Our regular May meeting went smoothly, with the planned ceremony for a 2nd Degree passing for Brother Matt Gurmin. Again, we had a spectacular number of guests attend this meeting, with over 50 masons in attendance. Bro Matt’s ceremony was kindly conducted by W.Bro Colin Grant IPM, and Bro Matt’s words were very well delivered. Bro. Matt’s 1st Degree ceremony was conducted back on 30th July 2021 and has been a regular of both LOI and all social events of Royal Hanover Lodge.
After the 2nd Degree Ceremony, elections took place for the ensuing year for Master and Treasure. The ballot for Bro Thomas Jackson, who is currently serving as Senior Warden, was duly elected as Master Elect for the year 2022 to 2023. W.Bro. Tom Wood was also elected to continue as Treasurer for this coming year as well. We look forward to Bro. Thomas Jackson year and I am sure all brethren wish him good luck.
It was also lovely to see W.Bro Fred Chandler again, as our organist, after such a long time being away due to the pandemic and staying cautious, rightly so, but it felt like the Lodge was complete again.
We also held an election for a new Tyler of the Lodge as W.Bro Brian Kemp has decided to slow things down. We are happy to confirm that W.Bro John Mellor is now our new Tyler after a successful ballot for him, but we are sad to see W.Bro. John Kemp step down, we shall miss his wonderful melodic tones during the meeting.
As such, we made a special presentation to say thank you to Bro Brian, for his service to the Lodge as our Tyler, a cut-glass plaque with the Lodge crest and thank you message and a framed certificate thanking W.Bro. Brian as you can see below. Both were received with a big smile from Brian, claiming he would be placing this in his mantelpiece.
After the meeting closed in due order, we started the next part of the evening in high gear. As part of this years Platinum Jubilee celebration the United Kingdom was celebrating, Royal Hanover Lodge just had to put a special Festive Board together.
Platinum Jubilee Festive Board
We had the honour of playing host to two Pipers, Brother Iain Raymond Pipe Major of Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders (Princess Louise’s Regiment) (retired) & Brother John Shipton Trooper in Queens Household Calvary (retired) both wearing Balmoral Tartan Piper Uniform.
The brethren were called to dining by the pipers with “The Rowan Tree with Harmonies”. All the evening pipers’ melodies are known favourites of the Her Majesty The Queen.
The Master of the Lodge was then piped into the sound of “The Crags of Tumbledown Mountain”, another favourite of Her Majesty The Queen.
It is worth noting that, Brother Iain Raymond Pipe Major has served as official Piper at Balmoral Estate & Castle whilst Her Majesty The Queen was in residence, including morning reveille for Her Majesty The Queen. All of the evening piper melodies are those that are played for the Queen in the mornings and also during official occasions at Balmoral Castle.
As part of the festive board, each member and visitor of the meeting was given a custom placemat for the evening’s festivities, which has our Lodge History and how we have linked the Royal House of Hanover.
The festive board menu was specially chosen from dishes the Queen is known to enjoy, with Cole Court Chef Vitalij doing a great job along with his bar & dining staff team. Many members & guests commented on how good the food was this night and our previous meeting, so Thank You Vitalij.
(A) Game terrine with garlic rosemary toasted sourdough
(B) 8 colours vegetable broth (Vegan\Vegetarian)
(C) Roast Chicken breast with a mustard crème, roast potatoes and roasted root vegetables
(D) Wild foraged mushroom Risotto with truffle oil and parmesan (Vegan\Vegetarian)
(E) Apple and blackberry crumble with Baileys custards
After the main dining, our pipers as well as W.Bro Michael Karn on the organ began the next part of this evening’s festivities.
As this was a Platinum Jubilee Celebration, we decided to separate the Toast to The Queen and The Craft, so we could acknowledge Her Majesty The Queen with the first 2 verses of the National Anthem, followed by 3 melodies from the Pipers.
We would also like to thank you W.Bro Michael Karn for playing the organ for the 2 verses of the national anthem which was sung with great gusto as usual.
After all the toasts, we held our Masters Raffle, which raised over £300, with a great selection of prizes. As a final parting gift for all Members and Guests, a Platinum Jubilee Tin of Shortbread Biscuits was handed around by the stewards of the Lodge.
On a lighter note, we have finally solved “The Cheddar” problem the Lodge Members (Actually only one member) seem to have a challenge with every meeting. Being from Lancashire, Brother Mike Ross does not do fancy cheese, not smoked, not blue, not runny but proper Cheddar is the only style he recognises. As such, we thought we would stock him up to make up for all the cheeses courses he has missed his Cheddar.
A 2 Kilo lump of Mature Cheddar was dutifully presented, which he dived straight in without crackers, to begin with. Still, we insisted he behaves himself and soon after he had a few crackers as well as made sure everyone had a piece of cheddar as well. He was delighted and it completed a very British event, with Union Jacks and Cheddar. Who knew it would be this easy to make him so happy!