"A unique meeting", so described by PPGM Richard Goddard, happened on Saturday 18 January at Kings Heath.
More than 150 Ladies, Gentlemen and Brethren witnessed the presentation of a Certificate of 50 years standing as a Freemason to the IPDepPGM Stuart Ian Edwards by our PGM, R.W. Bro Robert Vaughan.
Their double act was memorable for its good humour and friendly fencing, a truly astonishing record emerging of Stuart's early friendship with Barrie Cooper, our Past PGM but one, Barrie's father, and Stuart's own father who some of us remembered well. The contribution which Stuart gave as Provincial Treasurer, before becoming a Ruler was acknowledged by our PGM, who then described his eminence at Mark Master Masons' Hall, Career as Inspector General for the District of Staffordshire and Shropshire in Rose Croix and other exploits cut cruelly short by his accident.
It was particularly significant to us all then to have Valerie Edwards with us, Stuart's wife and supportive partner, to mark their magnificent performance together since it occurred. The PrGDC Peter Broughton rounded this off perfectly with a Proclamation and then invitation to sing : " For he's a jolly good fellow " which nobody could deny.
Stuart suitably responded, explaining he had shed both weight and spectacles, and was better for that.
There followed an apt musical presentation by WBros. Cliff Bull and Mario Rizzardi, generously given by them to support Festival 2020 and our meeting, beautifully performed and including humorous verses and touches, which was delightful.
Before the transactions of Lodge Room No.1 were over the PGM announced the Provincial Wardens to be appointed and invested at the meeting of PGL at the Chateau Impney in June this year. Senior Warden: Steve Middleditch; Junior Warden: Mark Gunton. Both W.Bros were present and received well deserved acclamation.
The Lodge was Opened, Called off and then on in Regular Form, and Closed in the comparative calm of Lodge Room No. 2 under the expert supervision of Lodge DC , everyone assembling in good fellowship in Lodge room 1 for the presentations described above.
The Festive Board was deliberately inclusive of non-Masons with a much shortened Toast list but nevertheless a Seasonal and appropriate Toast to our Visitors by JW. Ian Fothergill, incarnate as Rabbie Burns yet again. The proceedings were rounded off by a gift of flowers to Val Edwards from the Lodge which she received with grace and obvious pleasure. A great day in the history of the Lodge.