Email: Tel: 0191 567 5365


A Welcome from the Provincial Grand Almoner, WBro Paul Debenham

It is an enormous honour for me to serve as Provincial Grand Almoner for the Province of Durham. It gives me the privilege of heading the Provincial Welfare Team, comprising of the Visiting Volunteers, Caring Volunteers, a Caring Committee and the Lodge Almoners.

Each of these groups has a vitally important role to play in the effective provision of Masonic welfare and you, being a member of the Welfare Team, have an equally important role within that team. I am aware that the work involved can be time consuming, frustrating and sometimes upsetting but there is a reward in the satisfaction of knowing that you have helped a Brother or Companion and his dependants in their hour of need.   

To assist and support you in your duties, I am delighted to launch this new link providing the latest relevant news and information from United Grand Lodge and Province on matters of welfare. It will also give you access to a wide range of extensively researched information which will enable you to be better informed and prepared in your work. In addition, please make your Members aware of the resources too so they can benefit from them as well.

As Provincial Grand Almoner I would like to take this opportunity to thank each individual within the Province who gives so generously of their time to improve the welfare of our Members and their families.

I can always be contacted on


The Lodge Almoner 

The Almoner’s role is a pastoral one and plays a vital part in the life of every Lodge and Province and in recent times this has been recognised and acknowledged by Grand Lodge and Provincial Grand Lodges to be of great importance. With people now living longer, the work of the Almoner will continue to expand.

As the “eyes and ears“ of the Lodge, an Almoner should be a good “listener” and must be alert to the needs and problems of Freemasons and their families. He should keep in touch and maintain regular contact with sick or distressed Lodge members, widowed partners and families of recently deceased brethren as well as those who are not in regular attendance for whatever reason. He should also be familiar with and able to keep them informed of the Masonic help and support available to them.

Record keeping and reporting are a key part of his role. The Secretary will hold the personal data of each member which, subject to the correct consent having been obtained, will be made available to the Almoner. The Almoner should maintain his copy of that record, including if possible the details of widowed partners and dependants of resigned or excluded brethren. He should also ensure the Secretary is updated with changes of which he becomes aware. Subject to consent having been given, the Almoner should report on those Brethren, their partners or families at a Lodge meeting. In addition, a good Almoner will make himself aware of happier events such as birthdays, births and special wedding anniversaries so that the Lodge can send appropriate greetings. 

The jewel worn by the Lodge Almoner is a scrip purse on which is a heart.

Useful Resources


Complete Almoner’s Guide (Follow Useful Resources link, above, for individual items).

  • TLC Teddy Initiative……

    “thank you Freemasons for the thousands of teddies donated to children’s casualty departments”

  • Community Support Grants…..

    “The grant from Durham Freemasons has made an enormous difference to our service users”

  • Provincial Annual Meeting….

    “The Provincial annual meeting is one of the highlights of my year, it’s great to meet everyone and support all those being rewarded for merit”….

  • Masonic Widows……

    “My husband would be so proud that you still contact me so many years after his death, thank you for remembering me”

  • Provincial Meeting…..

    “The Provincial annual meeting is one of the highlights of my year, it’s great to meet everyone and support all those being rewarded for merit”

  • The Royal Arch…..

    “I feel that I have a much better understanding of the whole Masonic story after joining the Royal Arch”

  • What have you gained?

    “I’ve made wonderful friendships with people from all walks of life who I wouldn’t otherwise have even met”

  • In respect to the TLC Teddy initiative

    “A child patient copes with medical treatment so much better when they’ve been given a TLC teddy”

  • What Freemasonry has done for you?

    “The teachings of the masonic ceremonies helped me to be a better father, better husband, better son and better neighbour”What Freemasonry has done for you

  • One of the best things I have ever done…

    “Along with getting married, the birth of my children and Sunderland winning the FA Cup, becoming a Freemason is one of the best things I’ve ever done”

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