On Wed. 13 September the Lodge once again opened its doors to welcome members and visitors. Past Assistant Grand Master, David Hay and his Director of Ceremonies, Nigel Watson were also present to celebrate a Diamond celebration in recognition 60 years of continual membership and Service for Ronald David Coates. It is probably no coincidence that David also attended for the presentation of a 50 year citation to David in 2013.
It was also the evening of the Fraternal visit from Tow Law Lodge. In total there were 21 members and 61 visitors in attendance.
David was married and has two children. He worked for the railways and then joined his mother in the family business at Willington Post Office where he served for many years as Postmaster until he retired. He is fondly remembered by the townspeople.
As part of the evening David presented a short history of Willington in the 1800s which was well received and enjoyed by the audience.
David has a long and distinguishes career as a freemason. It began when he was initiated, into Willington Lodge, at the age of 23 years and has had a continual working involvement ever since.
The citation was the presented to David by David Hay and an outline of David’s life, career and Masonic career was given as follows:
Having taken a very active interest in the Lodge David went on to be Master in 1976 and has since served as Secretary, Assistant Secretary and Treasurer at various times and is an active ritualist who helps out and fills in when other members are not available.
In recognition of this he was awarded the position of Past Provincial Junior Grand Deacon in 1986 and was promoted to Past Provincial Junior Grand Warden in 2014.
David was always a member with a keen interest in Freemasonry and continued with this by Joining Willington Chapter in 1972. In this he was promoted Provincial Grand Steward in 2009.
David is always known to be available to offer advice and help others and many have benefitted from his vast experience.
Everyone then retired to the festive Board where a very enjoyable meal was served by the wives of the brethren.
Following the formal toasts David responded to a toast proposed to him by Geoff Dunn. He thanked everyone for their support and concluded by saying,” That we should stay healthy and enjoy the craft”.
The raffle very commendably raised £770 of which 50% will be donated to Durham Benevolence and %50 to Butterwick hospice.
The evening closing and many Brethren remained to chat and enjoy the companionship and friendship which we have all missed due to the Pandemic.