On the 26th of October the Provincial Grand Master, John Thompson, had the pleasure of leading his team of Provincial officers to the Lodge of Fraternity. Both members and visitors had gathered to celebrate a very special milestone in the history of the lodge; Lodge of Fraternity was consecrated one-hundred and fifty years ago in 1873.
All of the visitors were warmly welcomed into the lodge by its members and were then treated to a presentation led off by the Worshipful Master, Richard Barlow, and supported by his team of lodge officers. The presentation gave snippets of the lodge history through the years touching on founder members, membership during war time, some callouts to individual lodge members on various topics as well as peaks and troughs in membership over the time.
As part of the history it was highlighted that back in 2007 the lodge applied for membership of a new initiative from the United Grand Lodge of England. The initiative being the Universities Scheme, as a means of introducing Freemasonry to younger members. The lodge has a wide demographic ranging from 20 to 85 years of age. All of the brethren showed their appreciation of the presentation, and the hard work that has gone into it, in a manner usual among masons.
During the second rising Richard had the pleasure of presenting a cheque to John for masonic charitable purposes to the value of £1,418; which is the number of the lodge as a mark of the occasion. John was also able to surprise Richard by presenting him with a signed and framed certificate from The Provincial Grand Lodge of Durham for the lodge commemorating their 150 year achievement.
Downstairs at the festive board everyone in attendance was gifted a 2024 pocket calendar, a pen and also a booklet to commemorate the 150 years of the Lodge of Fraternity. John responded to his toast and thanked the lodge for their 150 years of service in the Province of Durham. John also highlighted what a proud achievement it is and how appreciative he was able to be there celebrating with the lodge members and visitors.