Michael Rushton has been installed into the chair of King Solomon at the installation meeting of West Lancashire Lodge No 1403 held at Southport Masonic Hall.
After the opening of the lodge by WM Peter Martin and the usual business being completed, DC Jeff Iveson retired from the lodge and on his return announced that Assistant Provincial Grand Master David Grainger was outside the lodge and demanded admittance. Peter responded that the lodge members would be very happy to receive him. David was then admitted in due form.
On this occasion David Grainger was accompanied by the Chairman of the Southport Group Colin Jenkins, together with acting Provincial grand officers who were admitted to the lodge and formally greeted. Peter then invited Ken Milne to assist him by occupying the senior warden’s chair, David Bradbury to assist him by occupying the junior warden’s chair and Alan Sainter to continue to act as inner guard for the installation ceremony.
Peter than asked all those below the degree of a fellowcraft to retire and the lodge was opened in the second degree. The master elect Michael Rushton was then presented to Peter by his father Andrew. Michael then reaffirmed his unqualified assent and support of the essential ancient charges and regulations and was then placed before the WM’s pedestal where he recited his obligation with respect to his duties as master of the lodge.
All brethren below the degree of a master Mason were then asked to retire and the lodge was opened in the third degree. Peter then requested all those under the rank of an installed master to withdraw for a short period and a board of installed masters was opened. Michael having already been installed as master on a previous occasion was then required to reaffirm his obligation and was, according to ancient custom, installed into the chair of King Solomon, in what everyone agreed was an excellent ceremony, well executed by Peter who was very ably assisted by the officers of the lodge.
The brethren were then admitted by rank and Michael was proclaimed master of West Lancashire Lodge for the ensuing year. The third degree working tools were presented by Keith Wilson, the second degree working tools by Wayne Warhurst and the first degree working tools by Eric Morris. Peter then presented the lodge warrant, Book of Constitutions and the by-laws of the lodge to Michael.
Michael then appointed and invested his officers starting with Peter his immediate past master. The ceremony of appointing and investing officers being completed was the cue for Andrew Ruston to deliver the address to the WM. Following this the distinguished guest David Grainger gave a very clear and eloquent address to brethren of the lodge.
At the completion of the installation, David Grainger brought greetings from the Provincial Grand Master Tony Harrison, extending Tony’s sincere congratulations to Michael on being installed in the master’s chair for a second time and hoped he would enjoy his year in office. David then complimented Peter and also congratulated the officers who took part in what was a very enjoyable ceremony. Michael then presented David with two cheques; £200 Southport Masonic Hall Foundation and £200 West Lancashire Freemasons’ Charity. David thanked the lodge members on behalf of the recipients for their generosity.
After the ceremony, the festive board was attended by 40 brethren who were all in high spirits and enjoyed a very fine meal which is a benefit of having the hall chef as a member of the lodge. To end the evening’s festivities Michael thanked everyone who had attended and took part in the ceremony and mentioned that the collection upstairs raised £81 for the charities.