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Provincial Grand Master, RWBro Norman Eric Heaviside

Eric was born at Whittonstall, near Consett and spent all of his first 40 years in the Consett area. After attending Consett Grammar School he then began his working career at Consett Iron Co, which later became British Steel Corporation.

He was appointed as an Assistant Provincial Grand Master in 1997 and continued in that position until 2006 when he became Deputy Provincial Grand Master and was later Installed as Provincial Grand Master and Grand Superintendent on 4th September 2008, following the death of his predecessor and great friend Derek Richmond.

Eric has always had a keen interest in music and for many years was a member of Consett Citizens Choir and has entertained many Festive Boards around the Province with his fine bass voice. Eric is married to Sue and they have been married for 45 years. They have no children.

To contact Eric click here


Deputy Provincial Grand Master, VWBro John Arthur

John spent his entire career in the Steel industry holding numerous management and senior management posts in different locations before retiring from his role as Director Special Profiles in 2008.

John was  invested as  an Assistant Provincial Grand Master on 7th January 2011, after the November meeting was cancelled on the day due to dangerous winter weather. On his appointment John assumed responsibility for the Lodges in the East of the Province, he was invested as Deputy Provincial Grand Master on Friday 28th November 2014

If he has any free time he lists his other interests as following rugby union; photography; music; movies; current affairs; reading and keeping on top of the gardening. John and his wife Joan have no children and live in Great Broughton, North Yorkshire with their border collie Cleo.

To contact John click here

Assistant Provincial Grand Master, WBro John David Watts

Retiring from the Police as a Detective Inspector in 2011 John received the Northumbria Police Lifetime Achievement Award and subsequently attended the annual national police awards ceremony where he was ‘specially commended’ by the Home Secretary.

John lives with partner Mark, an Architect, at a marina development on Newcastle’s Quayside and in any spare time enjoys foreign travel, caravanning, DIY, gardening, and motoring as well as being a Northumbria Blood Bike volunteer.

Appointed on 23rd June 2012, John is responsible for the lodges that meet in the North of the Province and is also Chairman of Durham Benevolence.

To contact John click here

Assistant Provincial Grand Master, WBro Stephen William Walker

Stephen was born in Darlington and currently lives near Yarm. He married Helen in 1980 and together they owned and ran two community pharmacies, but they are now retired. They have three children, who all live in the Teesside area and two granddaughters.

Stephen was appointed on the 28th June 2014 with responsibility for Lodges meeting in the South of the Province.

Outside Freemasonry, Stephen is a Justice of the Peace, enjoys trying to play golf, scuba diving and spending time with his family. He is also very fortunate in having a wife who enjoys foreign holidays and feels compelled to accompany her at every opportunity.

Assistant Provincial Grand Master, Simon Craig Steele

Craig was born in Darlington and educated in Leeds and Middlesbrough. After graduating from The University of Leeds in 1981 he worked as a junior doctor in Yorkshire, Nottinghamshire and the North East before being appointed as a Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist at Sunderland Royal Hospital in 1994.

Craig has been married to Liz, a nurse, for over 30 years, they have two sons and a daughter. In the past, he has completed the Great North Run on nine occasions but more recently, has opted for a slower pace and has acquired an allotment. He regularly enjoys the fruits, and vegetables, of his labours.

After his appointment on 28th November 2014 Craig has been responsible for lodges that meet in the East of the Province and is also Vice Chairman of Durham Benevolence.

To contact Craig click here

Assistant Provincial Grand Master, John Paul Thompson

John was born in Billingham in 1968 and has lived all of his life in the Town. He has been married to Andrea for over 27 years, they have three children Danni, Joseph and Katie.

John was appointed Provincial Junior Grand Warden in 2013 and Promoted to Past Provincial Senior Grand Warden in 2014 and in Grand Lodge to PAGStB in 2015.

After his appointment on 30th November 2017 John was given responsibility for the Lodges in the West of the Province as well as continuing as our 2021 Festival Director.

To contact John click here

Provincial Grand Secretary, WBro Tom Gittins

Tom has 35 years’ experience in education, 25 of which were spent in the role of Head Teacher, in three schools. He retired at the end of 2014. He has been happily married to Gillian for 35 years and they have two grown up children, Jonathan and Ellie.

Having already served the Province as a Past Provincial Grand Steward and Communications Officer for the South of the Province, Tom became the Provincial Grand Secretary on 1st January 2016.

To contact Tom click here

Deputy Grand Superintendent, EComp Paul Philip Paterson

Paul was born in Sunderland and educated at Southmoor School and Durham University. Having trained in accountancy, he pursued a career in finance, finally retiring in 2007. He married Jill in 1973 and they have two children, Rachael and Giles, and one granddaughter, Isobel and two grandsons Janek and Oliver.

Paul was appointed on 1st November 2011 after serving as Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies for the Craft and prior to his appointment Second Provincial Grand Principal.

Outside of Freemasonry, Paul is a keen motorcyclist and a volunteer Blood Biker, he became a Founder Member of two motorcyclists’ lodges in Craft and Mark Masonry. Paul is a Church of England Lay Reader, and has a Master’s Degree in Theology.

001 Second Provincial Grand Principal, EComp Gordon Brewis

Gordon was born in Gateshead to a farming family who owned land between Gateshead and Birtley, now occupied by the Angel of the North.Educated locally in Birtley, Gordon decided to follow a very different career path starting as an architectural technician with a practice in Durham and continuing his education in Durham and Newcastle. He is currently Chairman of Howarth Litchfield Partnership in Newcastle.

Appointed on 28th May 2014 at the Annual Convocation after serving the Craft as Provincial Senior Grand Warden in 2012/13.

Gordon has been married to his wife Norma for 40 years and they have a son, Gary and daughter Karen and are the very proud grandparents of Freya and Isla both born in 2011.

002 Third Provincial Grand Principal, EComp Michael Stuart Shaw

Michael was born and educated in Stockton-on-Tees. He attended Leeds University, graduating in Chemical Engineering and  has worked for some time as a Chartered Chemical Engineer.

Since returning from a couple of years working in South Africa in the mid-1980s, Michael has lived in the village of Long Newton, just outside Stockton. Outside Freemasonry, Michael’s interests include music, especially classical. He organises regular concerts and musical events in Long Newton and is occasional organist at the village church.

Michael was appointed in his own Chapter on 13th March 2014 after serving the Royal Arch as Assistant to the Provincial Grand Principals since 2011.

  • 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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