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The Calm after the Storm (Blizzard!)


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On Wednesday 5th December 2012, as gritters struggle to keep the main roads open and the UK was battered with arctic conditions and the North East bearing the brunt of it. Palmer Lodge No.9255 celebrated their 25th Anniversary with a visit from the Provincial Grand Master, RtWBro Norman Eric Heaviside and a full Deputation of his Officers. When the skies opened around lunch time and the blizzard conditions showed no sign of easing up, the Deputation, being from all over the Province looked in serious jeopardy.

However, with Durham Freemasons being made of tougher stuff the members of the Deputation and the visitors on the evening started to arrive, most a little arctic blasted and some a little late but by the time the meeting started the Deputation was almost complete with only a handful of people who just simply could not move, with closed roads and 3-4 hour queuing traffic. The most notable absentee being WBro George Clark, the Deputy Provincial Grand Master who had to give up after almost 2 hours of trying.

The visitors were given the normal warm Palmer welcome and the meeting was underway by 6.45pm. After the Lodge business was conducted the Inner Guard gave the report that the Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies was at the door, he was then admitted and informed the Brethren that the Provincial Grand Master with a Deputation of his Provincial Officers demanded admission. RtWBro Heaviside then took the Chair of the Lodge along with his Wardens and the normal Salutations were observed.

After the Chairs were handed back to the Lodge Officers, The Provincial Grand Master thanked the Lodge for letting him have the privilege of taking the chair and asked the Worshipful Master to carry on with the business of the evening.

WBro Ron Smith, PPJGW the founding Immediate Past Master of the Lodge then addressed the Brethren and gave them a short but most interesting insight into the motivation behind the founding of the Lodge and the reasons for its name and meeting place, this went down extremely well with the Brethren who showed their appreciation in the usual manner. WBro Barry Gowens, PPJGW, Founding Senior Deacon of the Lodge and now Chaplain, then spoke for a short while to remember the Founders of the Lodge more especially the Founders who are no longer with us.

At The Second Rising the Worshipful Master, WBro James Irvin Carney presented the Provincial Grand Master with 2 cheques, one for ¬£200 to be given to the TLC Teddy Appeal and the other for ¬£1,500 to be donated to the Lodge’s Continuous Giving Relief Chest. The PGM thanked the Lodge for its generosity before he gave greetings on behalf of the Provincial Grand Lodge of Durham.

At the Festive Board the usual toasts were observed with the PGM replying to his own toast after being presented with an unusual bottle of Penderyn Welsh Whiskey and the Junior Warden delivering the Toast to the Lodge, which was very informed and received particularly well by the Members of the Lodge.

All in all an excellent night was had by those who attended and the Worshipful Master, Officers and Brethren of the Lodge would like to thank all the Brethren who battled the elements to help make this night so special, and for all those who unfortunately where literally stopped in their tracks by the cruel weather, the Lodge offer and invitation to their 50th Anniversary, in 2037 (or any other meeting in between now and then).

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