L to R: W.Bro. Mark Golding, Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies, W.Bro. Daniel Heath, Asst. Grand Secretary, RW.Bro Ernest Stevens, Past District Provincial Grand Master River Plate, R.W.Bro. John Prizeman Deputy Grand Master, W.Bro. David Hilton Worshipful Commander, R.W.Bro Bob Stokes Provincial Grand Master, W.Bro. Ian McLachlan, Senior Warden and W.Bro. Mark Constant, Provincial Assistant Grand Director of Ceremonies.
In the month of June 1918 a group of brethren in Peterborough decided to form a Royal Ark Mariner Lodge from which the Powys R.A.M. Lodge No. 477 was later constituted and moored to the Fitzwilliam Lodge of Mark Master Masons No. 477.
The first Commander was Lord Lilford who was the first of four brethren of the Lodge subsequently to attain the Office of Provincial Grand Master. On 5th October 2018 the brethren of Powys assembled to celebrate the Centenary of the Lodge in the presence of the Deputy Grand Master, R.W.Bro. John Prizeman and the Provincial Grand Master, R.W.Bro. Robert Stokes, two Past Provincial Grand Masters and a Past District Grand Master of the District of the River Plate.
The committee which had been formed to plan the celebration comprised W.Bro. David Hilton, Commander, W.Bro. Robin Johnstone, Scribe and W.Bro. Richard Asher, Treasurer.
Following the Lodge being opened by its Officers the Provincial Grand Master entered with his Wardens and active Provincial Grand Officers accompanied by holders of Royal Ark Mariner Grand Rank under the direction of W.Bro. Mark Constant, Provincial Grand Grand Deputy D.C. The Provincial Grand Master accepted the Lodge Sceptre and placed his Officers.
The Deputy Grand DC, W.Bro. Mark Golding, sought admission and advised that the Deputy Grand Master was outside the Lodge and that he demanded admission. The Deputy Grand Master entered the Lodge, to spontaneous applause, carrying a scroll accompanied by the Assistant Grand Secretary, W.Bro. Dan Heath. Offered the Sceptre by the Provincial Grand Master he accepted and took the Chair.
The Assistant Grand Secretary was asked to read out the original Lodge warrant the wording of which was significantly different to that which appears on a warrant today, referring, amongst other things, to the Colonies and Dependences – how times have changed? The Assistant Grand Secretary then read the Centenary Warrant which the Deputy Grand Master presented to the Worshipful Commander.
At the request of the Commander, the Deputy Grand Master then presented Centenary Jewels to each of the brethren of the lodge. The Worshipful Commander was pleased to present a Jewel to the Deputy Grand Master and to each of his team and to the Provincial Grand Master.
The Brethren present received a booklet covering the history of the Lodge’s first hundred years researched and written by the Worshipful Commander, W.Bro. David Hilton.
The Commander then gave a brief oration of the first Hundred Years and was thanked by W.Bro. Richard Asher for all his work in researching and preparing the presentation.
The Lodge being restored to its Officers, the Commander then proceeded to install Bro Ian McLachlan as his successor.
With the approval of the Deputy Grand Master and to complete the evening the Provincial Grand Master was pleased to confer a field appointment of ProvRAMGR to W.Bro. David Hilton in recognition of his two consecutive years as Lodge Commander and for his work on the Centenary Committee whilst researching the Lodge history booklet.
The brethren retired to enjoy a wonderful festive board of Royal Ark Mariner fellowship during which and to the enjoyment of all, the Deputy Grand Master gave an entertaining reply to his toast.
By: W.Bro Richard Asher GJD