Over 50 brethren gathered at New Sanctuary Lodge No 6604 at Cleveleys Masonic Hall for a celebration of 50 years in Freemasonry of Alan Dean. The initial business of the lodge was transacted by the master Ian Winnard and then it was time to receive Assistant Provincial Grand Master Harry Cox, accompanied by grand officers Malcolm Worsley, David Randerson, North Fylde Group Chairman Duncan Smith and group vice chairman Peter Greathead, ably supported by acting Provincial grand officers Philip Houldsworth, Jim Finnegan, Jason Dell, Daren Gardner and Joe Codling.
The master welcomed Harry Cox and offered him the gavel of office, which was accepted and Harry took the master’s chair. He introduced the main business of the meeting which was to honour Alan’s 50 years in Freemasonry. For this purpose, Alan was seated directly in front of the master’s chair. As he does so well, Harry set the scene for the year of Alan’s birth, 1946.
Alan Frank Dean was born at St Annes War Memorial Hospital, St Annes-on-Sea on 10 June 1946 into a family who can be traced back to the 14th Century. Shortly after Alan’s birth, his father Frank, mother Florence, big sister Carol and he moved to a new house in Harwood Avenue, St Annes and spent many happy years there together.
In 1957 he attended Ansdell Secondary Modern School and eagerly grasped all opportunities offered by the school, becoming captain of the school football and athletics teams, house captain, prefect and finally head boy. In 1963 he started his first job with NORWEB as an administrative trainee and in 1965 began work in the Civil Service. He started as a clerical officer, progressing through the ranks to senior principal. He retired from government service in 2006 and became a freelance consultant.
He married Linda on 30 June 1973 at St Annes Parish Church, and they have two children, Charlotte and Nicholas.
He was proposed into Freemasonry by Derek Moore and seconded by Peter Caird and was initiated on 13 December 1967, aged 21. At this point in the celebrations, the secretary of the lodge read a précis of the minutes of that meeting.
Alan progressed steadily through the various offices and in 1978 was installed by Eddie Cranshaw into the chair of King Solomon. On leaving the chair, he continued to be very active in the lodge and became assistant director of ceremonies in 1982 until 1988 when he was appointed director of ceremonies and continued in that post until 1994, thereafter serving as charity steward from 1994 to 1997. His contribution to Masonry was recognised with an appointment as a Past Provincial Senior Grand Deacon in 1989 and he was promoted to Past Provincial Junior Grand Warden in 1997.
The certificate in recognition of 50 years in Freemasonry was then read by the group chairman Duncan Smith and presented by Harry Cox. In conclusion, Harry wished Alan health, happiness and fulfilment in his Masonry. The brethren showed their appreciation in the traditional West Lancashire way. Lodge stalwart Neil Scott then delivered the unique piece entitled ‘The Morality’, in splendid fashion.
Master of the lodge Ian Winnard resumed his rightful place in the lodge and thanked Harry Cox for a wonderful presentation. On the first rising, Duncan Smith presented Alan with his lapel badge to mark 50 years in the craft.
The lodge meeting was followed by a wonderful festive board, at which further praise was bestowed upon Alan by his brother-in-law Chris Williams with a heartfelt address, which was responded to by Alan with warmth and sincerity. This special evening was concluded with the tyler’s toast from Barry Hague.