Steve is new WM of 151 years old Hesketh Lodge

Terry Hudson (left) and Roger Perry congratulate Steve Heginbotham on attaining the mastership of Hesketh Lodge.

Terry Hudson (left) and Roger Perry congratulate Steve Heginbotham on attaining the mastership of Hesketh Lodge.

Steve Heginbotham became the newest master of venerable Hesketh Lodge No 950, which was consecrated in 1863, in what proved to be a memorable and enjoyable installation ceremony held at Fleetwood Masonic Hall.

Representing the PrGM Tony Harrison was grand officer Roger Perry who was accompanied by PAPrGM.Terry Hudson who has a long association with the lodge and who officiated at its 150 years celebrations.

North Fylde Group Chairman Duncan Smith and a great many Provincial officers were also present for the ceremony.

Steve heard from outgoing WM Phil Rogers, as he completed the early business of the lodge, that he has a busy year ahead with the announcement that a ballot proved in favour of one candidate and that there is another waiting in the wings.

Also on the agenda was an item which saw lodge members approve the honorary membership of former master of the QEII Bob Arnott, RD. Senior Provincial Officer Jack I’Anson paid tribute to Bob’s long and successful merchant navy career with the Blue Funnel and Cunard Lines and charted his career as a fine example of a Fleetwood Nautical College student who had gone on to do well.

John Darrell (left) toasts Steve Heginbotham with the master’s song.

John Darrell (left) toasts Steve Heginbotham with the master’s song.

Steve was well and truly installed into the chair of the oldest lodge in the North Fylde Group by Mike Lamerton who acted as installing master. Mike in turn invited Derek Williams to act as ISW, Bob Stringer as IJW and Ron Fenton to take post as IIG.

Jack I’Anson presented Steve as master elect and Mike, who hails originally from Cornwall, soon got into his stride to get the installation underway in a manner which was later to earn him plaudits for ‘an excellent ceremony’ from Roger Perry who is from rival county Devon. Roger quipped that it was not often that a Devonshire man had good words to say about a Cornishman.

Jack delivered the address to the WM and Derek Williams the address to the wardens. In turn David Grassie, Bill Acton and Mark Ivison presented the working tools of each degree.

After he had addressed the brethren Roger brought the good wishes and congratulations of the PrGM to Steve and the officers who had supported him in the installation ceremony. Steve presented Roger with two cheques one for £200 and another for £500 both for the West Lancashire Freemasons’ Charity for which Roger thanked the lodge on behalf of the ultimate beneficiaries.

Steve Heginbotham (left) hears “there is no response required” as Roger Perry and the Provincial officers toast his health.

Steve Heginbotham (left) hears “there is no response required” as Roger Perry and the Provincial officers toast his health.

After a very sumptuous festive board Roger said how delighted he was with the warmth of the welcome he had received from the members of Hesketh Lodge and how much he and Terry Hudson had enjoyed their day.

He relayed several important messages which the PrGM had asked him to underline to the brethren which included the three R’s of recruitment, retention and retrieval concerning membership, the importance of supporting the WLFC; citing the ‘Winder Walk’ in which the Lancaster Group had raised £5,000 as a prime example. He spoke too about best practice in running a successful lodge and how all Masons should consider themselves mentors. He said that though Hesketh was a very long established lodge it had proved to be very modern in its approach. He wished Steve and the lodge a successful year.

The new WM was treated to a fine rendition of the master’s song by John Darrell and, after a toast to his health by Phil Rogers, Steve went on to say how delighted he was to have attained the master’s chair and how  eagerly he looked forward to the year ahead.

Pictured from left to right are: Roger Perry, Steve Heginbotham, Mike Lamerton and Duncan Smith.

Pictured from left to right are: Roger Perry, Steve Heginbotham, Mike Lamerton and Duncan Smith.