The Province of Durham RAM Annual Assembly took place on Friday 31 March 2023 at Ferryhill Masonic Hall.
It was a packed Lodge room which welcomed the Provincial Grand Master, David Hanson and distinguished guests. This was of course, all done with the slick polished style we’ve come to expect from our Provincial Director of Ceremonies and his Team.
The Heads of Orders were given a traditional Durham welcome along with the special guest, Rt W Bro Walton, PGM for Northumberland.
Whilst there are formalities to complete, the main part of the evening was to celebrate the appointments and promotions in the Order.
The Royal Ark Mariner Provincial Team for the year can be found HERE
The recipients of Provincial Grand Rank are
Frederick William Lynas, Eclectic 39
Thomas Neil Hugill, Stockton-on-Tees 122
David John Anderson, Bede 605
Thomas Barr Jack, Bede 605
Alan Dargue, Hackworth 761
David Battensby, Moseley 925
Stephen Daniel McGlen, Castle Eden 930
Peter Harrison, Spennymoor 981
Ivan Jewell, Elevation 1112
Upon completion of the investiture, members of the Durham Lodge of Installed Commanders gave an explanation of the Royal Ark Mariner Tracing Board. In the picture (l to r) with the PGM are Don MacKenzie, Mark Gilpin and Fred Piggford.
The Provincial Grand Master, David Hanson addressed the RAM Annual Assembly and thanked everyone for being so inspirational in working so tirelessly for Lodges, the Province and Freemasonry in general. The continual efforts that everyone puts into help the charities and worthy causes. The support for the Durham 2029 Festival thus far has been amazing and despite difficult times, is so inspiring.
David congratulated all those he appointed or promoted. He stated how much joy it is to carry out the investiture and that it is the high point of the year. He also thanked them for the work they had done and likely to do in the future, for their Lodges and the Province. He also paid credit to the outgoing team.
David enthused about recruitment and retention of members. He encouraged everyone to consider colleagues in their Mark and Craft Lodges who may wish to join but are just waiting to be asked. But that is only one part of the equation, we must retain them once they join. The best way is to communicate and if they haven’t been for a little while, go talk to them, tell them how they are missed and welcome them back.
On closing, the PGM challenged everyone to seek out those Mark Masons who would enjoy this colourful degree and bring them into the Order.
The evening ended with a superb meal and fellowship in a sold-out hall. Everyone was looked after by the team of stewardesses and steward. The atmosphere was certainly one of enjoyment and catching up with old friends.