Provincial Almoners Letter from Andover

Dear Brethren All, 

I am very pleasantly surprised as to how many of you mention this letter from Andover to me, thank you, it makes the task worthwhile.

The garden is looking very colourful at the moment with various varieties of daffodils in bloom together with grape hyacinths, pink hyacinths, snowdrops, showing spring has arrived. The broad beans are flourishing well in spite of having been covered in snow recently. The ground is too wet to do any digging and the lawns need trimming when they dry out. They are though looking nice and green. Pat managed to plant a climbing rose ready to adorn a new wooden arch that has been erected in the garden, thankfully within half an hour the heavens opened and gave the plant a good soaking.

I have been involved with a couple of Masonic events this week which I have enjoyed for different reasons. On Thursday I was privileged to attend Sebastion’s House in Popham, together with V. W. Bro John Bell, President of the Board of the M.B.F., together with W. Bro. Nigel Wilkinson, Provincial Grand Charity Steward, where a cheque for £2,250 was presented towards supplying new beds. This home relies completely on Charity giving, it provides accommodation for families who have children suffering from cancer and near life’s end. I found it a humbling experience, having been shown around the premises, which are purpose built. There will be photographs published regarding this visit thanks to W. Bro Terry Nye who also attended.

The other event was the Centenary Meeting of Portsdown Lodge of Royal Ark Mariners Lodge, No,739 at Purbrook. The M.W. Bro. John Prizeman, Pro Grand Master, was in attendance together with the Provincial Grand Master, Rt. W. Bro. George Deacon and a goodly number of Provincial and Grand Officers. The Pro. Grand Master presented a Centenary Warrant to the Lodge and we witnessed an excellent Elevation Ceremony to bring Bro. Matthew Round into the Order.

Today I attended the Care and Support Seminar arranged by the Craft Almoner, W. Bro. Malcolm Collier, assisted by W. Bro Malcolm Childs and others. Once again this was well presented and very informative. I came away with extra knowledge on some important subjects. It also gave me the opportunity to discuss matters with some of the Mark Almoners who approached me. I thank the P.G.M. Rt. W. Bro Jonathan Whitaker for his involvement in this event.      

Malcolm Lloyd, P.G.S.D., Prov. Grand Almoner