In all lodges there are events which are remembered: some joyously, some sad and some just with the satisfaction of having completed a task well. The events chronicled here, may be remembered by individuals, perhaps of giving them that feeling of being satisfied in their own minds, as well as to the collective pleasure of the other members of the Lodge.
An Emergency Meeting was held on the 14th May 1958 to Raise Bro. Leslie Carter and Bro. Ronald Siddall.
At the ninth Regular meeting of the Lodge, held on the 7th November 1958, W.Bro. Alec Hawley announced that he was delighted to present to the Lodge on behalf of a Brother who wished to remain anonymous, a Charity Column, in appreciation of the happiness this Brother enjoyed from his Masonic friendships, particularly those in the Stanwell Lodge.
The sixteenth Regular Meeting held on Wednesday the 13th Apri1 1960, It was announced that a three month period of Masonic mourning had commenced, for R.W.Bro. Philip C.Bull, DSO.,T.D. who died on 23rd March 1960.
At the same meeting, W.Bro. George Parker presented a Pedestal Fall to the lodge from an anonymous donor. The W.M., on behalf of all the members of the Lodge, thanked the unknown donor for his gift to the Lodge. (This Pedestal Fall is still in use and is much admired: the needlework is superb).
The February 8th meeting of 1961 saw the announcement of the Provincial Grand Master’s appeal for support for the 1966 Festival of the Masonic Benevolent Institution. W.Bro. Ted Turnbull was elected by the Lodge to be the Lodge’s Festival Steward.
It was Proposed and Seconded at the meeting held on the 11th April 1961, to form a Lodge of Instruction, sponsored by the Lodge. Details of the venue, Preceptors and dates of meetings were given by W.Bro. Leslie Carter, who Proposed the motion. It was also proposed that the Bye-Laws of the Lodge of Instruction should be approved by the Lodge, both propositions were carried unanimously.
At the Meeting of the 11th April 1962, it was reported that there was a waiting list of seven (7) for admission into the Lodge.
The 12th December 1962 saw the proposition, of the Lodge holding a fifth meeting of the year and that meeting to be held on the First Friday in October 1963 and to continue thereafter. It was also proposed to amend the Lodge Bye-Laws accordingly, the motion was carried unanimously.
At the 30th Regular Meeting on Friday 1st November 1963 the Treasurer in presenting the Lodge accounts, stated that losses on the balance sheet, were occasioned by the Brethren not taking enough care to advise the Secretary of the number of guests they were likely to bring to the meetings. It was pointed out that the Caterers had to be advised of numbers dining a week before the meeting, but that he could accept amendments up to 48 hours prior to the meeting, failing this the Lodge was expected to pay for the numbers submitted and that the Lodge had and that the Lodge had paid the Caterers £6.8s.0d for meals which it had not had at the October meeting.
Bro. Secretary proposed and W.Bro. Mobbs seconded, that although the Lodge had no desire to profit from it, where the Lodge faced a deficit caused by Brethren not doing their utmost to keep the Secretary posted of their guests, those Brethren would be asked to pay for non attending guests. Exceptional circumstances would of course be taken into account. The motion was carried.
At the meeting of the 4th November 1966 it was announced that to commemorate the outstanding achievement of the Province for the RMBI Festival, the Festival Badge had been designated a Permanent Masonic Jewel for those Brethren of the Province who had served as Stewards. The Festival jewel may now be worn on all Masonic occasions, in accordance with the provisions of Rule 241.
February the 12th 1969, saw the launch of an appeal by the Provincial Grand Master for £20,000.00 to be donated to the Royal Masonic Hospital. The Lodge pledged its whole hearted support.
Friday the 15th November 1971, saw the Proposal that the Stanwell Lodge agree to the formation of the Stanwell Chapter. This was carried. The Petition was then signed in open Lodge by the Master and his Wardens.
At the meeting of the 13th February 1974, three silver goblets which had been purchased on behalf of the Lodge in memory of W.Bro. A.F.Petrie, Founding Junior Warden, and later Secretary of the Lodge, were handed to the Senior Warden for use at the Festive Board by the Master and Wardens.
At the 11th December 1974 meeting, W.Bro. F.E.Day of Ealing Lodge No.2662 a frequent visitor to the Lodge, presented the Lodge with a beautifully illustrated Bible, to mark the happy times he had spent in the Lodge. The Worshipful Master on behalf of the Lodge, accepted the Bible, tendering to W.Bro Day the grateful thanks of the Lodge.
W.Bro Day subsequently became a Joining member of the Lodge.
The 1st October meeting 1976, the Worshipful Master welcomed to the Lodge, W.Bro. Currie, the reigning Master of the Needles Lodge No.2833 (Hants & I.o.W.) the first Initiate of Stanwell Lodge to become the Master of another Lodge.
At the meeting of 14th February 1979, W.Bro. F.Richardson informed the Lodge that a Brother had generously and anonymously presented the Lodge with 6 Stewards collars. The Worshipful Master thanked the anonymous donor on behalf of the Lodge.
The meeting of the 13th February 1980, letters were read out in Lodge from Mrs Muspratt thanking the Lodge for their continuing support with her children’s education. In her letter Mrs Muspratt also gave an account of the successes of her daughter in various examinations after leaving the Royal Masonic School for Girls. Stanwell Lodge had been joint sponsors of Miss Muspratt and her Brother in attending the Girls and Boys schools respectively.
Friday the 2nd October 1981 was the 25th Anniversary of the Lodge, the occasion was marked by an Official Visit by W.Bro.G.L.Bourne, PJGD, Assistant Provincial Grand Master.
At the meeting of Wednesday the 14th April 1982 the Lodge saw a demonstration of an Initiation Ceremony circa. 1756 given by members of the CTO Telecoms Masonic Association, which was enjoyed by all present.
At the meeting held on Friday the 1st October 1982, the Worshipful Master extended a very warm welcome to the visiting Brethren, with a special welcome to Bro. Gerald Gilbert on his safe return from his recent ordeal on H.M.S. Coventry, which had been sunk during the conflict in the Falkland Islands. (Bro. Gilbert was a serving Petty Officer in the Royal Navy). Later, during the meeting, Bro Gilbert received a replacement Grand Lodge Certificate from Bro. Secretary, to replace the original lost during the conflict. Bro. Gilbert is a Lewis and his Father W.Bro. A.E.Gilbert a Past Master of the Stanwell Lodge. On this occasion Grand Lodge had not charged for the replacement, as it was unavoidably lost as a result of enemy action.
The regular meeting of Wednesday the 9th February 1983, saw the first of the Slark family to be admitted to the Lodge, W.Bro. Peter Slark was initiated on that day. His father, W.Bro. Joseph Slark, was initiated two years later, on Wednesday the 13th February 1985. A third member of the family was W.Bro. Terence Slark, second son of W.Bro Joseph Slark. All three members have served as Master of the Lodge.
The meeting of Wednesday the 13th April 1983. W.Bro. F.V.Day, PProvAGReg, of the Prince Arthur of Connaught Lodge No.5261, presented a silver goblet to the Lodge, on behalf of his Mother, in memory of her husband W.Bro. F.E.Day, a member of this Lodge who had passed away on the 10th May 1981. It was her wish that the goblet be used by the Worshipful Master at the Festive Board. The Worshipful Master accepted the gift and asked W.Bro. Day to convey his and the Lodge’s appreciation to Mrs Day.
Friday the 5th October 1984, Bro Secretary read a letter he had received from W.Bro. Brian McKinnie, currently working in Indonesia, informing the Lodge that his son, who had been sponsored by the Lodge to the Royal Masonic Boys School, had now obtained his degree at Queens University, Belfast and was currently working in Germany. Several Lodge members expressed their satisfaction at this news.
At the meeting of the 12th February 1986, W.Bro. B.C.Catling gave Notice of Motion that a set of Working Tools was to be purchased in memory of W.Bro. H.F.Richardson, who had passed to the Grand Lodge above on the 11th December 1985.
At the subsequent meeting on the 9th April 1986, pursuant to that Notice of Motion, W.Bro.B.C.Catling proposed and W.Bro.R.McLean seconded, that a set of Working Tools be purchased in memory of W.Bro.H.F.Richardson, DFC, PPrJGD and that those Tools be presented to the Staines Masonic Hall for use in the Temple, by all units at the Hall.
Meeting of Friday the 3rd October 1986. Bro. Secretary read out a letter of appreciation from the Trustees of the Staines Masonic Hall, thanking the Lodge for their generous gift of a beautiful set of Working Tools, stating that they had been placed in the Temple and would be appreciated by all who use the Temple.
N.B. These Working Tools are still being used in the Temple today as a permanent memorial to W.Bro.F.H.Richardson, DFC, PProvSGD.
At the meeting of 10th December 1986, W.Bro.Karl Malterer, Charity Steward of the Lodge, read out a letter he had received appealing for a final effort for the 1987 Festival of the Foundation for the Aged and Sick. He proposed and W.Bro.Morton seconded that the sum of £500.00 be motion was carried.
At the Meeting of 11th February 1987, a demonstration of the Ceremony of Initiation incorporating the Revised Penalties, was given by members of the Stanwell Lodge of Instruction to an appreciative audience.The following took part:
Worshipful Master W.Bro.A.R.Rolls
Senior Warden Bro.A.Brown
Junior Warden Bro.C.R.Butters
Senior Deacon Bro.M.J.Mercer
Junior Deacon Bro.J.Slark
Candidate Bro.D.A.G. Turner
At the same meeting W.Bro. K.Malterer, Charity Steward, reported that the Lodge had contributed £8,250.00 towards the 1987 Festival for the Foundation for the Aged and Sick and felt that congratulations for a good effort were in order.
After the meeting of the 9th December 1992, the Brethren and their Guests were joined at the Festive Board by their Ladies, which was a first for the Lodge.
The 9th December 1993 Bro. Secretary read out a letter he had received from Natasha Mason, (one of the two children being sponsored by the Lodge for their education) she says she is very happy in the 6th form of the Rickmansworth Girls School and is now studying for her ‘A’ levels.
The Regular Meeting of Friday the 15th October 1993, there being no Candidates to Initiate, Pass or Raise, the normal work of the Lodge concluded with a Lecture called ‘Beyond the Craft’ given by W.Bro. Col. R.C.Manders, MBE, TD, PProvGswdB.
This proved very interesting for those present. The lecture consisted of an explanation of the various side Degrees in Freemasonry and the Regalia worn by each, some of theBrethren acted as models to parade the different Regalia.
Friday the 5th November 1993 saw the retirement of Bro. R. G. Offen PPrJGD, from the Office of Secretary after 20 years’ service to the Lodge. A resume of Bro. Ray’s long and outstanding service to the Lodge was given by the newly appointed Secretary W.Bro. Mike Mercer.The Worshipful Master on behalf of the Lodge, thanked Bro. Offen for his dedicated service to the Lodge and congratulated him on a job well done. Bro Offen made a suitable reply and was warmly applauded by all the Brethren assembled. At the Festive Board after, W.Bro. R.H.Gillies presented Bro Offen with a crystal decanter and glasses to mark the esteem of the Brethren.
After the meeting of the 8th December 1994, the Brethren and their guests, again entertained their Ladies at the Festive Board, with carols after the meal.
The 4th October 1996 marked the 40th Anniversary of the Lodge which was a very well attended occasion, with W.Bro. R.Crimble and Bro R.Offen two Honorary members present and some 24 visiting Brethren. Also present was the reigning Master of our sponsoring Lodge, W.Bro. T Williams. W.Bro. Dudley M.Wensley, PSGD, AProvGM, entered the Lodge in procession and accepted the gavel from the Master. After speaking of the importance of the meeting he invested the Master with a new Masters collar to represent the rest of the new regalia the other Officers were wearing in honour of the occasion. Bro. Secretary gave a brief resume of the History of the Lodge Bible, which had been recently rebound for this meeting. W.Bro. Wensley was presented with a cheque for £500.00 for the Middlesex 98 Appeal and in return W.Bro Wensley presented the Lodge with 3 Bible markers, to mark the occasion and his own participation in it. All those present were given a copy of the first 40 years of the Lodge’s history.
An art exhibition sponsored by the Lodge was held at the Staines Masonic Hall in aid of the Middlesex 90 festival on October 29th 1995. Lodge members sponsored frames to the total of £340.00, frame sponsors from other lodges £18.00. All the paintings on show were by W.Bro Michael Mercer, a total of some 120 people visited and the sum of £800.00 was raised in total for the Festival.
At the meeting of 10th December 1997, Bro. Secretary announced the death of R.W.Bro. Arthur Hollins, OBE, MP, PProvGM, a Consecrating Officer of the Lodge and an Honorary Member, who had passed to the Grand Lodge above on the 28th November 1997.Bro Secretary read a eulogy and the Brethren stood to order in respect of departed merit.
At the meeting of the 8th April 1998, Bro Almoner reported he had been successful in obtaining a place for Mrs Stevenson (a widow of one of the Lodge’s old members) in an RMBI home, after protracted dealings with the DSS and Social services. It was announced during the meeting, that the Lodge had attained the status of Vice-Patron of the Festival Middlesex 98, the Lodge would shortly be receiving a Pedestal Fall to commemorate the achievement.
The 9th December 1998: Bro Secretary reported on his efforts with the assistance of Grand Lodge to trace the whereabouts of Mrs Mitchell, one of the Lodge widows, who resides in Australia. With help from the Grand Lodge of Australia, Mrs Mitchell was eventually traced and contacted by the Lodge Almoner.
Meeting of 1st October 1999, a eulogy in respect of W.Bro. Roy Crimble JP PSGD. PAProvGM, the founding Treasurer of the Lodge who had passed to the Grand Lodge above on the 6th June 1999. The Brethren stood to order in respect to departed merit. At this meeting it was proposed that the Lodge open a Charity Relief Chest with the Grand Charity, the motion was carried.
December the 8th 1999, W.Bro. Walter Berry a Past Master of the Lodge who had previously resigned the Lodge and was now residing on the Isle of Wight, here on this occasion as a guest, now a member of the Sandown Lodge No.1869, brought fraternal greetings from the Master and Brethren of that Lodge and thanked the Brethren present for making the evening so special for him on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of his Initiation.
The meeting of the 12th April 2000, saw the first of the work sharing initiatives adopted by the Lodge. In keeping with many others the Lodge was suffering from a shortage of Candidates. Bro. Robin Chiswell, was Raised on behalf of the Tower of Heathrow Lodge No.8846. Several members of the Candidate’s Lodge were present to see the ceremony carried out.
The November 3rd 2000 meeting, the Installation of W.Bro. Lawrence Henson saw some 32 guests attending, the largest number for some time. W.Bro.C.R.Butters, PPrDepGReg., stood down after 10 years as Treasurer, Having been pitched in the job on the death of the previous incumbent, W.Bro. W.Morton. W.Bro. Chris had served the Lodge well and deserved the vote of thanks rendered.
December 13th 2000 meeting, a lecture was delivered titled ‘Freemasonry in the Yukon’ by W.Bro. D Eve, PProvAGSuptWks. The lecture was illustrated by slides and proved very interesting and informative to the Brethren. At its conclusion, the Lecturer was greeted with acclaim by the Brethren.
At the meeting of 11th April 2001, the Secretary read a notice from the M.W. the Grand Master H.R.H. the Duke of Kent in relation to the death on the 22nd March 2001, of the M.W. Pro Grand Master the Lord Farnham and in accordance with the Grand Master’s wishes, the Brethren stood to Order in respect of departed merit. Following this, W.Bro. B.C.Catling delivered a very moving and sincere Eulogy in respect of W.Bro. Ralph Gillies, who had passed to the Grand Lodge above on the 7th March 2001.W.Bro.Ralph was much loved and respected within the Lodge and would be sorely missed. The Brethren again stood to Order in respect to departed merit.
The meeting of the 12th December 2001 saw the first effects of the downturn in recruitment for the Lodge. The Lodge G.P. committee had recommended for the Lodge to drop one meeting a year and revert to Four meetings a year. At the meeting Bro. Secretary gave notice of motion that the Lodge adopt the Model By-Laws and that the Lodge revert to Four meetings a year, dropping the November meeting and changing the By-Laws accordingly.
At this meeting W.Bro. K. Malterer had sent his apologies and expressed his regret at not being present as he had hoped to share his celebrations with W.Bro. Brian Catling on reaching their 30th anniversary in Freemasonry. The Worshipful Master congratulated W.Bro. Brian Catling on reaching this milestone in Masonic life, which met with applause from the Brethren. W.Bro. Catling suitably replied.
February 13th 2002. It was proposed by W.Bro. M.J.Mercer and seconded by W.Bro. B.C.Catling, a resolution to adopt the Model ByLaws and to revert to Four meetings a year, dropping the November meeting and changing the By-Laws to suit. The motion was carried.
W.Bro. M.J.Mercer was appointed to Grand Rank, of Past Grand Standard Bearer at Grand Lodge in April 2002.
At the Installation meeting of the 4th of October 2002, W.Bro. Lawrence Henson was appointed as Secretary of the Lodge, W.Bro.MJ.Mercer, PGStdB, had been in the Office for 9 years and a vote of thanks for his excellent service was expressed.
The meeting of February 11th 2004 had a lecture by W.Bro. Martin Katz, PPrSGD a member of the provincial panel of speakers, given to the Brethren, titled Openness in Freemasonry, which was very well received by the Brethren, after the lecture there was a lively question and answer session.
The Festive Board after the February meetings has since 2004 been in the form of a white table “Burns Supper” complete with Piper etc. which has proved very popular, it attracts more guests both Masonic and Non-Masonic than a normal white table would do, which is beneficial to the Lodge and to the Charity monies raised.
Whilst the Lodge has been maintaining its membership at a reasonable level, the Officers have performed a ceremony at virtually every meeting since the downturn in membership of the nineteen nineties. This has been achieved by Passing and Raising candidates on behalf of other Lodges, as well as the Lodge’s own one or two Candidates we have been fortunate to attract, not forgetting the contribution our Joining members have made to the Lodge’s welfare.
The meeting of 10th February 2016 was the closest to returning the lodge’s warrant, a Notice of Motion for the next meeting of the Lodge to be held on 13th April 2016 the proposition will be made that due to Lack of members to hold office the Stanwell Lodge, No.7468 has ceased to be viable and should be closed and its affairs finalised, the meeting of the Lodge on 30th September 2016 to be considered as the last meeting at which the Warrant of the Lodge will be surrendered to the representative of the Provincial Grand Lodge of Middlesex to be returned to the M.W. The Grand Master, but thanks to W.Bro Owen Toms, W.Bro Simon Hills and the social media. W.Bros Marc Quigley-Ferriday and Bro Scott Adnitt became joining members and were prepared to take offices, the proposal to close the Lodge was defeated.
The heady days of the 1960’s when the Lodge had 28 Initiates in the first 10 years are long gone. However, I remain optimistic that the Lodge will continue for the foreseeable future to be a part of the Middlesex family and contributing to its success.
In October 2016 a special dispensation was obtained to allow W.Bro Simon Hills to remain as Worshipfull Master for 3rd year, due to the fact the proposed Worshipful Master W.Bro Allan Bannister was going into hospital for an operation on his back the day of the installation.
The April 2017 meeting of a third degree saw for the first time in lodge the walking charge which was delivered by W.Bro Owen Toms.