... exclaimed Assistant Provincial Grand Master, John Boyington, feigning incredulity. He was addressing W Bro James Alan Fergusson at the well-attended September meeting of Pentalpha Lodge No.974 at Hoyle Court, Baildon. Jimmy had described his early life during the 2nd World War in Batley where his family home had been just a short walk from Blenheim House. He had been educated at Worksop College; on leaving, he had decided to train as a Chartered Accountant, a profession described later in the evening as “requiring all the charisma of a Funeral Director.”
Jimmy gave a brief account of a very successful career in accountancy, rising through the ranks to become a partner in a major firm at the age of 30. He had held various appointments within the profession, including president of the West Yorkshire Society of Chartered Accountants. Jimmy had served on several committees of his professional body, the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales. While a member of the Court of the Worshipful Company of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales he had become a Freeman of the City of London; for many years he had been a Trustee of the Livery Company’s Charitable Funds.
In 1985 he had been appointed the chairman of the Bradford Family Health Services Authority. Four years later, when his firm granted him early retirement, he had seized the opportunity to expand his commitment to the NHS, becoming a member of the Regional Health Authority and the Supervisory Board of the Medicines Control Agency, vice-chairman of the National Association of Health Authorities and Trusts and chairman of its Standing Committee for Family Health Service Authorities.
He also found time to be on the Board of Bradford Cancer Support (eight years as its chairman), a Board member of Brunel and Family Housing Association, and chairman of the Leeds General Infirmary Community Chest Appeal. He served as a Commissioner of Income Tax for Bradford. W Bro. Boyington was a little reluctant to mention this particular appointment, but the brethren were reassured when it was explained that this was an independent body appointed by the Lord Chancellor which heard appeals from taxpayers who could not agree their tax assessment with the Inland Revenue.
W Bro Fergusson was initiated into Integrity Lodge No.380 in Morley in September 1968 by W Bro Jack Binks whose son, Richard, later spoke at the Festive Board. He was Worshipful Master in 1984 and retained his membership of Integrity for some 40 years. However, the journey to Morley from Baildon - where he lives with his wife, Jillian – involved crossing Bradford at rush-hour. He, therefore, looked for a more local Lodge, and in 1997 he became a member of Pentalpha, at the time Bradford’s “Medical Lodge”, joining friends from the medical profession he had met while working in the NHS. He was elected Master in 2000 and for some years has been both Treasurer and Organist.
He is also a member of Old Worksopian Lodge No. 6963, Worshipful Master in 1990, and Bradfordians Lodge No. 9886, where he is currently Chaplain. He has been rewarded with the Craft Honours of PGStB, PPSGW (Yorkshire, West Riding) and PPJGW (Nottinghamshire).
In addition he holds Supreme Grand Rank in Chapter (he is a member of both Integrity Chapter No.380 and Pentalpha Chapter No.974); and he is a member of Fearnley Preceptory of Knights Templar No. 39, White Rose Tabernacle of Knights Templar Priests No. 24, St Blasius Chapter Rose Croix No. 407 and White Rose Lodge of Mark Master Masons, No. 1067.
Throughout his life, Jimmy has had a particular interest in classical music, and many Freemasons will know him as an accomplished pianist and organist. He plays for a number of Masonic orders and can frequently be heard playing or singing at Festive Boards.
This impressive Curriculum Vitae came to light during a conversation between W. Bro Fergusson and W Bro Boyington on the floor of Pentalpha Lodge and formed the prelude to the presentation of a certificate marking 50 years loyal service to the Craft. Jimmy was congratulated by W Bro. Boyington and warmly applauded by the brethren.
Brooke Lodge 3608 - John Montague Heeley and Roy Duncan Hague celebrating 50 years in Craft Masonry.
Brooke Lodge has celebrated two Jubilees this year with both John Montague Heeley and Roy Duncan Hague celebrating 50 years in Craft Masonry.
Worshipful Brother John Montague Heeley was initiated in Brooke Lodge No. 3608 on the 2nd April 1968 a few days before his 40th birthday. He was Passed and Raised on the 2nd July 1968 and 1st October respectively and all at Brookes’ old Masonic Hall in Honley. John has been an active member of the lodge and until recently has taken part in ceremonies particularly in the 3rd Degree Ceremony.
John was a Master Baker and as he advanced within the lodge, became concerned about going into the chair due to the 5.30 start in the bakery each morning. A past Master of Brooke Lodge who was also a master baker, showed great brotherly love in offering to do the morning bake the day after the lodge met. This kind gesture convinced John to take the chair – which he did in 1982. John had an eventful year and made many lifelong friendships. John also acted as Lodge Charity Steward for 9 years.
John received his first Provincial Honours in 1991 as Past Provincial Deputy Grand Sword Bearer and received promotion to Past Provincial Junior Grand Warden in 1997.
John was exalted into the Royal Arch on 11th November 1981 into the Chapter of Industry No 652 and became 1st Principal in in October 1995. He received his Provincial Honours in 2001 as Past Provincial Grand Sojourner and again in 2005 as Past Provincial Grand Registrar.
John was also an active member of the Re-enactment Lodge 1759 who’s ceremonies are carried out in full period dress and once travelled to Dublin to perform an enactment for the Grand Lodge of Ireland.
John was presented with his Jubilee Certificate in open Lodge in April by W Bro Gordon Wilkinson in front of a host of brethren where he was warmly received and all took a great deal of pleasure hearing about John’s years in Freemasonry and celebrating this landmark jubilee.
Worshipful Brother Roy Duncan Hague (Duncan) has had a 78 year relationship with Freemasonry in general and with Brooke Lodge in particular. His father W Bro Donald Hague was Worshipful Master of Brooke Lodge in 1956 and proposed his son into Freemasonry. Sadly his father passed away one month before Duncan was initiated on 3rd September 1968.
Duncan was Installed as Worshipful Master of the Lodge in 1978 (a Master in the year of the fabled “Snowmasters”) and was the second member of the Lodge to have a second term in the chair in 1986.
At his presentation Duncan regaled how, when the Lodge met at Honley – particularly in his father’s day, the trams stopped at 8pm, the Brethren and their Ladies thought nothing of walking home – on some occasions up to ten miles – how times have changed!
Throughout Duncan’s masonic career he has contributed greatly to the Lodge. His knowledge of the history of the Lodge and the accounts he could give for seventy or so years was fundamental in the preparation of the book about Brooke Lodge to commemorate its Centenary in 2012. Duncan has also held the position of Lodge Secretary for 16 years one which he still holds now.
Duncan and his wife Nancy have taken full part in the Lodges social life and they have both contributed greatly to the Ladies evenings and all social events particularly during his two periods in the Masters chair.
Duncan was awarded the Acting Rank of Provincial Grand Steward in 1987 and now holds the rank of Past Provincial Junior Grand Warden.
In the Royal Arch, Duncan was exalted in Beaumont Chapter No. 2035 and was 1st Principal in 1985. Duncan holds the rank of Past Provincial Grand Scribe Nehemiah. Duncan is also the second longest serving member of Beaumont Chapter.
Outside Freemasonry, Duncan spent 72 years working on the turnstiles as Huddersfield Town Football Club – where this year he was honoured by the club for the longevity of his service.
Duncan was presented with his jubilee certificate again by Worshipful Brother Wilkinson to a full temple at Kirkburton, where he was joined by several Past Masters of the year of the Snowmasters and afterwards said he was delighted that W Bro Wilkinson had done the presentation and advised the Brethren that he had “Done a wonderful job tonight!” to which there was warm applause.
Eighty-five-year-old David Lewellyn Steel is one of the busiest and much loved Freemasons in our Province.
Recently out of the chair (for a second time) of Shakespeare and Equity Lodge No 1018 and already planning to become First Principal of Connaught Chapter in two years’ time, his Connaught commitment will coincide with 50 years of Royal Arch membership.
Over 90 Brethren witnessed and listened to an absorbing portrayal of his 50 years in Craft Freemasonry when he was presented with a jubilee certificate.
David, whose Masonic career began at Anchor Lodge 6502 in Bristol in 1966, is also a Founder and Past Master of the Rugby Football Lodge No 9811.
Past APGM Stuart Cummins chronicled a fascinating history in Craft, Chapter and other Orders in Freemasonry, as well as cricket and umpiring exploits, when he made the presentation at a special meeting of the RFL at Greenhead Masonic Hall, Huddersfield.
David was privileged to welcome three APGMs, and three past APGMs, together with Brethren from Anchor Lodge on a very special night of celebration.
Amphibious Lodge no. 258 recently celebrated a double '50 years in Freemasonry' for W. Bro Peter Atherton (left) and W. Bro Desmond Broadbent (centre)
A very colourful journey, through both Brother's personal and Masonic histories, was conducted by Roger Newhouse (who really SHOULD have his own TV chat show) in front of a packed Masonic Hall.