Dewsbury RAM No. 641, A triumph for the Installing Commander, W. Bro. John, ‘Noddy’ Fitzpatrick

Time for a new pair of hands at the tiller and several vessels moored at the quayside in Dewsbury, Monday the 21st June, to witness  the hand over.  A number of the regular Crew absent on leave, the Director of Ceremonies, now Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies, W. Bro. Andrew Brown sought to press some crew and visitors into service. With a wonderful turn of phrase, ‘we need a Senior Deacon  and John Davies you are sat closest to the chair’, he began filling the gaps. 

All the spaces filled, Worshipful Commander John opened the Lodge in fine style and a time for refection following the sad death of the Assistant Grand Master, R.W.Bro.  Stephen Davison, highly regarded and someone who will be sadly missed. Housekeeping matters covered, attention turned to the Installation of the Senior Warden, Brother Steven Broadbent. Worshipful Brother Trevor Sykes presented the Commander elect, necessary questions were then submitted and responses duly received,  Brethren below the Rank of an Installed Commander withdrew for a short while,  An Assembly of Installed Commanders was then established. W.Bro. Steven was Obligated,  informed of the Sign ad Secrets of the Degree, invested with the Badge and Collar of his Office and placed in the Chair as Commander of the Lodge. Remaining detail despatched, the Assembly of Installed Commanders was closed.

Brethren were then re-admitted and W.Bro. Steven was prociaimed as Commander for the ensuing year. The end was now at hand for W,Bro, John and he passed the Volume of the Sacred Law, entrusted the Warrant of the Lodge and the Regulations and Bye laws to his successor. Finally the Key Stone Collarette was passed over, the explanation of which was given in polished style Worshipful Brother David Taylor. The Appointment and Investiture of Officers followed seamlessly under the guidance of W.Bro. Andrew and the Address to the Worshipful Commander was sincerely delivered Worshipful Brother Brian Page. This was an Installation Ceremony where all who took part can be very proud of a job well done. The business of the Lodge was now in the hands of W.Bro. Steven and the housekeeping matters were efficiently concluded and the Lodge closed.

All adjourned for a delightful repaste and the Toasts were in the hands of W.Bro. Andrew and speedily processed including that to the Carl Whitehead Lodge of Installed Commanders No. 110 proposed its current Worshipful Commander, W.Bro. Stephen Wood. The Toast to the Province was submitted W.Bro. Brian Page thanking the Provincial Officers for all their efforts to keep Mark Masonry functioning through the Covid years. Responding W.Bro. John firstly congratulated W.Bro. Steven and then moved forward to the 2023 Festival Celebrations which will take place on the 1st July 2023, full details will be on the Provincial Web site in a few weeks. Bear in mind that whilst the Province had a very successful first four years, the last two have been difficult so anything that we can do will be greatly appreciated, particularly as the aim now is to ensure that a Royal Ark Mariner Lodges achieve  GP Gold award status. 

He reminded all about; other dates for your  diaries, Grand Assembly of RAM. Tuesday 13th December, Carol Service 11th December and the Provincial Xmas Ball returns on the 3rd December.

The Worshipful Commander and his Installing Commander then exchanged glowing tributes to one another which was followed the Toast to the Visitors W.Bro. ‘Bobon’ Rod Dyer who thanked all the visitors of which there were many and trusted that ‘all had enjoyed a ‘reet good nite’. Responding Worshipful Brother Edward Wilkinson confirmed that was certainly the case and that they would return. He then made special mention of W.Bro. Rod, who was unable to undertake the Bike challenge but supported them throughout the whole five days. Congratulations are due to every single one, I could not have made the first hour.

A wonderful evening of Royal Ark Mariner Masonry, and an impeccable Ceremony, the Magic of the Fraternity.

W.Bro. Duncan Smith R.A.M.G.R.