Thursday, 28th May 2020 and Brethren of Integrity Lodge of MMM No. 110 gathered around their computers, tablets etc. for a Zoom meeting to celebrate, and reminisce, that the Lodge had been formed on the 17th April 1870, received its Charter on the 28th May and held the first meeting on the 10th June, none of us being present.. The first year brought forward 17 candidates of which 9 were Advanced, the first being Brother George Parkin followed 7 others on the night, all of whom were members of Integrity Craft Lodge No. 380 in Morley. Enquiries were made as to a Centenary celebration but the Lodge was informed that, as they could not show minutes evidencing 100 years of continued working, it could not be issued; it was held in 1985.
The Meeting was opened the Worshipful Master, W.Bro. Ken Parkinson and the first of our predecessors mentioned was W.Bro. Keith Hill, a Bon Viveur, favourite tipple champagne, he devised the theme Festive Boards the Lodge became famous for, five courses including Coffee with choices throughout. A French night included Sherry aperitif, Calvados (apple brandy) to follow the Fish course and Wine, suffice to say some left rather the worse for wear. These events were in full flow when I was asked a very Senior Mason if Integrity was a Mark Master Masons Lodge with a Festive Board or a Dining Club with Masonic tendencies! Mike Nowell reminded of the day when Keith ,D.C. at the time, asked Derek Cope, a very regular visitor, if he would stand in as J.W. for the evening. No problems and when it came to the response, Keith pointed out to Derek that he was the only visitor, would he now respond.
Unfortunately on the day I forgot to mention Frank Williams which I now must put right. A quiet, modest man , always willing to help, he developed a serious issue in later life which saw me visiting him as Almoner when he was bed ridden and could only communicate using his eyes and index finger. His Wife, Frieda reminded him that he had not told me something when, with her help he admitted that he had been a a fighter pilot in the Battle of Britain, flying Hurricanes and was an accredited Air Ace viz he had shot down more than five of the enemy. I am Very proud to have been a member of the same Lodge as him. Along the way numerous recollections were made of school days and visits to Lap land, Frank Milner aka Uncle Albert and our WM. Ken, including comment from Tom Wise who we all were delighted to see.
During the above an intruder was detected, fortunately the P.G.M, R.W.Bro. Jim Steggles., a delight for us all to see him present, he drew the winning numbers for the raffle which raised £100 for the Festival, Derek Walsh taking first prize, a bottle of Champagne. A wonderful event, our Sesquicentenary will be in 2035, I trust that many of you will be around to keep us company.
Worshipful Brother Duncan Smith P.G.S.D.