About Us

About Us

Who are we?

We are a group of like minded men, who come from a wide geographical area in the Midlands who gather to practice and enjoy Freemasonry

The Lodge of Peace & Goodwill practices Freemasonry under the auspices of the United Grand Lodge of England and comes under the group of Lodges under the Worcestershire Provincial Grand Lodge.

We have a wide range of members who travel from the West Midlands, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire and Derbyshire to join in our meetings, so its not that important to live locally!

Freemasonry means different things to each of those who join. For some, it’s about making new friends and acquaintances. For others it’s about being able to help deserving causes – making a contribution to family and for society. But for most, it is an enjoyable hobby.

Freemasonry is one of the world’s oldest and largest non-religious, non-political, fraternal and charitable organisation. It teaches self-knowledge through participation in a progression of ceremonies. Members are expected to be of high moral standing and are encouraged to speak openly about Freemasonry.

For six great reasons to join, read on below...

If you feel you may like to join our Lodge and become a Freemason, contact us...

Our Story So Far

If your interested in the history...

Interested in Our History?

Here is Our Story so far

This is a work in progress and will be updated during the coming months

So scroll down and read on...

Every Lodge has a story to tell

This is ours...

Preliminary Meetings

There were nine preliminary meetings of the Brethren who became the Founders of our Lodge. They were held between Friday 12th May 1944 and Friday 2nd March 1945

W Bro W G Higham took the chair for these meetings with Bro W J Aston acting as Secretary in the first instance. The most senior brother present was W Bro Fred S Rawson PAGDC PPGW who had first suggested to the then Provincial Grand Master, RW Bro General Sir Francis J Davies, KCB KCMG KCVO VL Deputy Grand Master, that a new lodge should be formed at Kings Heath. 

The petition was signed by the Founders and then presented to the sponsoring lodge at its regular meeting at Moseley Masonic Hall, Kings Heath on 1st July 1944. The deputation consisted of W Bros T H Dawson and W G Higham and Bros T A Wood and J J Penny. The sponsoring lodge and therefore our Mother Lodge was the Lodge of St Oswald No 5094. 

The Founders then set to work on all the necessary administrative work required before a lodge can be consecrated. For instance there were three drafts of the Lodge Badge and Banner that were sent to Grand Lodge before they were happy with the design we now have. The matter of a Lodge Name, who would be Master and what style of ritual would be worked to name but a few. The latter, once decided by a ballot, caused one of the petitioners to strike his name from the petition. W Bro J C Potter who was in favour of Taylor’s ritual was then replaced by Bro E Wilkes.

The Founding brethren soon arranged all the necessary details and received support from the Deputy and Assistant Provincial Grand Masters. During January and February 1945, the Founders decided upon their first initiates, joining members and the gifts that they would present to the lodge. The Lodge of St Oswald kindly offered the use of their furniture until such time as it was possible for the Lodge of Peace and Goodwill to procure its own. 

The Founders gifts are still in use today and are listed in the table below:

Gift Presented By
Lodge Banner Bro E Wilkes
WM Collar and Gauntlets W Bro F Wilson
SW Collar and Gauntlets W Bro W G Higham
JW Collar and Gauntlets Bro T A Wood
Working Tools in Case W Bro WG and Bro L G Higham
Charity Column Bro J S Warren
Ballot Box W Bro T H Dawson
Bible W Bro W G Higham
Bible Cushion W Bro T H Dawson
3rd Degree Cloth and Pillow W Bro F S Rawson
Heavy Maul for WM W Bro F Wilson
Square and Compass for Bible W Bro T H Dawson
Minute Book Bro W J Aston
Hymn Books W Bro W A Jeffrey
DC and ADC Wands W Bro F S Rawson
Senior Deacon’s Wand Bro J J Penny
Junior Deacon’s Wand Bro F G Nash
Inner Guards Tools Bro D R Farr
3 Gavels and Sounding Blocks Bro C D Ward

It was at this point that the Founders agreed the By‐laws of the lodge; produced the honourable understandings, which it was their desire to instil within the brethren of the Lodge. From its consecration this text dictated the standards of behaviour and the slight variances of ritual and festive board etiquette. This they hoped would distinguish the Lodge of Peace and Goodwill from others. These honourable understandings, with slight variations introduced in 1988 to bring them and the Lodge By Laws inline with Grand Lodge recommendations are still in existence today.

Consecration

The Consecration and first regular meeting of the Lodge of Peace and Goodwill took place on the 16th March 1945.

The Consecrating officer was the then Deputy Grand Master and Provincial Grand Master for the Province of Worcestershire, R W Bro Gen Sir Francis J Davies KCB KCMG KCVO VL. There were some one hundred and fifty Brethren present at Moseley Masonic Hall. The Oration was given by W Bro Canon J Grant Richardson, Provincial Grand Chaplain; this oration as recorded is reproduced here. The Founders and the Consecrating officers enjoyed a private Luncheon before the Consecration.

After the consecration, the First Worshipful Master was installed by the Consecrating team. The first officers are listed in the table below:

Founders and First Officers
W.M.W Bro F Wilson P.M. 4560,5650
S.W.W Bro W.G. Higham P.M. 5650
J.W.Bro T A Wood 5650
TreasurerW Bro T H Dawson P.M & D.C. 43
SecretaryBro E Wilkes 5407,5846
D.C.W Bro F S Rawson P.M. 1874,4144,5094, PAGDC, PProv G W
S.D.Bro J J Penny, 5407
J.D.Bro F J Nash, 3659
Asst SecretaryBro W J Aston, 5650
Asst D. C.Bro L G Higham, 5650
I.G.Bro D R Farr, 5407, 5846
StewardBro J S Warren, 3659, 5846
StewardBro C D Ward, 3713
I.P.M.W Bro W A Jeffrey, P.M. 1946 P Prov G Supt Wks (W Div SA)

All the brethren celebrated afterwards with a sumptuous banquet, or at least as sumptuous as War time rationing would allow!

All of the Consecrating Rulers were proposed as Honorary members at that meeting, this being confirmed by ballot and approved at the 2nd Regular meeting. Also at this meeting, the Lodge’s first candidate was initiated into the mysteries and privileges of Freemasonry, Mr Murray A Bull, who progressed quickly within the Lodge and was the 9th Worshipful Master in 1953.

The Oration

Given at the Consecration of the Lodge - 16th March 1945

By: W Bro Canon J Grant Richardson, Provincial Grand Chaplain.

Right Worshipful Provincial Grand Master and Brethren, we are met together this afternoon on a solemn and historic occasion. Solemn from the nature of our intention, and historic from the influence it will have on generations of our Masonic Brethren yet to be, for it is a task of Building.

Such a task is congenial to Masons, whether they be Operative or Speculative. To the former, their works are visible to men, to the latter they are invisible to the eye of nature, yet keenly perceived by that special insight which is the mark of the Speculative Mason. For these raise no structure of bricks and mortar, they have the nobler task of erecting a Spiritual Superstructure, compound of the noblest thoughts of Masonic hearts, and firmly cemented together with the Mortar of their highest aspirations.

It is in this mind that we hope to erect a building which shall be perfect in its parts and honourable to the builder. At such time it is our custom to remind ourselves of those Masonic foundations on which all our Lodges are based, and from which they draw their stability. Our Ritual tells us that Masonry is founded on the purest principles of Piety and Virtue, and so indeed it is. But let us not forget that to the ancient Brethren who formulated that Ritual, Piety and Virtue had a sacred and hallowed meaning. To us today Piety has an acquired meaning, it is unfortunately associated with that religious humbug of the drooping head and sidelong glance which honest and true men find hard to tolerate. To our ancient Brethren it meant nothing other than our whole duty to God and Man. Piety means duty, and bearing that meaning it produced one of the greatest poems the World has ever seen – Virgil’s Aeneid.

So Brethren, this duty, which comes of Piety, being our foundation, we remind ourselves today that at the centre of our Institution there will

ever remain God. We hail Him as the Great Architect of the Universe, the Author and Centre of our being. We hail Him as the Grand Geometrician of the Universe, whose words are a never ending source of wonder and admiration. To us He is the Most High. What we shall do this afternoon will be for His Glory, and for the Honour of His Most Holy Name. He it is who inspires us in our duty to Man. For we profess that in all our relations with our fellow men, and specially with our Brethren, our thoughts and actions shall be shot through with feelings of Brotherly Love, Truth and a desire to Relieve them in their afflictions and distresses. So, well defined in all Masonic Hearts, is our duty to Man.

Bearing in mind then these common foundations of our Brotherhood, let us now look at the superstructure. May I first of all congratulate you

on the name you have chosen for it. In this Shell‐riven World of today, where Humanity is reeling from the horrors it has seen and suffered, the name you have chosen brings us all the one thing that can bring comfort, solace, and hope. I mean Peace, for this is the name you will give your Lodge.

But Peace may well be a mirage, and an illusion, if it means for us but a cessation of the fighting, if it means that we retire into our Ivory Tower, or our own minds, there to pursue what other men have not. Peace can never be the peculiar possession of a select few. Peace is a desirable state for all men, therefore, there must be added the dynamic word – “Goodwill”. Even as the Angels at Bethlehem sang “peace on Earth to Men of Goodwill” so to men of goodwill alone will come that most precious of all God’s gifts to man. For it is men of Goodwill alone, who will, by their actions promote Peace, and by their words ensue it. And so in your Title you offer to Masonry in this Province, and to Masonry throughout the World, a glimpse of that better World which is yet to be. 

Of you, may it ever be said –“Here is the Lodge of Peace, for it is fashioned and preserved by Men of Goodwill”.

Banner Dedication

The Lodge Banner was consecrated at the third regular meeting of the Lodge on 15th May 1945 by V W Bro Rev P Scott‐Warren, Past Provincial Grand Chaplain. The oration is reproduced below. In addition to this ceremony, there was also the initiation of the second candidate for the Lodge, Mr Ernest West, who at some point leapfrogged Murray Bull and became the 8th Master in 1952! Unfortunately the minutes of the Officers and Past Masters committee are not available so the reasons for many of the decisions taken in the Lodge are lost to us.

The next meeting held does not count towards our first 400, for it was a Lodge of Emergency, held by dispensation outside of and in addition to the normal meetings. This was because the Candidate for the evening was a Squadron Leader in the RAF and was due to be posted to the Middle East before the next Regular Meeting. Mr Leo Stanley Davies, was also passed within Peace and Goodwill but then left for service overseas. The minutes record greetings from Bro. Davies for many years, mostly from the Middle East.

 

Oration given at the Dedication of a new Lodge Banner 18th November 1988

By: W Bro Rev P T B B Lutton, P Prov G Chaplain, Acting Provincial Grand Chaplain

Right Worshipful Provincial Grand Master and Brethren. The medieval wars, the Crusades, the brothers of the Reformation, had made men weary of squabbling. Again men of note and learning had attended Masons’ Lodges since the time of Prince Edwin in the 10th Century, attracted by the deep Symbolism, and the harmony they found in these Lodges. So war‐weariness on the one hand, and the vision of fraternity on the other, led to the formation of the Grand Lodge of England in 1717, walking the middle path of wisdom and charity, in peace and goodwill.

Still maintaining, pure and unsullied, the Masonic ideal – the Brotherhood of man, under the Fatherhood of God – this Lodge of Peace and Goodwill was consecrated on 16th March 1945, and the first Banner was consecrated on the 15th May 1945. Tonight we join together in the Consecration of this replacement Banner, hand made by the Nuns at a convent in Calcutta.

So, gathering up the past – and what memories it contains for us! – we face the future with the vision bright before us, let circumstances bring what they may.

In the heart of the Lodge, and in the centre of the Banner, Peace and Goodwill are symbolised by the Dove bearing an Olive Branch, and by

Clasped Hands. The Dove represents harmlessness and innocence, and is the opposite of hard aggressiveness. Again, Olive trees take so long to

mature that, in themselves, they represent patience and a peaceful environment. Then, for many Centuries the un‐gloved hand was taken as

a kind of insult, except among those who were on terms of great friendship.

It is difficult for us, in our day, to realise what an act of faith and trust was involved in reaching out to grasp the hand of another in goodwill. The central symbols are surrounded by four symbols so well known among Masons that they need not detain us now. 

Speaking of the Banner as depicted on the Summons and Order of Procedure, let us turn our attention to the Gourds, the Bottle Gourds on either side of the sprig of Acacia. These remind us of the Book of Jonah in the Volume of the Sacred Law. Jonah had been sent by God to preach against Nineveh, and to announce its coming destruction. We find him sitting in a booth, sheltered from the heat of the Sun, by a Bottle Gourd growing over a framework, and he was anticipating, with some pleasure, the catastrophe about to overtake the City.

The narrative continues:‐

At dawn the next day, at God’s command, a worm attacked the Gourd and it died. After the Sun had risen, God sent a hot East wind, and Jonah was about to faint from the heat of the Sun beating down on his head …. So he wished he were dead. But God said to him, “What right have you to be angry about the Plant?” Jonah replied, “I have every right to be angry.” The Lord said to him, “This Plant grew up in one night, and  disappeared the next. You didn’t do anything for it, and you didn’t make it grow, yet you feel sorry for it! How much more then, should I have pity on Nineveh, that great City. After all, it has more than 12,000 innocent Children in it, as well as animals!”

So the Gourds remind us that our peace and goodwill must extend beyond our Brethren in Freemasonry, and even include the biosphere.

Thanking the Great Architect of the Universe for that Peace and Goodwill, which alone enables us to survive, and acting in conformity with the principles of the Craft, we press on into the years ahead, ever remembering to discharge our duty to Him with fervency and zeal.

The First 100 Meetings
The Lodge grew steadily over the first one hundred meetings, which time took us up to around 1960, all bar one of which was either a degree ceremony (or two) or an Installation.
 
The fifties finished with Peace and Goodwill in great heart and strength in numbers, with an Installation ceremony regularly attracting over 100 Brethren to dine. During this time, the average age of the thirty‐three initiates was 40.5 years; there were also sixteen joining members. The one meeting without a degree ceremony or ceremony of Installation was the 9th Regular meeting held on 16th April 1946. At this meeting, W Bro Rev P Scott‐Warren, the Past Provincial Grand Chaplain, gave an address to the Brethren entitled "Freemasonry and the Wreckage of the War"; there were plenty of candidates and ceremonies outstanding at the time and it would seem that the Lodge Committee wanted to commemorate the end of the war with a formal lecture on the subject. It is a shame that a copy of the address is not interleaved with the minutes of the meeting which would have allowed us to understand almost at first hand the feelings of the Lodge and its members at a time of great hope and expectation for the future.
 
Towards the end of this period, in October 1958 W Bro Tom Hobday was Worshipful Master and was conducting the Raising of Bro Peter Hobday, when during the perambulations, the Junior Warden Bro William Hobday tragically collapsed and died in the Lodge room. The minutes record that the Lodge was called off and not called on again, with the ceremony being repeated to its completion during the following meeting . One can only wonder at the emotional scenes at the repeated ceremony with the two remaining Hobdays completing the task in hand.
 
Also during this time, two of the more eminent members of the Lodge, blood brothers, became Master. Firstly, W Bro Thomas A Wood who was the founding Junior Warden, and became the 3rd Worshipful Master in 1947. W Bro Tom Wood was appointed a Provincial Assistant Grand Director of Ceremonies in 1953, the start of a long and illustrious career of active and acting rank within the Provinces of both Worcestershire and Warwickshire.
 
Tom’s Brother David Wood was the 15th Worshipful Master in 1959 and it wasn’t many years before he too started in acting rank.
 
Brethren also in receipt of Acting Provincial Grand rank during this time were:
 
  • 1956 W Bro L G Higham Prov G Stwd
  • 1957 W Bro E West Prov G Purs
  • 1958 W Bro M A Bull Prov Asst G Purs
It was in January 1956 that our current senior Past Master, Tom Stanley Deeming, was initiated at the tender age of 38 years old.
 
One of the distinguishing points to note from the minutes of these early periods, apart from the high standard of handwriting compared to later years, was the way that Peace and Goodwill seemed to introduce its junior brethren to the ‘floor work’. The contrast with today is quite marked. Nowadays, a young Brother, maybe recently raised, might be asked to have a go at a presentation of the working tools, maybe for the 2nd degree, so as not to put too much stress on him. Well, in the 1940's and 1950's within Peace and Goodwill, it seemed to be common place to see the 2nd degree tracing board on the summons being presented by Stewards of the Lodge with possibly only two or three years in the Craft under their belt.
 
This could reflect either the free time that was available to the Brethren of the past compared to today, or the lifestyle and educational model of that time which taught its students to learn everything by heart. The methods of study today are very different and rarely call for a regurgitation of detail or substance.
 
The expectation in terms of ritual was that there were NO books allowed in the lodge at any time whilst it was open. It was expected that the Director of Ceremonies would have overall prompting responsibility, with other brethren prompted as follows;
 
  • Worshipful Master – Immediate Past Master
  • Senior Warden – Junior Deacon
  • Junior / Senior Deacons – Director of Ceremonies
This was a tradition within the Lodge and continued through to the early 1970’s, our current Grand Officer W Bro Tony Sadler remembers this being the case when he was Worshipful Master in 1974.
 
As a final comment to the first one hundred meetings, it also seems common that a candidate would be initiated, passed and raised within one Masonic year and often within three consecutive meetings. This is a topic that is subject of frequent comment in Masonic circles today; indeed it was one of the major discussion points of the “Securing the Future” seminars held throughout the Province of Worcestershire in 2006. It is my belief that we should be putting more Freemasonry into men than we do men into Freemasonry, although the latter is also of importance. How many of our Brethren today delve into the deeper meaning and symbolism of the ceremonies through which they progress on their journey of self‐improvement? Retention is equally as important as recruitment in any regularly organised society.
 
The 100th Regular meeting was held on 17th April 1959 and was the Ceremony of Raising for Bro Henry Norvel Davies; there was no particular celebration recorded for this meeting.
 
The Next 100 Meetings
The newspaper headlines for the second century of meetings, had we allowed such things in those times, would read “a time of strength and growing numbers for the Lodge, with several members going on to Senior Acting Rank and then on to Grand Rank”.
 
The meetings from 101‐ 200 take us up to the end of 1973 and see the initiations of several current members: W Bro Frank Lewis at the age of 39 years in 1960; W Bro J A (Tony) Sadler PGStB at the tender age of 22 years in 1961 who was initiated by his father, W Bro Harold Sadler, W Bro Tony is the only living member of the Lodge who has known all of the members of the Lodge including all the founders, Tony’s father was the fourth initiate into the Lodge and so he grew up knowing all the founders as well as the members of the time; W Bro Louis O Tippins (Obit.) at the age of 41 years in 1964 and Bro Tony Deeming at the very tender age of 21 years in 1968, also initiated by his father, W Bro Tom Stanley Deeming.
 
Peace and Goodwill has only had two initiates at the age of 21 years and only nine of the remainder of our one hundred and one initiates has been in their twenties. The breakdown of the rest were, twenty-eight in their thirties, forty‐seven in their forties, twelve in their fifties, one of sixty and one of seventy‐two. In addition, there is also the case of Bro Arthur Radford Jenkins who was initiated in October 1961. His age was missing from the declaration book, which usually records the name and age as well as both his proposer and seconder into the Lodge and each members dates of initiation, passing and raising. However, he was stated as being 50 years old in the summons for the April 1961 meeting when he was balloted for as a Candidate for initiation, Bro Jenkins resigned in 1975 and died in 1982.
 
W Bro Stan Deeming became Worshipful Master of the Lodge for the first time in March 1968 and Bro Peter Hobday, who had had such a shock when his relative died during his raising, was installed as Master in 1969, the 24th and 25th Masters respectively.
 
Throughout this period, there were thirty initiates with an average age of 43 years and two joining members. During this time, every single  meeting was a degree ceremony or a ceremony of Installation. Despite this being an indicator that the Lodge was healthy in terms of membership, perhaps it could also be an indicator that what has become known as the Masonic quickstep maybe responsible for the decline in membership within our lodges as a whole. I am certain that there are other reasons for this too, but would caution against relying on repeating ceremonies every meeting. I would caution also against lodges that are struggling for members deciding not to rehearse ceremonies when they do not have ‘live’ candidates; a healthy balance of ceremonies and education should surely be the way forward.
 
At this time, the Lodge subscription covered all fees including dining for the whole year. Country members paid a lower subscription but had to pay to dine when they attended.
 
The Lodge also used to hold two Ladies festivals each year, an informal one at which, strangely enough, Black Tie was the dress code and a formal at which White Tie was required. As a sign of the times, the ticket price covered all food and drink for the night as well as entertainment, ladies’ gifts and breakfast prior to departure. During the sixties and seventies, the Lodge became known as the ‘family lodge’ as there were no fewer than 26 members who were blood related. There was always a special wine taking at the festive board with those so related. The Lodge also had a reputation as the ‘Barrow Boys’ Lodge as there were a number of members that were market traders, Frank Lewis being the only remaining member.
 
It is evident from the minutes of the time that the Lodge of Instruction was thriving and was providing a healthy place to rehearse the ceremonies and future offices. It was also a place for the Preceptors to educate the junior brethren as to their duties and responsibilities within the Lodge and at the Festive Board. As a regular occurrence the majority of the Brethren below the Chair of King Solomon attended and took part.
 
The brethren in receipt of Acting Provincial Grand Rank, Past Grand Rank and Acting Grand Rank during this period are listed in the table below.
 
It is notable that two brethren received the first appointment of Acting Provincial Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies; W Bro David Wood in 1964 and W Bro David Hosking in 1969. As can be seen it was during these years that our Founder, W Bro Tom Wood, our second Grand officer, but the first to receive the honour whilst a member of the Lodge, rose to eminence. His first promotion was as Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies in Warwickshire, through Acting Grand Rank and ending up in 1972 as Assistant Provincial Grand Master for Warwickshire.
 
  • 1964 W Bro D H Wood Prov Dep. GDC
  • 1965 W Bro H R Harradence Prov JGD
  • 1966 W Bro T A Wood Prov GDC (Warks)
  • 1966 W Bro T A Wood P G Std B
  • 1969 W Bro D G Hosking Prov Dep. GDC
  • 1969 W Bro T A Wood AGDC
  • 1970 W Bro D H Wood Prov Dep. GDC
  • 1970 W Bro T A Wood PAGDC
  • 1970 W Bro D H Wood Prov Dep. GDC
  • 1971 W Bro W Gregory Prov G Stwd
  • 1971 W Bro D H Wood Prov Dep. GDC
  • 1972 W Bro C Gregory Prov AGDC
  • 1972 W Bro T A Wood Asst PGM (Warks)
  • 1973 W Bro D H Wood Prov Dep. GDC
  • 1973 W Bro T A Wood Asst PGM (Warks)
  • 1973 W Bro D H Wood Prov Dep. GDC
The 200th Regular Meeting was held on 16th November 1973 and was the Ceremony of Raising of Bro John Henry Postans; there was no celebration recorded for this meeting.
 
The 70's and 80's
If the 1960's and 1970's were a period of strength for the Lodge, then the 1970's and 1980's were sadly a time of the lodge suffering from declining membership and the inevitable personality clashes that periods of hardship bring. The meetings from 201‐300 were held between December 1973 and January 1988.
 
This was a time when Freemasonry in‐general suffered from its poor ‐ or to be more accurate, non‐existent, public relations policy. The cries of conspiracy and corruption did the fraternity we all love and respect no favours at all and led to many worthy Masons leaving the Craft altogether. The Lodge of Peace and Goodwill was no different and as an example, the statistics for initiations and joining members show a stark contrast between the first two chapters. There were just twenty‐five initiations with an average age of 39.8 years and two joining members; of those, the first W Bro Alan Russell, a long time visitor to the Lodge, joined in 1981 and celebrated his Silver Jubilee with us in October 2006 having served as Worshipful Master for three years in 1983, 1995 and 1996.
 
The other, W Bro Frank Lewis, was a re‐joining member in 1984. The 300th Regular Meeting was held on 15th January 1988 and was a demonstration of the ceremony of Passing; the name of the candidate was not recorded in the minutes. There was no celebration of this meeting; however the 250th Meeting held on 19th December 1980 was an Initiation ceremony of Mr John Richard Spooner and a brief history of the Lodge was given by the Chaplain W Bro J H Grainger.
 
Sadly there is no record of this history with the minutes or secretary’s papers. Also, in stark contrast to the previous meetings, of the 201st – 300th Meetings, ten were either lectures or demonstrations. These are all recorded in the listing of the regular meetings at Appendix D. Two of these demonstrations were held in 1987, the first being by the Lodge of Instruction to demonstrate the new emulation ritual containing the revised obligation and penalties for the ceremony of Initiation. W Bro Tony Sadler, at the time a PPrJGW, was the candidate for the second of these ceremonies, performed by the normal lodge officers.
 
The use of demonstrations and lectures within the Masonic calendar for every Lodge has a place, and a very important one too; however, it seems that these were held mostly as gap‐fillers due to a lack of candidates. There were two meetings at which no ceremony, lecture or demonstration was carried out: the first, it appears, was due to the absence of the candidate for raising, Bro S C Harrison in December 1986. The minutes of the meeting do not record the reason for the absence, but the ceremony was later carried out at a Past Masters night in February 1987.
 
During this period, as you would expect, many of the current senior Lodge members passed through the Principal offices, including:
 
  • W Bro Tony Sadler
  • W Bro Louis Tippins (Obit.)
  • W Bro Alan Russell
  • WBro Clive Abbott
  • W Bro John Dillon
The average length of service before reaching the Chair of King Solomon was starting to drop from well over ten years to nearer seven or eight, with W Bro Clive Abbott taking only six years. Most will agree that even for an accomplished ritualist, this is rather hasty!
 
The list of Acting Provincial Grand Ranks and Grand Ranks is also dramatically diminished and is shown below. Despite its length being diminished, it was during this time that W Bro Tom Wood was appointed both V W Deputy and R W Provincial Grand Master for the Province of Warwickshire, a much loved and respected Mason and by this time, our last surviving founder.
 
In 1979, W Bro Tony Sadler was appointed as an Acting Provincial Assistant Grand Director of Ceremonies the first appointment in an illustrious Masonic career. In 1982 W Bro David Wood was rewarded for so many years as Provincial Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies with appointment as PAGDC, becoming the third appointment to Grand Rank for the Lodge.
 
  • 1974 W Bro D H Wood Prov Dep. GDC
  • 1975 W Bro D H Wood Prov Dep.GDC
  • 1978 VW Bro T A Wood Dep. PGM (Warks)
  • 1979 W Bro J A Sadler Prov AGDC
  • 1979 W Bro J Woodall Prov G Stwd
  • 1981 RW Bro T A Wood Prov GM
  • 1982 W Bro D H Wood PAGDC

 

Into the 'noughties'
The span of the final part so far is from February 1988 to March 2007, a period which has seen both resurgence and decline in equal measure. The figures for membership make painful reading, however, with the lowest ebb being in the late 1990's. During this period, there were only fourteen initiates with an average age of 41.6 years, although this is somewhat skewed by Bro Harry Browne who was the oldest initiate in the Lodge history at 72 years young. Harry is now a Country member and still going strong at the tender age of 81.
 
There were eight joining members and this period saw W Bro Frank Lewis rejoining again having resigned to care for his ailing wife in the late 1990s. Of the 100 meetings covered here, forty‐five were either lectures, demonstrations or presentations which is no surprise when you consider all the degree ceremonies for the fourteen initiates would only take up forty two meetings if they were all completed. Installations would only deal with another eighteen. In November 1988, one of the forty‐five meetings without a degree or Installation ceremony was the dedication of the new Lodge Banner, presented in April of that year. The story behind the new banner is a remarkable one and worthy of comment here.
 
Appendix to Lodge Minutes of the 305th Regular Meeting 18th November 1988, added at the instruction of the R W Bro E F Hanson, JP, LLD(Hons) Provincial Grand Master – this is the story of how the new Banner was obtained. Whilst a patient in the Royal Masonic Hospital in August 1984, W Bro J H Grainger , Secretary, PM PPJGD met Bro J R Hawtin of Lewes, Sussex who, in discussion of matters Masonic, mentioned he was presenting his Royal Ark Mariners Lodge, Southdown No 164, with a new Banner.
 
Knowing the approximate cost of Banners, W Bro Grainger facetiously suggested that Bro Hawtin must be very wealthy, which he denied by saying the cost was very reasonable, not exceeding £120.00. In further discussion it came to light that the Banner was being made, entirely by hand, by Roman Catholic nuns at a convent in Calcutta (Now Kolcata), India, hence the comparatively low cost.
 
In 1986 W Bro Grainger noticed that our Lodge Banner was in a very poor condition, colours faded, silk frayed and split in places, the insignia being almost unreadable. W Bro Grainger therefore contacted Bro Hawtin asking if it would be possible to obtain a price for a new Banner, at that time sending a copy of our Summons to give a small indication of our Badge etc. After several weeks the reply came that the cost would be in the region of £120.00 ‐ £150.00 but a proper coloured drawing must be supplied for a firm price to be quoted.
 
W Bro Grainger made a . scale drawing in full colours of the Banner, and after a few weeks more a firm figure of £135.00 was received. W Bro Grainger and his son, W Bro D A Grainger, decided to present a new Banner to the Lodge and requested Bro Hawtin to place an instruction to supply. Bro Hawtin did so, but advised that as he would be away abroad a lot in future, W Bro Grainger should in future deal with W Bro Wade‐Cooper, a PJGW, founder member of the Grand Lodge of India, Past Deputy District Grand Master of Eastern India. W Bro Wade‐Cooper now retired and living at Burgess Hill, West Sussex, thus became the primary contact.
 
Many months passed until in March 1988 news came that the Banner had arrived at Burgess Hill and was available for collection, but the final cost was not yet advised. W Bro Grainger arranged for a friend to collect it and bring it to Birmingham in April when attending a reunion of an RAF Unit in Coventry.
 
W Bro Grainger felt it now safe to advise the Lodge Committee of what he had done; many members then expressed a wish to partake in its purchase and so it was decided that the Lodge would pay for it from our “Special Fund” and although the price was confirmed to be £135.00, it was decided to increase this to £150.00 as a gesture of appreciation for the wonderful workmanship. Payment was made in September 1988 and a letter of thanks sent via W Bro Wade‐Cooper, to the nuns.
 
As Secretary of the Lodge, W Bro Grainger then wrote to the Provincial Grand Lodge requesting the necessary Dedication Ceremony, and mentioning that no ceremony was to be held at our Regular Meeting in November 1988. This was granted and arrangements commenced with a meeting between W Bro Grainger and W Bro L Pownting, Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies; meanwhile W Bro Grainger decided that, as the Fringe and hanging Ropes and Tassels on the new Banner were not of the same quality as the remainder of the Banner, they should be replaced with those off the old Banner, which although 43 years old, were of much superior quality. Mrs Grainger therefore performed the task of removing, washing and sewing the old Fringe etc. on to the new Banner. Apart from the much improved appearance, general satisfaction was felt,  specially expressed by R W Bro T A Wood, our sole remaining Founder, that part of the old original Banner should be preserved and continue into the future.
 
The quite beautiful hand embroidery and general workmanship in the new Banner was much admired. The Acting Provincial Grand Chaplain referred in his oration to the fact of this Masonic Banner being made by Roman Catholic nuns, something hardly possible during the 230 years preceding 1974.
 
W Bro Grainger gave this explanation at dinner and the R W Provincial Grand Master expressed the wish that it be put on record as an appendix to the Minutes as a bit of Lodge History.
 
The last hundred meetings saw the majority of the current Past Masters reach the Masters chair for the first, second, or in some cases, third time. It also saw many resignations through age and health as well as periods where a group of Brethren felt it necessary to resign for personal reasons.
 
W Bro J H Grainger was Secretary for several years and then became Treasurer towards the end of the 1980's and after what seems to have been several years of rumblings, he resigned in open Lodge at the 329th Regular meeting in February 1992.
 
This led to a special meeting alongside the 333rd Regular Meeting in February of the following year, at which the Past Provincial Grand Master offered his wise counsel and support. The meeting was to determine the viability of the Lodge. I am glad to say that the assembled brethren made the right decision.
 
At around this time, the Lodge resolved to reduce the number of meetings each year from seven to four, and to move the Installation meeting to April instead of March, the first of these Installations was in April 1992, presided over by the R W Provincial Grand Master E F Hanson. The following meeting saw the death of our first initiate, Murray Bull at the age of ninety years.
 
Also during this period, W Bro David Wood passed to the Grand Lodge above and in his memory, Mrs Wood presented the Lodge with two crystal port decanters, suitably inscribed. It seems that even in a fraternity such as ours, strong personalities cannot always be moulded into conformity. This period also saw the only instance of the resignation of a reigning Master.
 
In September 2004, W Bro Ian Bruckshaw who had been installed for the second time in April of that year, felt it necessary to resign at the first Officers’ meeting of the year; at that time, there were eleven letters of resignation from a total of eighteen members of the Lodge. Eventually calm was restored and only two members resigned, one a country member, the other, the reigning Master. This led to the Immediate Past Master, ruling over the Lodge for a second year.
 
Since those days, the Lodge has regained some of its former strength and in the last Masonic year, initiated four candidates in one year and, had the fifth candidate been able to attend the Lodge on his allotted date, it would have been five. In addition to these ceremonies, W Bro Tom Stanley Deeming was presented with his certificate marking fifty years in the Craft by W Bro P C Band PSGD APGM in February of 2006. It was a wonderful evening and to witness the initiation of our 101st candidate and the presentation, to our Senior Past Master was a Masonic treat.
 
The list of Acting Provincial Honours for this period is sparse, and is repeated below. W Bro Tony Sadler was appointed Provincial Grand Treasurer and Past Grand Standard Bearer in the same year; he served as Provincial Grand Treasurer for five years.
 
In fact only two brethren received Acting Provincial Honours in the 20 years covered by the final chapter of the Lodge so far.
 
  • 1993 W Bro J A Sadler PGStB
  • 1993 W Bro J A Sadler Prov G Treas
  • 1994 W Bro J A Sadler Prov G Treas
  • 1995 W Bro J A Sadler Prov G Treas
  • 1996 W Bro J A Sadler Prov G Treas
  • 1997 W Bro J A Sadler Prov G Treas
  • 2005 W Bro E D Baker Prov G Stwd
The Lodge of Peace and Goodwill has always had a reputation for good ritual and fellowship and it is the hope of all the current members that the Lodge grows and continues to flourish, whilst maintaining the principles of its founders from 16th March 1945.