The 31st October saw the Finale of the Tercentenary Celebrations of United Grand Lodge of England.
It started with an epic journey for our Worshipful Master who had to fight with the traffic, as a result of one of the bridges in Burton-On-Trent being closed and the surrounding roadways full to bursting! Eventually arriving at Burton-On-Trent Railway Station, only to find his train had been delayed, which subsequently meant the connecting train from Tamworth was missed.
Eventually arriving in London, he made his way to the Hotel where he and a number of Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Staffordshire Masons were all staying, where they had a few drinks and then made their way on to the Royal Albert Hall.
After taking a few photo’s we made our way in side to one of the bars, for another drink or two.
We were then asked to put our regalia on and make our way into the Royal Albert Hall and were greeted with the view of 4000+ Masons and a stage which had clearly taken a lot of preparation and hard work.
The show started and what a performance it was, narrated by Sir Derek Jacobi, Samantha Bond and Sanjeev Bhaskar OBE, with performances from Fleur De Bray, Jihonn Kim, Richard Suart, Clive Rowe, Laura Darton, Cat Simmons, Amelia Adams-Pearce, Stephen Aintree to name but a few.
After some great performances the Grand Master – His Royal Highness The Duke of Kent, processed in, accompanied by the Pro Grand Master – Peter Geoffrey Lowndes, Deputy Grand Master – Jonathan Spence and the Assistant Grand Master – Sir David Wootton, the Grand Chaplin – The Rev. Canon Michael Wilson, expertly Directed in of course by the Grand Director of Ceremonies – Oliver Lodge.
A new reconstructed Ark of The Masonic Covenant was also dedicated, as designed by the Architect Sir John Soane.
During the ceremony the Brethren also sung I Vow To Thee My Country, Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah, Jerusalem and The National Anthem.
A superb ceremony was had by all.
We then had transport to take us to The Battersea Evolution, where we had a Champagne Reception and meal which consisted of Lobster Tortellini, spaghetti of vegetables caviar and white wine cream, crisp leeks. Followed by Treacle Roast Fillet of Beef, watercress and horseradish emulsion, glazed carrots, anna potatoes, bone marrow crumble and red wine sauce. Traditional Sherry Trifle for desert with toasted almonds and shortbread biscuits, followed by a Cheese Board.
We then caught taxis back to the hotel where the partying carried on into the early hours of the morning.