It was recently discovered that WBro Ernest Hartley PPrGInspWks had achieved 50 years membership of Fitzwilliam Lodge of Mark Master Masons on the 28th January 2010, and that he was not yet in possession of a certificate to ‘mark’ that occasion. Mark Grand Lodge was pleased to issue such a certificate and in October the Provincial Grand Master RWBro George Bonham and RWBro Roy Bradley PPrGM were able to visit Bro Ernest, who is now 98, at his home in Peterborough - where he lives with his daughter Isobel - to present it. Bro Ernest was initiated into the Craft in St Guthlac Lodge in Market Deeping in 1955, has been married for 74 years, although his wife is now sadly in a nursing home, and professionally was a well-respected Chiropodist. He went through the chair of Fitzwilliam Mark Lodge in 1968 and achieved the rank of Past Provincial Grand Inspector of Works in our Mark Province. He was able to attend Lodge occasionally until the age of 95 thanks to the good offices of WBro John Whiting who would transport him. He had been Lodge Organist for many years and he was also Organist at St Guthlac’s Parish Church in Market Deeping. As a fitting thank you for all that Bro Ernest had done the Lodge gave him Honorary Membership in 2008.
RWBros Roy Keith Bradley PPGM & George Bonham PGM present WBro Ernest with his certificate
Another stalwart of the Mark Degree WBro Stanley Simms PGJD (and RAMGR in the Royal Ark Mariner degree) achieved 50 years membership of Socrates Lodge of MMM back in 2009 and also 50 years membership of Socrates RAM Lodge on the 14th March 2011. It had been planned to present these at a Provincial Team Visits to both Lodges on 4th October but unfortunately Bro Stan’s health prevented this so RWBro George Bonham PGM and VWBro Richard Turpin PGJO PDPrGM were able to visit him in a local respite care home on the following Monday to make the presentation of both Certificates. Bro Stan was Worshipful Master of the Mark Lodge in in 1968 ant Worshipful Commander of the Royal Ark Mariner Lode in 1967 and again 35 years later in 2002 – he also has had Honorary Membership of both Lodges conferred on him.