The latest excursion by ‘Prince of Wales On Tour’ ventured forth on Monday 11th September when 20 members of Prince of Wales 1705 and 3 members, Rob Dewbery, Alan Page, and Brian Morris, of Prince of Wales 951, ventured forth to Llanelli in South Wales, for the Installation meeting of Prince of Wales 671.
We were met by a very warm welcome, both from the members of 671 and our old friends in 1705, and a mini banquet of sandwiches, quiches, scones and cakes, and an ample supply of tea and coffee, served by the Ladies of the catering team, over seen by the incoming Master’s lady wife. This spread was not entirely for our benefit, for as this was the first Installation meeting of the new Masonic year in the Province of West Wales, the PGM was there as Presiding Officer, with a goodly team of Provincial Officers. The Rt Worshipful Brother, James Ross, warmly circulated the room speaking to each and everyone of us and again, made us all feel extremely welcome.
The Lodge was opened at 3.30 by the Officers and Brethren of 671, and after the routine business of the Lodge had been carried out, we of the visiting Prince of Wales Lodges were processed in and welcomed, and shown to our seats. This was followed by the entry of the PGM accompanied by 19 Provincial Officers (including the 2 wardens, 2 banner bearers, and Sword bearer), 6 Grand Officers, the past PGM, and the DGS of the Royal Arch Province. The PGM took the gavel for a short while so he could formally invest the 2 Provincial Wardens, who had both been unavoidably absent at the Provincial meeting in June.
When the Installing Master resumed his seat the Installation ceremony was carried out in fine form, which included closing IN FULL in all 3 degrees! The new officers were appointed and invested, before the charges to the Master, Wardens and the Brethren were delivered respectively by the PGM, and the Provincial Senior and Junior Grand Wardens. The working tools in each degree were delivered faultlessly by ‘light blues'. After the meeting had been completed we retired to a very enjoyable 3 course festive board with Coffee all for the princely sum of £16! To some of us the toasts and speeches were longer than we are accustomed to, but never the less we got up from our seats at 9.15. The Brethren of the visiting POW very generously dug in their pockets, and Worshipful Brother Bill Starkey of 1705 presented the new WM with £230 for his chosen charity of the Fire Brigade, with an explanation of how ‘POW’s on Tour' came about, and encouraged the Brethren of 671 to join us on our next outing. Masonic Knowledge was enjoyably increased by seeing a familiar ceremony done in a different way, and Brotherly Love was certainly advanced by reconnecting with our friends in Gosport, and the new friends we have made in Llanelli, which we hope to build on in the near future