ISSUE 15, October 2005
Editorial
Historic: Nelson and Freemasonry
Grand Lodge: Pro Grand Master's Speech
Grand Lodge: Quarterly Communication
Hurricane Katrina: Grand Charity Relief Chest
Royal Arch: John Knight
Masonic Embroidery: A stitch in time...
Travel: Walzing along the Danube
Specialist Lodges: Martial arts
Library & Museum: The two Freemasons' Halls
    Anniversary: Jersey's Liberation
Anniversary: Dorset's 225 years
Obituaries: Lord Swansea OSM
Pro Grand Master: Whither directing our course?
Charmian Hussey: A Mason's wife on Masonry
International: The Grand Lodge of Israel
Education: Sheffield's big plans
Education: Forthcoming events
Education: The Second Degree
Masonic Charities
Letters, Book Reviews, Gardening

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© Anthony Howell
    The death of Lord Swansea, on 24 June, has deprived Freemasonry of one of the great Masonic figures of the last fifty years.
     Holding high office in all the major Masonic Orders he had a breadth of Masonic wisdom and experience at a high level equalled by few alive today. His commitment and service were recognised by the MW The Grand Master when, on 28 April 1999, he personally invested Lord Swansea with his Order of Service to Masonry.
     John Hussey Hamilton Vivian was born on New Year’s Day 1925 and succeeded his father as the 4th Lord Swansea at the age of nine. Educated at Eton, where he developed a talent for rifle shooting, he went up to Trinity, Cambridge, to read French and German. On graduating he worked for a land agent and devoted himself to running the 11,000 acre family estate near Builth Wells, until it was sold in 1966. An active member of the House of Lords until the hereditary peers were removed in 1999, he spoke on Welsh affairs, road safety, his beloved shooting and, latterly, Freemasonry.
     As a shot he was one of the greatest marksmen of his generation. Regularly captaining Great Britain and Wales, he took part, under Welsh colours, in five Commonwealth Games, winning the Gold Medal in 1966 and the Silver in 1982.
     A regular at Bisley, he won the Grand Aggregate in 1957 and 1960, the Match Rifle Aggregate in 1971 and 1974 and took part in the Queen’s Prize on 18 occasions, coming second in 1958 and 1968. He served as Chairman of the British Shooting Sports Council and Vice-chairman of the National Rifle Association.
     He came into Freemasonry in 1956 in the Alliance Lodge No. 1827, London, being its Master in 1962. After serving as Senior Grand Warden in 1965 he was appointed Provincial Grand Master for South Wales Eastern Division in 1966 and was to hold office for 33 years, during which the Province grew from 109 to 176 Lodges.
     Such was the Province’s affection for him that the 25th anniversary of his installation was celebrated with a huge Festival attended by the brethren and their wives at Builth Wells. The then Pro Grand Master, Lord Cornwallis, on behalf of the Province presented him with a superb informal portrait. In the Royal Arch he was Grand Superintendent of his Province, from 1977 until 1999.
     In the Mark Degree he first held office as GSW in 1975 and from 1979–1999 was successively Assistant, Deputy and Pro Grand Master. He was Great Seneschal and a GCT in Great Priory and held high office in the Cryptic, Red Cross of Constantine, Allied Masonic Degrees, Secret Monitor and Royal Order of Scotland.
     The citation for his Order of service to Masonry concluded with the words “For all this, he remains essentially a modest man, who combines reticence with approachability and deservedly gains the affection of all those with whom he comes into contact.”
     Our thoughts and sympathy go out to Lady Swansea and his family.

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