Address of the Pro Grand Master,
the Marquess of Northampton
Brethren, we held the first meeting of
the Rulers’ Forum here yesterday with
representatives of the ten groups and have
got off to a good start. We discussed a
variety of topics which are relevant to
the future of English Freemasonry.
The minutes of the meeting will be
widely circulated and I hope that any
Brother who has any good ideas for the
well-being of the Craft will pass them to
the Forum through his local group.
The Centre for Research into
Freemasonry at the Sheffield University
continues to make good progress. Many
of you will have seen reports of the events
in the spring, accompanying the opening
of the Centre’s new premises, named after
the pioneering Masonic scholar, Professor
Douglas Knoop, a Past Master of Quatuor
Coronati Lodge No. 2076.
The University of Sheffield’s teaching
affairs committees have now approved
an MA programme in the history of
Freemasonry and Fraternalism, the first
such degree in the world, which will be
launched during 2007-8.
Finally, on behalf of my fellow Rulers,
I would like to take this opportunity of
wishing you and your families a very happy
and peaceful Festive Season and a prosperous
The Minutes of the Quarterly Communication
of 13 September 2006 were confirmed.
Nomination of a Grand Master
for the ensuing year.
HRH The Duke of Kent was nominated
for re-election as Grand Master
Report of the Board of General
Annual Investiture of Grand Officers
So that sufficient accommodation can
be reserved for those Brethren who are
to be invested and their friends, admission
to the Annual Investiture is by ticket only.
(25 April 2007)
Brethren to be invested for the first time
may invite to be present with them three
qualified Brethren and those to be
promoted, two qualified Brethren.
Allowance having been made for such
an issue and for those whose presence in the
Grand Lodge is essential, a few seats will
remain. Written application for these seats
may be made to the Grand Secretary
between 1 March and 31 March by Brethren
qualified to attend the Grand Lodge:
Past Grand Officers, Masters, Wardens
(not Past Wardens), Past Masters qualified
under Rule 9, Book of Constitutions.
Applications should state clearly the
name, address and Lodge of the Brother
concerned and under which of the four
categories mentioned his application is
made. If necessary, a ballot for the allocation
of seats will be held on 2 April, and tickets
will be posted to successful Brethren on
approximately 5 April. Brethren who have
been unsuccessful will be so informed.
Possession of a ticket will not, of itself,
ensure admission – Brethren who are not
Grand Officers will be required to hand their
tickets to the scrutineers before examination
by them in accordance with the usual practice
at Quarterly Communications.
Past Grand Officers should sign the
Attendance Books in the Past Grand
Officers’ Room, and give up their tickets
before being admitted to the Grand Temple.
Grand Officers taking part in the procession
will sign in the Grand Officers’ Room.
Most Brethren in London will, and some
Brethren elsewhere may, be aware that the
Metropolitan Grand Master for London
proposes to make significant changes to
the manner in which the Metropolitan
Grand Lodge and the Private Lodges in
the Metropolitan Area of London are
administered. Most of the changes are ones
of internal organisation, and as such are
entirely a matter for the Metropolitan
He has, however, requested certain
amendments to the Rules in the Book of
Constitutions to reinforce the changes that
are proposed and to cover certain related
The principal matter covered by the
proposed amendments is the redesignation
of Metropolitan Group Chairmen and
Deputy Metropolitan Group Chairmen as
Assistant Metropolitan Grand Masters and
Metropolitan Grand Inspectors respectively,
each of whom will have authority
throughout the Metropolitan Area.
Both will be permitted to wear chains
of office and will be enabled to demand
admission to and preside in any Lodge
in the Metropolitan Area.
In addition, a Brother who has held office
in the Metropolitan Grand Lodge will be
permitted to wear a jewel showing his
former office, similar to that of a Past
Provincial Grand Officer, with the apron
of a holder of Senior Metropolitan or
Metropolitan Grand Rank.
The Board has taken the opportunity to
put forward some further small amendments
to the Book of Constitutions, most of which
are matters of form rather than of substance.
There is, however, one significant
amendment, which will give the MW
The Grand Master the power to rearrange
the boundaries of Metropolitan areas,
similar to the power he possesses in relation
to Provinces and Districts. The Board
wishes to stress that it is introducing
this amendment in order to rationalise
the existing position and that there
is no suggestion that the power might
be exercised in the foreseeable future.
Notice of Motion to amend the Book
of Constitutions accordingly appeared on the
Paper of Business.
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