ISSUE 21, April 2007
Editorial
Historic: Philanthropist and scientist: Sir Henry Wellcome
Travel: In Darwin's footsteps
Grand Secretary: Interview with Nigel Brown
Quarterly Communication: Speech by the Pro Grand Master and Report of the Board of General Purposes
Faith and Freemasonry: A Salvationist and the Craft
Young Mason: Keep up the tradition
Freemasons' Hall: Refurbishment
Ladies Groups: Cheshire Ladies Circle
   Library and Museum: Masonry and music - the role of the organ
Specialist Lodge: A new Lodge for showmen is consecrated
Serving the community: Two Masons win major rescue awards
Spain: How a Cleveland Mason found his Spanish roots
Wales: Welsh Mason lands national sporting award
Hospices: The Craft's historic links with hospices
Ancient Craft: Herefordshire's ancient boat builder
Education: Forthcoming events and Andrew Prescott and Own free will and accord and First Universities Scheme Initiate
Masonic Charities: Latest from the four main Masonic charities
Letters, Book reviews, Gardening

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Many of you will know that I left the Centre of Research into Freemasonry at the University of Sheffield on 1 March 2007 to take up an appointment as manager of Library Services at the University of Wales Lampeter.
    My new post is an exciting opportunity for me. The University of Wales Lampeter was founded in 1822 by Thomas Burgess, at that time Bishop of St David’s, and is the oldest university in England and Wales after Oxford and Cambridge.
    On his death in 1829, Bishop Burgess bequeathed his collection of books and manuscripts to his foundation. This forms the kernel of a remarkable collection of 25,000 early printed books and manuscripts which constitute the University’s Founders’ Library, one of the most unusual and interesting libraries in Wales, and a major part of my job will be to raise its profile.
    I agonised for a long time before accepting this post, since I have thoroughly enjoyed my work in developing the Centre for Research into Freemasonry and was keen to bring to fruition the exciting plans we have developed there. In the end, it was only my hopeless addiction to libraries and the prospect of living in a very beautiful part of the country which made up my mind.
    Having made my decision, I realised that it was a good thing that I have decided to move on. The main thrust of my work at Sheffield over the past six years has been to emphasise that Freemasonry forms an integral part of our social history and should be approached in the same way as other historical institutions.
    However, there is a danger that those researchers and curators who take an interest in the history of Freemasonry are seen as in some way divorced from the mainstream. I hope that by moving on in this way, I will demonstrate that this is not the case.
    I will take with me many happy memories. I have received superb hospitality from Lodges and Chapters all over the country and I would like to thank them all. I have made many new friends, whose good fellowship I will continue to value.
    Above all, however, what I will remember is the marvellous Library and Museum of Freemasonry. The exploration of its extraordinary collections and the unstinting support I have received from all its staff, will be my most abiding memory of my time in developing the Centre for Research into Freemasonry.
    These happy memories were made possible by the funders of the Centre at Sheffield, for which I must thank the United Grand Lodge of England, the Supreme Grand Chapter of England, Yorkshire West Riding Province and the Marquess of Northampton.
    I should also mention the unstinting support the Centre has received from many individuals, particularly Trevor Broadley, Nigel Buchanan, John Hamill, James Daniel, Michael Lawson, James Newman, Viscount Gough and Richard Crane.
    The University of Sheffield has expressed its continuing support for the work of the Centre and will be advertising shortly for my successor. The new Director will take forward the MA in the History of Freemasonry and Fraternalism recently approved by the University, which will begin in October 2008.
    My successor will also work closely with the United Grand Lodge to develop plans for a tercentenary history to be published in 2017.
    The public seminars of the Centre for Research into Freemasonry will be continued during the interregnum under the aegis of my colleague John Wade, and details can be found elsewhere in this issue of MQ.
    So farewell, and thanks. I will not be giving up my interest in the history of Freemasonry. I will be speaking at the International Conference on the History of Freemasonry in Edinburgh from 25-27 May 2007, and I look forward to seeing many of you then.
    I received many kind words and presents on leaving Sheffield. The most splendid was a beautiful portrait by William Hogarth of John Pine, the first engraver to Grand Lodge, presented to me by the Board of General Purposes, the Committee of General Purposes and the staff of the Library and Museum of Freemasonry, which will have pride of place in my office in Lampeter.
    More unusual, and particularly touching, was a beautiful square, presented to me by six of the most loyal supporters of the Centre’s events (John Acaster, John Belton, Tony Lever, Jack Thompson, Alan Turton and John Wade), inscribed:
    To Prof Andrew Prescott. We met upon the level and parted on the square.
    That was a truly Masonic thank you, and I will treasure it.

Andrew Prescott was presented with this Hogarth print of John Pine, first engraver to Grand Lodge




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