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Two 70-Year Membership Certificates Presented in Lincolnshire


Bryan Robinson receiving a certificate commemorating his 70 years of membership as a Freemason Is there something magical in the water in the south of the Province of Lincolnshire?

That might explain why two 70-year certificates have been presented within 24 hours at masonic centres a mere dozen miles apart, in a unique combination of circumstances in the Province.

The milestone involved only the second and third 70-year certificates ever presented in Lincolnshire. The second was to Bryan Robinson at Hundred of Elloe Lodge in Spalding; the third to Eric Jessop at Hereward Lodge in Bourne – and both presentations were part of ceremonies at which new Freemasons, both called Matt, were Initiated.

Bryan's certificate was presented by Provincial Grand Master Dave Wheeler, who'd turned up unannounced for the evening and surprised Lodge Master Roy Mead by taking the gavel long enough to make the presentation to Bryan – though he handed it back for Roy to carry on with the ceremony.

Retired farmer Bryan, 98, has been a member of all three Spalding Lodges. He was initiated into Hundred of Elloe in March 1954, became its Worshipful Master in 1966, St Godric Lodge in 1957, and was a founder of Welland Lodge in 1994. He joined the Royal Arch as a member of the Welland Chapter in June 1955. He now holds an Honorary membership.
Bryan has held many offices and, throughout his career, has been a member of numerous Companion Orders in Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire, and Derbyshire, including being a founder member several times.

Eric, who was presented with his certificate by Provincial Junior Grand Warden Paul Ellis, is 96. He was born on New Year's Day 1928. He was initiated into Hereward Lodge in March 1954 and became its Master in October 1969. In addition to receiving a certificate, he was presented with a card signed by Lodge members and a decorated cake baked by Beverley Greenfield, whose husband Ian is the Almoner in Hereward Lodge.

In another unexpected coincidence, both the Brethren who were Initiated to embark on their careers in Freemasonry were called Matt: Matt Alexander at Hundred of Elloe and Matt Williams at Hereward.

Provincial Grand Master Dave Wheeler said: 

"Bryan and Eric have done much to sustain Freemasonry in Lincolnshire and beyond over long and distinguished careers, and it was a pleasure for all those who saw the certificates presented to have been involved in such significant milestones. It will no doubt be many years before we see such a combination of circumstances again – if indeed it ever happens!" 

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