The Provincial Delegation
For the first time in the history of Meribah Chapter (consecrated in 1825), a personal 60th was celebrated to honour EComp Kenneth Tyler PProvGScN. To recognize the significance of this achievement, the Deputy Grand Superintendent EComp Bill Porter accompanied by a large Provincial Delegation attended Farnworth Masonic Hall to celebrate this significant event.
On being admitted to the Chapter Room and duly honoured, the Deputy Grand Superintendent took the First Principals Chair with the 2nd Provincial Grand Principal EComp David Thompson, and the 3rd Provincial Grand Principal EComp Revd. Donald Pryce taking the chairs of Haggai and Joshua respectively.
The Chapter was called off so the ladies of Ken’s Chapter and Lodge could hear the tribute and witness the presentation to Ken. Some 18 ladies were then conducted into the Chapter by the Acting Provincial Director of Ceremonies EComp David Bristol. EComp Ken Tyler was then placed on a chair in the middle of the chapter room.
EComp Jason Tyler, the nephew of the celebrant and the Chapter Scribe E, then read out the relevant extract from the minutes of his exaltation into Goulburn Chapter No 3748 on 2nd January 1955. He then gave a very fitting tribute to his uncle explaining why, after being a member of Goulburn Chapter for eight years, he joined Meribah Chapter because all his masonic connections were at Farnworth. The tribute covered Ken’s extensive masonic career in the Craft and Royal Arch. The final sentence in the tribute to Ken read as follows:-
“Your zeal, tireless energy and zest for life even at 91 years of age is surely an example to us all, but your contribution to the Royal Arch and to Freemasonry across the Bolton District for the past 65 years will never be surpassed and for that we offer you our sincere grateful thanks”.
At the end of this tribute spontaneous applause broke out.
The Deputy Grand Superintendent then took the celebrant back to 1955 and outlined some of the events which took place that year after which he left the First Principal’s chair to speak to Ken in the centre of the Chapter room. He first read out a congratulatory letter from the Most Excellent Grand Superintendent Sir David Trippier and the read the contents of the illuminated certificate signed by the Grand Superintendent before presenting both to EComp Tyler.
The Acting Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies then escorted EComp Tyler around the Chapter to a standing ovation from everyone present. EComp David Thornton, the patch Assistant to the Provincial Grand Principals, then presented EComp Tyler with a Royal Arch 60 year service badge which he attached to his lapel to join his 65 years service badge in the Craft and a lapel badge for “exceptional services to Freemasonry in the East Lancashire Province” presented to him by the Provincial Grand Master at Provincial Grand Lodge last November.
The ladies were then escorted out of the Chapter room after which the Chapter was called back on and the rest of the business of the evening was transacted. After the Chapter had been closed a number of photographs were taken to mark this very significant occasion not only for EComp Tyler but also for Freemasony at Farnworth in general and Meribah Chapter in particular.
The Deputy Grand Supt with the 2nd & 3rd Provincial Grand Principals, the members of Meribah Chapter including the celebrant EComp Ken Tyler accompanied by the patch AProvGP
The Deputy Grand Superintendent with the celebrant EComp Ken Tyler
There then followed a very enjoyable festive board at which the ladies joined all the Companions.
This evening will be long remembered by so many of Ken’s friends and colleagues in Freemasonry particularly in the Royal Arch.
© 2016, all text and images contained in this post are the property of the author and photographer respectively.