Wednesday 29th March marked the 50th anniversary in Freemasonry for WBro Colin Farrow PProvGSwdB and a large number of Masons came together at Roch Valley Lodge 5120 in Rochdale Masonic Hall to help him celebrate.

The proceedings were led by WBro Peter Rhodes APGM with Grand Lodge officer WBro Gerry Hodson PGStdB, District Chairman WBro Doug Smith and a delegate of District Officers in support.

Upon accepting the Gavel from Roch Valleys Worshipful Master, WBro John G Hall, WBro Rhodes began the celebrations with a music quiz to test the Brethren’s knowledge of popular music from 1973 – the year Colin was initiated into Freemasonry. Good practice ahead of the Provincial Quiz in a few weeks’ time!

WBro Rhodes then invited the Secretary to read a letter from WBro Peter Hewitt and his wife who unfortunately could not be in attendance but wanted to record his own tribute to Colin. WBro Hewitt commended Colin on giving 100% to every office he has held and his dedication to Freemasonry. Following this, the Secretary read an exert of the minutes from Colin’s initiation.

WBro Andrew Stott led the tribute on behalf of Roch Valley, giving the brethren in attendance in insight into Colin’s Masonic journey, which started when the Junior Warden crashed him into the Senior Wardens column on his initiation! It got much better from there, with Colin first being installed as Worshipful Master in 1979 and again in 2011. Colin has held a number of vital roles in Roch Valley over the years, acting as Treasurer, Assistant Secretary, Charity Steward and DC as well as the role as Director of Rochdale Masonic Hall and roles within the District.
Andrew went on to explain that Colin’s passion was for ritual and ceremonial work, overseeing countless ceremonies and installations with his party pieces being the full explanation of the 1st degree tracing board and address to the brethren.

Following the tribute, WBro Rhodes and WBro Doug Smith presented Colin with an illuminated certificate and a 50th pin badge. WBro Smith took the opportunity to add his own glowing tribute to Colin.

Colin was then perambulated around the lodge to great acclaim.

Before retiring from the lodge, WBro Rhodes was presented with a donation of £250 towards the 2026 Festival on behalf of Roch Valley.

The brethren then gathered at the excellent the social board, where with much merriment, they enjoyed a toast to the celebrant given by WBro Hall and the response by WBro Farrow.