On Thursday, 1st December 2022, Albatross Lodge `NO.6164 celebrated 50 years in Freemasonry for WBro. Derek Bryant.

The Lodge was opened in due form, and the Worshipful Master, WBro Dudley Bostock was delighted to receive the Assistant Provincial Grand Master and his delegation. As is customary, he offered the gavel to the Assistant Provincial Grand Master, who, on this occasion, advised the Worshipful Master that he would be delighted to take the gavel after he had installed his successor.

The Worshipful Master, with the support of members of the Lodge, then installed WBro Jim Hilton as the Worshipful Master of Albatross Lodge for the ensuing year. WBro Hilton then invested his officers in completing the ceremony of installation.

The next item was to Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of WBro Derek Bryant; for this, the Worshipful master offered the gavel of the Lodge to the Assistant Provincial Grand Master, WBro Mark Davis, and on this occasion, he was pleased to accept.

Upon taking the chair, WBro Davis first congratulated the Worshipful master on his recent preferment at Provincial Grand Lodge earlier this month. WBro Jim Hilton was promoted to Past Provincial Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies.

WBro Davis introduced the members of the Area delegation, which included WBro Chris Armstrong -Area Chairman for the newly created City West Area, WBro Steve Wallace Area Deputy Chairman for City West, WBro Andrew Foster Area Mentor; WBro Mick Dugdale Deputy Area Mentor, WBro Peter Tonge, Assistant Secretary and WBro Ben Davies Area Communications Officer.

WBro Davis thanked the members of Albatross Lodge No.6164 for allowing him to conduct the proceedings on this celebration of 50 years in Freemasonry of WBro. Derek Bryant – Past Provincial Grand Sword Bearer in the Province of East Lancashire.

WBro Davis said, I am privileged and honoured to be here and to have the opportunity to take the Chair of King Solomon, and I also bring with me the congratulations and good wishes of our Right Worshipful Provincial Grand Master Robert Ian Frankl, on this very special occasion.

WBro Bryant was then seated in the centre of the lodge room, and once he was sat comfortably, he began,

Derek, 50 years is a fantastic achievement and goes some way to demonstrate the tremendous commitment you have given to Albatross Lodge and, perhaps more importantly, to Freemasonry in general during this period.

Brethren, Derek was initiated into Mansfield Lodge No.7094 on the 26th of October 1970, and as a result, we will unfortunately not be able to present a precis of the minutes from that meeting, but to set the scene, I will highlight a couple of facts to give you a flavour of life over 50 years ago:-

Edward Heath was our Prime Minister, which brings back so many negative memories for people as a result of the miner’s strikes, three day weeks and the troubles in Northern Ireland.

On a more positive note, can you believe that 50 years ago, the backbone of the RAF at that time was ably supported by famous aircraft names such as the Buccaneer, Phantom, Hercules, Nimrod and the recent introduction of the Harrier.

1972 was the year of the Munich Olympic games, which are remembered for so much more than the games themselves.

The FA Cup was won by Leeds and the First Division Championship by Derby County, whom late great Brian Clough managed his first major trophy.

In short, brethren, there was not much positivity around then other than Brother Bryant joining Freemasonry.

WBro Derek Bryant, as we have already heard, you were initiated into Mansfield Lodge No.7094 on the 26th of October 1970 and became a joining member of Albatross Lodge No.6164 in installed as its Worshipful Master in December 1996 and again in December 2011 and again more recently in 2018 and have held a variety of offices within the Lodge in the in-between years.

Your first Provincial appointment was to the rank of Past Provincial Senior Grand Deacon in 2003, promoted to the rank of Past Provincial Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies in 2014 and to your current rank of Past Provincial Grand Sword Bearer in 2021.

You were exalted into Constitution Chapter No.3392 on the 25th of January 2020 and served as its First Principal in 2006, you became a joining member of Renaissance Chapter No.1219, where you hold that very important office of Scribe Ezra.

Your first appointment within Provincial Grand Chapter was to the rank of Past Provincial Grand Standard Bearer in 2015, and you were further promoted to Past Provincial Grand Sojourner in 2022

Derek, it is clear from what we have heard this evening that you have demonstrated throughout your life the true qualities of a model Freemason not only within the boundaries of Freemasonry, but your business life and, more importantly, your family life of which you should be justly proud, and I hope the celebration this evening goes some way to making you realise just how much you have made a difference and contributed to society as a whole.

WBro Davis then presented the letter and certificate celebrating 50 years in Freemasonry, after which WBro Chris Armstrong, City West Area Chairman, presented Derek with his 50th Pin and conducted WBro Bryant around the Lodge to receive the acclaim of the brethren he justly deserves.

Then there was a convivial social board where further toasts were given to Derek.