John Arthur Provincial Grand Master

John Arthur Provincial Grand Master

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A MESSAGE FROM THE PROVINCIAL GRAND MASTER AND THE 2021 FESTIVAL DIRECTOR

Dear Sir and Brother

We hope this message finds you well and safe at this difficult time. The past few weeks have been a major concern for us all and we have not seen the worst of it yet if you follow the news. The encouraging thing is that once again the nation seems to be acting as one in support of our National Health service and emergency organisations. Hopefully this “unified response of appreciation” for these key workers will last for long after this pandemic is dealt with.

This year was to be our final push in support of the 2021 Festival and so many of you were excited to be a part of it. The next few months will continue to be challenging for the country and many may need to call on The Masonic Charitable Foundation for support. The funds we have raised to date over the last 4 years I’m sure will be put to good use if called upon.

As the safety and wellbeing of our families, friends and fellow Freemasons is our main priority, we have reluctantly taken the decision to postpone or cancel some of our events which are detailed below. If the event is cancelled, all those who have made sponsorships should have their donations returned, if they wish. There is no reason why you cannot ask your donors if they would like to leave their donation standing and in support of the charity, but the option to return it must be offered.

If you have paid an entrance fee or a deposit please get in touch if you wish for it to be donated in your name to the MCF or, if you require a refund please contact Paul Quinn by email at: paul.quinn@durham2021.org

For all postponed events we will keep the sponsorship going until the event is concluded.

  • 15th April - Archery Event – Cancelled.
  • 18th April - Eanred Lodge Ladies’ night for the 2021 Festival – Postponed to a future date
  • 26th April - Lanchester Railway Walk (Alden Grange to Blackhill, @ 12miles Postponed (until late Sept / Oct).
  • 23rd May - Plant Sale at Shildon hosted by Corinthian Lodge Sale conditions to be altered - details to be provided asap.
  • 27th-31st - May London UGLE – Paris Eiffel Tower cycle ride Postponed until late September.
  • 12th June - Ladies that Leap, Tandem Sky Dive - Postponed (date to confirm asap).
  • 14th June - 24 Peaks Climbing Challenge – Cancelled.
  • 2nd-5th July - Chester Le Street Beer & Cider Festival – Postponed (date to confirm asap).
  • 13th September - Great North Run – The Organisers currently plan to go ahead with this event.
  • 13th September - Dragon Boat Race – The Organisers currently plan to go ahead with this event.

2020 Grand Raffle

All lodges should now have tickets; we recommend that ticket sales are suspended until further notice. It is our intention to postpone the draw date until early 2021. This will give sufficient time to sell our allocation of tickets. For any tickets sold to date we have been given the advice by the Sunderland Council to “Make all reasonable efforts to inform those to whom we have, or intend to sell tickets to, that the date of the draw will be postponed (by a reasonable time) due to the Covid19 virus". A new draw date will be determined when we return from this enforced recess.

During this period, we are sure that our members will generate other methods and ideas to raise monies for charities and good causes and some we can do indoors. Maybe grow a beard, or run 10k on the running machine indoor sport or disco marathons, Etc. Etc. or even

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Whatever you do please at all times stay safe and follow the Government guidelines. The festival team are here to advise and support you in whatever you do, please get in touch with your ideas so we can share them with the all of our members.

As “we have been taught to be cautious” and at the moment caution is imperative. It is important for you to know that the Masonic Charitable Foundation is there to support you.

The MCF remains committed to providing the same levels of support to our members and to the wider society as they always have done.  Of course if there is an increase in the support that they need to give they will react in the appropriate way to meet that need. There has never been a greater need for us to pull together and the support the MCF.

Thank you all for your understanding and the constant support that you give to our Charity, and hopefully this will just be a temporary pause in our fundraising activities.

We both sincerely hope that you and your families get through the next few months and are not too badly affected by this crisis and we look forward to meeting again in the not too distant future.

Sincerely and Fraternally

John Arthur ProvGM / GSupt

John Thompson 2021 Festival Director

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june 2020 Durham newsletter