2021 Festival

The last lap – 12 months to go – let’s do all we can to push back on the pandemic

Brethren, your response to the Festival has been tremendous and unflagging. I take this opportunity to thank all of the brethren for their personal generosity and wonderful team spirit in raising funds in so many enjoyable and imaginative ways. May I also thank Lodge Charity Stewards, who are the most crucial people in making any festival a success, and to the Liaison Officers, Area Chairs and my Festival Committee, who carry the huge administrative burden. My especial thanks to our Provincial Grand Master, Most Excellent Grand Superintendent and the Executive for their unstinting support and advice.

We have now entered the final twelve months of the Festival, which is the time when Provinces pull out all the stops. Because of the unprecedented times we find ourselves, it is not possible for us to go for the last big push in the normal way. However, the importance of not only meeting, but indeed exceeding our target has never been more important.

The COVID-19 Pandemic has had an enormous impact on both the RMBI and MCF. The RMBI has been, and continues to be, in the front line of the pandemic. Keeping our residents and staff safe from the virus remains paramount, and has come at an extraordinary cost to the Charity.  I am grateful to the MCF for providing an emergency grant of £5 million to the RMBI to help meet these unforeseen costs.

At the same time, the MCF has also incurred additional costs in assisting brethren, their families and indeed the wider community, who have been badly affected by the pandemic either through direct grants, supporting partner charites, like Help the Aged and Mind, and providing matched funding to the UGLE for its COVID Appeal.

Brethren, I hope you agree that supporting the Festival is more important than it has ever been. I urge you to continue to do all that you can. Please support your Charity Steward in his efforts to achieve Gold status in the Festival Awards scheme. If you have already achieved that distinction, let him know you wish to go the extra mile. It is important for us all to continue our regular giving.

These are unprecedented times, which require extraordinary efforts, and for us to find new ways of raising funds. I know this is asking a lot, particularly at a time when not able to meet. However, when the going gets tough the tough get going.

There is much we can still do:

  • For all of us who have covenants to extend and possibly increase our existing pledges to Dec 2023.
  • Appeal all brethren, who have yet to commit to a Festival Jewel, to do so.
  • To explain to all recent initiates who have yet to sign up for a jewel why their support is so vital.
  • For us to be innovative and explore every opportunity in the 12 months ahead to raise as much as we can, by all means possible.

So that on the night of the Festival Gala, we can raise a glass and be proud in the knowledge, what we in the Province of South Wales have done all we can to support those in need.

RW Bro Sir Paul Williams JGW,
Chair PGLSW, 2021 RMBI Festival

2021 Festival gold awards

As a Province, we can take pride in continuing to work hard and support our Provincial Grand Master in the aim of achieving £5m for the 2021 Festival. As we are aware the money raised will go directly to our first class Care Homes via the Royal Masonic Benevolent Institution (RMBI).

It is with pleasure we can announce that twenty five Lodges have donated over £1000.00 per Bro and have received their GOLD Award. To date those achieving this are:

Loyal Cambrian 110, Brecknock 651, Dr James G Hall 3161, Beaufort 3834, North Glamorgan 4055, Penarth 4113, Dinam 4521, Henbont 4691, Harlequins 5793, Doric 5968, Fidelity 6112, R.P.St John Charles 6466, Cambrensis 6608, Ionic 6626, Ind.Y Bont Faen 6700, Endurance 6729, Hamlet of Van 8334, Nottage 8452, Dinas Llandaff 8512, Ystrad Mynach 8567, Discovery 8601, Tudor Lodge 8886, St Andrew’Oriel 8934, Proscenium 9059.

A huge ‘thank you’ is extended to all the above, as it is to all those Lodges who are continuing to raise the necessary funds. Brethren please remember that if your Lodge has any money which you are at present not using (possibly in your Relief Chest) then seriously consider a donation to this worthwhile cause. Brethren must be commended for their ongoing efforts in arranging a vast variety of events and activities, both large and small, to raise funds. Indeed all events, be it a Bike Ride, Hog Roast or a Grand Ball, not only raise funds but also provide opportunities to meet socially with our family and friends. So many of our family members, friends and fellow Brethren have and continue to benefit from the high standard of care and support offered by our Care Facilities. It is only with your support that we can ensure we maintain this vital service for many years ahead.


Swansea Masons raise £12,500 for the RMBI by cycling the length of Wales

On 22 June 2019, four Swansea Masons set out on gruelling 175-mile one-day ‘Home from Home’ ride from Llandudno to Porthcawl to raise funds for the 2021 festival in aid of the RMBI. The RMBI Care Co. is a charity which provides caring support for people in need of residential or nursing care, dementia support or limited sheltered accommodation, which it does via its network of 19 residential homes throughout the UK.

Simon Francis, Jason Thomas, Derek Johnson and Richard Owen – all members of an informal cycling club – had come up with the idea of cycling between two RMBI homes during the planning of the upcoming festival events.

The day of the ‘Home from Home’ event was sunny with a cooling breeze, and after a 4.30 am start at the Queen Elizabeth Court RMBI nursing home in Llandudno, the team set off at a relatively gentle pace towards Blaenau Festiniog. There, a respite from the energy-sapping gradients of Snowdonia was taken before a gentler run down to Machynlleth and then Aberystwyth.

However, the mid-Wales stage of the ride was more challenging than expected. Organiser and lead rider Simon Francis commented “the combination of steady headwinds and relatively gentle but long climbs made this stage a real test of endurance and toughness for all the riders.”

Fortunately, the rest of the journey via Ammanford and Swansea was easier. The team was joined for the last 35 miles by Alison Aberdeen, the manager of the Albert Edward Prince of Wales Court Nursing Home in Porthcawl, which was also their ultimate destination.

Francis commented that “Everyone had to dig deep to get the ride done in one day – it was very challenging, and it was an honour to have had such a team to do it with. Without exception everyone performed admirably, and it was fantastic that we were able to raise £12,500 for such a good cause”.

The cheque for the money raised from the ride was presented by the group to the Provincial Grand Master Gareth Jones OBE, and Chairman of the 2021 Festival Sir Paul Williams, at the PGM’s Summer Ball held in Brangwyn Hall on 29 June, where it was gratefully received.

Francis concluded “Events like these, where like-minded Freemasons capitalise on a passion or a skill to raise much-needed funds, are really important. Not only do we set ourselves a challenging personal task, but in doing so we are able to raise a significant amount of money, in this case for the RMBI, and to support our Province in reaching its £5m target during our festival period.”

PGM’s Business Persons’ Lunch 2019 – The Beech Tree, Cardiff

Tickets available from:
Paul Bunyan
E: paul.bunyan@nullcpengineering.co.uk
T: 07966 241980

Our guest speaker, Brynmor Williams

Brynmor Williams played representative level rugby union for British Lions and Wales, at invitational level for Barbarian F.C., as a scrum-half and representative level rugby league for Wales.

In 1977 he toured New Zealand with the British and Irish Lions when he had yet to be capped by Wales. He made his international début in the first test of the series against the All Blacks at Athletic Park, Wellington, in June 1977 and went on to play in the first three tests before being replaced due to injury during the third match.

He made his Wales début against Australia at Ballymore, Brisbane in June 1978 and scored a try on his début.

Brynmor played club rugby for Cardiff RFC, Swansea RFC and Newport RFC. His sons Lloyd Williams and Tom Williams are both professional rugby union players.

In 2016 Brynmor took up the voluntary role as Chair of Fields in Trust Cymru, a charity dedicated to protecting outdoor space for play, sport and recreation.

Home from Home Cycle Ride 22nd June 2019

Picture updates from the Home from Home, The Queen Elizabeth Court in Llandudno, North Wales to Albert Edward Prince of Wales Court, Porthcawl, South Wales. Approximately 175 miles with in excess of 10,000ft of accumulative climbing in one day.

RMBI 2021 Festival

Our Provincial Charity Steward W.Bro Robert Payne is talking about the progress of our 2021 Festival and how your continued support is making such a valuable contribution to each and every resident across our 18 RMBI care homes. Have you pledged your support to our Festival ? A Minimum commitment of just £500 over the Festival period will ensure your qualification for a Festival Jewel.

Festival Golf Day – 2019

Teams of 4 Players using the
Stableford format

£130 per team which includes:
Bacon Roll and Coffee on arrival, Green Fees,
On-course Refreshments and 2 Course Dinner to finish.
Excellent prizes for the winners and runners up.
Including a unique competition within a competition for the

Masonic Ryder Cup

12 players East and 12 West of the Province will be selected from the entered teams to compete for the Cup, currently held by the East of the Province.

WBro Alan Gardener APGM – EAST
VWBro Roy Woodward PDPGM – WEST

Masonic and non masonic golfers all welcome.

Tee times from 9.00am to 2.00pm
Deposit of £10 per player required to guarantee tee time.

To book please contact
Alan Gardener: M: 07904048817 E: alangardener@nullsky.com
Phil Osborne: M: 07774 203170 E: philip.n.osborne@nullgmail.com