Cornwall Freemasons raise more
than £2.8m in Festival celebrating their 250th anniversary
Ten years of fund raising activity culminated with a dinner and dance, with music provided by the St Keverne Youth Band, at the Royal
Cornwall Showground in July.
More than 900 Cornish
Freemasons and their guests were at the celebration at which a cheque for £2,038,007 was presented to the Royal Masonic Benevolent Institution (RMBI).
Peter Gray, RMBI chief executive, expressed his gratitude to the Province of Cornwall for the 'tireless work and generosity involved in this tremendous achievement'.
Other donations to the RMBI during this Festival year amounted to £800,000, bringing the total raised for 2002 to more than £2.8m.
The Festival celebrations
also marked the 250th anniversary of the Province. Cornwall has provided two Grand Secretaries for Freemasonry, Sir Philip Colville Smith (1917-37) and James Wallace Daniel
A Festival jewel and brooch have been designed and a 350-page, fully illustrated history of the Province has been published. Thread of Gold tells the story of the Cornwall Province from 1752-2002, with details of the growth of its individual Lodges and of some of its
remarkable personalities and significant occasions.
The Pro Grand Master, Lord Northampton, described the celebration as 'an historic occasion'. He spoke of his own West Country roots and praised the tremendous efforts
of the Cornish Freemasons.
Stressing the value of gifts to local charities by the Lodges, he also pointed out that, in the past five years, over £ 100m has been raised nationally for charitable causes through Freemasonry.
In his reply, Nicholas Barrington paid tribute to the individual and collective efforts of many people during his eight years as Provincial Grand Master.
He said that it had been a privilege and a pleasure to be sponsoring a Festival in this special year for the Province.
He thanked members and Lodge charity stewards for their hard work, adding: 'The support I have received personally and for the Festival has been immense;
Brian Smith, RMBI president, spoke of the increasing responsibilities of the Institution and called the Festival efforts 'a most outstanding result that reflects the confidence you have in your Provincial Grand Master and the support you have given to him'.
He said, 'We are encouraged by the dedication and support of the people
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