Cambridgeshire Freemasons discover the impact of their donation to research into Multiple Sclerosis
Cambridgeshire Freemasons gathered in March Masonic Hall on Friday 6th March for a fascinating talk describing the effects of Multiple Sclerosis and how research, funded in part by Freemasons is moving towards a potential cure.
Multiple sclerosis is a condition that affects your brain and spinal cord when the coating (myelin) that protects your nerves is damaged. This causes a range of symptoms like blurred vision and problems with how we move, think and feel. More than 130,000 people in the UK have MS and are most likely to find out they have MS in their thirties, forties and fifties. Many people notice their first symptoms years before they get their diagnosis.
The enthralling talk was entitled “Repairing the Brain from Multiple Sclerosis” and was delivered by lead researcher Reverend Professor Alastair Coles, who received £100,000 from the Freemasons’ national Grand Charity (now part of the Masonic Charitable Foundation) in 2010.
Professor Coles, a neuroscientist and consultant at Addenbrooke’s Hospital, and Cambridge University Medical School is leading a team carrying out ground-breaking research into Multiple Sclerosis. Having already developed a way to stop the condition developing, Professor Coles and his team are turning their attention to finding a cure, which is now at the very early clinical trial stage.
The presentation explained in clear lay terms Professor Coles’ work and the progress being made as well as the hurdles he is overcoming. The many questions after the talk which showed how well Professor Coles had explained both the illness and the potential benefits of the research. The talk was followed by dinner, at which senior Cambridgeshire Freemason Bill Dastur presented Professor Coles with a further £1000.
Supporting young people in Whittlesey, Ramsey and Wisbech
On behalf of the Charity for Care & Relief, the Prov Grand Almoner W.Bro George Brennan had the pleasure of presenting a cheque for £400 to Dr Alison Graham (chair of the charity and local GP) and Michelle Lay (vice chair and lead therapist) of The Young Peoples Counselling Service (YPCS).
The charity has been providing counselling for 11-16 year old’s over the last 25 years in the Whittlesey and Ramsey areas and are presently setting up a new centre in the heart of Wisbech as they have identified a need and lack of accessible mental health support in the area.
The YPCS would like to say many thanks to the Provincial Grand Lodge of Cambridgeshire. This donation will provide a full course of counselling by their highly qualified therapists to a young person.
You can discover more about the invaluable work of the charity at https://www.ypcs.uk/
How a £200,000 donation from the Masonic Charitable Foundation is helping patients with neurodegenerative diseases
Cambridgeshire freemasons visited the Department of Clinical Neurosciences at the University of Cambridge to cast a knowledgeable eye over research into neurodegenerative disease being carried out by PhD students Sarah Shipley and Annabel Curle. Their research has benefitted from a donation from the Masonic Charitable Foundation (MCF) Cambridge Scholarships, facilitated by the Cambridge Trust, which has provided over £200,000 of funding to bring them to Cambridge.
Cambridgeshire freemasons Bharat Khetani and Nigel Williams, both retired doctors in the north of the county, were especially interested in the technology used in the labs and the potential medical impact of the work. They were accompanied by Mark Shields, who is coordinating Cambridgeshire freemasons’ Festival 2023 which aims to raise nearly £1,000,000 for the Masonic Charitable Foundation.
Sarah, who took up her place at Cambridge earlier in 2019, said “I am enormously grateful to the Foundation for their support. Understanding how and why memory consolidation changes in Alzheimer’s disease could open the door for future research into targeted treatment of memory-related symptoms. Working in Cambridge offers a unique potential for research in this area.”
Professor David Rubinsztein, Deputy Director of the Cambridge Institute of Medical Research, said "Degenerative diseases such as Alzheimers, Parkinson’s disease and Huntington’s disease take a devastating toll on victims and their families, and place a huge economic cost on society. The work taking place in Cambridge, under leading academics including Professor Henson, has the potential to be truly transformative. We’re making great progress, but there remains a great deal to do. Support from donors such as the Masonic Charitable Foundation in helping us to bring the best young scientists here is invaluable."
Kynaston Lodge presents £500 to Pos+Ability
Pos+Ability is a locally based Charity set up to assist those with reduced mobility. Now they have received a donation of £500 presented by Kynaston Lodge which will help them continue to provided a range of chair-based activities as well as providing much valued social contact and a brief respite for their carers. David Smith and Bob Sculthorpe visited the charity to learn more about how the donation will be used. Discover more about Pos+Ability at posability3.wordpress.com
Kynaston Lodge presents results of Elafonisos Raffle to 2023 Festival
At Kynaston Lodge’s regular meeting on the 23rd January 2020, the Worshipful Master, WBro John Creek, was delighted to present two cheques from the Lodge to the Provincial Grand Charity Steward, WBro. Paul Gillingwater.
The first was an interim cheque for £2,000 resulting from the sale of raffle tickets from the Elafonisos raffle that the Lodge initiated and which has been adopted across the Province over the past few months. The monies being an interim contribution as some remains to be collected. The final total of the raffle is expected to be in excess of £3,500.
The raffle was the brainchild of Bro. George Kontakos, the Lodge Junior Deacon, whose family own a hotel on the Greek island of Elafonisos just off the southern tip of Greece. The first prize of a one week stay for two at the hotel, including a cash amount of £300 from the Lodge toward travel costs, was won at the draw taken at the Festive Board by WBro. Jon Cooper of Descensus Aquarum Lodge No. 8655. We wish Bro. Jon an enjoyable holiday.
The second cheque was for £210 resulting from the sale of a photograph of the subscribing Lodge Past Masters taken on the occasion of the Lodge 80th anniversary celebration at the Installation meeting on the 24th October 2019.
Fenland Farmer's Lodge Donation
The Fenland Farmer's Lodge have presented a £450 cheque to the Province of Cambridgeshire's Masonic Benevolent Association. This money will go to Teddies for Loving Care, which provide cuddly bears at Accident and Emergency units by medical staff to give to young children.
The bears are used to calm children down, reward them for being brave, may be used to demonstrate procedures - and are given to the children to take home when they leave hospital.
Arthur Rank Hospice Visit - January 2020
Adrian and Graham from The Cambridgeshire Light Blues Club visited the Arthur Rank Hospice Charity this morning see how donations from our province and the Masonic Charitable Foundation are benefitting the community from Cambridge, across Fenland and up to Wisbech with the Hospice@Home scheme.
2019 Provincial Grand Lodge Meeting
Having convened at the Guildhall, Cambridge for 70 continuous years, Provincial Grand Lodge was held for the first time at the West Road Concert Hall, Cambridge on 20th June 2019. The more spacious, cleaner and air-conditioned environment proved a big hit with members and visitors alike.
At the Royal Arch meeting, 260 companions saw E. Comp David Blair continue in office as 2nd Provincial Grand Principal, whilst E. Comp Paul Gillingwater was invested as the new 3rd Provincial Grand Principal. E. Comp David Coupland took over as ProvGDC from E. Comp David Sowman after his 5 years in the role.
For the Craft meeting, 350 Brethren were present, with Cambridgeshire Brethren joined by representatives of 19 other Provinces and numerous side degrees. This total included an incredible 16 serving Provincial Grand Masters who were in attendance.
W. Bro Pat Kilby was re-appointed as Deputy Provincial Grand Master with W. Bro Kevin Mader re-appointed as Provincial Grand Secretary. W. Bro Stuart Lingard was invested as Provincial Chaplain and the Wardens for 2019 are W. Bro Danny Ellis as Senior Warden and W. Bro John McCormick as Junior Warden.
Also in attendance was W. Bro Neil McKittrick, the High Sheriff of Cambridgeshire.
Cambridge Light Blues visit Lodge of Three Grand Principles No. 441
At the invitation of Bro Tony Orfeo we attended an excellent Initiation at the Lodge of Three Grand Principles (No 441) at Freemason's Hall in Bateman Street (Cambridge). We were treated to an excellent ceremony and watched / participated in the Initiation of our newly made brother Malcolm Duffield on the 4th March 2019.
Photo 1: Members of CLB Tony Orfeo, Adrian Dent, Andy Murfitt, Razvan-Ioan Dinita
The Worshipful Master Ed Williams steered and guided word perfectly an absolutely superb ceremony with some very nice touches which were new to this Mason but made it all the more enjoyable. The candidate/ newly made Bro Malcolm Duffield had an excellent ceremony with an outstanding charge given by Bro Tony Orfeo, in one of the most dramatic and eloquent versions I have ever seen. I and the other Brethren of the Cambridge Light Blues would like to thank the Worshipful Master and all his Officers for an absolutely superb night and ceremony, followed by a brilliant Festive Board.
Photo 2 Bro Tony Orfeo, WBro Brian Elliott, WM Ed Williams, Bro Malcolm Duffield, Bro Razvan-Ioan Dinita, Bro Andy Murfitt
Our thanks go out to WBro Pat Kilby, Deputy Provincial Grand Master and WBro Brian Elliott (pictured) who again supported us on the night and have been staunch supporters of CLB since it’s onset.
Adrian Dent 5/3/2019
2018 Provincial Meeting
Provincial Grand Lodge was held at the Guildhall, Cambridge on 20th June.At the Royal Arch meeting, the 3rd Grand Principal, E. Comp Gareth Jones was in attendance and gave a fascinating and engaging address to the Companions. E. Comp David Blair was invested as 2nd Provincial Grand Principal.
Nearly 350 Brethren were present for the Craft meeting where Cambridgeshire Brethren were joined by representatives of 17 other Provinces and numerous side degrees.The meeting included the investiture of W.Bro Pat Kilby as the new Deputy Provincial Grand Master and W.Bro Kevin Mader as Provincial Grand Secretary. The Wardens for 2018 are W.Bro Gordon Easton as Senior Warden and W.Bro Bob Wordsworth as Junior Warden.
Bright Future for Bullied Children thanks to Freemasons' Grant
John Sherriff, Deputy Provincial Grand Master of Cambridgeshire Freemasons, Dr. Carrie Herbert, Founder of Red Balloon and Peter Sutton, Provincial Information Officer for Cambridgeshire Freemasons
Monday 1 May 2018
Bullied children too scared for school will now be able to reengage with education, thanks to a grant from the Cambridgeshire Freemasons.
The generous grant of £20,000, which will contribute to a bursary fund, will allow children in Cambridgeshire and beyond to receive academic and therapeutic support as part of the Red Balloon programme. At any one time, there are more than 16,000 students bullied out of school around the country, and thousands more too traumatised to attend. Red Balloon offers a lifeline to a brighter future, but the programme is expensive, and relies on generous donations. The Freemasons’ grant will allow 6-8 students who are currently not on roll with Red Balloon to access the recovery programme.
The grant from the Cambridgeshire Freemasons comes through the Masonic Charitable Foundation, which is funded by Freemasons, their families and friends, from across England and Wales
Red Balloon founder Dr. Carrie Herbert said:
'We are very grateful for the grant from the Cambridgeshire Freemasons, which will help us to support children as they reengage with school and get their lives back on track. The Freemasons have been generous supporters of Red Balloon for many years.'
John Sherriff, Deputy Provincial Grand Master of Cambridgeshire Freemasons, said:
'We are very pleased to be helping Red Balloon support vulnerable children. Our contribution to the bursary fund will assist students who will benefit from the support they receive at Red Balloon enabling them to return in due course to normal schooling.'
Cambridgeshire Festival 2023 Launched
On Wednesday 14th March 2018 the Provincial Grand Master, W Bro William CM Dastur launched the Cambridgeshire Festival 2023. This will be managed by the Cambridgeshire Masonic Benevolent Association (CMBA) and will support the Masonic Charitable Foundation (MCF). This aims to raise £900,000 within Cambridgeshire between now and the end of 2023.
Further details can be found on the Festival 2023 website and a video taken at the launch is shown below.