Author: Richard Barnett

On Saturday 3rd August a group of members of Grace Dieu Lodge together with their families and friends enjoyed a walk through the Leicestershire countryside with a picnic in the grounds of Mount St Bernard Abbey and a couple of stop off points on route for some liquid refreshment. A very enjoyable day was had by all. Thanks go to the Worshipful master W Bro Paul Gregory for organising the day out.

On Thursday 9th May, the Grace Dieu Lodge gathered at the Masonic Hall in Coalville for the annual Installation meeting, on this occasion, they were honoured by the presence of the Provincial Grand Master R.W.Bro. David Hagger.

During the evening, Paul Gregory was installed for the first time as Master of the Lodge, who was then pleased to invest Guy Adkin as Senior Warden, and Alan Lindsay as Junior Warden, before proceeding with the investiture of the rest of the officers for the year.

Following the installation, the Provincial Grand Master was presented with a most generous donation of £1,409.50 for the Leicestershire & Rutland 2022 Festival. This included proceeds from the Lodge social fundraising events over the last year and is in addition to the £622.50 already presented to the Festival.

W.Bro. Jim Steven was initiated into Grace Dieu Lodge No.2428 on Thursday 9th December 1976, Passed on 14th April 1977 and Raised on 10th November 1977. He served the Lodge as Master during 1989-1990. W.Bro. Jim was promoted to the rank of PPAGDC in 1995.

W.Bro. Jim Steven was born on 16th Sept 1918 in Irvine, Ayrshire, moving to Ibstock as a child. After attending Ashby Grammar School Jim went to work at Ibstock Brick & Tile Co Ltd. Jim was called up in 1939 and served in the RASC throughout the Second World War, as a driving instructor, a Telecommunications engineer and one of the first engineers working on Radar. After the war he spent 6 months with a REME workshop in Italy before returning to Leicestershire where he re-joinedIbstock Brick and became Transport Manager, where he remained until retirement. 

Jim married Jean in 1951 and they had a daughter, Judith, who still lives with them. As a younger man Jim was a keen cricketer as a leg break bowler and wrist spinner. He played football as a goalkeeper for Ibstock Brick and was a very keen cyclist traveling around England and Europe. Philately was his great hobby along with his garden, and of course Freemasonry.

Jim was meticulous throughout his masonry, a highly accomplished ritualist, his ‘party piece’ being the secrets in each of the degrees. Until Jim’s health deteriorated, he updated the Emulation Ritual book for all new brethren to the Grace Dieu workings.

To Mark his 100th Birthday the Worshipful Master of Grace Dieu Lodge, W.Bro. Richard Morris, together with the members of the Lodge Care Team, W.Bro.Rev’d Clive Watts, W.Bro. Paul Dixon, W.Bro. Paul Hart and W.Bro. Cyril Clark visited Jim and his family at home, presenting him with a hamper of his favourite goodies and a card signed by all the members of the lodge. They were accompanied by the Provincial Grand Master R.W.Bro. David Hagger who presented Jim with a certificate commemorating him on this significant birthday. The Provincial Grand Master was also delighted to promote W.Bro. Jim to the rank of Past Provincial Grand Registrar with immediate effect.

More than 75 Brethren of Grace Dieu Lodge No.2428 and their guests gathered at Lingdale Golf Course in Markfied on the evening of Saturday 15th September. The evening was hosted by W.Bro. Richard Morris, Master of the Lodge. The Brethren together with their families and guests were treated to a series of televised horse races with a Tote betting system, allowing them to pit their wits against the bookies to see if they could correctly select the race winner.

During the course of the evening there was a Hot Roast Buffet, and an excellent raffle with many prizes which helped raise further funds. Everyone agreed that it was a truly excellent evening.

The evening raised over £1,200, which will be divided between the 2022 Festival and ‘Keep The Beat’. Keep the Beat is a small charity dedicated to giving hope and support to those affected by Congenital Heart defects. The Charity supports the Children’s Cardiology Ward (Ward 30) and the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) at Glenfield Hospital.

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