The designated Companion to be the primus First Principal of Grey Friars Chapter No. 5169 had to stand down because he was appointed as the Provincial Grand Superintendent and per se the Consecrating Officer. Having previously been proposed as a joining member and duly elected, he was Installed at the fourth regular Convocation as the second First Principal but not before the required dispensation from Supreme Grand Chapter (SGC) for also being the MEZ of another Chapter had been read to all the Companions.
At the 315th regular Convocation of Grey Friars Chapter held on 25th October 2021 history repeated itself as acting Scribe E, Jason Rees, read the required dispensation from SGC to enable David Boylan as an MEZ to follow in the footsteps of his illustrious predecessor, Dr Frank Douglas Turner CBE MD OSM, and be Installed as the First Principal of Grey Friars Chapter.
The Director of Ceremonies, Jeff Cripps (Jeff Cripps PPSGW 50 Years in Freemasonry (essexfreemasons.org.uk) with his extensive experience made the Installation ceremony both sincere for the Principals and enjoyable for the members and visitors to see. This was appreciated by all with a bumper toast to David at the chapter banquet in the St Giles Masonic Centre. In addition to David’s personal guests from London there were visitors from local Chapters which meet at the Colchester Masonic Centre.
These included Tony Terry of Patriotic No. 51, who was proud to show the banner and explain the history of the oldest Chapter in Essex; Mark Eve of Abbeygate No. 4219, who has given much support to help care for animals in Afghanistan and also gives a good lecture about his experiences as a former firearms officer in the police; and Peter Hinchcliffe of Comrades No 2976, who is organising the Colcestria Ladies Festival at St Giles on Saturday 4th December 2021.
Replying to the Toast on behalf of the visitors, John Wilmot of Pyefleet No. 8913 brilliantly summed up the deeper enjoyment and friendship found among Companions in Royal Arch Masonry and how everyone there was glad to be back. With 20 plus sitting down for the chapter banquet John elucidated just how valuable visitors are to smaller Chapters and encouraged all the Companions to visit other Chapters as much as possible.
David Boylan is the editor of The Essex Mason and also received good wishes for a successful year from all his colleagues in the Provincial Communications Team. David together with those mentioned above and countless others all put in a good shift to help Companions enjoy their Royal Arch Masonry which is much valued by all.
Long-standing Grey Friars Companion, Roy Gwinnell, is a great advocate of the core principles of Freemasonry: Integrity, Friendship, Respect and Charity. He volunteers and supports many local charities and good causes. Never wanting to go through office or seek preferment himself, Roy thoroughly enjoys attending Grey Friars Chapter with its colourful Royal Arch ceremony as well as the friendliness of the Companions and enthusiastically remarked “It’s Great at Grey Friars!”