Mistley Chapter recently celebrated its 25th anniversary with a visit from our APGP, E Comp John Crudgington PGStB, skilfully escorted by E Comp Ralph Ankers ProvDepGDC. It was our installation meeting, at which E Comp Jerry Watsham, Acting MEZ, installed E Comp Keith Ralph PPGReg into the Chair of Zerubbabel for the second time. E Comp John Parker and E Comp Brian Hamilton PAGDC were installed as Haggai and Joshua respectively.
E Comp David Branch PGStB PAPGP, the only remaining subscribing Founder, presented a brief history of the Chapter. He paid tribute to the persistence and foresight of E Comp Frank Wheatley, the founding MEZ and then Scribe E until his untimely death less than two years after the consecration.
The Consecration was a splendid affair, attended by 90 Companions (a number which our Health and Safety Laws do not now permit!) and graced by the ME Grand Superintendent, Sir Neil Thorne, E Comp C W Key, Second Provincial Grand Principal, E Comp A E Simons, Third Provincial Grand Principal and the Deputy Grand Superintendent, E Comp Peter Nievens, a great friend of the Chapter.
All the Founders and some of the early Exaltees were presented with an engraved goblet by E Comp John Carrington and a distinctive pair of cufflinks by Comp Don Candy.
The Festive Board was a joyous affair, comprising a five-course dinner costing £20 inclusive of pre-dinner drinks, wines, liqueurs and afternoon tea.
E Comp Branch recalled some of the other outstanding characters of the first 25 years: E Comp Tony Lingard, a wonderful ritualist, E Comp John Tritton, who obtained second-hand the Chapter’s furniture, E Comp Peter Gosling, the only other surviving Founder, now an Honorary Member, whose ability to create some of the Chapter furniture saved money and gave the Chapter the character it has today. We hope to carry on those traditions for many years to come!