This visit to Stour Valley Lodge was to see some firsts in the challenge to visit all of the Suffolk Lodges. It was the first time the boys were to visit the Sudbury Masonic Centre, the shortest mileage yet and the first time that WBro Andy Gentle didn’t cycle to a Lodge. To cover the 3.7 miles to get to Sudbury should have been an easy ride but to keep the challenge a challenge WBro Andy didn’t ride and the journey there certainly wasn’t easy. So donning a large rucksack full of weight (approx 35kg) the journey was made on foot. He was accompanied cross country by Bro Nick Moulton on his bike, his challenge was staying on at such low speeds, not made any easier by Andy’s dog!! (who accompanied them for the first 2 miles) Andy attempted to run but was unable to, due to the weight of the pack.
WBros John Yeldham, Alastair Branch and Peter Clayton were greeted by a somewhat sweaty and hunched over figure as they arrived at the Masonic Hall and the look of surprise that a Brother should arrive for a meeting in such a manner would have been worth a picture had it not been dark!
Thankfully the task was completed in time for the boys to quickly retire back home and get showered and ready for the meeting. There followed a short meeting (being the Christmas meeting) during which the RWPGM delivered a short 10 minute paper which was a masonic look at the Liberal Arts & Sciences before the Lodge was closed and the Brethren retired to the bar.
The festive board was the usual excellent affair that Stour Valley put on every Christmas with the Turkeys being carved at the end of the tables. It all made for a great festive board with around 85 Brethren sitting down to enjoy the meal, each others company and the festivities. Towards the end of the evening the raffle was drawn, and a donation for £400 in support of the cyclists efforts was made towards the Festival. This was a most generous contribution and made for a very successful if short trip to visit Stour Valley Lodge and a most enjoyable evening. A further £20 donation from a Brother made the total £420!!
So a once again a big thank you to Stour Valley for their warm welcome and support.
And a big thank you and a happy Christmas to all the Brethren of the Lodges that we have visited thus far. The challenge continues in the new year and the cyclists will be visiting a Lodge near you soon!
Next Visit: Gainsborough Lodge (No 9332 ) 8th February 2016, Sudbury
Miles to date: 708
Lodges visited: 24
Lodges to go: 43