Durham Team complete challenge in London..
Well, the Talk has been Walked!
It was a long and tiring day but the members of our Team and I enjoyed it and were delighted to take part in such a high profile event.
We were particularly proud to have completed the Walk on your behalf, inspired as we were by the £13,130 you have donated thus far. The total raised by the Provinces overall was a remarkable £331,196, a total, which like ours, could rise further as donations will continue to be received until 31st May.
The bottom line is that through your generosity, you have made it possible for the MBF to improve and even save lives. What a wonderful thought that is.
So, on behalf of all those who during the coming weeks and months will benefit from your generosity, I extend heartfelt thanks.
TEAM DANNY, STUART, TREVOR, TONY, FRANK, DENNY.
More than just, " A walk in the park".
In times of austerity the raising of monies for any worthy cause has become some much harder and that task is compounded by the number of charities that are crying out to the public for their support. Freemasonry recognises those challenges and over the years has crystallised its fund raising, now under one banner, the newly former and recognised Masonic Charity Fund.
Benevolence is also at the heart of the work of Mark Master Masons supporting and caring for the wider community. Evidence of that came when it was announced by pro Grand Master, Most Worshipful Richard Wallace, back in October 2016 announced a fund raising initiative that would involve every Mark Master Masons in each Province. The challenge to raise £100.000 through a sponsored walk of four parks in Central London. The participants being the Executive Members of each Province. A novel idea, you may think but one that has captured the imagination and support of its membership.
Leading from the top and stepping up to the challenge was the Provincial Grand Master himself. Professor Denovan Keith Wilson, ably and willingly supported on this venture by Danny Guy, Deputy PGM, Stuart Ingram APGM, Tony Craven PGDC Frank Rankin PDPGM and Trevor Lynn PGS. The fund raising commenced as brethren and lodges throughout the Province of Durham rallied to the cause, being further motivated by an enthused Denny with regular updates on the growth of the donations being made by both individuals and Mark Lodges.
The big day arrived on Saturday the 6th of May. Our intrepid leaders, in peak physical condition after weeks of dedicated training in preparation for the physical exertions that lay ahead. Okay, I know that is hard to comprehend but it's what we were led to believe. That apart, The Provincial Grand Master mustered his team on the train to London with Frank and Tony boarding at Newcastle at 6.00am. The two were woken up again as Denny and Stuart joined them at Durham and again when collecting Danny and Trevor at Darlington.
They arrived in London in plenty of time to join over 220 fellow walkers from other Provinces. They received a briefing and words of encouragement from the Pro Grand Master before he and the Grand Lodge Team were the first team to leave. Each of the Provincial teams followed in alphabetical order. The walk itself started a little ahead of schedule and the Durham team left at 10.30am.
There was a spring in their initial steps, knowing that they had the complete backing of the Mark Mason movement in Durham behind them, both in spirit and to the tune of almost £13.000.00. That spring lessened as they completed each mile and park footpaths covering a distance of 8 miles over at a period of some 150 minutes arriving back at Mark Masons' Hall at 1.00pm.
With satisfaction they refreshed themselves returning to their normal comforts and joining fellow participates for refreshments. There were no reporting injuries amongst our team, although there is a rumour going around about the liberal use of Vaseline and Johnson's Baby powered. Each registered walker then received personalised certificates.
THE WHOLE WALK SUCCESSFULLY COMPLETED AND BACK AT MARK MASONIC HALL LONDON WHERE IT ALL STARTED.
Armed with documented recognition of their achieved, they caught the 4.30pm north bound train home. Our weary athletes arrived mid to late evening, tired but happy they had been worthy of the wonderful support of the Mark Masons of Durham. The confidence in such feeling was not misplaced as the overall total raised being £327.000.00 and the Province of Durham Mark Masons contributing to date £13.000.
This initiative, this challenge, whatever you want to call it, is a fine example of team work, led from the top and involving all the brethren, across the whole country, that even exceeded the highest expectation. Such a total can and will now turn tears into smiles, hope we're was none and change lives for the better. MW