Back in 1967 when the Earth was still deemed to be flat, and Ken Lord had been a Craft Mason for several years already, the spark of an idea to join The Mark degree was muted. Racing driver and motorboat racer Donald Campbell was killed in a crash on Coniston Water in the Lake District while attempting to break his own speed record. The first North Sea gas was pumped ashore, and Harold Wilson announced that the United Kingdom had decided to apply for EEC membership, oh, and Ken Lord took the bait.
Ken started his Masonic life 53 years ago with Limestone Rock No 369. His Father, John Lord and brother Bernard Lord SW were both members. When he joined the lodge his father in law Hue Sephton was in the chair for his initiation.
It was the first visit to Clitheroe Masonic rooms for several acting officers, and what a surprise it was. Car Parking was easy enough just behind the Swan Hotel and up through a small ginnel to the main street. The building from the front door doesn’t look that big and the steps leading upstairs certainly suggest that. However, when you arrive on the first floor, on the left, there is a large dining/banqueting room with a wooden dance floor and bar, obviously used regularly for private parties and celebrations, whilst on the right large changing rooms leading to a grander than expected Masonic Lodge room. Having been in use for many years it had all the hallmarks of a well-loved Masonic temple.
In December 1967 he joined priory Mark Lodge in Whalley as his Brother Bernard was also a member there.
The Provincial Grand Director of ceremonies likes to have his team assembled at least one hour prior to the meeting to practice all the movements within the lodge. You would expect these things to be pretty much standard but with most lodge meeting rooms being different sizes its always good to practice the ceremonial and movement in advance. After several changes of positions and routes through the lodge room, a plan was settled upon and then changed again at the very last moment. The joys of being on the Provincial DC team. It always goes to plan though, which is a credit to the guys.
In 1975 when we moved to Cheshire, Ken still travelled back to Clitheroe for practice and Lodge meetings.
The Lodge was opened on time and the first 4 items of business were swiftly despatched whilst the Provincial Grand Master VWBro. Alex Sillars McLaren supported by his Deputy John Smith, several APGM’s. the Senior Warden, Junior Warden, and multiple acting officers waited patiently outside.
in 1977 with red white and blue flags flying with cakes and Sandwiches on street party tables, we moved back to Clitheroe. Ken becoming WM in Limestone Rock 369 that year
The PGM and deputation were admitted into the lodge and the necessary ceremonial completed by the Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies Simon Archer in his usual smooth and calming manner. The W.M John Whitney offered the gavel to the PGM, who accepted it on this occasion, and proceeded to take item 6 on the summons, which was to present a Grand Lodge Certificate to Bro Harvey Robinson, and noticing that his name was listed as presenting the certificate he rose from his chair and duly explained the Mark Grand Lodge Certificate to the recipient. Now you don’t see that every day and I’m sure Harvey was pleased as punch. The Certificate was returned to the WM who then officially presented it to Bro Robinson.
family holiday in France 1982, Heather and I sat on the back seat of the car listening to music on the tape player, with dad reciting ritual, as he was to be WM at Priory Mark Lodge.
The highlight of the meeting was to celebrate the 50 years of Mark Masonry that W.Bro Ken Lord had achieved. The Provincial Grand Secretary read the proclamations from Grand and Provincial Grand Lodges and both certificates were presented to W.Bro Ken Lord by the PGM. A rapturous applause sprung out as Ken was paraded around the lodge room in front of all the brethren and deputation. Ken’s son, W.Bro Steven Lord, the Provincial Senior Warden then read a history of his father’s Masonic career over the past 50 years+. It was a revelation to hear what Ken had achieved and experienced during his career in the Craft and Mark Degree’s
In 1991 Ken was the DC of Limestone Rock Lodge and he took the chair to initiate his son into Freemasonry at the same age of 23 and on the same month of September that he had joined.
The meeting came to the point where the PGM and the Provincial Deputation retire and this was conducted by the Provincial DC, but on this occasion, the PGM asked to be accompanied by W.Bro Ken Lord, he got another standing ovation from his fellow brethren which continued well beyond Ken leaving the Lodge room.
2004 Ken was Sovereign of Accrington chapter Rose Croix no 364.
The festive board was conducted at the Swan Hotel just across the road from the Meeting rooms. The upstairs dining rooms were very well presented and hosted a fully stocked well-attended bar. The meal was Country Pate followed by Meat Pie Chips and Peas. You can guess who’s favourite that was, and then Cheese and biscuits. Good draught beer and red wine flowed in abundance and no skimping was made of the portions. A very nice meal was had by all.
May 2004 At Great Queens Street Grand Logde Ken got acting Grand Rank in Mark Degree. That year he visited over 70 mark lodges and RAM lodges in East Lancs and beyond.
The toast list was completed up to toast 6 where the IPM stood up and gave a full rendition of Ken Lords career, including most of the antics Ken had got up to which amounted to quite a lively time in his Masonry. It was all very well received. Ken responded to the toast and added more colourful anecdotes to the rendition and had everyone on the edge of their seats for several minutes.
In 2010 Ken married Ellen and they got a place in Spain where they enjoy the sun, spending 6 month of the year there,
The evening was an amazing celebration of 50 years in the Mark Degree. Ken is obviously a much-loved member and held in very high regard amongst the brethren of not only his own Lodge but many others from the Province of East Lancashire.
I will be always Grateful. – Ken Lord