News on Essex Cornerstone Chapter

News on Essex Cornerstone Chapter

Exciting news was read out at the Supreme Grand Chapter that will have the companions of Essex Cornerstone Chapter jumping for joy. On the 27th of April, during a meeting held at UGLE, it was announced that their petition to create the Essex Cornerstone Chapter had been granted. All of the founders and petitioners have been accepted without exception, and it's full steam ahead now. This news has filled the companions with enthusiasm and anticipation as they can now start planning and making this new Chapter the best in the United Kingdom.


The companions can now put their heads together and work towards a common goal, which is to make this new Chapter a great success.


In the upcoming weeks and months, the Scribe Ezra will be contacting all the companions to request their support in making this new Chapter a success. This will require all the founders to pull together and contribute in whatever way they can.


The current plan is to concentrate this November, and the dates will follow in due course. This gives everyone ample time to prepare for the event and make it a memorable one.


In conclusion, this is fantastic news for all the companions, and it is an excellent opportunity for them to work together and create something special. This news has come at a perfect time and has given everyone something to look forward to. The companions can now start preparing for the event, and with everyone's contribution, they can make this new Chapter the best in the United Kingdom.

An evening of fun at 2023 Members' dinner

An evening of fun at 2023 Members' dinner

The Essex Cornerstone Club's Members Dinner at the In and Out Naval and Military Club was a night of celebration and reflection. The event, held on April 15, 2023, marked a poignant moment for the club and committee as they bid farewell to two of their most valued members, President Barry and Secretary Jon.



The In and Out Club, with its elegant surroundings and rich history, provided the perfect backdrop for this significant occasion. The evening started with a champagne reception, where club members mingled and caught up with old friends. The atmosphere was lively and convivial, with plenty of laughter and reminiscing.




The main event of the evening was the three-course dinner, which was a true culinary delight. The menu showcased some of the finest local produce, expertly prepared by the In and Out club's renowned chefs. The wine flowed, and guests toasted the achievements of the club and its departing members.


As the night wore on, the mood turned reminiscent a speech was made paying tribute to Barry and Jon. The guests reflected on their significant contributions to the club and expressed their deep appreciation for their dedication and hard work. Both Barry gave an emotional speech, expressing his gratitude for the support he had received.


The evening concluded with a rousing round of applause, and many guests lingered on to catch up with old friends and share their memories of the night. The Essex Cornerstone Club's Members Dinner at the In and Out Naval and Military Club was a truly memorable occasion, and one that will be remembered for years to come.

Cornerstone at PGL

Cornerstone at PGL

On March 23rd, 2023, Freemasons Hall in London was bustling with excitement as the Provincial Grand Lodge meeting was held, where members of the Essex Cornerstone Club and Lodge were awarded first appointments and promotions. The event marked a significant milestone in the careers of these Freemasons, who were recognized for their dedication and commitment to the craft.


The ceremony was presided over by the Provincial Grand Master, who acknowledged the achievements of the members and praised them for their contributions to the fraternity. The Grand Master highlighted the importance of teamwork, and how it was critical to the success of any lodge or club.


The ten members of the Essex Cornerstone Club and Lodge were awarded first appointments and promotions, which marked a significant milestone in their Masonic journey. Each member was recognized for their unique talents and contributions to the fraternity, with the awards reflecting their hard work and dedication.


The ceremony was attended by Freemasons from all over the country, with many expressing their congratulations and admiration for the recipients of the awards. It was a proud moment for the Essex Cornerstone Club and Lodge, who had worked hard to achieve this recognition.


The event was a reminder of the rich history and traditions of Freemasonry and its enduring relevance in modern society. Freemasons continue to promote charity, integrity, and brotherhood, with events like this providing an opportunity to recognize and celebrate the achievements of its members.


Overall, the Provincial Grand Lodge meeting was a momentous occasion, and the recipients of the awards will continue to be an inspiration to their fellow Masons, and serve as an example of the values that the fraternity embodies.


In addition to the ten members who were awarded first appointments and promotions, other members of the Essex Cornerstone Club and Lodge played a crucial role in making the Provincial Grand Lodge meeting a success. These members helped with the procession in and escorting brethren around the temple, ensuring that the event ran smoothly.


The members who helped with the procession in were responsible for leading the Provincial Grand Master and his Provincial Executive into the temple, and escorted brethren around the temple and ensured that everyone was in the right place at the right time. These roles required a great deal of coordination and attention to detail, and the members who performed them did so with skill and dedication.


Their efforts did not go unnoticed, and the Provincial Grand Master expressed his gratitude to all those who had helped make the event a success. He emphasized the importance of teamwork and the role that each member of the fraternity plays in supporting each other and promoting the values of Freemasonry.


The participation of these members highlights the importance of the wider Masonic community in supporting and recognizing the achievements of their fellow brethren. It is a testament to the strength of the fraternity that members are willing to come together to support each other and work towards a common goal.


In conclusion, the success of the Provincial Grand Lodge meeting was a result of the efforts of all members of the Essex Cornerstone Club and Lodge. The awards given to the ten members recognize their individual achievements, but it is the collective effort of the entire fraternity that makes Freemasonry such a powerful force for good in society.

Bernie Axe Throwing

How much wood can Cornerstone chuck?

The Essex Cornerstone Club recently held a thrilling event at the Boom Battle Bar in Chelmsford. The activity of choice for the night was axe throwing. Eight members of the club were in attendance, ready to test their skills and try their luck at becoming the ultimate axe throwing champion.

The eight members of the club had to throw the axe at a wooden target, with points awarded based on where the axe landed. As the competition heated up, the tension in the air was palpable, with everyone trying their hardest to outdo each other.


After several rounds, it was clear that Dave Wilder was the one to beat. His precision and consistency throughout the evening earned him the title of the ultimate axe throwing champion. The event was a great success, with everyone leaving with big smiles on their faces and a sense of camaraderie that comes with shared experiences.

Overall, the axe throwing event at the Boom Battle Bar was an excellent choice for the Essex Cornerstone Club. It provided an opportunity for members to try something new, challenge themselves, and bond over a shared experience. Another great social had by all! We can't wait to see you at the next club event which is the Members Dinner at the In and Out Club in London.

Our Chairmen is now in the Chair!

On March 6th, Bernie Smith was installed as the Worshipful Master of the Sibelius Lodge 9448. The installation meeting was attended by 21 members of the Club. Bernie, who is also the Chairman of the Essex Cornerstone Club, was recognized for his dedication and commitment to the craft by his peers, who entrusted him with the leadership of the Sibelius Lodge.

However, the highlight of the evening came during the second rising when Deputy Provincial Grand Master Nick Franklin presented Bernie with his promotion letter. Bernie was appointed as a Provincial Steward, an important office within the Provincial Grand Lodge. This is a significant honor, and Bernie's appointment as a Provincial Steward is a testament to his dedication and hard work within the Essex Freemasonry community.

Bernie's installation meeting on March 6th marked the beginning of an exciting new chapter in his journey within the Essex Freemasonry community. The presence of 21 members of the Essex Cornerstone Club added to the significance of the occasion, and Bernie's appointment as Worshipful Master of the Sibelius Lodge and promotion to Provincial Steward demonstrate his commitment and dedication to the craft. We wish him all the best in his new role as Provincial Steward.

2023 Members' Dinner announced

2023 Members' Dinner announced

The 2023 for our Annual Members' Dinner we will be heading to one of the most exclusive members clubs in London.


15th April we will be dinning at the The In and Out Naval and Military Club in the St James' Square tickets have gone on sale


These events are really popular so book now



A celebration of Mexico & Mexican Freemasonry

A celebration of Mexico & Mexican Freemasonry

This Saturday was our December Lodge installation meeting we had over 90 attended and had a jam packed day which included a post meeting live link to the Most Worshipful Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Mexico, and several members of his Executive.

This was followed by a rather lively Mexican themed Festive Board which included tequila, nachos and a Mariachi band.





Football Fever at Braintree

Football Fever at Braintree

A number of Cornerstone members met for our November social at the Boars Head Braintree to see England beat Wales 3-0


The football was great, the beer was great and the friendship was great all topped off with Pizza after the game! The only criticism was that it was a bit cold!


Our chairman DJ Bernie was in charge of the smoke machine and music at half time!

Mexican Themed image with Lodge Logo

December's Meeting Theme Announced

This meeting, like all our Lodge meetings, will be action-packed. Firstly we are installing a new Master followed by an incredible 'Mexican' themed Festive Board. There'll be plenty of surprises (and Tequila) along the way!


Cornerstone at Quarterly Communications

Cornerstone at Quarterly Communications

Last week members of the club went to Great Queen Street to attend Quarterly communications, where there was a triple Investiture of the top three chairs in English Freemasonry, never been seen before in Masonic history.


The Ceremony took place infront of 2,200 masons in the Grand temple and live streamed to 2 other rooms. Masons attended from all over the country and further afield including our friends from other Young Masons Clubs.

Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II

Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II

We are extremely saddened by the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and offer our condolences to The King and the Royal Family.

We are privileged to have lived under under reign, a simply incredible woman who dedicated her life to the United Kingdom ,her realms and Commonwealth.

May she rest in peace.

Cornerstone reached new heights!

Cornerstone reached new heights!

This weekend 6 members of the club embarked on climbing Mt Snowden in Wales.


The team started the climb at 9am making their assent up Pyg track. 

They traversed multiple rocky paths to reach the summit in just under 3 hours.


They made their decent down miners track where they stopped for a swim in the lakes. In total they covered over 12km and 23,000 steps.

They got back to the accommodation at 4pm for a well earned drink!

Congratulation guys a great effort by all!

Member Spotlight - Tom Kendle

Member Spotlight - Tom Kendle

My name’s Tom and I’m a firefighter. In August of this year I will be climbing Mt. Snowdon with the intention of raising as much as possible for The Firefighters Charity.

The work they do to give personalised support to the whole of the fire service community is invaluable. By supporting the Mental, Physical and Emotional health of not only serving firefighters, control and support staff, as well as their families, they have a huge impact and are vitally important. That is why I have chosen this charity.

Not sure on total amount as people are still donating. My target was £150 but so far I’ve raised £3,247

Help Tom raise as much money as he can:

I’ve been doing a lot of running and walking in preparation and look forward to the big climb!

June 2022 Chapter update

June 2022 Chapter update

It’s an exciting time for the Essex Cornerstone Chapter as the founders have been signing the petition over the last few months. There has been a huge amount of organisation and planning going on with so much more to do for the Consecration in 2023.


June 2022 Lodge Meeting

June 2022 Lodge Meeting

On Friday 10th June there was another fantastic meeting of the Essex Cornerstone Lodge.

The Lodge looks to strike a balance between exceptional ritual & floorwork, and the creative planning of the Festive Board & post-toast entertainment. This time was an Ibiza theme, with inflatable decor, rolling tapas buffet starter, huge paella main followed by live entertainment.

There was background music from a DJ booth during the meal, and a live saxophonist playing in time with chilled tunes afterwards. These Lodge meetings are open to all Freemasons, regardless of age, and it’s so wonderful to see so many guests from across the Province connecting in such a unique way.


Community litter pick along Southend Seafront.

Community litter pick along Southend Seafront.

Last week was our community litter pick along Southend Seafront.

Southend receives many visitors on sunny weekends who don’t always leave our local beaches in the way they are found.

Members of the Essex Cornerstone Club worked collaboratively with Southend County Council to walk the beaches one evening collecting sacks of littler, making our local community cleaner and safer.

First step for the Cornerstone Chapter

First step for the Cornerstone Chapter

A momentous day for young Freemasonry in Essex!
In the presence of the Deputy Grand Superintendent Elliott Chevin , members of the Essex Cornerstone Lodge signed a petition to form a new Royal Arch Chapter for young Freemasons - Essex Cornerstone Chapter.
More details will be forwarded soon to Club & Lodge members as well as our Chapter Founders.
Cornerstone's Annual Dinner 2022

Cornerstone's Annual Dinner 2022

February 5th saw the Club host its showpiece event; The Annual Members’ Dinner at The House of Commons. 70 Club members and guests were finally able to celebrate the restart of Freemasonry, and they certainly celebrated in style.

Joined by the Provincial Grand Master Paul Tarrant, the evening began with pre-drinks on the terrace overlooking The Thames. Brethren were then moved into the historical Churchill Room for dinner. During dinner it was announced that Bro Bernie Smith would become the Club’s new Chairman after the departure of W.Bro Jack Gilliland. Bro Bernie emphasised the importance of the Club to young Freemasons in Essex and in supporting one another throughout their masonic journeys.



Planning is already underway for the 2023 Annual Dinner so please keep an eye out for future announcements.

Essex Cornerstone Foundation Ball 2021

Essex Cornerstone Foundation Ball 2021

At the end of an impressive tree lined drive in the Essex countryside is the stunning Braxted House with its secret walled garden, enchanting pavilion, and exquisite orangery. There, on 9th October 2021, members of the Essex Cornerstone Club welcomed fellow Freemasons, their families and friends with reception drinks and canapes followed by a delicious three-course meal. After dinner the guests were treated to an evening of live music and danced the night away in the marquee

This Autumn Ball black-tie event celebrated the launch of the Essex Cornerstone Foundation, a new charity set up to support local Essex good causes, particularly those with young people in mind. The Foundation unites the charitable efforts of the Essex Cornerstone Club and the Essex Cornerstone Lodge, the world’s first Lodge for Young Freemasons.

One of the main guests, Nick Franklin, the Deputy Provincial Grand Master of Essex Freemasons, said 'I was absolutely thrilled to attend the wonderful Autumn Ball along with many other members of the Essex Provincial Executive. This new charity has been set up to support some very worthwhile causes around Essex, which is something we can all get behind'.  

Nick further explained that 'The Essex Cornerstone Club has become an integral part of Essex Freemasonry over the last five years since it was established and has been a driving force amongst New and Young Masons Clubs across the English Constitution'.

After dinner, but before the young Essex Freemasons danced the night away, a raffle was held for the Essex Cornerstone Foundation. Prizes included a Ferrari driving experience, afternoon tea at Harrods, and signed sports memorabilia. Over £2,000 was raised for the new charity and will be donated to Essex good causes later in the year. Freemasonry is one of the largest charitable givers in the country, contributing more than £51m to deserving causes in 2020 alone.

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Squaring The Quarterdeck – Essex Cornerstone Dine Aboard Historic WW2 Warship

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Laptop donation during the pandemic

Laptop donation during the pandemic

The Essex Cornerstone continues to lead the way, supporting a growing range of good causes across the county with a youth programme focussed on local charities dedicated to helping young people and children in need.

Last year the Essex Cornerstone started a scheme to supply NHS hospital wards with iPad/tablet devices to allow patients to communicate with their relatives whilst patient visiting has been restricted due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The success of this scheme led many other Provinces to take up the challenge as well.

Following this success, at the start of the second COVID-19 peak, with schools closing, we were approached by W.Bro Henry Bass to see if we could help support his local school, Templars Academy in Witham, to provide computers to help support home learning.

Ten months after the first national lockdown, with schools across England once again closed due to the pandemic, it is clear that many students still do not have access to a computer, laptop or data.

The Essex Cornerstone rose to the challenge and quickly provided the school with 10 laptops.

Cornerstone Chairman Dr Jack Gilliland commented “We are delighted to have been able to provide support to Templars Academy, and know that the laptops we have donated will help school children access online learning during the lockdown. Being able to provide this support at a time of need harmonises with the ethos of the Essex Cornerstone supporting young people”.

Quotes from the School

Miss Victoria Gooding, Head of School, Templars Academy, “The laptops that were very generously donated to Templars Academy will without doubt support our families to access online learning. Families are struggling at the moment; without adequate or sufficient access to technology, some families have either no way of accessing the live or recorded lessons and the learning that is set on a daily basis. Some of our families are working from printed copies of work because of this, but the laptops being given to them will enable them to easily log-on and use Microsoft Teams or access the school website. The laptops also support our families who have many siblings. Again, we are very grateful for how this provides learning opportunities for our students who are most disadvantaged.”

Faye Welsher, MAT Safeguarding Lead and Family Liaison Officer Templars Academy, “I just wanted to put in writing a huge thank you for the generous gift of the laptops. We have identified specific children that will hugely benefit from this.  The families are completely overwhelmed and grateful”.

Jane Bass, “Can I also, as CEO of Connected Learning MAT, the Academy Trust, of which Templars is a member school, say a big thank you for your generous gift of laptops. For pupils of the school, who do not access to IT devices whilst trying to learn at home, these will make such a difference to their learning”.