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Festival Archive

Festival 2018 

The 2018 150th Mark Benevolent Festival has come and gone. The countdown clock stopped on Saturday 7th July 2018. The party is over and the baton handed on to the Province of Sussex who will host the 151st Festival banquet on 6th July 2019 in Brighton. That's a short summary of what has been a tremendous effort on behalf of all Lincolnshire Mark and Royal Ark Mariners; their families and friends. The Festival weekend was a wonderful celebration and the culmination of many years of hard work by a lot of people. I thank everyone who took part, whether donating to the Festival or helping out at the numerous events that have been held.

I know that everyone who was at the Festival banquet on Saturday 7th July 2018 will never forget the moment when R.W. Bro Ryan Williams, the Grand Secretary, revealed the total raised for the 150th MBF Festival.

£853,023 is a staggering amount of money, raised over a short period of time and exceeds all expectations that anyone could have had when the Festival was officially launched in 2015.

Thank you to you all on behalf of the Lincolnshire 2018 Festival Committee.

Dave Wheeler
Lincolnshire Festival Committee Chairman


      Published    Additions       Totals
Lincolnshire Mark Lodges      289,361      49,051      338,412
Lincolshire RAM Lodges        17,619      26,110        43,729
Unattached Lodges           4,024             4,024
Provinces and Districts      346,857        4,194      351,051
Other Masonic Orders        18,049          18,049
Other Donations        77,079           246        77,325
Total Donations      752,989     79,601      832,590
Interest Credited to the festival from MMH        20,300           133        20,433
Festival Total      773,289     79,734      853,023
In addition to the published figures a further £79,734 has been received as below: 
Lincolnshire Mark Lodges            49,051    
Lincolnshire RAM Lodges            26,110    
Berkshire                  250    
Hong Kong                  569    
Oxfordshire              1,100    
Wiltshire              1,000    
Worcestershire              1,000    
Other sundry donations                  521    
Interest                  133    
Making a grand total of          853,023    




2018 MBF Festival - Banquet Update


The 2018 MBF Banquet will be held at the Lincolnshire Showground on Saturday 7th July 2018. The complete booking forms were circulated nationally on Monday 10th July 2017. Within the first week the two allocated hotels in Lincoln have become fully booked and details of three more hotels have now been released with the booking forms being update accordingly. This high level of demand is unprecedented and is fantastic news for the Province of Lincolnshire. However, the venue for the banquet is limited to 1,000 people so I urge everyone to consider booking their places as soon as possible to avoid being disappointed. Places will be allocated on a 'first come, first served' basis and a reserve list will be kept once the limit is reached in the event of any cancellations.

Download your MBF 2018 Complete Festival Forms Pack HERE in PDF format. 

Yours sincerely and fraternally,

Dave Wheeler
Lincolnshire 2018 Festival Committee



Mark Benevolent Fund

Hope for Tomorrow logoThere can hardly be a family that has not been touched by cancer, and over the next 4 years, and to mark their 150th Anniversary in 2018, The Mark Benevolent Fund will fund a number of Mobile Chemotherapy Units, which Hope for Tomorrow will launch across the country, with the Lincolnshire Unit being the first of these.

The Mark Provincial Grand Lodge of Lincolnshire is raising money for the Mark Benevolent Fund Festival 2018, to help the MBF fund these Mobile Chemotherapy Units, provided by the Hope for Tomorrow Charity.

In 2007 the Hope for Tomorrow Charity launched the world’s first Mobile Chemotherapy Unit in a unique partnership with the NHS. Owned and maintained by the Charity, and operated by highly trained NHS staff, these well-equipped Units allow cancer patients to receive treatment in a restful environment closer to home, saving stressful long distance travel and minimising waiting times.

Mobile Chemotherapy Units can travel five days a week throughout their counties of operation to five locations. These Units have the capacity to treat between 18 to 20 patients a day. 

You can find out more information about the MBF if you CLICK HERE

You can find out more information about Hope for Tomorrow if you CLICK HERE

The Charity Hope for Tomorrow celebrates its 10th anniversary this year 2007 to 2017.

There are now 12 mobile units in operation and they have saved the patients 2.000.000 miles of travel and 10.000 hours of time. 

Elaine, the Lincolnshire mobile chemotherapy unit  had its third anniversary in May of this year. 

The unit now visits Lincoln Louth Grantham and Skegness, and has saved patients over 120.000 miles of travel and 10.000 hours of time. 


APRIL 2016

Mark Festival Newsletter

May I start by thanking you all for the contributions you have made to the Festival so far and congratulate you on helping us achieve a wonderful first half result to date. Current totals so far show us as having achieved around £230,000 which is almost enough to pay for one mobile chemotherapy unit. This shows that we have already done much to help the PGM with his aim to provide funding for two units for the Hope for tomorrow Charity as well as contributing to the many other charities supported by the Mark Benevolent Fund. The Festival still has another two years to go and money is now coming in regularly. But please don’t get complacent! Remember that two years to go means a maximum of eight more lodges for us to make that final push.

Much of the money has been raised through the raffle and prize draw routes and these should be your first targets. There are still over 60% of Mark and RAM Masons who have not bought a ticket and about the same number don’t subscribe to regular giving. If we can up the percentage taking part in these by only another 20% we will have far exceeded expectation.

Details on the prize draw area:
• Each Number will cost £5 per month.
• Payment will be by Standing Order.
• Numbers will be allocated by the Committee in numerical order, in order of application and payment.
• Members can purchase as many numbers as they wish to.
• Numbers can be purchased by, and on behalf of a member's family.
• Any member ceasing to pay the monthly fee of £5.00 per number will immediately cease to be eligible for any future draws.
• There will be three draws a year until 200 numbers have been purchased when there will be four draws a year.
• Prizes based on four draws per annum
• Annual value of four draws:
£300 £300 £300 £300 £1,200
£200 £200 £200 £200 £800
£100 £100 £100 £100 £400

Mike Robinson will take cheques or cash in payment for the draw. Email address is: and his home address for cheques is The Cottage, Leverton Road, Sturton - le - Steeple, Retford, DN22 9HE

The number of individuals who have done their little bit to help is outstanding. All these £50 to £200 sponsorships have made as much in total as the lottery and the regular giving put together. Please congratulate all those members who have taken part and encourage the others to think of some way in which they can be of help. It doesn’t have to be massive. Every little helps. Little and often is the maxim. Please note that sponsorship can now be taken on line so that your circle of contributors can be far wider than just your own small group. Use our hassle free BT MyDonate page on the Mark website to set up your event to allow donations to be made quickly and easily so you don’t have to worry about collecting cash or cheques. It would also be helpful if all sponsorship forms were fully completed with the name and address of the sponsor or that the sponsor form is accompanied by a completed Gift Aid slip completed by each donor for the same reason.

Surprisingly the government has been our biggest donator. For no effort at all other than gift aiding the money sent in we have made a massive 25% on all our individual giving. This includes every envelope donation at the festive board as well as all the money taken in by the lottery. Please encourage your lodge to ensure as much as possible is donated this way. We don’t often get something for free and this is a wonderful way to make our contributions count. Please note John Clements impassioned plea that we collect gift aid details properly. We have already lost thousands in tax relief because the forms of some were not filled in properly. Please note below:

• Ensure that it is legible, full first names not just initials otherwise wrong brother may be credited. We do have some with same initials and Surname.
• Complete the address section, otherwise tax cannot be reclaimed.
• Charity Stewards to stamp the slip with the Relief Chest number MMM2106.
• MARK Lodge number is filled in.
• Tax relief box is ticked , if appropriate.
• Sort envelope slips into alphabetical order so they can be checked easily
• Charity Steward to include his e-mail address, secretary or treasurer if he does not have one, when the slips are sent so that they can be acknowledged without incurring postage costs.
You can get a new supply of envelopes by contacting the Charity secretary at Grand Lodge. (Note not Mark Grand Lodge) Details on the Grand Lodge web site.

At lodge level many of your lodges have contributed from their charity accounts. In my travels I note that there are still untapped funds here. We raise money for charity to help worthy causes and this must be one we can consider. Have a word with your Charity Steward. Don’t forget that a lodge can get an MBF honorific as well as an individual. Look on the Mark website for details. If you don’t usually have raffles at your lodge then have one a year in aid of the Festival.

All those of you who run businesses can help by simply collecting the used stamps on the many letters and parcels you receive. These can be sent to David Southwood - Urania Lodge MMM. His contact email is It would help if each of the main Masonic Centres would set up a collection point.

It is very good to see so many of the Brethren wearing the MBF jewels. For those who are not sure how to qualify the main information is:
Vice Patron £250
Patron £500
Grand Patron £1,000
Grand Patron Gold Award £2,500

All your contributions count towards these and the MBF will automatically send out your award when you reach the required amount. A downloadable PDF file with all the details can be downloaded from the Lincolnshire Mark website.
Web site address is:


MARCH 2016

Following the discussion and agreement at the last Festival Committee meeting, I have now come to an arrangement with HSBC that they will accept cheques made out either to Lincolnshire Festival 2018” OR “The Provincial G.L. of M.M.M. – 2018 Festival Cttee”.
I hope this will assist in simplifying both the writing of cheques and banking them.
S & F,
Mick Stocker


You may have seen the item on BBC Look North on Monday about the Lincolnshire Mobile Chemotherapy Unit (MCU), or heard it on the news on BBC Radio Lincolnshire. The unit is currently at Lincoln County Hospital and is not able to fulfil its role owing to a lack of trained NHS Chemotherapy trained nurses. Hope for Tomorrow, the charity that provides the MCU, had communicated this issue in advance to the Mark Benevolent Fund who, in turn, informed our Provincial Grand Master, the Revd Trevor Walker. This is an NHS issue and Hope for Tomorrow are putting pressure on the NHS to provide the staff in order to ensure the MCU starts operating again very soon. Obviously, this is not a situation that we, the MBF or Hope for Tomorrow are happy with but the reality is that until the NHS can provide the correctly trained nurses then the MCU cannot operate effectively. The NHS say they are actively recruiting for new staff and the situation is a national one not just a local one to Lincolnshire.

Brethren, I am sure you will join with me in hoping that the Lincolnshire MCU, “Elaine” will be back on the road soon to continue the wonderful work that it has been doing across the county.

Please continue to support the MBF through the 2018 Festival initiatives as best you can.

Sincerely and fraternally,

Dave Wheeler


2018 Festival Committee


Mark Benevolent Fund - A new way to donate - Use 'BT MyDonate'

Are you or any Brethren in your Province planning an event to raise money for the Mark Benevolent Fund?

Use our hassle free BT MyDonate page to set up your event to allow donations to be made quickly and easily so you don’t have to worry about collecting cash or cheques.

What does it cost?


Example from BT MyDonate - Amount received by the M.B.F. for a £10 donation + Gift Aid (£2.50) is £12.37. The only fee is a credit card transaction fee of just 13p (15p for debit cards)

Compare this to the JustGiving site and card fees of 76p are applied. There is also a £15 fee that the charity has to pay. Leaving only £11.74 for your cause.

Even the Virgin Money Giving site levies card fees of 35p. But there is also a one off fee of £120 that the charity has to pay on registration. This leaves only £12.15 for your cause.

Take a look and set up your event today


When filling out the Gift Aid Envelopes

Please note the following:

It would be a great help if brethren can be encouraged to do the following on completion of gift aid slips and save much time:-

1) Ensure that it is legible, full first names not just initials otherwise wrong brother may be credited. We do have some with same initials and Surname.

2) Complete the address section, otherwise tax cannot be reclaimed.

3) Charity Stewards to stamp the slip with the Relief Chest number MMM2106.

4) MARK Lodge number is filled in.

5) Tax relief box is ticked , if appropriate.

6) Charity Steward to include his e-mail address, secretary or treasurer if he does not have one, when the slips are sent so that I can acknowledge without incurring postage costs.


 Thursday 29th December 2014

The Ultimate Ice Bucket Challenge!

I am sure most sensible Mark Master Masons spent Christmas and the New Year at home by the fireside, with a glass of something warming in their hand. 

Brother Richard Powell, of the Bayons Lodge MMM, spent this Christmas in a lakeside log cabin north of the Arctic circle in Northern Finland and completed the 'Ultimate Ice Bucket Challenge'.

Read all about it click HERE to go to the Latest News Page.

Sunday 21st December - Santa raises money for MBF 2018 Festival

Geoff Burgoin, the "Champion" of the St Guthlac Lodge of MMM No.1122 has set an early example to all  its members by raising a magnificent £235.00 for the Lincs Mark 2018 Festival at Burghley Park in Stamford.

Read all about it click HERE to go to the Latest News Page.

Friday 31st October 

This photograph was taken on the occasion of the third draw of Lincolnshire Prize Draw when the three winners were:- 1st W. Bro. John Bush of Nene M.M.M. No.427 who won £325.00; the 2nd prize winner was W. Bro. Chris Oates of John O'Gaunt M.M.M. No 172 who won £215.00; and the 3rd prize winner was W. Bro. Bob Parsons who won £110.00.
The photograph shows me presenting the W. Commander of The ARK Lodge RAM No 1910, W. Bro. Ray Wade, with a cheque for £2,592.00 to be sent to W. Bro. John Clements, Mark Provincial Charity Steward, for the 2018 Festival.
This donation makes the total that has been given from The Draw in its first year £5,700.00 and total value of prizes won £1,420.00.
This is from a total membership of 125 holding 187 numbers. If more of the 800 M.M.M's. in Lincolnshire joined, at only £5.00 per month per number, the prize money would rise and we could have more draws each year and, therefore, more winners. More  importantly the £4.00 from each number donated to the Festival would increase dramatically.
Remember everyone who you know, or have known, suffering with cancer and the trauma of having to travel miles for chemotherapy medication and what a marvellous improvement it would be to have the medication brought to their local village or town.


JOIN NOW you could be among the next winners!

Saturday 8th November 2014

Good Old Days

On Saturday November 8th 2014 the Festival kicked off with a fantastic evening of fun at the Grimsby Masonic Hall.  Starring singers Jeannine Ridha and  Rita Grove  Grimsby Mark Masons staged a night of fun and entertainment based upon the Old Time Music Hall theme of ‘The Good Old Days’.  

Magician Steve Short did a marvellous job taking the place of Andrew Sachs and he was helped by a wealth of local talent of all ages providing fun for all the family.  Steve was helped by: members of the Grimsby Ladies choir:  Jeanette Moulson, Josie Wilson, Jane Volland, Mary Simpson , Margaret Amos and Janet Firth and honourary member for the evening,  Lesley Forrest  led by their Musical Director, Rita Grove.

Ted Ford and Bill Threapleton reprised Flanagan and Alan and there were comedy interludes from Peter Lane,  John Moulson, Johnny Allbones, Peter Crookes, and Mel Starkey,.  A wonderful group of young musicians very kindly arranged by Sue Baker displayed talents with the violin and Japanese drums,  Piano accompaniment was provided by our very own Malcolm Forrest and the Ladies Choir also loaned their own pianist Sheila Shelston.

Highlight of the evening was a display of Senior Synchronised swimming by a group of St James’ members led by Jim Starkey.

The evening was in aid of the 2018 Mark Festival and raised a grand total of £1568 for the Mark Benevolent Fund for the purchase of Chemotherapy Units to be run by The Hope for Tomorrow Charity.

A selection of photos from the night can be downloaded by clicking HERE


 Sunday 28th September 2014

Brethren, family and friends were in for a treat, when the world's no. 1 theatre organist, from the Blackpool Tower Ballroom, Phil Kelsall MBE, played a selection of musical favourites at the Wurlitzer and Compton Organs of the Burty Fen concert hall.

The proceeds of the concert went to support the MBF Festival 2018, and raised over £870 towards the appeal. 




Tuesday 20th May 2014


The sun shone and we had a wonderful day in Lincolnshire at the Grantham and District Community Hospital on Tuesday 20th May, for the launch of our 7th Mobile Chemotherapy Unit 'Elaine', which has been named in memory of the wife of Phil Anyan, a senior member of the Mark Master Masons in Lincolnshire, who sadly passed away from cancer.

The state of the art Unit has been provided to the United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust to operate with their qualified staff, and will not only allow cancer patients to receive their chemotherapy treatment out in the community and closer to their homes, but will save patients travel and waiting times, as well as providing a restful environment.

Moving forwards, the Unit is likely to give treatment in Grantham, Spalding, Louth and Skegness.

Christine Mills, Founder and Trustee of Hope for Tomorrow is thrilled with the launch of the Charity's 7th Mobile Chemotherapy Unit; "I hope that, as a result, rurally based cancer patients throughout Lincolnshire will feel the benefits from receiving their treatment closer to home, which is the ultimate goal of Hope for Tomorrow and our Mobile Chemotherapy Unit project.”

To read more about the day, CLICK HERE  to visit the Hope For Tomorrow website.