The Latest from the Connaught Club
Bro. Michael Parsey, Club Secretary, gives an update on what's going on with young masons in London.
Reflecting on the last seven months has been an enjoyable exercise, in part due to the tireless efforts of the committee orchestrating a plethora of successful events but also down to the glowing feedback received from the ever-expanding membership.
The Connaught Club were spoilt with tropical London heat on the afternoon of the Masonic Bike Tour in July, with past chairman Lewis Clement bestowing his niche but ever-valuable London Masonic landmark knowledge on attendees, followed by a much-needed re-hydration stop at the Civil Service Club.
For any Connaught Club member unfortunately unable to make the bike tour, the beating summer weather was once again pre-ordered by the committee in mid-August, when the annual club picnic took place. It was a roaring success by multiple metrics with many members bringing both partners and prospective joiners to enjoy a wide range of al-fresco finger food and great company.
Switching over from linen to suit and Connaught Club tie, the membership was invited to the club dinner, taking place at Davy's wine bar & restaurant in St James – a venue frequented and well known to many a London Mason. The evening was by all accounts a great success, and as seen in the photo, our membership secretary once again took the opportunity to present the highly coveted Connaught Club ties to all the new joiners.
Burgoyne Lodge No 902, and its inherent synergy with the Connaught Club, went from strength to strength in the latter part of 2022, spearheaded by our incoming chairman, Bro Adam Bradley. Plans to bolster Burgoyne membership with Connaught Club members are underway, and I look forward to reporting on the exciting changes ahead.
October brought the Installation meeting, which was well attended and assisted by Connaught Club members. I hope this was for more reasons than the exciting prospect of Bavarian beer, kindly donated by W Bro Robert Selwyn, current Worshipful Master!
The membership was no doubt counting down the days to December and getting increasingly excited with every social media update for the big event of the masonic calendar: the Connaught Club Christmas dinner, held at the Savile Club. Sixty dapper members descended on the opulent ballroom for what proved a bonzer evening! Many thanks must go to both our club president, VW Bro Timothy L'Estrange PGSwdB and to VW Bro Matthew Hampson PJGW, DepMetGM, for their insightful and humorous speeches to the membership on the evening.
The new year was kicked off in true Connaught Club fashion with the 'Worshipful Mastermind' quiz, hosted by our very own deputy chairman, Bro Adam Bradley, who might I say would give Magnus Magnusson a run for his money! The quizzing brethren left not only satiated but also kicking themselves that they had not brushed up on past Eurovision winners.
The Connaught Club committee are pleased to report that the calendar for the remainder of 2023 and early 2024 is chock-full of events, including seminars on grand stewards and the foundations of Metropolitan Grand Lodge, wine tastings, the annual club clay shoot & dinner, dinners in clubland, a summer picnic, Burgoyne Lodge No 902 meetings, and even a trip abroad to visit a Danish Masonic meeting. And if that isn't enough, look out for details of the Connaught Club ski trip in early 2024! I hope you will agree with me that there is plenty on offer for the members.
Don't fear though, it isn't all big events and plush dinners – as always, our regular drinks are on the first Friday of every month near Great Queen Street, where you can meet the committee, stalwart members and guests for a casual drink and catch up.
If you're not already a member of the Connaught Club, you're 35 or under, and you are either a London Mason or you live or work in London and are a member of a Lodge outside London, why not consider joining? Membership is only £25 per annum (a one-off £15 joining fee covers administration and the cost of your club tie and pin) and enables you to attend all of our events as well as giving you access to a myriad of visiting opportunities! You can sign up for the club online on our website at www.connaughtclub.org, or drop our membership secretary an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We have a great many events planned for this year and would love for you to be able to join us!
This article is part of the Arena Magazine, Issue 51 April 2023 edition.
Arena Magazine is the official magazine of the London Freemasons – Metropolitan Grand Lodge and Metropolitan Grand Chapter of London.
Read more articles in the Arena Issue 51 here.