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Bro Raymond Norris (centre) after his initiation with the members of St Augustine’s Lodge.

At their Lodge meeting on December 2nd 2015 members of St Augustine’s Lodge welcomed Mr Raymond William Frank Norris, at the tender age of 86, as a new member. He immediately became the newest and oldest member of the Lodge, also showing that age is no barrier in Freemasonry.  

He has been a supporter of the Lodge for several years and when he expressed an interest in joining the members had no hesitation in accepting his application. The bulk of the initiation ceremony being performed by his proposer, W Bro Glyn Cardy (Master).

In his response to the toast at the festive board Ray revealed a keen sense of humour when he said   “at least I’ll have a large number of family at my funeral now” indicating that he accepted all Freemasons as his Brothers.


Following the success of last year’s ride to Paris, 4 Redditch Masons,     (W Bro Paul Buck, Bro’s Mark Broadhurst and Jon Hughes of St Augustine’s Lodge No 3713 with W Bro Paul Beaumont of Forge Mill Lodge No 9658) accompanied by 5 friends embarked on a bike ride from Redditch Rugby Club to Amsterdam to raise money for Acorns Children’s Hospice, a local charity that cares for terminally ill children in the Midlands.

W Bro Paul Buck, Matt Burke, Bro Mark Broadhurst, Ian Strutt, Gary Carter, Rob Gall,

W Bro Paul Beaumont, Bro Jon Hughes & Dan Moorehouse

The 7 cyclists and 2 support drivers faced a 450 mile journey over 4 days, leaving Redditch Rugby Club at 8:00 am on Friday 8th April and arriving in Dam Square, Amsterdam at 5:30 pm on Monday 11th.

Day 1 – Redditch to Guildford. 122 miles

Fairly uneventful day with the exception of an early set back due to one bag, complete with passport and money, not being loaded into the van causing an unscheduled stop after only 5 miles.

The weather was good, no rain and not too hot. The day ended with a meal and a couple of beers to celebrate Dan’s 40th birthday in The Wooden Bridge, Guildford.

Day 2 – Guildford to Dover 113 miles

Early start, 6:30 am, with a ferry to catch and the weather turning, the cyclists knew it was not going to be easy. Having braved all sorts of weather from glimpses of sunshine to sleet and all things in between with the addition of almost gale force winds on the south coast, plus several punctures they arrived at Dover with borderline hypothermia, uncontrollable shivering and inability to talk properly. After changing on the roadside, loading the bikes into the van and boarding the ferry spirits rose with the prospect of better things to come. However the drama was not over, cyclists taking a wrong turn out of port at Calais turning a 10min walk into 1 ½ hours and it was raining, again.

Day 3 – Calais to Vlissingen 108 miles

After a night in possibly the smallest hotel room for 3 the first thing to be done was some much needed maintenance on the bikes, cleaning and re-greasing etc. Blue cloudless skies promised a good day ahead. Terrain was flat, cycle tracks well signposted and generally dead straight along canals, the only drawback was the headwind, but with no deadlines to meet there was time for rest stops in some of the picturesque towns of Northern France and Belgium. Arrived in Vlissingen and after storing the bikes and freshening up it was time for a Pizza and beers at Lungo Mare.

Day 4 – Vlissingen to Amsterdam 107 miles

First part of ride along coast exposed to brutal winds whipping sand across the track keeping the pace down, but once away from coast, with a bit of shelter, spirits rose again as the finish got ever closer. Last stop, by another canal, saw the cyclists in good mood with only 30 miles to go. After the nightmare of trying to park a transit van in a city dominated by bikes, the drivers made their way to Dam Square to await the arrival of the cyclists. On their arrival, amidst the hundreds of bikes in the square, celebratory pictures were taken and then celebratory beers drunk. With the words “Never again! Well maybe “ being muttered all round.

              Dan Moorhouse, Bro Mark Broadhurst, Bro Jon Hughes,                                  The two Pauls’ join in the celebrations                   Ian Strutt, Rob Gall, Matt Burke & Gary Carter

With the money still coming in the original target of £3000 has been exceeded but any donations would be welcome. The just giving page is still open for donations to this worthy cause. https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Redditch-RFC


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Marathon Effort

Bro Mark Broadhurst took part in the Cotswold 24hr Run in July, where he completed 53 miles over a 9km multi-terrain course in 2 x 4hr stints. He raised just short of £2000 in aid of The Acorns Children’s Hospice

Charity Auction raises over £6000 for Acorns

On September 9th Bro Mark Broadhurst organised a Charity Auction and Ball in aid Of Acorns Children’s Hospice. It was held in a marquee in his Garden and was attended by 120 guests. The evening was an outstanding success raising in excess of £6000 from the auction, a raffle and bar takings.

This brings the total raised in aid of The Acorns Children’s Hospice to well over £10,000 over the three events. Credit must go to all those who took part with particular credit to Bro Broadhurst for the run and auction.

New Initiate

St Augustine’s welcomed a new initiate to their ranks on October 7th in the person of Mr Mohammed Khan. Mr Khan created a first for the Lodge as he was their first Muslim candidate. The ceremony was well attended by both Lodge members and guests and a good night was had by all.