Thursday, 14 January 2010

£30,000 emergency aid for Haitian earthquake relief

Following the devastating earthquake which took place in Haiti on Tuesday 12th January 2010, the President of The Freemasons’ Grand Charity has approved two emergency grants totalling £30,000. The funds have been issued to the British Red Cross and Plan.

The 7.3-magnitude quake, Haiti's worst in two centuries, struck at 1653 local time (2153 GMT) on Tuesday. The epicentre was within 10 miles of the centre of the densely-populated capital, where around one million people live, more than 50,000 people are feared dead.

The British Red Cross has been awarded £20,000 to assist with their relief efforts. Red Cross volunteers in Haiti are currently assisting the injured and supporting hospitals who do not have enough capacity to deal with this emergency. The most urgent needs at this time are search and rescue, field hospitals, emergency health, water purification, emergency shelter, logistics and telecommunications.

Plan has also been granted £10,000 in support of their efforts in dealingwith the immediate aftermath of the disaster. Plan’s priorities are assisting children and their families and getting people into safe accommodation wherever possible, as well as working with survivors to help ease their psychological trauma.

Visit The Freemasons’
Grand Charity website at

Tuesday, 28 October 2008

2008 Provincial Church Service

The Annual Provincial Church Service for 2008 was held at Llandaff Cathedral, Cardiff, on Saturday 25 October.

Provincial Grand Master, Captain Sir Norman Lloyd Edwards, KCVO, GCStJ, RD*, RNR, expressed his gratitude to all those who attended, and particularly those who devised and took part in an impressive and inspiring Act of Collective Worship.

The service is held different venues around the Province each year.

The collection at this year's event raised £550 which will be donated to the Cathedral Organ Appeal, along with whatever can be reclaimed from the Exchequer in Gift Aid.

Friday, 3 October 2008

Nearly £2 million given to non-Masonic causes

Nearly £2 million is to be dedicated to helping charities delivering opportunities for young people, supporting vulnerable people and researching the cause and treatment of illness and disease. The grants to seventeen national charities were approved by hundreds of Freemasons at a General Meeting of The Freemasons’ Grand Charity held in Bournemouth.

The organisations that will benefit from the generous sum include the Scout Association which is set to receive £1/2 million as a contribution towards its KidsOutdoors Campaign and Ovarian Cancer Action whose research and awareness work will be supported over five years through a £1 million donation.

The meeting also heard that the District Grand Lodge of Eastern Archipelago is to receive a grant of £15,000 towards its work with survivors of Cyclone Nargis in Myanmar (Burma). The grant will help to fund the building of three health clinics at Pyinkhayang, Myaugmya and Nadupaw.
For further information contact Natasha Treweek on 020 7395 9394.

Visit The Freemasons’ Grand Charity’s website at

List of Grants approved:


OVARIAN CANCER ACTION (£1 million over five years)
Research relating to the treatment of ovarian cancer and a programme to raise awareness of the illness amongst women. Ovarian cancer is the fourth most common cancer in women and each year some 7,000 women are diagnosed with the disease.

DEAFNESS RESEARCH UK (£82,700 over two years)
Research into the transplantation of fibrocyte cells to combat age-related hearing loss. The research is a continuation of a successful pilot project funded by The Freemasons’ Grand Charity in September 2006.


THE SCOUT ASSOCIATION (£500,000 over five years)
A contribution towards the KidsOutdoors Campaign. The grant will help improve opportunities for young people from all backgrounds to access the physical, social and emotional benefits of outdoors activities and help to develop scouting across the country.

The Choice Matters interactive CD project aims to facilitate foster carers and residential care staff to enable children and young people to develop decision making skills, in order that they can make informed choices.

Supporting the youth agency partnerships programme working with other youth opportunities charities to enable disadvantaged young people to take up volunteering opportunities and achieve personal and life skills development.

Support for organisations working with young people. The Youth Programme will promote and provide tailored support to organisations to help improve operational effectiveness, strengthen governance and achieve better sustainability, creating greater benefit to the young people and communities with which the organisations work.


Advocacy for Education service. The service enables parents to understand both their own and their children’s rights and obtain the most appropriate educational provision for their children. An estimated 520,000 people in England and Wales, 130,000 of whom are aged between 0-19, have an autism spectrum disorder.

WHIZZ-KIDZ (£40,000)
Salary of a Head Therapist. Whizz-Kidz’s mobility therapists work with disabled children and young people to enable them to get the most out of their mobility equipment and help them to take part in activities to which they would not otherwise have access.

Building and development of a National Home Learning Programme and Demonstration Home for parents with newly diagnosed deaf babies and pre-school children. The Elizabeth Foundation supports infants and pre-school aged children with hearing loss and their families, by providing help, support and encouragement.

The Teens and Toddlers programme. The innovative programme significantly reduces the occurrence of pregnancies amongst participating teenagers and is founded on creating an environment where at risk teenagers, both male and female, can experience first hand the demands of parent – child relationships and understand the implications of becoming a parent.

Salary of a visual impairment adviser. Treloar Trust provides education, care, therapy, medical support and independence training to young people with physical disabilities. The visual impairment adviser works as part of a multi-disciplinary team to ensure that all aspects of a student’s learning and care are addressed, increasing independence, confidence and academic success.

Salary of a coordinator for supported volunteering in the community. Elizabeth FitzRoy Support provides practical support for adults with learning disabilities. The supported volunteering initiative enables service users to become volunteers, fostering integration into local communities, the learning of new skills and improving independence and confidence.

COUNSEL & CARE (£15,000)
An advice worker to provide information, advice and emotional support to vulnerable older people and their carers. The Counsel & Care advice team deals with more than 2,500 enquiries every year answering many complex queries on community care issues faced by older people and their carers.

Towards the costs of a new canal boat. The Bruce Trust provides purpose-built, wide-beam canal boats for disabled, disadvantaged or elderly people and their carers, enabling them to enjoy a holiday.

Information Plus Project. Cued Speech is a simple system of manual cues, which clarify lip reading. The Information Plus Project will disseminate information about cued speech and how it can be used, helping about 1,000 deaf children and 30 deaf adults to improve their literacy and communication skills.

Holidays at specially adapted hotels for blind and physically disabled children. The holidays provide a rare opportunity to be in an environment away from home, alongside other young people; this can help to give greater independence, encourage self-esteem and confidence and assist social and communication skills.

As a contribution towards the work of the St John Ambulance and Rescue Service in Guernsey.

Monday, 22 September 2008

Help for Air Ambulances from Freemasons' Grand Charity

The potentially life-saving services provided by eighteen air ambulances have been supported with a grant of £180,000 from The Freemasons' Grand Charity. The announcement of how the grant has been shared between the services is made as National Air Ambulance Week (22-28 September 2008) begins.

Air ambulance charities across England and Wales collectively fly around 17,500 missions every year at a cost of £0.5 million per week. The money to fund this work is met almost entirely by donations from the public.

Earlier this year, Provincial Grand Lodges were invited to nominate a service to receive a £4,000 share of the total grant and throughout the summer months representatives of the Provincial Grand Lodges have been visiting helipads to meet crew and present the donations.

Our own Provincial Grand Master R.W.Bro. Captain Sir Norman Lloyd-Edwards, KCVO, GCStJ, RD*, RNR; along with R.W.Bro. Rev. Malcolm C. G. Lane, Provincial Grand Master for Monmouthshire presented their cheques to Air Ambulance Wales at the RMBI's Albert Edward, Prince of Wales Court Residential Home in Porthcawl on Wednesday 17 September.

For details of how the £180,000 grant has been shared between the air ambulance charities, visit:

Thursday, 24 July 2008

Our new Provincial Grand Master is Installed

Hundreds of South Wales Freemasons turned up at Barry's Memorial Hall on 24 June 2008 to witness the Installation of Captain Sir Norman Lloyd-Edwards, KCVO, GCStJ, RD*, RNR, as their new Provincial Grand Master.

Appointed in succession to Hywel Davies, who retired from the position on 30 June, Captain Sir Norman is only the seventeenth holder of the office since the Province was formed 281 years ago! He had retired as HM Lord Lieutenant for South Glamorgan after 17 years in the position a little over a month before.

The Ceremony was presided over by Peter G. Lowndes, Deputy Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of England, and was attended by scores of honoured guests from United Grand Lodge and other Provinces. In his address to the gathering, the new Provincial Grand Master set out the theme for his tenure in office, which would be recruitment and retention. He was pleased to confirm the re-appointment of the Provincial Executive and all officers appointed by his predecessor.

The ceremony was followed by a splendid luncheon at Cowbridge Leisure Centre.

Thursday, 15 May 2008

China Earthquake - we aid relief efforts

The President of the Grand Charity has approved a £20,000 grant to the Red Cross to support relief efforts following an earthquake measuring 7.8 in south-western China. The Freemasons’ Grand Charity is the first organisation to support the British Red Cross’ response to the worst earthquake to strike China in more than 30 years.

The Red Cross Society of China’s local branches have been active in the 48 hours following the quake providing emergency relief to the affected areas, including tents and blankets. Although the official death toll stands at 12,000 this is expected to rise sharply as rescuers gain access to previously cut off areas and thousands of people remain trapped in the debris of collapsed buildings.

The grant of £20,000 from The Freemasons’ Grand Charity will be an important contribution to the continuing rescue and relief efforts and is enough to provide approximately 200 relief tents which will provide shelter for many of those affected and act as a first aid point to treat casualties and also 850 quilts.

The announcement of this grant comes just 24 hours after details of a £20,000 grant to assist victims of Cyclone Nargis in Burma (Myanmar) were released.

Wednesday, 14 May 2008

Burma Cyclone - we aid relief efforts

Save the Children’s relief work in Burma (Myanmar) is to be supported by the £20,000 emergency grant approved last week, following Cyclone Nargis, by the President of the Grand Charity. The Freemasons’ Grand Charity is also in discussions with District Grand Lodges in the affected region to identify what support it may be able to provide to their own efforts.

More than 32,000 people are now believed to have been killed by the high winds and resulting tidal surge which struck Burma (Myanmar) on 2 May destroying homes, crops and infrastructure. Following the Cyclone, Save the Children quickly redirected the efforts of 500 staff already in the Country from work on longer-term projects to the emergency relief response and essential supplies including clean water and food have already been distributed to over 100,000 people including around 33,000 children.

The grant of £20,000 from The Freemasons’ Grand Charity will be an important contribution to this ongoing work and is enough to provide plastic sheeting for temporary accommodation to 1,400 families.

Visit the Freemasons' Grand Charity's website at

Monday, 5 May 2008

Name Change for our Province!

At the meeting of Provincial Grand Lodge Committee at Barry this evening, the Provincial Grand Master, R.W.Bro. Hywel Davies announced that following a decision by the M.W. Grand Master, after 160 years the name of the Province would revert to "South Wales".

The Eastern and Western Divisions of South Wales were created in 1848. Prior to that, the Province of South Wales also included the counties of Cardiganshire, Carmarthenshire and Pembrokeshire. Those three counties made up the Province of South Wales Western Division, which has already adopted the style "West Wales".

The use of the style "Province of South Wales" will be phased in gradually.

Monday, 21 April 2008

Freemasons help for Smaller Charities

The latest grants announced by The Freemasons’ Grand Charity focus on helping smaller charities. In total £34,000 is being given towards the important activities of eighteen charities working in the areas of youth opportunities, vulnerable people and medical research.

More information can be obtained by clicking: HERE

Saturday, 5 April 2008

Our next Provincial Grand Master is named

The next Provincial Grand Master for the Masonic Province of South Wales (Eastern Division) is to be R.W. Bro. Captain Sir Norman Lloyd-Edwards, KCVO, GCStJ, RD*, RNR, Lord Lieutenant of South Glamorgan.

He will succeed R.W.Bro. Hywel Davies, who steps down from the role after 9 years on the day after the Annual Meeting of Provincial Grand Lodge on 30 June. Sir Norman is likely to be Installed soon after the departure of his predecessor, by which time he will have retired as Lord Lieutenant of South Glamorgan. The precise date of Installation has yet to be determined. The appointment was made by HRH The Duke of Kent, KG, in his capacity as Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of England.

Sir Norman, 74, a retired Solicitor, will be the tenth holder of the office since 1848 when the Province of South Wales (ED) was created by dividing the earlier Province of South Wales into two. He has been a Freemason for over 50 years and has already held a number of very senior positions within the fraternity and its associated charities.

His Knighthood comes by virtue of his appointment as Knight Commander of the Royal Victorian Order in the New Year’s Honours List published at the end of 2007.