The return of Elias Ashmole

The Warrington Group Heritage Weekend saw the return of Elias Ashmole to his home of Freemasonry. Elias Ashmole being the first recorded speculative Freemason to be initiated. His ceremony took place in the town of Warrington in the year 1646.

Pictured left: The Herald played by David Burgess. Pictured right: Elias Ashmole (right) played by Allen Yates.

Pictured left: The Herald played by David Burgess. Pictured right: Elias Ashmole (right) played by Allen Yates.

As part of the planned events held by the Warrington Group for the Warrington Heritage Weekend and part of the tercentenary celebrations of Freemasonry, a timeline drama and pageant was organised which covered the period 1646 to 1813 and was enacted by the St Helens and Prescot Group. The timeline started with the initiation of Elias Ashmole and culminated in the formation of the Grand Lodge of England.

Visitors to the hall were invited to attend one of the two drama presentations and both were well supported. The first presentation was also visited by The Mayor and Mayoress of Warrington, Councillor Les Morgan and his wife Gwen. The presentations were light hearted and humorous, and when looking at the smiling faces, all who attended enjoyed the enactment.

Other attractions on the heritage event included a display of Masonic banners, various embroidery and craft items brought by the Embroiderers Guild and the Craft Workers Guild, there was also a teddy bear hunt.

Pictured left from left to right, are: Andy Barton, Councillor Les Morgan and Gwen Morgan previewing the banner display. Pictured right: Councillor Les Morgan and Andy Barton unveiling the commemorative plaque.

Pictured left from left to right, are: Andy Barton, Councillor Les Morgan and Gwen Morgan previewing the banner display. Pictured right: Councillor Les Morgan and Andy Barton unveiling the commemorative plaque.

Dignitaries visiting the hall over the two days included Faisal Rashid, MP for Warrington South and Kevin Poynton, Assistant Provincial Grand Master and his wife Susan.

Before the Mayor left, he along with Andy Barton the Warrington Group Chairman, unveiled a plaque to commemorate the life of two Warrington Masons who died in the First World War. They were Lance Corporal William Haddock Robinson, a member of Lodge of Friendship No 2963 and Lieutenant Percy Carter who was a member of Gilbert Greenall Lodge No 1250.

Warrington Mayor and Mayoress (seated) with the cast of the Pageant.

Warrington Mayor and Mayoress (seated) with the cast of the Pageant.

Story and pictures by John Starkey.

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