With Lodge meetings (for most lodges) slowing down for the summer break of 2023, now seems a prudent time to take stock of the activities of the South Circular in 2022/23.
Before we delve into our activities, and for those who have yet to hear about or see the South Circular at a meeting, the following describes our intention and benefits to Masonry.
Like similar groups, the South Circular’s purpose is to promote visiting, add atmosphere to events, support lodges for special events, engage with Initiates in quieter lodges, provide an organised platform for masons wishing to visit, and generally be supportive of all masonic activities, within the South Central Area of the Province, and beyond.
By supplying your email address you agree to receive 1 or 2 emails per month, which will provide the details of the visits, to include (The Ceremony, Booking and Dining, Venue, Dates/Times etc.)
There is no fee to become a member of the South Circular, no minimum requirement to visit, or any other responsibility – other than to consider attending on occasions that fit your schedule.
As some of you will know, the South Circular was based on the activities of the ‘South West Tourists’- the brainchild of the late W.Bro Leon Whitfield (SW Area APGM), with our own APGM W.Bro James Ian Preece SGD, taking a view to emulate the model and creating a similar entity in this region (W.Bro Ian is also a SW tourist and SW Mason), and it has been very pleasing to see neighbouring areas refresh/modernise their functions of a similar nature, accordingly. I have been happy to share the learning points the South Circular have accrued since inception, and likewise have been happy to receive any help from our neighbours to ensure this benefits the province as a whole, rather than an individual area.
Ok that explained, how did we do in 2023?
We have averaged two visits per month across the 4 centres of Botley; Southampton; Totton and Woolston, and even managed a trip to the South West Area’s ‘Elizabethan Lodge’ in Christchurch. On average we have taken along 12 members, who have definitely added positive energies to the proceedings. The focus of this year has been the Ceremony of Initiation, which has helped Masonry in the South Central area in various ways. It has provided guests for less attended lodges, which will always be a good thing for any new initiate to witness. Additionally, it has proved to be helpful to many new Entered Apprentices to witness the ceremony for themselves for the first time, but lastly, the South Circular has provided an organised platform to promote visiting across the area in general, which can only be a good thing for the Craft.