On and from Monday 17 May 2021
• Masonic activities and meetings of up to 6 people (“Rule of 6”) may resume, subject to certain restrictions.
• Regular meetings (and convocations) must be summoned even though it may not be possible to achieve a quorum (see definition below).
• In accordance with Statutory Instrument 2021 No. 364, The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions (Steps) (England) Regulations 2021, which came into force on 29 March 2021, UGLE/SGCE has previously advised that ‘Permitted Organised Gatherings’ of up to 30 people may be allowed in Masonic Centres (or other premises operated by a business, charity, or public body) provided that Centre (or other premises) has undertaken a risk assessment and implemented the required precautions to enable such gatherings to take place safely and in compliance with the Regulations.
• Whether or not ‘Permitted Organised Gatherings’ of up to 30 people may be allowed will depend on the actions taken by the management of each of the Masonic Centres at Harrow, Southgate, Twickenham or Uxbridge.
Therefore, Secretaries and Scribes E are strongly advised to contact the management of the Centre where your Lodge or Chapter intends to meet, to ascertain the restrictions that will apply and the availability or otherwise of meeting rooms, bar, and dining facilities.
• Indoor dining in groups of no more than 6 people will be permitted.
No earlier than Monday 21 June 2021
• Restrictions on Masonic meetings and on dining are lifted.
Note that these dates may change and may vary for different parts of England.
Definition of a Quorum
In accordance with the booklet entitled: ’Information for the Guidance of Members of the Craft’, the definition of a quorum is:
Five (excluding the Tyler and the Candidate for the degree in question): two must be members of the Lodge and one an Installed Master (see Rule 119, Book of Constitutions).
For a Board of Installed Masters to be opened, three Installed Masters (excluding the Master Elect and the Tyler) must be present.
A similar definition applies to Royal Arch convocations.
There must be no pressure applied to Brethren or Companions to attend meetings or convocations until the individual concerned considers it is safe and he is comfortable to do so, e.g. after he has received his second vaccination.
Consequently, if meetings or convocations are inquorate on the day of meeting and not beforehand, they must be abandoned, and the fact recorded in the Minute Book.
Further information and guidance will be given in due course, as and when it may be published by HM Government, UGLE and/or SGCE.
I am sure, like me, you are keen to resume Masonic activities, but in the meantime, please do keep safe and well and follow the simple actions we must always observe to continue to protect each other, relating to: Hands> Face> Space> Fresh Air.
Finally, following the sad death, on 9th April 2021, of Brother His Royal Highness, The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, and as a mark of respect, it is my wish that Brethren and Companions wear a plain black tie, rather than the Provincial tie, for the two-week period from 17th to 31st May 2021, or at the first meeting or convocation of a Lodge or Chapter, if it occurs after this period.
You may also wish to observe a short period of silence in respect to departed merit after the Lodge or Chapter has been opened.
With kindest fraternal regards,
Peter R A Baker
Pro Provincial Grand Master for and
Grand Superintendent in and over Middlesex
16th April 2021
Download a copy of the announcement HERE
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