50 Years of Membership for our much loved Senior Past Master Alexander Wordingham
On Wednesday 5th December Mowbray Lodge, and our guests, had the pleasure of celebrating 50 years of membership by Alex Wordingham. Craig Steele, Assistant Provincial Grand Master presented Alex with his certificate of service to the craft.
Craig informed the lodge that Alex was born 90 years ago and has been a loyal supporter of the Sunderland Football club since he was 11 years old. He was brought up in the North Dock area of Sunderland where swimming in the River Wear was a popular activity in his childhood.
At 11 years old Alex achieved a place at the Central School for Boys but his education was unfortunately interrupted at this point, by the outbreak of war. He was evacuated to Wetwang in Yorkshire. At the age of 15 he left school and began his apprenticeship as a plumber, at Laings Shipyard in Deptford. In those days there was no day release and further learning had to be done, after work, at night classes where Alex achieved a First-Class City and Guilds. As the top apprentice plumber in the town that year he even got a mention in the Sunderland Echo.
Alex’s other interests included dancing at the Rink in Park Lane where he met the love of his life Mavis. Mavis was a baker in the Dockyard’s canteen – so we can all guess who got all the best meat pies for his lunch! Alex and Mavis married in 1951 and managed to find accommodation in Sunderland after the war years. They eventually settled in Grangetown with their daughter Sandra in 1963. Alex moved jobs and joined the British Oxygen Company where he stayed until he retired as their Senior Maintenance Engineer.
When living in Grangetown Alex made friends with his neighbour Frank Ainslie, who proposed Alex into Masonry. This is where his Masonic journey begins. Over the years Alex has taken on most of the jobs in the lodge and became involved in the social and charitable activities of Freemasonry. He has enjoyed and continues to enjoy lifelong friendship and comradeship, often acting as a mentor and a friend to so many.
The lodge enjoyed a traditional Christmas meal at the Festive Board where, following harmony, a cheque was presented for the 2021 Festival. Alex was presented with a gift voucher and a bottle of his favourite spirit on behalf of the lodge. Being full of emotion, Alex the lodge Chaplain said ‘God Bless You All’ which brought the very enjoyable evening to a close.