It was 3am on Thursday 9th October and W Bro Huw Forster’s phone was ringing. There was a major storm that night and the phone call was from the Fire Brigade to let W Bro Huw know that the Lodge building in Cardigan had been struck by lightning. As the storm subsided it became clear that the building needed some structural repairs to make it safe and the Teifi Lodge Installation meeting, scheduled for later in the day, would have to be either cancelled or change venue.
All Installation meetings are important, but this one marked the 90th Anniversary of Teifi Lodge; The Provincial Grand Master of West Wales, RW Bro Stephen Hookey was not only scheduled to officiate at the meeting, but also to address the Brethren of Teifi Lodge on the occasion of their anniversary and finally the Master Elect, Bro David Elliot was due to be Installed by his father and long standing secretary of the Lodge W Bro Graham Elliot.
The Brethren of Teifi Lodge agreed that cancelling the meeting was not an option and they hastily contacted the other lodges in the area and The Provincial Grand Secretary, W Bro David Elsley, to inform them of the crisis. It was quickly agreed that the best option was to move the meeting to the Cliff Hotel in Gwbert, which was already scheduled to host the Festive Board. The hotel was delighted to accommodate the meeting and by 10am a Dispensation had been produced and a van had been hired. The Brethren set about moving the lodge furniture to the hotel and by 12.30 everything was in place. In addition to more traditional methods, the West Wales Provincial website, Twitter Feed and Facebook page were used to let everyone know about the change of venue.
A huge debt of gratitude is owed to the hotel who not only allowed Teifi Lodge to take over their function facilities, but also set aside two guest lounges as Robing Rooms. As can be seen from the photos, the hotel is in a spectacular setting and this added to a very special and unusual occasion.
To further enhance the day RW Bro Stephen Hookey presented a UGLE cheque for £4,000 to The Pembrokeshire Coordinator for The Wales Air Ambulance, Mr Tony Key OBE and received a cheque for £10,000 from Teifi Lodge towards the West Wales 2015 Festival for The Grand Charity.