The RAF was formed on 1 April 1918 and, after their Meeting, on 28 April 2018, Innsworth Lodge (8751) celebrated the Centenary of the formation of the Royal Air Force, with a White Table Dinner in the company of their ladies.
The Dining Room of the Gloucester Masonic Hall was bedecked with RAF ensigns, photographs of RAF aircraft (old and new) and a few photographs of a selection of the Brethren (and a few of the Ladies) from younger days in RAF uniform.
The WM, W Bro Martin Price (who is an RAF Veteran), was pleased to take wine with those ladies who have been privileged to serve in the WRAF as well as those gentlemen and Brethren who have been privileged to serve in the RAF. He then took wine with those who feel that they may have been privileged in other ways.
After the Loyal Toast, W Bro Peter Brindle proposed the toast to Her Majesty’s Royal Air Force; of course, there were one or two digs at the Royal Navy and the Army for good measure.
W Bro Bill Beedie subsequently gave a tribute to Pilot Officer John Gillespie Magee Jnr, an Anglo -American RCAF fighter pilot and poet, who wrote the poem “High Flight” – “Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of earth and danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings.”
The Lodge Charity Steward, W Bro Tom Robson, held the Raffle with “unbelievable” prizes which included a brass Bristol Fighter bi-plane, a die-cast Spitfire, a die-cast Hurricane, a commemorative plate showing Spitfires over Paris in 1945 and a Teddy Bear pilot. There were also, of course, prizes of more interest to the ladies.
The WM auctioned a “Candlelight Dinner for Two” and the proceeds from the auction and Raffle produced a most commendable donation of £250 to the PGL, 2018 Festival.