Kimbolton to Camberwell

The Travelling Gavel

Saturday 5 th February 2022 at 11am nine members of the Old Wilsonians Lodge 6602, led by W. Bro Richard Thorne, current WM, gathered at MMH, to join the Old Kimboltonians Lodge 7204 for their regular meeting by dispensation in London; far from their usual venue the impressive ‘Kimbolton Castle’.

Their mission was to Rescue the Travelling Gavel. Both schools are members of the Federation of Old School Lodges and W. Bro. Terry Hall, Federation Membership Secretary and London Rep, had launched the Travelling Gavel initiative in order to encourage Federation member lodges to visit each other. The Old Wilsonians therefore rose to the challenge and attended a first class raising ceremony for Bro. Thomas Campbell conducted by the Past Masters of the lodge followed by a splendid festive board. After the usual toasts the opportunity presented itself to claim the Gavel and W. Bro Hall, who also happens to be the Old Wilsonians Lodge Mentor, rose to his feet to press the case. However, the Old Kimboltonians were not giving it up lightly and cited clause 6 that the meeting has to be a regular meeting. W. Bro. Hall being very familiar with the rules was able to win the day by reminding our hosts that their Emergency meeting by Dispensation was held on a regular basis and that any further banter on the subject would require W. Bro Hall to wear another hat being the “Overseer of the Gavel”.

The Old Kimboltonians admitted they were always intending to surrender the gavel but wanted to test the robustness of the rules. Under the watchful eyes of The Chairman of the Federation, W. Bro. Michael Button, and the Joint Secretary W. Bro. John Hubbard the Old Kimboltonian’s WM W. Bro. Max Constant duly presented the Travelling Gavel to W. Bro Richard Thorne to the delight and applause of all present. As the Old Wilsonians prepared to leave with their trophy it was made very clear that the Old Kimboltonians would be plotting to take it back.

The Federation of School Lodges was founded after the Second World War and held its first meeting January 1949. The Travelling Gavel rules are here: Federation of School Lodges - The Travelling Gavel and the eligible schools are listed here: Federation of School Lodges - Member Lodges

The Old Wilsonians next regular meeting is on Thursday 3 rd March 2022 at Mark Masons Hall and to “Rescue the Gavel” will need a raiding party of at least three members of an eligible lodge to attend and dine. We look forward to witnessing the effort!

W. Bro. Gregory Kirby LGR

Secretary Old Wilsonians 6602.