A team lead by the MW Grand Master has consecrated the latest Court in the Province of Lindsey - Cildru Court No 134.
The new Court, a daughter Court of the Court of Beoferlic No 59 meeting at Beverley, was consecrated in Hull and is the first such Court in the Order and the name, "Cildru", is derived from the old English word for "child". The proceedings were witnessed by over 80 brethren from the Province and beyond.
The Grand Prior's Oration at the Consecration of Cildru Court No 134
We assemble today to consecrate the latest Court of our Order in the Province of Lindsey – Cildru Court No 134, the name being derived from the Old English word for “child”, and holding the distinction of being the first “daughter” Court to be consecrated within our Order. How apt that is as a route to growth, given the strong provincial family ethos recognised by all within this Province. How pleasing also to note that the inherent strength of Athelstan freemasonry in this region, especially in the sponsoring Court of Beoferlic No 59, is such that this happy milestone event is possible.
And so the Athelstan Province of Lindsey today welcomes its latest Court, established within this celebrated city of Hull. Historically, prior to Viking Invasion, the Hull region was part of the ancient kingdom of Deira, which corresponded very approximately to the East Riding of Yorkshire but extending up to the Tees. During the middle of the seventh century Deira and neighbouring Bernicia combined into the ancient kingdom of Northumbria – so called as it comprised "those dwelling north of the Humber". In Athelstan’s time, there was sparse settlement or urban development in what we now recognise as the East Riding of Yorkshire, although subsequent archaeology proves a trade path between York, Beverley and the river Humber, itself forming a natural boundary to the south. During this period and following the Norman Conquest, it was the Church that provided the focus of learning, enlightenment, morality, culture, commerce and education to the population and acted as a unifying element in society. So it was that some three centuries after Athelstan the abbey of Meaux, situated a short distance east of Beverley, seeking an easy export outlet by sea for its own wool and that of other local wool producers in the days before motorways and rail links, established the 'new town' of Wyke upon Hull. In 1293 the town became Kingston upon Hull with its acquisition by Edward I, partly in order to serve as a base for his Scottish campaigns and echoing the travel of Athelstan himself through the region in the 10th century on his own path to quell northern rebellion. From the 14th century onwards the town developed into the foremost port on the east coast and subsequently one of the leading ports in the kingdom.
So for over 700 years this town, port and locality has grown and thrived as a result of the original inspired initiative of the learned Monks of Meaux, no doubt a consequence of their Cistercian ethos, and is now a recognised centre of international importance in science, technology, commerce and the arts: indeed, UK City of Culture 2017. In our masonic Order with its focus on the importance of knowledge, wisdom and understanding there could be no more apt location in the region to establish our presence, and may that presence flourish for as long as this city, and beyond.
It is every parent’s earnest desire that their child will thrive beyond their own achievements and I am sure this new Court will fulfil that ambition. As we read in the book of proverbs (Proverbs 22:6) ”Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” The brethren of the Court of Beoferlic No 59, as erstwhile parents and in the intellectual spirit of our Order, will, it is certain, act as guiding mentors and look on with great satisfaction as their offspring flourishes in the years to come, echoing in some part the actions and sentiment of Alfred in his mentoring and steerage of both son Edward and grandson Athelstan to the burdens and responsibilities of kingship in the days before primogeniture, and symbolically following the learned example of the monks of Meaux in expanding the precepts of our Order from Beverley to the Humber.
Today we welcome Cildru Court into the Masonic Order of Athelstan and congratulate the founders on their commitment to the continuing growth and development of Athelstan Freemasonry. We wish you every success and enjoyment as you establish the unique ethos of our Order in this historic City.