For those of you who were present at this year’s AGM, you will have heard our outgoing Chairman, W.Bro. Lewis Geo. Clement mention that he would spare us his speech and instead, publish his address to the membership on the website. Albeit a week or two late, please find below Lewis’ speech and a downloadable PDF of the AGM Booklet for those who weren’t present.
It is customary at this meeting for the outgoing Chairman to say a few words prior to his departure. I shall not break with this tradition; however I am mindful that the sooner I wrap up, the sooner we may enjoy each other’s company at dinner (and maybe even have a pint). Thus, I shall not detain you long.
For those of you who were at last year’s Annual General Meeting you may recall that we voted on to the Committee a number of fresh-faced and eager individuals. Well twelve months on I am happy to report that these ‘newbies’ have not jaded but have grown in to their roles on the Committee and have gradually taken over the management of the Club over the course of the year. I have said on numerous occasions that Bros. Kyle and Mitch left real voids when they moved on as they did so much for the Club. Over the course of my Chairmanship I have been eager to encourage some new talent to get involved with the Committee in order that the Club may continue to evolve, and to ensure our smooth governance for many years to come. With the likes of Jack, Josh and Mungo we have extremely capable and enthusiastic Masons who, all being under the age of 25, have over ten years of involvement to look forward to with the Club. With the likes of Neil, Tes and Muirhead we have experienced Masons and wise counsel. I believe that there has been somewhat of a necessary changing of the guard over the last two years during my tenure, and I believe that Laurence is inheriting a happy Club, with a particularly bright future.
I think we would all agree that 2017 has been the most extraordinary year in Freemasonry. We have all been extremely privileged to have witnessed the celebrations at the Royal Albert Hall and throughout the Constitution. I feel very proud to have represented the Club at many of the tercentenary events across London and even on the tele! I am particularly privileged to have hosted our own tercentenary celebrations – the 300 Ball at the H.A.C. That evening was a roaring success as around 180 of us danced the night away to the big band, drank cocktails, and raised awareness and funds for Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust.
I really am extremely grateful to the whole Committee who have continued to help put on a variety events whilst continuing to streamline the internal structures of the Club. You have heard this evening that we continue to be over 300 members strong. With this success comes a lot of responsibility and one would be amazed of the amount of administration and man-hours that are dedicated to processing applications, managing event sign-ups and communicating with the membership. I thank each Committee member for their dedication and hard work in helping the Club to run as efficiently as it does.
Finally – I really must thank you, the membership of the Club, for supporting my proposed charity appeal, for continuing to attend and engage with the Club, and for supporting me personally. I have made some of my best friends through the Connaught Club, and with you I have enjoyed some amazing Masonic and life experiences. I am really fortunate to look forward to another five years of membership of the Club, and to a whole lifetime of Masonic friendship with you all. I do look forward to seeing Laurence and his team continuing to develop the Club and I shall continue to participate as and when I’m needed!
Yours in the friendship of the Club,
W. Bro. Lewis Geo. Clement