The Earl of Lathom in Blackpool

Blackpool entertained another distinguished visitor on Saturday, 23rd September 1899, in the person of the Right Homourable Earl of Lathom, P.G.W., Pr.G.M. of West Lancashire, who was the guest of the local masons.  His lordship visited the town for the purpose of opening the new Masonic Club, in Adelaide Street, and was accompanied by the Deputy Grand Master Bro. R. Wylie, P.G.D., P.Pr.G.W., Bro. W. Goodacre, Provincial Grand Secretary, and several Provincial Grand Officers.  His lordship was met by a deputation of the directors and the secretary of the Masonic Hall, at Talbot Road Station, and he was entertained to luncheon at the Palatine Hotel.  From there he went to the new Masonic Hall and with an appropriate speech, he was welcomed by Bro. Taylor, the vice-chairman of the company.  Bro. Cardwell, the builder of the Club, presented the Earl with a gold key, and the distinguished mason opened the building with an appropriate address.  Afterwards a provincial grand lodge was held under the banner of Clifton Lodge, and His Lordship dedicated the new lodge room.  At the conclusion of the ceremony he went to the admirably fitted billiard room, and with Bro. Wylie, opened the tables by playing a short game.  During the day the Earl of Lathom, Bros Wylie and Goodacre were made first honorary members of the Masonic Club, and Lord Lathom also consented to be the first president.  At seven o’clock a reception was held in the lodge room and a number of masons in town for the Congress received a warm welcome.  During the evening a capital convivial gathering was held, the artists being Bros. J. T. Muirhead, F. Coop, W. Bradshaw, J. Collins, T. W. Kay, D. Willox, (the Scotch[sic]  Masonic Poet), and Messrs Victor Ashworth, C. Chantler, and W. H. Simbley, who accompanied.  Amongst the visiting Masons were several provincial Mayors, and the Mayors of Harrogate, Abingdon, and Bacup responded on behalf of the visitors.  The proceedings were very pleasant throughout