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Pioneer Lodge is the Scout Lodge of Derbyshire. It was founded at the behest of RW Bro. Charles Connal Wilson, Provincial Grand Master for Derbyshire and County Commissioner for the Scout County of West Yorkshire. He personally invited senior Masons with a Scouting background to become founders. The twenty founders came from four Masonic provinces.
The name of the Lodge was suggested by W Bro. Dennis Cooper. In “Scoutng for Boys”, part 3, published 12th February 1908 (Camp Fire Yarn No. 11), Baden-Powell wrote that, “Pioneers are men who go on ahead to open the way … for those coming after them.”
W Bro. Clive Bemrose, a former County Commissioner for the Scout County of Derbyshire and a Past Master of Tyrian Lodge No. 253, the oldest Lodge in the Province, arranged that Tyrian Lodge would sponsor the new Lodge.
At a Founders’ meetng it was decided to ﬁnd a Ritual not already worked in Derbyshire. Taylor’s working met this criteria and the oﬃcial ritual book included all the Rubric required. Minor changes were made to the perambulations, especially during the Opening and Closing Ceremonies. From the start all twenty founders had to learn a new ritual, pulng them all on the same level. Pioneer Lodge is today the most northern follower of this ritual and is a member of the Association for Taylor’s Working.
The Lodge badge is based upon the post-1959 Scout Pioneer proﬁciency badge, together with the Scout World Membership Badge and the Masonic square and compasses. The Pioneer badge shows a clove hitch on a spar. Square lashings start with a clove hitch on the upright spar, to which the horizontal is lashed at right angles. When tightened with equal strain on both ends the hitch holds fast.
The Scout World Membership Badge is the arrowhead encircled by a rope tied with a reef knot. The arrowhead points the right way to go ahead. The rope tied with a reef knot shows Scouting’s global nature tied with unbreakable bonds. The Masonic square and compasses are linked through the clove hitch, taking the strain and remaining ﬁrm. The log’s striations represent the Lodge’s twenty founders. The whole demonstrates Scoutng and Freemasonry universal.
The Lodge momo, “Prove all things: hold fast that which is good”, is taken from I Thessalonians 5 verse 21. The link with the clove hitch on the Lodge badge is clear. The Lodge banner, designed by W Bro. Dennis Cooper to display the badge, was dedicated by the Provincial Grand Master in June 1985.
A stock of the pre-2003 version of the Pioneer badge having been procured, the Lodge now presents one to special guests and others who have rendered special service to the Lodge.
Pioneer Lodge No. 9065 was consecrated during the “Year of the Scout” on 18th December 1982, at Derby Masonic Hall, by RW Bro. C.C. Wilson. The Master of the sponsoring Lodge that year was W Bro. J.G.R. Rudd, who went on to become the Provincial Grand Master for Derbyshire and is now an Honorary Member of the Lodge. The then W Bro. Rudd delivered the third degree working tools at the consecra^on and presented the Lodge with the folder in which the Lodge keeps its Warrant.
The ﬁrst Initiate into Pioneer Lodge was J.R. “Kim” Gale, County Commissioner for the Scout County of Derbyshire. W Bro. Kim served as the Lodge’s Worshipful Master in 1995-96.
Pioneer was founded as a peripateric Lodge, with each meeting being held at a diﬀerent Masonic venue around the Province. Pioneer Lodge has now semled at Alfreton Masonic Hall, in the centre of the Province and accessible to all within Scou^ng in Derbyshire. Pioneer Lodge’s annual uniform meeting has been held every June at The Bemrose Training Centre, Drum Hill Scout Camp Site since 1991.
From its early days Pioneer Lodge has been a member of the Kindred Lodges Association (KLA), the purpose of which is to foster fraternal relations between Lodges associated with Youth Work. Pioneer Lodge has hosted the KLA’s twice yearly Festival on three occasions, in 1995, 2003 and 2012.
Pioneer Lodge is proud to have among its members a number who have served in active roles within this and other Provinces, including one Assistant Provincial Grand Master, two Grand Oﬃcers, three Provincial Grand Wardens, Derbyshire’s ﬁrst Provincial Grand Mentor, four Provincial Grand Stewards, a number of Provincial Grand Deacons and a Provincial Grand Tyler. The Lodge is also the mother Lodge of a ruler of two Orders in Derbyshire and of the 2012 Prestonian Lecturer.
Pioneer Lodge is a strong, healthy and happy Lodge, asttractive to visitors and new members. Many members hold or have held roles within Scouting, and so it continues to be what its founders wished – Derbyshire’s Scoutng Lodge.
You can follow them on Twitter @pioneer9065