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Strategic Review~ January 2012

Strategic Review~ January 2012

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Published by Fuzzy_Wood_Person
St Austell Masonic Hall: Strategic Review on the constitution of the Masonic Hall Trustees and provision of compliance with Health & Safety Legislation and other inter-related matters

Preamble This is a desk based assessment of the implementation of Health & Safety legislation in the St Austell Masonic Hall, with special relation to the requirements of the Disability Discrimination Acts. It also includes an assessment of the structure of the presently constituted Masonic Hall Trust, with recomm
St Austell Masonic Hall: Strategic Review on the constitution of the Masonic Hall Trustees and provision of compliance with Health & Safety Legislation and other inter-related matters

Preamble This is a desk based assessment of the implementation of Health & Safety legislation in the St Austell Masonic Hall, with special relation to the requirements of the Disability Discrimination Acts. It also includes an assessment of the structure of the presently constituted Masonic Hall Trust, with recomm

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Published by: Fuzzy_Wood_Person on Jun 21, 2012
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St Austell Masonic Hall:Strategic Review on the constitution of the Masonic Hall Trustees and provision of compliance with Health & Safety Legislation and other inter-related matters
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Preamble
This is a desk based assessment of the implementation of Health & Safety legislation in theSt Austell Masonic Hall, with special relation to the requirements of the DisabilityDiscrimination Acts.It also includes an assessment of the structure of the presently constituted Masonic HallTrust, with recommendations for possible incorporation in a future redrafting.
Introduction
The basis of this Strategic Review, is the document issued by the Province of WestLancashire, entitled
 A Code of Practice for the Management of Masonic Halls
 published in
January 2009, hereinafter referred to as “CoPMH”.
CoPMH is a comprehensive guide to the workings and structure of the Masonic Hall network in the Province of West Lancashire. According to the
United Grand Lodge of England  Masonic Year Book 2010-2011
there are 395 Lodges in that Province, compared to 80 in theProvince of Cornwall.Likewise the
 Directory of Lodges and Chapters 2006 
shows that in the Province of WestLancashire has 42 Masonic meeting places, compared to 33 Masonic meeting places in theProvince of Cornwall, although it is unclear, in both cases how many are actual purpose builtMasonic structures, as opposed to buildings merely used for Masonic purposes.Liverpool Masonic Hall has 88 Craft Lodges meeting there alone without taking intoconsideration the other side degrees that meet on such premises, although it should be notedthat several of the Masonic Buildings in the West Lancashire Province have multiple temples.
Hall Management
: “Hall Trustees” and the St Austell Masonic Trust
 
The constitution of the St Austell Masonic Trust, as detailed in the 2002 (as amended)Constitution is wisely vested in Peace & Harmony Lodge No. 496, who hold such building,for the benefit of Freemasons in St Austell, and who use the facilities afforded by it. As thePremier Lodge in St Austell, it is right and proper that the members of this Lodge are the sole
Trustees‟ of the building.
 The remaining three other Craft Lodges, together with the two Royal Arch Chapters, oneMark Lodge, one Royal Ark Mariners Lodge and Rose Croix Chapter, (or any other CraftLodge or side degree who may at anytime begin to use the building) as tenants, and pay suchfees as are determined from time to time by the Building Consultative Committee, in
conjunction with the “Hall Trustees”.
 No other Craft Lodge, or side degree can claim the use of the building as a right, and the
“Hall Trustees” may at their absolute discretion
demand that such Lodge or side degree findalternative accommodation to hold their meetings, but in doing so, shall use the normalaccepted Masonic etiquette, and shall make such decision, if, but only if, all normal andaccepted means of resolution or mediation shall have failed, or the continued use of the
 building would lead the hall Trustees‟ to breach or violate any obligation imposed upon them
under any Regulation or Statute in force, at the time the decision shall be made, or if the
 
St Austell Masonic Hall:Strategic Review on the constitution of the Masonic Hall Trustees and provision of compliance with Health & Safety Legislation and other inter-related matters
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 continuation of any Lodge of side degree caused or continued to cause such obligations to be
abrogated or violated. The decision of the “Hall Trustees” shall be final and conclusive.
 
We have not seen the 1922 original document that vested the building in Trustees‟ hands, but
can well imagine the construction of that conveyance when it was written. The interpretationgiven on it by W.Bro. Peter Browning, in his
Commentary upon “A Code
of Practice for the
 Management of Masonic Halls in the Province of West Lancashire”
written in January 2012,
hereinafter referred to as “ComCoP”, states that the 1922 conveyance was
very specific as tohow the Temple building should be managed, it is therefore important that any amendmentsor preferable redrafting of the entire Constitution, takes into account the wishes of theoriginal members of Peace & Harmony Lodge No. 496, from ninety years ago.
Should a redrafting of the Hall Trustees‟ Constitution
be deemed to be necessary, it would be
advisable to redefined the basis for membership of the Trustees‟, and I will aver to suggest
the following as a template.
Hall Trustees‟ (who will be able to vote at meetings, and whom the building and other 
 property will be vested in) to be the Worshipful Master, Wardens and Past Masters
of 
Peace & Harmony Lodge No. 496.Other Installed Masters
in
Peace & Harmony Lodge No. 496, may sit on the
“Hall Trustees”
,
 but shall not be deemed to be Trustees‟ and
shall not be eligible to vote, but may speak and put motions.As it presently stands, this will mean that, excluding the incoming Worshipful Master and histwo Wardens, there would be 17 Past Masters
eligible to be Trustees‟, and 5
other InstalledMasters in, but not of, Peace & Harmony Lodge No. 496
who could sit on the “Hall Trustees”
 It would be advisable to state on the face of any redrafted document, that the Treasurer and
Secretary of the Trustees‟ must themselves be either 
 be Past Masters or current eligibleWardens of Peace & Harmony Lodge No. 496
This would make the “Masonic Hall Trustees” as a body, to be comprised of 2
5 members, 20of which would have a vote.In addition to the above, I would suggest that each of the other 3 Craft Lodges, elects one
Installed Master to serve on the “Hall Trustees”, for a period of three years, without re
-election to the same, unless a period of 18 months has elapsed since the person retired fromthe
“Hall Trustees”.
Such elected brethren would not be entitled to vote.The power of co-
option should remain as a prerogative of the Trustees‟, but such power 
should be used sparingly
Hall Management: The Building Consultative Committee
The Secretary of the „St Austell Masonic Hall Building Consultative Committee‟
, hereinafter referred to as the BCC, would be an ex-
offico member of the “Hall Trustees”, but would not
 be entitled to vote unless he was a Past Master or current Installed Warden of Peace &
 
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 Harmony Lodge No. 496. There should be no time limit on the holding of the position, but
the Trustees‟ would be advised to make such appointment on a yearly basis, and for such a person appointed to be deemed an “office
-
holder”. The „gift‟ of the appointment shouldideally rest in the hands of the “Hall Trustees”, as oppo
sed to the BCC itself.The BCC should consist of a Chairman (who should be the same such person as the
Chairman of the “Hall Trustees”, but who shall be permitted to ask any other Trustee to chair 
such meeting on his behalf), and one representative from each Craft Lodge and other sidedegree that meets in the Hall. The Chairman and Secretary of the St Austell Masonic Clubwould be ex-offico members of the BCC. Nothing would prevent any representative from representing another Craft Lodge or sidedegree at one and the same time, although it would be advisable that each such side degree or Craft Lodge was so represented by a separate and distinct person.
The “Hall Trustees” have the right to veto the appointment of anyone appointed to the BCC.
 
Employment of a Caretaker and Cleaning of the Hall
The employment of a caretaker, who is in receipt of emoluments, places several separate and
distinct problems on the “Hall Trustees”. Such person, who must be paid in accordance with
the Working Time Directives, and the National Minimum Wage legislation, irrespective of the fact that his employment is deemed to be either an honorary appointment, and thus inreceipt of an honorarium, or as an employee subject to National Insurance, PAYE and or inclusion in a Stakeholder Employer Pension Scheme.
The “employer” for this purpose, is the “Hall Trustees”, so I would respectfully take issuewith W.Bro. Browning‟s interpretation, in his “ComCoP” analysis. Peace & Harmony
Lodge, No. 496, in this respect is a tena
nt of the “Hall Trustees”, in the same way that the
other Lodges and side degrees are, and as such pays the same such fees.
The “Hall Trustees” would find it more advantageous, if they ceased to employ a caretaker,
and instructed professional cleaners (who are insured and referenced) to undertake thecleaning of the hall.We are not privy to the current contractual arrangements that pertain to the current Caretaker,nor are we privy to his remuneration, but working on the basis that as a part time employee,who works around 18 hours a week and paid at the National Minimum Wage, then we arelooking in the region of £108.00 per week Gross.
The Treasurer of the “Hall Trustees” would
therefore be saved much of his precious time from doing payroll for this employee.On researching this report, we have found a company called
The Clean Team,
based in the StAustell area, who are insured and can provide references. If they were invited to the hallmaybe we could get a costing, which would enable the janitorial services in the hall to be budgeted for in the next fiscal year. The advantage of employing an outside agency to provide janitorial services, is that it would enhance our due diligence regime and move the
shifting of „blame‟.
 

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