Posted: 14th July 2016

On 25th June, the Freemasons of Cumberland & Westmorland celebrated the culmination of their 2016 Festival Appeal which raised £1,669,398 for the Masonic Charitable Foundation’s predecessor charity, the Royal Masonic Benevolent Institution (RMBI).

The event was held at the Shepherds Inn, Carlisle and was hosted by the Festival President and Provincial Grand Master, Norman James Thompson and his wife, Janet. Special guests included Pro Grand Master, Peter Lowndes; the Lord Lieutenant of Cumbria, Clare Lensman; Past-Deputy President of the RMBI, James H Newman; and former Chief Executive of the RMBI and current Chief Executive of the Masonic Charitable Foundation, David Innes.

Entertainment was provided by 14-year-old singer and Britain’s Got Talent finalist Jasmine Elcock. Jasmine is the daughter of a Freemason and her family has been supported by the Masonic Charitable Foundation. The evening concluded with a Last Night of the Proms-style singalong.

Speaking about the total raised, David Innes said: “I would like to thank and congratulate the Freemasons of Cumberland & Westmorland for their tremendous efforts to raise funds for our work. The donations will be used by the Foundation to provide support for older members of the Masonic family across England and Wales in their time of need.”

Every year, four Masonic Provinces conclude a five-year fundraising Appeal, or ‘Festival’, in support of the Masonic Charitable Foundation or its predecessor charities. The Cumberland & Westmorland Festival brings the total raised so far to over £6.7 million.