TLC in action

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To some, TLC may mean Tender Loving Care, to others Thamesdown Ladies Choir (to your humble correspondent at least); however, to the Companions of Warwickshire, it will hopefully mean the Travelling Loving Cup.

This is the latest initiate from the furtive mind of our Grand Superintendent with the simple aim of encouraging inter-chapter visiting. The cup comes from Charity Lodge No 1551 to which it was presented back in 1897 by one W.Bro Thomas Henry Pearce. Sadly Charity Lodge is no longer in existence, having surrendered its warrant, but those ex-members still around kindly gave their permission for their magnificent silver loving cup to find a higher service.

Companions, it simply works like this. To claim the cup, three or more companions from one Chapter can visit the current holder of the cup. In doing so, the Grand Superintendent hopes that more companions visit other Chapters, forging new links and making new friends on the way.

For those of you who were at the AnnCon at Rugby, you will have seen the Grand Superintendent present to the first recipient. He had decided that this should be to the Chapter that had performed the most exaltations in the past year. That Chapter was Shakespeare Chapter No 284 that meets over at Alderson House.

At the lunch following the AnnCon, some may have heard a somewhat vocal Chapter (no names but it meets at Severn Street and is No 74!!) boasting that they’d be the first to claim the cup. The SE of another auspicious Chapter also meeting at Severn Street felt that this constituted a challenge and, with it celebrating its centenary at its next meeting, decided to do all he could to ensure that it would be his Chapter that would be bringing home the cup! His hard work – or was it the subtle persuasion of a used-car salesman – paid dividends as Leigh Chapter fielded no less than 15 visitors!!

For the more astute out there, you may have noticed that there are only 14 companions in the photo with the MEZ of Shakespeare, EComp Chris Stoner. For those concerned about accuracy, the 15th companion was the one behind the lens!

So, the TLC has made its first move – from Shakespeare to Leigh – for those Chapters wishing to be the third recipient of this magnificent cup, its next meeting is on Friday 6th September.