New equipment for Axmouth playground thanks to £1,250 Freemasons donation

PUBLISHED: 15:00 10 November 2019

Samantha Miller (chairperson of the Axmouth Playground Association) receiving the cheque from Ian Kingsbury accompanied by W. Bro H. Jaggers of No. 1181 De La Pole Lodge. Picture courtesy of Samantha Miller.

Samantha Miller (chairperson of the Axmouth Playground Association) receiving the cheque from Ian Kingsbury accompanied by W. Bro H. Jaggers of No. 1181 De La Pole Lodge. Picture courtesy of Samantha Miller.

Archant

An Axmouth association has taken a slice of £50,000 raised for charities and organisations by Freemasons across Devon.

Axmouth Playground Association has been awarded £1,250 after it was nominated by its local lodge.

The Association, which looks after a playground in the heart of Axmouth, has been fundraising to replace some of the play equipment that has reached the end of its life to ensure a safe and fun environment for village children to play in.

The Freemasons cash is raised by the Wake Fund - a trust conceived by the Right Worshipful Brother William Alexander Kneel, the Provincial Grand Master from 1970 to 1984.

Mr Kneel was the late owner of Kneels laundry and Dry Cleaners, now known as Johnsons.

The fund now stands at £2million and the interest earned is given annually to local non-Masonic organisations in need of help.

Since the first disbursement in 2001 more than £820,000 has been given to more than 911 worthy causes selected by members of the 131 Masonic lodges based in the county.

The Axmouth Playground Association was one of 20 causes presented with a cheque by Right Worshipful Brother Ian Kingsbury JP. Provincial Grand Master for the Devonshire Freemasons.

The presentation was made at Exmouth Town Hall where charity representatives, accompanied by a Mason from their nominating lodge, were able to enjoy a buffet supper, explore the lodge, and ask questions about Freemasonry.

The total amount of the cheques donated to the 20 organisations totalled £20,000.

Mr Kingsbury said: "I am delighted that the Freemasons of Devon are able to contribute to these important local causes many of which are so competently run by volunteers and hopefully these donations will make a real difference."

A spokesman for Axmouth Playground Association said: "The monies received would go towards funding new pieces of play equipment for the playground.

"New playground equipment can run into thousands and it is difficult for small village associations to raise enough funding to replace equipment without the generous help of organisations such as the Freemasons and the Wake Fund."

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