Just before the lockdown when coronavirus took hold, Sir Joseph Williamson lodge celebrated the presentation of a 60th certificate to W.Bro R.A.E Martin PPJGW. The most senior of the ‘old boys’ in the lodge.
Ron was presented with his 60th certificate by W.Bro David Graeme APGM, PSGD at a meeting of the Sir Joseph Williamson lodge just before the lockdown at the meeting hall in Gundulph Square Rochester and is seen here with their WM and his step son.
Ron Martin was born 27 November 1935, in St Margaret’s Cemetery, Maidstone Road, Rochester where his father was Cemeteries and Parks Superintendent for Rochester Council. Educated at Woolwich Polytechnic (now Univ. of Greenwich), Medway Technical College, and Sir Joseph Williamson’s Mathematical School.
He was appointed as Associate Director, Faber Maunsell Ltd where he represented Transport for London in discussions with owners, their consultants and local authorities in the development of Greenwich Peninsula. Previously he had acted as Employer’s Site Representative on the widening of M2 between Junction 4 and Shorne/Cobham Interchange.
Previously he had been Projects Engineer, employed by KCC where he managed design and construction of A289 Wainscott Northern Bypass, A229 Blue Bell Hill Stage 2, A2 Harbledowns Bypass and Maidstone town centre projects team from 1974 to 2005 Between 1954v and 1974 he was highways engineer for and various local authorities in Kent.
He was frequently admonished by Geoffey Dearing, PProv GM that he could not go anywhere in Kent without being delayed by his works.
He is a Chartered Civil Engineer, Chartered Environmentalist, a Member of the Institution of Civil Engineers and a Member of the Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation.
During his long and successful career, he always made time, not only for his lodge, but also his school being Chairman of the Governors of Sir Joseph Williamson’s Mathematical School 1989 to 1999 and Chairman of the Charity Trustees from 1990 to 2010.
Ron has also dedicated his time to charity and has from 2001 been a Trustee of Carers FIRST, not only raising money with the help of Sir Jeosph Wiliamson Lodge, Pentangle Chapter and the Province of East Kent but using his experience to guide and encourage the trust continued success.
Carers FIRST was established as a project within Tonbridge VCS in 1991, by Carers who wanted to help others in a similar situation.In 1996 Carers FIRST took on charity status and became a registered not for profit organisation, number 1085430 and company limited by guarantee.In 2009 Carers FIRST became the parent company of Medway Carers Centre, a charity set up in 1991 by Carers, some of whom remain on the Board of Trustees today. The two charities merged fully in April 2013.By 2013, Carers FIRST were supporting over 5,000 Carers across South West Kent, North West Kent and Medway, providing information and support to carers of people who cannot manage by themselves through ill health, frailty, disability, mental health or substance misuse.Originally a member of the Princes Royal Trust for Carers, Carers FIRST is now a network partner of Carers Trust (a merger between PRTC and Crossroads Care).2016 was an exciting year for Carers FIRST. Marking the charity’s Silver Jubilee, Carers FIRST grew in these 12 months both it’s services and geographical reach. In January 2016, Carers FIRST became the parent company of Crossroads Care Medway, another network partner of Carers Trust, who provide respite care to those living in the Medway area. The two charities will be fully merged by 1st April that year.
In his spare time, he is a volunteer on the Thames and Medway Canal. It is a restoration project that will never be completed, as the north Kent line goes through the Tunnel. However, they have opened about 5km, and have plans for a further length to make it available for canoeing and general water recreation. For Ron it is a form of exercise every Tuesday morning and cheaper than a gym!
Ron’s Masonic career as we know spans 60 years, he was Initiated in Sir Joseph Williamson Lodge 4065, becoming WM in 1975, and 2008.
First appointment PPGReg in 1990 and received further promotion before being promoted to PPJGW in 2011 . Exalted in Pentangle Chapter No1174 1977, First Principal in 1983, and Treasurer from 1989 to 2008. First appointment Prov G Steward in 1987 and received further promotions before being promoted to PPScN in 2006.
Perfected in Money Chapter No 75, in 1989, Recorder 2000 – 2009 . Founder member of St Ithamar Chapter 1032, MSW in 1995, Recorder from 2011 to 2017 and promoted to 31 degree in 2012. Also a member of Sitis Pro Scientia.
Sir joseph Williamson lodge is a school linked lodge and was formed and consecrated in 1924 by its old boys, although the school had been in existence for centuries. The Mathematical School was founded in 1701 in accordance with the last will and testament of Sir Joseph Williamson who bequeathed five thousand pounds “towards the building and carrying on and perpetual maintaining of a free school at Rochester for the instructing and educating of such youth there who were or should be the sons of freemen
these towards the Mathematics and all other things which fit and encourage them for the sea service and arts and callings leading and relating thereto”.
Sir Joseph Williamson served as a leading politician and diplomat during the reign of King Charles II. He was first elected as MP for Rochester in 1690 and held various offices until his retirement in 1699 when he settled to live at Cobham Hall. At one time he was President of Royal Society Keeper of the King’s Library at Whitehall and Editor of the Oxford Gazette. He receives mention in the diaries of Samuel Pepys. The School moved to its present site from its former building in Rochester High Street in the 1960s and enjoys the benefit of excellent sports facilities on its 30-acre site.
Article written by Chris Sanford