RBP No. 1168 – Bennett Memorial Temperance – Carricklongfield

A meeting of RBP No 1168 was held on Friday 5th November 1926 to make arrangements to form a Preceptory in Carricklongfield.  The first encampment was held on Wednesday 15th December 1926 with Sir Knight W J Hall Deputy District Master of Killyman District No.1 presiding assisted by Sir Knight J J Hazlett MA, JP, Deputy Grand Master of Ireland.  It was proposed by Sir Knight Matthew Morrow and seconded by Sir Knight Alan Stevenson that the title of Bennett Memorial Temperance be recommended to the District Chapter.

The Preceptory first paraded in Cookstown on 12th August 1927 led by Carricklongfield Accordian Band.  This band led the Preceptory until 1937 and Caslecaulfield Pipe Band then led the Preceptory until 1939.  During the war years of 1939-1945 Carricklongfield Flute Band led the Preceptory.  Mullintor Pipe Band led the Preceptory in 1946 and 1947.  Carricklongfield Pipe Band led the Preceptory from 1948 to 1952.  Then Edentilone Pipe Band served from 1953 to 1955.  Carricklongfield Pipe Band once again assumed the role in 1956 and still leads the Preceptory to the present day.

The first election of officers was held on 21st March 1928 resulting in Sir Knight Hugh John Bennett W Master, Sir Knight Matthew Morrow D Master, Sir Knight Thomas Bloomer Chaplain, Sir Knight Alan Stevenson Registrar, Sir Knight John Gowdy Treasurer.  On 17th February 1938, Sir Knight William Latimer was elected Deputy Master and on 20th November 1938 it was agreed on the proposal of the W M Sir Knight Hugh John Bennett that the Warrant be renewed as it was still under Boland RBP No. 1168.  On 15th February 1940 Sir Knight Samuel Dougal became Deputy Master.  On Sunday 1st November 1942 Sir Knight Uriah Brush of Aughnacloy Black District Chapter started a lecturer’s class with five candidates.  Sir Knight Thomas Montgomery was elected Deputy Master on 15th February 1945.

Sir Knight William Graham became Deputy Master on 21st April 1952.  Sir Knight Alan Stevenson, who served as Registrar from the Preceptory’s inception until 10th April 1953, was replaced by Sir Knight Thomas Marshall.  On 16th February 1956 Sir Knight Ewing Walsh was installed as Deputy Master.  The WM Sir Knight Hugh John Bennett was presented with a Bible and a rocking chair on being elected W M for the 31st time.  Sir Knight W J Bennett was installed WM on 21st April 1961 and replaced his father who had served for thirty-five years. On Thursday 20th February 1964 Sir Knight Fred Jardine became Registrar.

In December 1965 a new banner was ordered to replace the first banner which had been used for forty years.  Our new banner was unfurled on the evening of Friday 29th July 1966 by Miss Edith Bennett, daughter of our late WM, and was dedicated by Reverend Patterson of Newmills.  Sir Knight Stanley Morrow was installed Deputy Master on 20th April 1967 and it was agreed that the holders of the offices of WM and DM be changed every two years.  On Thursday 4th April 1968 Sir Knight Stanley Morrow was installed WM.

The first recorded purchase of a banner is on 29th July 1966 from Purse of Randalstown at a cost of £125 -16s – 0d.  Our next banner was unfurled on Saturday 19th August 1989, the ceremony being performed by Mrs. Irene Marshall, wife of the then Worshipful Master.  The banner was dedicated by Canon A. S. O’Connor, District Chaplain and first paraded in Killylea on Saturday 26th August 1989. Sir Knight W.S. Bennett, who is depicted on the banner was the father of the first Worshipful Master Sir Knight H.J. Bennett.