It’s been no secret, so this is no scoop, but the United Grand Lodge of England’s Board of General Purposes announced its choice to serve as Prestonian Lecturer for 2017: Bro. Jim Daniel! “The Grand Design” is the title of his lecture.
I was among the fortunate to hear him speak in April 2012 at the Bernard H. Dupee Memorial Lecture in Pennsylvania, and we’ll have to inquire into getting him back stateside.
His bio, according to Quatuor Coronati:
Jim was appointed DGS of UGLE in 1998 and served as GS from 1998-2001, when he retired to his native Cornwall. He was Grand Secretary General of the Supreme Council 33° (1989-98). He is an honorary member of the North American Conference of Grand Secretaries; a Past Grand Secretary of the Grand Lodge of Canada in the Province of Ontario; Past Senior Grand Warden of the Grande Loge Nationale Française; and a member of the Texas Lodge of Research. Jim was awarded a Ph.D. by the University of Sheffield for his thesis “The 4th Earl of Carnarvon (1831-90) and Freemasonry in the British Empire,” and his collection of papers Masonic Networks and Connections was published in Australia by the ANZMRC and in England by the Library and Museum of Freemasonry. He became the interim Secretary of QC in 2009; his Masonic offices include Substitute Grand Master of the Royal Order of Scotland, and Chief Steward of his mother lodge, Apollo University Lodge No. 357, Oxford.
Magpie file photoRW Thomas Jackson and RW James Daniel, 2012.
He served as Worshipful Master of Quatuor Coronati 2076 in 2003-04.
The Prestonian Lecture is an English Masonic tradition that dates to 1822. It is named for William Preston, the author and printer and ritualist whose book Illustrations of Masonry provides the basis of the ritual used in most of the English-speaking Masonic world to this day. He died in 1822 and bequeathed the sum of £300 to the United Grand Lodge of England for the purpose of endowing a lecture of Masonic education that would be presented to the brethren every year. This endured to the 1860s, when it fell into abeyance, but the tradition was revived in 1924 and—except for the years of World War II—has continued to the present day, with the UGLE’s Board of General Purposes selecting a Prestonian Lecturer annually.