Paul Paterson Inspector General for Durham (r) a volunteer rider himself, presents a cheque for
£1000 from the District of Durham Rose Croix to Graham Moor of Northumbria Blood Bikes
(mouse over to zoom image)
Northumbria Blood Bikes (NBB) is a registered charity providing an entirely free out-of-hours voluntary courier service for hospitals across County Durham, Tyne and Wear and Northumberland. NBB has service level agreements in place covering all six NHS Acute Hospital across that area. They operate 7pm to 7am weekdays and all day at weekends and bank holidays transporting urgent and emergency items such as blood, plasma, platelets, samples requiring immediate analysis, and even patient notes when doctors require comprehensive background information on patients brought into A&E.
Established in late 2012 NBB now has six 'Blood Bikes’ and two 'Blood Cars' for when motorcycles are not appropriate transport. All their unpaid volunteers are advanced qualified as either motorcyclists or drivers and undergo additional training in blue light use and the safe handling of blood and blood products. They have 70 riders and 20 drivers taking their places on the rotas.Since going live in February 2014 they have now completed almost 2500 'jobs' for our local hospitals. Their largest expense, after the purchase of vehicles, is fuel with a bill now averaging over £2000 per month.
In January 2015 their involvement allowed GNAAS, the local air ambulance service, to begin a 'Blood on Board' (BoB) service where blood is carried on each helicopter for transfusions at scene where this is vital. Working together with their sister group in Cumbria 365 days a year NBB takes blood from the RVI in Newcastle to Cumbria and returns with the previous day’s used or unused blood box. This operation is then repeated with a run to and from the GNAAS airfield at Durham Tees Valley. Without this support for GNAAS the BoB operation would not be possible and, in addition, the unused blood would not be able to be safely returned for usage at the RVI in Newcastle. Up to the end of May 2015 the BoB blood enabled 11 critically injured accident victims to be transfused at the scene of their accident.
NBB relies heavily on donations from groups and individuals so are really appreciative of Durham Rose Croix for the donation of £1,000, which will be used to put fuel into the fleet for around 2 weeks, helping to save multiple lives in the process.
THE ORDER IN DURHAM
The Supreme Council 33º for England Wales and its Districts and Chapters Overseas, formed in 1845, is the governing body for the Ancient and Accepted Rite in England – popularly known as the Rose Croix. It consists of nine members and has been based at its headquarters at 10 Duke Street, St. James' London since 1911. It is responsible for all matters pertaining to the Order within its jurisdiction, including Ritual matters, Consecrations of Chapters, and conferring the higher degrees of the 30º - 33º during ceremonies which it carries out regularly at Convocations held at its headquarters.
In 1872 the Supreme Council decided to divide England and Wales into Districts under the direction of Inspectors General. Each District is ruled by an Inspector General who is invariably promoted to 33º. They are appointed initially for five years but may be eligible for reappointment for a further five-year term. They have certain powers delegated to them by Supreme Council, and they can be assisted by a District Recorder, but there is no District organization similar to that in the Craft, Royal Arch, Mark, Knights Templar, etc.
The District of Durham was formed in 1932, at which time there were three Chapters in the District, and VIllBro The Lord Ravensworth 33º was appointed as the first Inspector General. Since that time, the number of Chapters has increased to 20, which is considered to be quite large (the majority of Districts are much smaller). The aim is to enable Inspectors General to have a valuable and personal contact with the members of the Chapters they supervise, which could prove difficult if they were responsible for greater numbers. Presently these Chapters have around 600 members.
JOINING THE ORDER
The Order amplifies the teachings of Craft Masonry within a Christian context, for which reason candidates must profess the Trinitarian Christian Faith.
Candidates for the 'Rose Croix' must:
(a) have been initiated in a Lodge under the United Grand Lodge of England ,and
(b) have been a Master Mason for at least one full year and be in good standing within the Craft.
Nowhere in the 18º is the Candidate asked to swear an oath: all the Obligations are promises. One may presume that the word of a man of the type invited to join the degree once given, is ample bond.
Regalia for the 18th degree is both simple and spectacular and comprises a red collar embroidered in gold braid with symbols and emblems of the Degree of Perfection.
Being a progressive Order, it is the aspiration (but not a requirement) of most members to attain the Chair of Sovereign. His work, in the only degree worked in our Chapters, is not extensive because much of the ritual can be undertaken by Past Sovereigns. He is however, expected to carry out the short ceremony of Enthroning his successor. As very few Rose Croix Masons withdraw from progression, it normally takes about seven years to pass through the different Offices.