The Inspector General and the District Recorder send all the Princes and their families their sincere wishes for a safe time during these unprecedented and ever changing times......... 


Week 7 and it seems we might get some relaxation information on Sunday. Journalists are already guessing at what form the Prime Minister’s exit strategy may take but, as usual, we should not give any credence to their “a highly-placed source says…” but wait for the actual statement. Several friends have contracted Covid-19 and recovered but one died yesterday of coronavirus complications. He was 94 and beginning to slow down but we still regard him as taken too early. If any of us contract Covid-19 let us pray for the strength to get through it. Anecdotally, fighting this virus is very exhausting so we must try to avoid catching it in the first place until we have a cure or vaccine. I look forward to hearing the experts’ views on easing the lockdown.  I shall also be pleased to hear some concrete facts about immunity – as far as I know no-one has yet stated firmly whether those who recover become immune and, if they do, for how long. Perhaps we shall just have to hang on for a vaccine. Some newspapers have referred to the BCG vaccine we got at school in the early 60s as a cure but someone probably ought to tell them the difference between bacteria and viruses – and, by the way, why isn’t the plural viri? Don’t write in, I do know!


I hope you and yours are coping with our continued incarceration. I am trying to keep the days different so as to avoid getting in a rut. That way I feel that returning to a fuller life won’t be so much of a shock.


I still distrust the politicians with their statistics and even the medical experts seem to be following a pessimistic line. We must try to stay cheerful – it won’t last for ever. Do keep phoning friends, family and colleagues, especially if you are also on your own – it helps you to talk and avoid vegetating, and helps them to know someone cares. Most of us think we don’t need support but I had a very nice ecard from my mother-chapter Recorder which I was surprised to find I really appreciated. Sally already uses and it is very easy (and inexpensive) way of sending greetings to people.


I hope you enjoy these quizzes. My sudoku skills are improving nicely but researching questions on the interweb is also enjoyable. Last week’s answers are:


  1. Captain Tom is now Honorary Colonel of The Army Foundation College, Harrogate

  2. If the general public wear face masks it will reduce the amount of any coronavirus which they may issue which could infect other people (i.e. it doesn’t protect the actual wearer).

  3. Front-line staff wear PPE to prevent any airborne coronavirus particles getting to them.

  4. London, Birmingham, Manchester, Harrogate, Bristol & Sunderland already “open” with others planned.  Reportedly, London’ Nightingale hospital is being mothballed for now.

  5. The precise phrase “lies, damned lies and statistics” is usually attributed to Benjamin Disraeli (Earl of Beaconsfield) who died in 1881. The phrase appears nowhere in his writings but has been quoted many times by others. The earliest use of that exact phrase in writing is by Mrs Andrew Crosse in 1892 but “fibs, lies and statistics”, “lies, outrageous lies and experts” and similar phrases can be traced back earlier to various individuals. The correct answer to this quiz question is probably “no-one knows”.


This week’s teasers:

  1. Where does the phrase “Bob’s your uncle” come from,why was it said and who was the nephew?

  2. What are the names of the only 3 angels who are specifically named in the bible?

  3. Who fought the Midianites and what were his weapons?

  4. Who was the first Inspector General for the combined district of Berks, Bucks and Oxon?

  5. What do masonic historians find most interesting in Samuel Pritchard’s 1730 book?

  6. Who first used the phrase three score years and ten? [though it wasn’t in English at the time!]


If you need help, do ask – especially with any medical problems not covid related.  GPs may be distancing but help is still available and if you are under doctor’s orders for something else keep in touch with your medical team - they are all still publicising their availability.


God Bless and Stay Safe

Peter Harborne 33°

Inspector General


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