W Bro David Varney SLGR explains how he has got involved

Having retired from the Metropolitan Police in 2019, my new career as an artist was coming on nicely and I had begun to see regular sales of my artwork.

But when Covid struck and with time on hands, I looked at how I could help others. Locally, we set up a ‘WhatsApp’ Group for our neighbourhood to ensure the elderly and vulnerable were looked after, and to co-ordinate our efforts in doing shopping, going on general errands and checking their wellbeing. Some of the group expanded their efforts into volunteering for the local Borough’s Covid-19 Mutual Aid Group, where I helped with collecting and delivering furniture for vulnerable families in the Borough, and assisting with food bank deliveries.

We got involved with local charitable causes such as having a bake-off to raise funds for a children’s hospice called ‘Haven House’, part of a wider event which raised an astounding £21,000! I donated some artwork to Haven House and another to a local care home, who had looked after my father-in-law prior to him passing away in 2019.


When the Masonic Charitable Foundation announced its Covid-19 appeal, I immediately set up a fundraising page, and promoted their efforts. When the call came for the MCF and UGLE initiative to distribute protective visors within the community, I jumped at the chance to help.


I took great pride in contacting care homes and hospices in and around London to offer them PPE on behalf of local Freemasons, and it was extremely humbling to deliver them across my local Borough. I delivered some 1,800 visors, but it was especially rewarding to again assist Haven House by delivering visors there. I feel extremely privileged that as a London Freemason, I could help in some small way across my neighbourhood and my Borough and will look back on this time with pride.

This article is part of the Arena Magazine, Issue 42 October 2020 edition.
Arena Magazine is the official magazine of the London Freemasons - Metropolitan Grand Lodge and Metropolitan Grand Chapter of London.

Read more articles in the Arena Issue 42.