Meet The Men at The Top, 2ndProvGPrin, John Stribling

Our Second Provincial Grand Principal, John Stribling was born at Hillingdon Hospital, Hillingdon, he was adopted at birth by two wonderful parents Denis and Florence Stribling. John spent his formative years living in Hayes, Middlesex with his parents and adopted elder brother David, with many glorious memories. School life started at Pinkwell Infant School, Hayes, Middlesex, continuing at Pinkwell Primary School and then Harlington School, Middlesex.  John was an avid reader from an early age and took part in school amateur dramatics, but his passion was playing football, however he was not good enough for the school team, as a very poor second in John’s opinion at the time, he was made captain of the School chess team!

A young John Stribling (where did it all go wrong)

Apprenticeship: Having left school at fifteen, his subsequent career development started as an indentured engineering apprentice with Cramic Engineering, located in Southall, Middlesex (then part of the Eveready Group of companies), working on routing systems and machine tools for the manufacture of aircraft, along with studying on day release at Southall Technical College.

Family: It was towards the end of his apprenticeship that he meets his wife to be Wendy at a local dance, marrying in 1972 and subsequently raising three children Angela, Richard and Deborah, now with a further five grandchildren. Sadly, Wendy passed away in July 2013 after suffering over a number of years with Alzheimer’s disease.   John now lives in Langley, Berkshire with his partner Yuki.

Career: After serving his apprenticeship, John supervised the installation of aircraft manufacturing machinery within the UK and abroad, he was subsequently employed by a number of large engineering companies, working on building services, hydraulics and electrical systems at industrial sites, office complexes and Airports. In 1986 John was invited to join a mechanical and electrical services company as contracts manager for building services, airport ground services, passenger loading bridges and industrial hydraulics, in 1987 appointed group managing director.

In 1990 John joined an engineering consultancy practice based in Addlestone, Surrey. From 1996 until his retirement in 2011 changed direction once again forming a company supplying technical building services to the Television Industry.

Freemasonry:  After enjoying several masonic ladies’ nights and taking an interest in Freemasonry, John joined Freemasonry in 1989 being initiated into Nestor Lodge No 8184, there were more than fifty Freemasons at the meeting, with many friends and colleges present who John had not realise were Freemasons! The initiation ceremony was well worked and much appreciated by the candidate.

From initiation John’s Freemasonry has mainly taken place within the Masonic Province of Buckinghamshire. Progress to the East within Nestor Lodge was relatively quick, within seven years in 1996 he was Master of the Lodge, at the time of writing John has to date served as Worshipful Master on ten occasions in various Craft Lodges, which he has joined or founded!

In the meantime, in 1996 he was Exalted into Neleus Chapter No. 3062, becoming First Principal of the Chapter in 2004. To date John is a member of four Royal Arch Chapters and a member of many Masonic Orders in Freemasonry. In the Royal Arch in 2006 John was appointed Provincial Standard Bearer, in 2007 promoted to Assistant Grand Scribe E until 2010, when promoted to Provincial Grand Scribe E, serving in Office until 2015.  Promoted in 2015 to Third Provincial Grand Principal and in 2017 promoted to Second Provincial Grand Principal.  In the Royal Arch, John was appointed as a Grand Officer PGStB in Supreme Grand Chapter in 2012.

Beaconsfield Masonic Centre, from 1996 John has been a member of the fund-raising team, raising more than £600,000 to buy a 99-year lease on the property in 2004, to extend, repairing, maintaining and bring the property up to date. As Beaconsfield Masonic Centre building chairman John has been responsible for the property from 1996 to date. Appointed in the year 2000 as a Director of the Centre responsible for the property and health and safety.

Hobbies: Arm Chair Rugby Player, Vegetable Gardener and the preservation of a Victorian School, (the Beaconsfield Masonic Centre) which has taken much time and effort over many years to extend and make functional as a Masonic and Community Centre, now the biggest Masonic Centre and I like to think the best in the Province of Buckinghamshire with over fifty Masonic Units meeting there.

Five things you did not know about John Stribling:

Whilst a pupil at primary school won a national schools painting competition, the painting at the time was part of a display at the National Gallery.

As a school boy, built a plywood canoe at school and then with a friend used the canoe to navigated the Thames from source to estuary.

Walked the length of Buckinghamshire from Olney to Slough, 65 miles in one day to raise funds for Buckinghamshire’s Masonic Grand Charity Festival 1999.

Enjoys cooking and experimenting with recipes.

A keen vegetable gardener.

John Vegetating