St John the Evangelist's Church in Toft was built between 1852 and 1855 and designed by William Gilbee Habershon. It was paid for by Mrs Leycester of Toft Hall in memory of her husband. Its chancel was intended for the use of the family, rather than for a choir.
Toft Chapter 897
Toft Chapter is the Past Sovereigns’ Chapter for the District of East Cheshire.
It was originally consecrated as a Higher Degrees Chapter for the old District of Cheshire on 27th October 1981 with 40 Founding Members.
The Chapter met in Knutsford at Leicester Warren Hall which is located in Bexton the civil parish next to the village of Toft after which the Chapter is named.
Toft is a village and civil parish in the ceremonial county of Cheshire. It is located immediately to the south of Knutsford and is split by the A50 road to more southern Holmes Chapel. The village comprises several farms and a small picturesque church.
Toft shares a parish council with the neighbouring parishes of Plumley and Bexton. At the 2011 Census the population of the civil parish remained less than 100.
In 2022 the Chapter amended its by-laws to become a Past Sovereign’s chapter with membership open to any Sovereign of the Order, especially past Sovereigns of Chapters in the District of East Cheshire.
At the same time the Chapter relocated its warrant from Knutsford to the new Masonic Hall in Altrincham but becoming peripatetic with the aim of meeting anywhere in the District.
To facilitate this the Chapter commissioned its own travelling altar and furniture to be built for the September 2023 meeting. This enables the Chapter to meet in venues at which there is no resident Chapter from which to borrow equipment and furniture.
The Chapter meets on the first Wednesday in May and September (Enthronement). The May meeting includes interesting content or guest speakers.
The Chapter also hosts the District Annual General Meeting at an emergency meeting held by dispensation on the Saturday before Palm Sunday each year. This meeting is held at the home “hall” or town of the Chapter’s Sovereign.
The Chapter provides the opportunity for members to continue the friendships forged during their year as a Most Wise Sovereign in a relaxed and convivial atmosphere.
It is also an important conduit for the sharing of information and discussion of issues that affect the District with the Inspector General, District Recorder and senior members of the District.
In 2021 the tradition of appointing the District Recorder as Recorder of the Chapter and the Leader of the District Demonstration Team as either Director of Ceremonies or Assistant Director of Ceremonies began thus cementing the link between the Chapter and the District and firmly establishing the Chapter’s importance within the District.
Membership is open to all Enthroned Sovereigns. Members are encouraged to invite members of the 18° who are especially welcome to attend as guests.