Photos: 2011 Peppercorn Ceremony

April 27, 2011

The Peppercorn Ceremony which took place this morning [Apr.27] in St. George’s began in 1816 and is now one of Bermuda’s oldest and most colourful traditions.

Marked by pomp, circumstance and pageantry, the King’s Square ceremony requires the Governor to accept the annual peppercorn rent paid by Freemasons for use of the State House.

The State House was built in 1620 and is Bermuda’s oldest stone building. The landmark was used for the General Assembly of Bermuda until 1816, when the capital moved to Hamilton.

The Government of the day then rented the building for one peppercorn a year to Bermuda’s Masonic Lodge 200 of Scotland, an agreement which continues to this day.

Numerous MP’s attended, and various dignitaries arrived with great ceremony including US Consul Grace Shelton, Police Commissioner Michael DeSilva, Mayor of St. George’s Kenny Bascome, Acting Premier Michael Scott and Governor Sir Richard Gozney. As tradition dictates, the Governor travelled in a Bermuda style horse-drawn carriage.

As the dignitaries arrived, they were introduced to the large crowd of locals and visitors who had gathered for the event in the bellowing tones of the St. George’s Town Crier.

With a Bermuda Regiment guard of honour on hand as well as the Regiment band and members of the Bermuda Police Service, the symbolic peppercorn was presented to the Governor on a velvet cushion laid out on a silver platter. The annual 45-minute Peppercorn Cermemony always takes place in early to late-April.

Photos by Only the Best, click to enlarge:

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Category: All, News, Parades, Photos

Comments (29)

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  1. Terry says:

    Is this an April Fools joke Bernews…….This is the first I have read anywhere that it was today………Then again, I only get the Workers Voice in my cell….

    • Terry says:

      I see a man holding his chest………is he wounded…….(no further comment)….

  2. Let_Us_Pray says:

    I’m glad to see so many school children were present as this is a part of our islands history and most of the youth have no idea that this tradition even exists..

  3. Just wondering says:

    Glad it was nice weather today for it, I’m sure the children liked it as well as our visitors…. its the first time in four years i’ve missed this

  4. The peoples choice says:

    who cares about this crap ?!?!?! this is why the island is boring, and a location for old rich people..

    Compared to other Caribbean islands, they have carnivals that bring in thousands of people from other countries. We have the Bermuda Day Parade and Cup Match. The parade is boring !!! and people always complain about there dress..

    BERMUDA NEEDS TO MOVE FORWARD IN LIFE AND TH WORLD..ALL THIS OLD ENGLISH CRAP IS WHACK !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Confused says:

      Real crap comment. You should’nt be so quick to forget your history. I agree bermuda is very boring and there are a million and one things the country could do to make it more lively and entertaining, but one should never for get our history.

    • Away says:

      Be quiet

    • sandgrownan says:

      Go buy an atlas – Bermuda is not in the Caribbean.

    • Terry says:

      Well….honey bunny…were not part of the “Caribbean”….

      As for “old rich people”……..your gonna eat those words sooner than later.

      They will all be dead and as of the end of this year the fan will be unplugged and who you gonna call….HUH!!!!! who you gonna call.

      Granny Windsor is always on your side. Momma Paula………………..

      Over your head?

    • Appointer says:

      You should be called “the peoples complainer”. You have been making some negative, whiny comments on this site today, so…I now appoint you the Minister of Complaining and you shall run the Ministry of Complaining. Your salary will be some french cries and a waaaamburger. We’re trying to cut costs here, k?

    • Patrick says:

      Obviously never been to Jamaica.

      You’re so out of touch,it’s frightening.

      • Truth says:

        ..or almost any other island for that matter. Practically ALL of our cousins to the south have parades like this one.

  5. Epic Fail says:

    It’s an interesting bit of our history as an island – I am however a bit sad that the photos included lots of pictures of the Regiment and the other dignitaries yet there were only 2 poorly taken photos of the Freemasons. It is their payment to the Governor that makes this event happen yet they seem to be the considered the least important after everyone else has their “moment”.

    Not to get into an argument with the previous commenter, but really is Bermuda the kind of place that a Caribbean-style carnival would really work? Heck, even college weeks were a bit extreme for their time!

    Old English crap or not, it’s an important bit of history. IF we had visitors to the island and St. Georges could actually host cruise ships, the place would have been mobbed.

    • bernews says:

      Our apologies for the two photos, its a matter of angle – they were across the square and that was the best we could manage from our position as we only have one camera person.

      We have videos coming up later today, but they are all from that same angle, so it won’t be much better. We have removed both photos from the gallery in light of the complaint about quality, and next year anyone is welcome to send in their own photos and we will post them, help is always appreciated.

      • Epic Fail says:

        No need to remove them – fully appreciate the covereage since I couldn’t attend and thanks for the videos too.

        You guys do a good job. Just media outlets of recent years have downplayed the Masonic involvement. Many take the day off to attend as do others. Too bad for the bad angle for the shots.

    • Just wondering says:

      Do you think the Freemasons requested it that way? cause as i recall most years there are very few picture of them.

      On the note about carnival, remember what happened when we hosted the tall ships? had drunk sailors passed out on front street, so i can just imagine carnival.

      • Albert Pike says:

        Freemasons run this country and have been laying low for years. Only recently have their photos been appearing in full color in the local papers, particulatly in the Saturday editions, showing who they are. If there are poor photos of them, or a small quantity, it is by design as is most everything operating behind the scenes. The Illuminati. Do your research. Also, look up one of their founders, Albert Pike. Just wiki him. Then hit for more information. FYI, this ceremony, like many others, is a Masonic Ritual.

        • Albert Pike says:

          Notice how the high resolution images of the Freemason’s isn’t available. That, or I am blind.

        • Epic Fail says:

          A peppercorn is considered a small legal payment (probably the least payment) – it is not Masonic in nature. It is the equivalent of selling a car to a relative for $1 – rather than give it away, a legal sum has been given in consideration for services or property.

          • Watching! says:

            You have no idea on the fundamentals of the Freemasons! Albert Pike had his own ideas but he Does NOT represent the true Mason. Besides, the only thing secret is the handshakes and passwords otherwise everything else is in plain site…you just need to be a Brother to understand and recognise them.

            • Bryan says:

              What ever! You are probably a Blue Lodge mason which means you
              are within the 1st three degrees and the most deceived and misinformed of all the masons. When you check out the interest and involvements of the fellas in the 30- 33rd degrees, the Red lodge, and the Senior Ladies of the Eastern Star etc.. that,s the ones who know the truth and they ain’t talking. Deception is their bread and butter. ” The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was to convince people that he didn’t exist”.

          • anpok says:

            Hey Epic,

            can you please illustrate the significant of pepper in it his ceremony. before this ceremony i had never heard about such spices ceremony in grand way. moreover, could you please tell me why this is cerebrated in this way is there any link between the St George’s Masonic and pepper?


  6. W.T.F.??? says:

    because of lack of buses for people the town had few tourists

    • st. geo resident says:



  7. Terry says:

    Jingus…I forgot….Sayne Jorgazz….dets det ampty place wiff dee hoetals horn dee heel ann a gulf korze…..Texi caust 45 dullarz frum Hemhillton….doze pink tings caust 5 dullaz……….summbuddy stole dee pink things….?

    Um gunna breehing my yat hin….detz rite…lett dee kroo go mayad ann sal mighy veed………

    BREAKING NEWS********* Mr. Adderly said today that he has found a Hairplane 200 miles west of Bermuda with his new radar and will be trying to screw the pilot into a two day stay at Holiday Inns in St. Jorge………. ..oh crap….just a bunch of Uighars on their way to Mid-Ocean…..dammn………

    • Let_Us_Pray says:

      LMAO!!! I don’t always find you funny Terry but this one just nearly made me fall out of my seat.. Even read it out loud with the accent.. DEAD FUNNY!!! (for those who can understand you at least!!!)

  8. Terry says:

    Val yoo baddah prey det beel zool dunt gatt mighy kunttract………dezzrite……

    Ann eye steek buy mighy cummantz beekawz det buy wiff dee hahn horn his chazt his nuffin butt dee horrijhinal “Graazy Knoll” falla…(kinda odd falla) det dee Pleece latt gahoe…….han his gahorn hinto hydin……detz rite……..Sow mutch four my cuntstaytooosional ritez……..
    Vat dee hal ver vee tawkin bowt…..owe yah….Pappakorns…….looks like next budget yah gonna have to give two…..hinflatsheon yah no………

    I need a rum and my needle……damn arryting kawst sow mhautch deeze deyz………