ISSUE 15, October 2005
Historic: Nelson and Freemasonry
Grand Lodge: Pro Grand Master's Speech
Grand Lodge: Quarterly Communication
Hurricane Katrina: Grand Charity Relief Chest
Royal Arch: John Knight
Masonic Embroidery: A stitch in time...
Travel: Walzing along the Danube
Specialist Lodges: Martial arts
Library & Museum: The two Freemasons' Halls
    Anniversary: Jersey's Liberation
Anniversary: Dorset's 225 years
Obituaries: Lord Swansea OSM
Pro Grand Master: Whither directing our course?
Charmian Hussey: A Mason's wife on Masonry
International: The Grand Lodge of Israel
Education: Sheffield's big plans
Education: Forthcoming events
Education: The Second Degree
Masonic Charities
Letters, Book Reviews, Gardening

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The Duke of York (centre), later George VI, after his affiliation in a Scottish Lodge



I can add a few more background details to two paragraphs of John Hamill’s excellent article on George VI (MQ, Issue No. 15) dealing with the affiliation to a Scottish Lodge and the Grand Master Mason of Scotland by the then Duke of York.
     Perhaps one of the main reasons for the choice of Lodge Glamis (now known by its older name as The Lodge of Glammis) No. 99 was that his fatherin- law, Claude (George) Bowes-Lyon, 14th Earl of Strathmore and Kinghorne, was a member and Past Master.
     The proposed affiliation was announced at the Quarterly Communication of the Provincial Grand Lodge of Forfarshire held in Dundee on 29 April 1936, as reported in the following day’s edition of the Dundee Courier and Advertiser.
     The affiliation took place on 2 June 1936 in the presence of several senior officers of the Grand Lodge of Scotland and of the Provincial Grand Lodge, as evidenced by a photograph of a group of 18 brethren.
     The then Grand Master Mason, Sir Iain Colquhoun of Luss and Colquhoun, 7th Baronet, nominated The Duke of York as the next Grand Master Mason at the Quarterly Communication of Grand Lodge held on 6 August 1936, and it was he who installed the Duke on 30 November 1936.
     Following his accession to the throne a mere eleven days after his Installation, it was not until 8 March 1937 that the King wrote a letter of resignation from Buckingham Palace, addressed to Sir Iain Colquhoun at his London address, so in theory he remained Grand Master Mason of Scotland for 88 days after becoming George VI.
     I am greatly indebted to Brother C. Martin McGibbon, Grand Secretary of the Grand Lodge of Scotland, for providing dates and details in a letter written on 16 November 1994, and to Brother Iain D. McIntosh, lately Provincial Grand Secretary of Forfarshire, for providing a copy of the photograph, identifying all the brethren in the picture and for copies of the relevant press announcements of both events.
     Bro McIntosh also provided the information of the Especial Grand Lodge Meeting held at the Royal Albert Hall the following June from the Dundee Courier & Advertiser of 1 July 1937. The newspaper had the headline ‘First King at Masonic Meeting’ with the enthusiastic, but perhaps somewhat exaggerated, ’9,000 Greet George’.
     Bruce B. Hogg, Middlesbrough

HRH’s equerry

The meeting at which the Duke of York (later George VI) became an affiliated member was held at the Usher Hall, Edinburgh because the normal Lodge room used by Glamis Lodge was too small for such an event.
     My father was a Grand Officer in the Edinburgh Defensive Band Lodge No. 151 and was present at this special occasion, when he was chosen to act as a steward for the ceremony. His specific duty was to escort the Duke, who was accompanied by his equerry, to the robing room. My father challenged the equerry to ascertain if he was a Mason or not, to which he replied “No, sir”.
     My father escorted him to the front door and pointed to a café over the road and suggested that he have a cup of tea and come back in an hour and a half!
     Clifford E Ranson, Cheadle Heath, Cheshire

Visit to Kitchener Lodge

The Kitchener Lodge No. 2998 EC, about which one of its Past Masters, W. Bro. Alex Taylor, wrote in your July 2005 Issue, does indeed continue to flourish.
     It was founded in November 1903 in Simla, and my great-uncle, the first Earl Kitchener, who was then Commander-in- Chief of the Indian Army, was a founder.
     The Lodge had a difficult time when Masonic relations between England and India were strained, but last October I was invited to its centenary celebrations in Delhi, where it now meets.
     I was most hospitably entertained by the Lodge and by the District, and also by the Indian Army Signals, with whom I served briefly in Delhi just after the War. There are now no European members, but the Lodge values its historic connection with a Mason who was a famous soldier and statesman of another race.
     Kitchener, Chichester, Sussex

Beamish request

I am sure you will have heard that Durham Province, for its Millennium Project, is rebuilding within Beamish Museum an 1867 Masonic Hall. The project is progressing well and we intend to have the official opening in Spring 2006. We have collected many Masonic objects and artefacts from within our Province and throughout the country.
     However, amongst the things we now desperately need is a pair of large Lodge Room Columns to stand inside the Lodge as a main feature. The taller and more ornate the better, as the room is 27 feet high.
     Quality is obviously important, but any pair would be considered. Collection would not be a problem as our colleagues at Beamish are well practiced in the art of dismantling and removal. Further information on the project can be seen on our website at
     Alan Hall, Provincial Grand Secretary for Durham

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