ISSUE 11, October 2004
Elias Ashmole: Masonic Icon
Travel: The magical beauty of Scotland
Honoured: By the Glovers' livery company
The Theatre: Strong links between Craft and stage
Quarterly Communication: Address of the Pro Grand Master and, Report of the Board of General Purposes
Mauritius: Fascinating Masonic history
Rochester Cathedral: Kent Masons' magnificent fresco
Clerkenwell: 25 years of Masonry
  Bravery award: One Mason's heroism is honoured
Christmas shopping: What to buy in London's West End
High flight: Helping terminally ill children
Jewels of the Craft: An essential part of Masonry
Library & Museum: John Pine exhibition and Library & Museum Trust report
Masonic education: Events for Masons; Quatuor Coronati Lodge; Mentors for new Masons
Charities: Masons provide emergency aid for flood victims; Charity news; Demelza gives voice
Letters, Book reviews, Gardening

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Green Room Lodge was formed by, and was originally for the sole benefit of, members of the Green Room Club – a gentleman’s club for members of the dramatic, literary, artistic and liberal professions. The Lodge was consecrated on 1 May 1903 and its members over the years have included Sir Donald Wolfit, the comic actor Ronald Shiner, and Anthony Huntly-Gordon, who was for 21 years company and stagemanager to the Agatha Christie thriller The Mousetrap at the Ambassador’s Theatre. The Lodge summons depicts quite clearly its roots in theatre and the arts.
    Savage Club Lodge No. 2190 was another Lodge formed principally for members associated professionally with literature, art, drama, music and science, and included many members of the theatrical profession.
    The Lodge was instigated by the Prince of Wales (later Edward VII), who as a guest of honour at a Savage Club dinner enquired if the club had a Lodge attached to it. On finding out that there was not, he suggested that one should be formed, and the Lodge was consecrated on 18 January 1887.
    There have been many distinguished members in this Lodge, which include Sir Henry Irving, one of its founders, William S. Penley, and Edward Terry, Sir Augustus Harris and, more recently Arnold Ridley, actor and playwright, who is probably best known for his portrayal of Godfrey in the television series Dad’s Army.
    Sir Henry Irving was born John Henry Brodribb in 1838 and was the first of his profession to be knighted for services to the stage. He was a leading actor of his day. In 1878 he became manager of the Lyceum Theatre where he produced over 40 plays. As a Freemason he was initiated into Jerusalem Lodge No. 197 on 27 April 1877, was a founder of Savage Club Lodge No. 2190 and was also a member of St. Martin’s Lodge No, 2455.
    Sir Augustus Harris, an impresario, was initiated into Lodge St. Clair No. 349, Edinburgh in 1875. He was a founder of Drury Lane Lodge No. 2127 (which meets at the Drury lane Theatre), London and St. Martin’s Lodge No. 2455, London and was appointed Grand Treasurer in 1890.
    Theatrical links have continued into the 20th century. Sir Donald Wolfit, who was known for his portrayals of King Lear and Tamburlaine, was initiated on 26 January 1937 into Newton Lodge No. 1661, which meets in Newarkupon- Trent.
    He joined London Nottinghamshire Lodge No. 5133, London in 1953 and joined Green Room Lodge No. 2957 in 1955, becoming Master in 1965. He was also a Grand Officer, being Past Grand Deacon in 1967. He died in 1968 in the Royal Masonic Hospital.
    Peter Sellers and Bob Monkhouse (both Chelsea Lodge No. 3098) will be names familiar to many as will current member, Jim Davidson. There are probably many more in this long tradition of links with the theatre “waiting in the wings”!

Jewel of the Lodge of Asaph No. 1319

Jewel of Drury Lane Lodge No. 2127