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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Library & Museum

Annual Report of the Library & Museum Charitable Trust

As at 31 January 2004 the consolidated net assets of the Library and Museum Charitable Trust were £707,373 (2003: £709,027) which included £349,043 (2003: £470,153) received as Gift Aid from United Grand Lodge to support the ongoing activity and expenses of the Library and Museum.
    Whilst the activities of the Library and Museum are funded largely by United Grand Lodge, other income is raised from fees charged for genealogical research, donations and booking fees for Saturday tours.
    The Friends of the Library and Museum (web site), established in 2001, enables individuals (whether Freemasons or not), Lodges and Chapters to support the Library and Museum by way of an annual subscription.
    The year to 31 January 2004 represented the first full year of trading by Letchworth’s (Freemasons’ Hall, London) Limited (“Letchworths”) which was acquired by the Library and Museum in 2002. Letchworths has made a substantial Gift Aid contribution to the Library £133,260 (2003: nil). The investment is valued at cost.
    In July 2002 the Library and Museum was awarded a grant of £65,700 by the Heritage Lottery Fund to catalogue and conserve 1,700 letters and 14,700 returns covering the history of Freemasonry from 1750-1820.
    The project was completed in February 2004 when catalogues were made available on the free Access to Archives (A2A) searchable website ( as part of the National Archives Network. The National Archives provided partnership funding to support the grant.
    The Council would like to thank the Supreme Grand Chapter, the London Grand Rank Association and the Friends of the Library and Museum for their continuing support.

The 2003 summer exhibition ‘Art of the Apocalypse – Trench Art Objects from the Armada to Bosnia’ was held at Freemasons’ Hall, London from 30 June to 20 September.
    The exhibition was inspired by the research of Dr Nicholas Saunders (Lecturer at University College London) whose innovative work has put the subject of Trench Art 1914-39 in an anthropological context.
    The exhibition combined Masonic and non-Masonic artefacts and attracted a wide range of interest from press, public and Freemasons. It received favourable reviews in The Times and the Independent.
    The book Craft and Conflict written by the Curator, Mark J R Dennis, and Nicholas Saunders in association with the Trench Art exhibition, was published by Savannah Publications.
    The changing series of exhibitions in the Library and Museum itself included one on Ladies Nights. From September to December 2003 an exhibition, Love and Hate, featuring a large number of documents conserved and catalogued with the help of the Heritage Lottery Fund grant mentioned above was mounted. This exhibition formed part of Archives Awareness Month held in September.
    The exhibition, the Library and Museum and the ceremonial rooms of Freemasons’ Hall were opened on Saturday 19 September as part of this event and also for London Open House. More than 2,500 visitors were received that day. Plans were well advanced for the exhibition of engraver John Pine.

Special openings or tours were held for a number of groups including the Friends of the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Silver Study Group, the National Art Collections Fund and the National Association of Decorative and Fine Art Societies.
    The Library and Museum took part in two national museum events: Museums and Galleries Month in May 2003, organising ‘Aprons for Everyone’ which concentrated on the crafts involved in the manufacture of regalia with demonstrations and items to handle, and the Campaign for Drawing’s The Big Draw in October 2003 when ‘Art and Craft’ gave visitors the opportunity to sketch the collections under the guidance of Jo Weir, a local artist.

Library and Museum staff undertook a number of outside engagements. Mark Dennis, the Curator, arranged and took part in a session at the Museums Association 2003 conference to introduce curators to the importance and diversity of fraternal material. A temporary exhibition co-curated by Fay Newman, the Assistant Curator, and opened by the Lady Mayor of Brighton and Hove, accompanied this conference session.
    The Librarian, Rebecca Coombes, jointly presented a paper at the Public History Conference at Ruskin College, Oxford in April with Professor Andrew Prescott, called Fraternal Communications: the Membership Records of Freemasonry.
    She also gave a talk entitled Fraternal Communications: Masonic Newspapers and Periodicals in The Library and Museum of Freemasonry, to the London Archive Users Forum in November 2003.
    The Director, Diane Clements, presented a paper on Sir Michael Costa to the 5th International Canonbury Conference in November 2003, as well as giving a number of talks to Lodges and a presentation to the Public Schools Lodges Council.

In September 2003 the Library and Museum launched its own website, which includes free on-line access to the electronic catalogue of the library, museum and archive collections.

The Council would like to express its thanks to the Director and staff of the Library and Museum for their commitment to the objectives of the Library and Museum and their hard work and enthusiasm in working towards their realisation.

Visit the Library and Museum website at