Operative Masons building the Great Queen Street entrance to Freemasonsí Hall in 1931. Asbestos was used in the construction, part of the reason for the increase in Grand Lodge dues.
Click on the links for some close-up views:
A Mason at Work...
Called from Labour to Refreshment...
Some are Called to Rule and Direct...
As a result of Grand Lodge in March agreeing a substantial increase in Grand Lodge dues next year, the Grand Secretary has received many letters of concern.
It is clear from many of the points raised
that the reasons given at the Quarterly Communication in March were not always fully understood. I would therefore like
to take this opportunity to reiterate the
key reasons and then explain the costs that Grand Lodge has to cover from its dues and, therefore, what our money is spent on.
One of the major reasons is the cost of maintaining Freemasonsí Hall, which was built by the Craft as a memorial to those who died in the Great War. It is not only
a monument to them but is the flagship of Freemasonry in England and Wales and our headquarters. It belongs to all our members and we have a duty both morally and legally (it is a Grade 2* listed building) to keep
it in good repair. Unfortunately it is now over seventy-five years old and becoming increasingly expensive to maintain.
Another reason is that for a number of years Grand Lodge dues have been subsidised by investment income. If investment income is removed from the accounts, Grand Lodge has been operating on a deficit between operating income and expenditure. Using investment income to bridge that gap has meant that we have not been able to build-up any significant contingency or sinking fund for major expenditure on the structure of Freemasonsí Hall.
Therefore, when faced with the substantial cost of paying for the removal of asbestos we had insufficient
funds set aside.