MW Grand Master, ladies and brethren.
Firstly, may I, on behalf of my wife Pamela
and myself, thank you for your kind
invitation to be with you today and offer my
congratulations on your 225th anniversary –
you make your mother Grand Lodge
Secondly, may I thank you and your
brethren for the great honour you have
conferred on me. It is something I shall
always treasure and which I regard as a
tangible proof of the very cordial relations
which have always existed between our
two Grand Lodges.
It will also remind me of the advice, love
and support I receive from Pamela, who
shares with me a passion for the Craft as
well as some of the highs and all of the lows
associated with my role as Pro Grand Master
of English Freemasonry!
Your Grand Lodge had its origins in a
group of Lodges under the Antients Grand
Lodge of England and, I am reliably
informed, your ritual still contains many
elements of the working of that Grand
Lodge, possibly more than our current
workings in England do!
This evening is not an occasion to dwell
on our respective histories, but we have
recently discovered a fascinating link
between your City and our headquarters.
The present Freemasons’ Hall in London
was built as a memorial to our brethren who
died in the First World War. A problem for
the architects was that they had to erect a
very heavy building, covering over two
acres, on London clay which, even in the
1920s, was beginning to dry out.
The architects spent two months in New
York in 1926 studying how your architects
were able to build such magnificent
structures. As a result, Freemasons’ Hall
became the first building in England to be
raised on a massive steel frame. The New
York lessons learned by our architects
certainly paid off, as the building has hardly
moved in the ensuing 80 years, whilst many
of the neighbouring buildings have had
History is important, but we live in the
present and must plan for the future, which
in recent years in many Grand Lodges has
looked somewhat bleak. English-speaking
Freemasonry, whilst it is widely spread
over the globe, has common roots and also
We all went through a very large
expansion in the period after the Second
World War, an expansion it would have
been impossible to sustain indefinitely.
Since the 1970s we have all suffered from
a decrease in our members.
Lord Northampton receives the
Medal of Honor from Edward
Trosin, Grand Master of the
Grand Lodge of New York
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