Members and guests of Bredenstone Lodge No 8093, meeting at St Margaret’s-At-Cliffe, turned out in force on the 28th June 2016 to celebrate the lodge’s 50th anniversary.
The lodge celebrated this momentous occasion by holding a ‘white table’ meeting, led by its Master Bill Harrison, which involved quickly dealing with the lodge business before admitting the non-masonic guests. Everyone was then treated to a brief history of the lodge by Past Master Lew Finnis.
The lodge was consecrated on the 22nd June 1966, by the then Head of Kent Freemasons, Provincial Grand Master The Lord Cornwallis, after which his Deputy, Sydney Day, installed Arnold Stanway as the first Master of the Lodge. There were 19 Founder Members.
The name Bredenstone is connected to the remains of a 1st century Roman lighthouse on the drop redoubt at Dover, similar to the eastern Pharos which can still be seen in Dover Castle. Throughout most of the 17th and 18th centuries, new Lord Wardens were installed at the Bredenstone on the Western Heights overlooking Dover Harbour.
1966 was era of the ‘swinging sixties’ when groups like the Beatles and the Rolling Stones were high in the charts. Henry Cooper floored Mohammed Ali and it was also the year England won the World Cup. The average house price was £3,500, long hair and mini-skirts were the rage and petrol was five shillings a gallon, (equivalent to 25p in new money). The first Annual Subscription was 5 Guineas (£5 5s or £5.25), which would be just under £90 at today’s prices.
Bredenstone Lodge is fortunate in having a healthy number of members, 52, (most of whom luckily are healthy), a solid core of Past Masters who do their best to make sure the Lodge runs smoothly, some excellent junior Officers, and candidates to take the lodge on to 2066.
After the meeting, the members, wives, partners and guests enjoyed a lovely evening with a very enjoyable festive board.
Report and photos: Phil Heath