Lodge News

Ton up at Clevedon

This year Clevedon Masonic Hall celebrates 100 years since opening its doors to Freemasonry in 1924, on Wednesday 10th April 2024, Coleridge Lodge hosted delegates from the 7 Craft Lodges, 3 Royal Arch Chapters, 2 Mark Lodges, a Lodge of Royal Ark Mariners, and a Rose Croix Chapter, that meet at Clevedon. Complemented by the Provincial Grand Master and his brand new team, having only been invested the previous week.

They met to Dedicate this building to the next 100 years of Freemasonry in Clevedon. The dedication team consisted of the Craft Provincial Grand Master Ray Guthrie, the Mark Provincial Grand Master Phillip Voisey and the Inspector General of the Ancient and Accepted Rite Clive Lambert.

The meeting was followed by a Banquet at the nearby Princes Hall, where nearly 100 Brothers dined in fine company. 

The Public Hall was built in 1867 by Sir Arthur Hallam Elton (1818-1853), 7th Baronet of Clevedon Court, on land that he owned. At the time there was a great need in the town for a Hall where various groups could meet. The venue became extremely popular, was soon oversubscribed and even after only 10 years in 1877 there were calls for the building to be extended. The Local Board of Health also started to meet at The Public Hall but their regular monthly meetings together with various committee meetings soon overwhelmed the other groups. It was therefore decided to extend one of the wings of the building for the express purpose of accommodating the Local Board with a room on the 1st Floor for full Board Meetings with the Ground Floor used for the various committees. At this time Sir Arthur Hallam Elton had died and was succeeded by his son, Sir Edmund Elton (1846-1920), 8th Baronet, who was Chairman of Clevedon Urban District Council which had succeeded the Local Board and they moved from the Public Hall into their own premises leaving the wing that was extended for them empty.

Following the death of Sir Edmund Elton in 1920 the new Baronet, Sir Ambrose Elton (1869-1951) 9°Baronet, found the estate in financial difficulties and to resolve this he decided to sell some properties owned by the Clevedon Court Estate, one of which was the Public Hall. The building was purchased, with a large mortgage, by a Mr Thomas of Abergavenny and Mr Veale of Knowle in Bristol. To resolve the mortgage problem they agreed in 1923 to sell the wing, plus a plot of land across the rear of the wing to W Bro Thomas Nichols and W Bro Sidney Keen who purchased it for £700.00. with the express purpose of converting it into Clevedon Masonic Hall.

Article by WBro Craig Harding – PrGStwd

Images courtesy of Les Pickersgill

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