Lodge Kenmuir No 570 on the Roll of the Grand Lodge of Scotland

Lodge Kenmuir 570

Lodge Kenmuir No 570 on the Roll of the Grand Lodge of Scotland

Lodge Kenmuir No 570 on the Roll of the Grand Lodge of Scotland






            This era marked a period of mixed feelings for the Lodge with, on the one hand the Lodge looking forward to the Centenary celebrations, and on the other hand an ongoing battle with to support the Lodge financially. The Lodge was forced to look at new ways of raising funds—These included a Sale of Work and charging Brethren for the cost of their harmony! The Maintenance of the building was now becoming a serious matter and the Lodge even considered having an emergency meeting to discuss this problem alone, while on the Centenary front a Committee was set up in 1974 to organise the celebrations.
            It was also in this era that the Lodge changed the day of its Installation from the fourth Wednesday in November to the fourth Friday in November.
            This period concluded with a Rededication Meeting at which both Grand Lodge and Provincial Grand Lodge attended—This was followed by a Celebration Dinner at the Albany Hotel.


The 1970s opened with a Meeting on 14/1/1970 at which 10 Applications were read and a First Degree was conferred on 2 Candidates.

A sign of the times noted at the Meeting on 28/1/1970 when vandalism to windows was reported. Bro. W Clay received the thanks of the Lodge for carrying out reglazing. The Lodge decided to fit grills “When Lodge finances permit

At the Meeting on 25/3/1970 a Deputation was received from Lodge Thistle and Rose No 73 to confer a Third Degree headed by Bro. James Thornberry---The Brother of Bro. George.

It was reported that the insurance for the Masters Chain had more than doubled in cost from £3-7-0 to £6-19-0. Either a sign that the Chain had been under-insured or a sign of the inflation of the 1970s.

The Lodge decided to accept Grand Lodge recommendation NOT to hold an Annual Divine Service in 1970---Perhaps a dispute between Grand Lodge and The Church of Scotland.

A measure of Sporting success was reported at the Meeting on 27/5/1970 as Bro.Killough and Bro.Johnston reached the fourth round of the golf competition before being defeated.

At the Meeting on 16/6/1970 it was reported that the Provincial Grand Master, Bro. Fenwick had died. At the same Meeting the Byelaws were changed to allow 1/10 of Test Fees to be transferred to the Benevolent Fund.

The Lodge increased the rent payable to itself to £120 which was transferred from the General Fund to the Hall Fund.

The Lodge was still voting for “wet” or “dry” Harmonies and it was interesting to note that at the meeting on 9/9/1970 there was no Brother willing to second a “dry” vote!

The Lodge was obviously having to look at its finances as at the Meeting on 23/9/1970 it was reported that in future Brethren may have to pay for Harmony to defray expenses! Extreme measures indeed! A new Fundraising venture was held on 14/11/1970—A Sale of Work—Entry Fee 1/6. There is no record as to how much was raised by this venture.

At the Meeting on 14/10/1970 an invite was received from Lodge Thistle and Rose No 73 to confer the Mark—Lodge Kenmuir still confers this same Degree there some 30 years later (We must have created a good impression!). The cost of the retiring Masters Jewel and Apron had now increased to £50.

At the AGM on 11/11/1970 the Secretary reported that the Initates had increased by 5 but attendances had decreased by 2 per Meeting.

Bro. Norman Brown was elected as Master and duly Installed on 25/11/1970.

The wet/dry vote was taken at this Meeting with the “wets” being successful by 23-4------A fairly low turnout for an AGM.

Grand Lodge intimated that the minimum Test Fee was now £1 thereby making Life Membership £15.

At the Meeting on 23/12/1970 the Lodge awarded a gift of £6 to the Hallkeeper, Bro. Willam Banks Wilson  (My Grandfather) for the cleaning work carried out in the Hall—My Grandmother got this gift immediately! At this same Meeting a notable visitor was Bro. William Douglas McMillan Master of Lodge Sir William Wallace No 1504 who was to be a regular visitor to Lodge Kenmuir over the next 25 years. Dougie, as he was known, He was an “indubitably” unforgettable character.   

A Lodge of Instruction was held on 17/02/1971 which notable for the fact of it being the first Meeting after Decimalisation—The collection £1-75! The next Lodge of Instruction was held on 17/3/1971 at which Bro. G Sneddon PM Airdrie Operative Lodge No 203 gave a lecture on “The Masonic Apron”.

The Meeting on 14/4/1971 confirmed the Masonic bus run for 12th June to Dunoon.

Bro. E Murray PM organised a Christmas raffle and tickets would be available from 22/9/1971.

Inflation once again hit the cost of the retiring Masters Jewel and Apron, this time increasing it to £55!

The AGM was held on 10/11/1971 and the Secretary reported that although Initiates had decreased by 4 attendances were up by 1 per Meeting.

Bro. Robert McKellar was elected and duly Installed as Master on 24/11/1971. The Installation was tinged with sadness as death of Bro. John Coutts PM (1958)was announced.

A Lodge of Instruction was held on 15/15/1971 at which Bro. A Grant showed a film about the Masonic Home in Dunblane.

The Meeting on 22/12/1971 was notable as a Notice of Motion was put forward to change the Byelaws to alter the date of the Installation from the fourth Wednesday in November to the fourth Friday in November. Perhaps Bro. McKellars Installation had carried on too late and everyone missed work on Thursday! This was voted on at the Meeting on 26/1/1972 and the Notice of Motion was successful by 35-13.

Concern was expressed at the Meeting on 12/1/1972 about coal shortages although the Lodge was assured that stocks were still available—This was most likely to do with the forthcoming Miners strike. At this same Meeting an invite was received to attend Rothesay St John No 292 in February.

Provincial Grand Lodge carried out a Visitation on 23/2/1972. This Deputation was headed by Bro. Adam J Ferguson Provincial Grand Master who was awarded with Honorary Membership of 570. This date also marked the 90th birthday of Bro. C Cording Senior Past Master who was voted a grand ovation. It was also announced that photographs were available from the recent trip to Rothesay St John No 292-----One of which is currently on display in the Lodge.

Bro. W Killough was elected as Master and duly Installed on 29/11/1972 . At this same Installation 2 Gavin Sorbies—Senior and Junior---were installed as Office-Bearers. The elder—Gavin Sorbie Senior---into the Office of Chaplain and the younger—Gavin Sorbie Junior---into the Office of Senior Steward. The younger one is, of course, the older version today.!

The Lodge invited Rothesay St John No 292 back on Saturday 17th March to confer a Second Degree by Bro. John Buckeridge PM. Unfortunately the exact numbers of the deputation are not recorded but 3 cars were sent to the station to pick them up!

The Meeting on 11/4/1973 was notable for 2 events –Bro. John McLeod celebrated being a Member for 50 years and Bro. Alex Watson took over as Treasurer.

The first mention of a Centenary Celebration in the Minutes is recorded on 22/8/1973 when Lodge Livingston St Andrew No 573 invited Kenmuir to attend their celebrations! Perhaps this planted the seed for 570 to plan theirs!

An interesting letter was received from Provincial Grand Lodge on 10/10/1973 which advised the Lodge that Provincial Grand Lodge were considering giving up 100 West Regent Street.

The Lodge held a Mark Degree on 24/10/1973 conferred by Bro. G Thornberry PM with Bro. E Murray PM as Conductor. 17 Candidates were conferred.

Bro. John Eadie was elected Master on 14/11/1973 and duly Installed as Master on 23/11/1973 being the fourth Friday of the month. Bro. Brian Brown Provincial Grand Master witnessed the Installation, which was carried out by Bro. A Tasker Pm and Bro. A Watson PM.

The Lodge of Instruction continued to meet on the third Wednesday at this time. It was used mostly for practices and discussions rather than lectures

The Lodge appointed a Centenary Celebration Committee at the Meeting on 13/2/1974 and they met on 18/2/1974. I would have thought that a Committee should have been set up much earlier than this given the magnitude of work and expense involved. 18 months is not a long time to organise a Centenary Celebration.

At the Meeting on 27/2/1974 it was reported that the new heating system would be wired into the electricity supply in March. This may have been in response to the coal shortages of the Miners strike or the age of the heating system (which was now 65 years old). I can remember the old boiler room which is directly below the Committee Room and was accessed by the door which now leads to the gents toilet—The boiler still worked well until the late 1960s.

The Meeting on 28/8/1974 advised the Brethren that Centenary jewels and Lodge ties were available at £2 and £1 respectively. Brethren could also pay up the cost of their Centenary Celebrations meal ticket.

By this time the building was obviously showing signs of its age as no regular or planned maintenance had been carried out----Many Masonic buildings, and not just in Glasgow but nationally as well, were lost through this type of neglect. At the Meeting on 11/9/1974 the Lodge discussed the works required to remedy the problems. A motion was put forward by Bro. D Abernethy SD seconded by Bro. Hugh Tollan SB that an Emergency Meeting be held to discuss the problem. An amendment was put forward by Bro.T Wilson PM, seconded by Bro. W Guild PM that the Halls and Finance Committee deal with the matter. The amendment prevailed 33-11.

At the next Meeting it was reported that the upper hall would be unavailable for the Installation and the Auchinairn Community Hall was suggested as an alternative. The building repairs theme continued at the next Meeting when it was reported that the Lodge were trying to locate plans of the premises. They only had to look in the adjacent where the plans drawn by Bro. Miller in 1953 were kept!

However it appears that the Installation did take place and the upper hall was used as normal.

Bro. Ronald Walker was elected on 13/11/1974 and duly Installed on 22/11/1974 as the Centenary Master of 570. The Installation was carried out by Bro. Sam Sloan PM and Bro. Robert McKellar PM.

The next Meeting on 11/12/1974 contained a vote on whether to hold a Divine Service and the vote finished tied at 19-19. Bro. Ronald Walker Master used his casting vote to vote for the service.

 At this same Meeting a fund raising venture for the Centenary was announced---A jumble sale to be held on 25/1/1975.The Meeting on 26/2/1975 opened on a sad note with the death of Bro. C Cording Senior Past Master (1927) being recorded. At this same Meeting the Lodge accepted an invitation to carry out a First Degree at Lodge Rothesay St John No 292 on 8/3/1975 with the Degree being conferred by Bro. R McKellar PM.

The last Meeting before the summer recess was held on 11/6/1975 at which the Lodge passed the following recommendations in respect of the Centenary;

  1. £100 to be presented to Grand Lodge Benevolent Fund.
  2. £100 to be presented to the Provincial Grand Lodge Benevolent Fund
  3. £50 to be presented to the Royal Scottish Masonic Homes Fund.
  4. Pensioners tickets for the Centenary Dinner to be purchased from the Benevolent Fund.


All of these donations could be covered by the Benevolent Fund (which was probably just as well given the apparent state of the Lodge finances!)

By this point the Lodge had also ordered new Regalia and the intention was that this would be in place for the Centenary.

A Meeting was held on 27/8/1975 to dedicate the new Regalia of the Lodge. This was carried out by Bro. Rev. John Stewart Provincial Grand Chaplain. This same Meeting passed an account for Toye Kenning Spencer for the sum of £694-98 being the cost of the Regalia. In addition Bro. A Grant PM was thanked for his gift of a new Volume of Sacred Law and Mrs Grant was thanked for carrying out work to the altar cushion. Another “loss” to the Lodge was reported to the Lodge at this Meeting---Bro. Alex Watson PM was going abroad to work in the near future.

The Ceremony of Rededication was held on Saturday 30/8/1975 at 3.00PM. The Meeting was opened by Bro. R Walker Master who welcomed a Deputation of Reigning Masters headed by Bro.Gordon Lindsay Master of Lodge Thistle and Rose No 73. A Deputation was then received from Provincial Grand Lodge headed by Bro. Brian Brown Provincial Grand Master. Lastly a Deputation was admitted from the Grand Lodge of Scotland headed by Bro. Robert Woolridge Gordon of Esselmont Most Worshipful Grand Master Mason who took over the Chair of the Lodge.

The Rededication Ceremony was conducted by Bro. Rev. Eurson Past Senior Grand Chaplain at the conclusion of which the National Anthem was sung.

The Grand Lodge of Scotland retired followed by the Provincial Grand Lodge of Glasgow.

The collection of £28 taken at the Meeting was put to the General Fund.

The Centenary Celebrations concluded with a meal held at the Albany Hotel, which commenced at 5.30PM.  A feature of the meal was a Kenmuir glass, which every guest at the dinner received. Additional glasses could be purchased in the Lodge to make up a set.





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