History 1925 – 1944
The first regular meeting was held at the Assembly Rooms New Romney on Thursday 19th November 1925. There were present 35 members and 15 guests. On the agenda was the initiation of Mr. B. E. Prior who is a member at the present time ( 1975 ). At this meeting the bye-laws were read. One interesting point was bye-law No 5 “ The Initiation fee shall be 8 gns. Rising to 10 gns. When the lodge had 50 members.
It was obvious at this time that the lodge was working very hard to build up its membership. This was shown in the January meeting 1926 when the work for the evening consisted of a double first, second and third. The secretary finished the minutes of this meeting with, The evening becoming well advanced the lodge was closed in harmony.
On Wednesday 3rd March 1926 the first Romney Marsh lodge of instruction was held. The subscription was 5/- (shillings) ( 25 pence ) and the preceptor was WBro. Keeler.
The Masonic Charity Association was formed in May 1926.
The founders are again mentioned in June 1927 with first the death of WBro P. R. Boddy P.M. 2849 P.P.G. Stw Bucks. ( WBro. Eric Boddy’s Father ) and secondly a presentation of a clock to WBro. Sharp P.M 125 for his help in founding the lodge.
At the installation banquet of November 1928 £16.10.0d was collected for the relief of the sufferers of the Rye Lifeboat disaster.
The first Lewis to be initiated into the lodge was Norman A Balcombe on the 21st March 1929 still a member at the present time ( 1975 ) .
During 1929 a plot of land was offered to the Lodge at Littlestone for the building of a Masonic Hall. Due to the question of finance the offer was refused.
At the 1929 installation meeting the W.M, S.W. and J.W. who had been three of the brethren who could not be founders, presented the lodge banner to the lodge.
It was designed and made by Miss Eve Locke of 19 East street Rye.
On Wednesday 26th February 1930 was the first record of a Ladies Night being held at the Avenue Golf and Social Club from 7pm to Midnight. The cost was Ladies 4/- Gentleman 6/-
March 1931 saw the secretary preparing for the future when he gave a short history of the first 50 meetings.
In May 1931 the local paper reported the passing of WBro R. C. Uden and in their words states that he was given a true Masonic send off.
The lodge was honored in June 1931 with a visit from the Rt. Hon Lord Cornwallis C.B.E Deputy Grand Master of England Provincial Grand Master of Kent. A note taken at the time states “ The brethren who were present carried away the happy memory of the R.W. Prov Grand Master sitting after the lodge meeting with them eating sausage rolls and biscuits and cheese, to all appearances thoroughly enjoying the experience “. Perhaps the R.W. Prov Grand Master joined the Romney Marsh Masonic Club founded in 1931. Annual subscription 1/-.
A Church Service was held in St. Nicholas Church, New Romney for the members and their wives on 11th June, 1933 Prince Edwin’s lodge also assisted in the arrangements.
The sum of 2 gns. Was donated to Bro. Devas Bousfields ( Chaplain ) list of contributions in aid of the sufferers of a disastrous fire at Brookland at the December meeting 1933.
Two points are worthy of note from the minutes of 1934. At the April meeting the secretary asked for the names of any brother who wished at attend the Provincial Grand Lodge in London, stating that Southern Railway were running a train for the event at 7/6d return. Secondly a GP meeting was held at the New Inn New Romney followed by an Audit Supper.
A warning was issued to the brethren in September 1935 to look out for an impostor in the area
The first lodge of emergency was held in October 1936.
On the 18th February 1937 a motion was passed that the R.W Prov Grand Master and his deputy become honorary members of the lodge. The R W Prov Grand Master Lord Cornwallis returned the compliment by visiting the lodge at the 1938 installation meeting when W Bro Marchant was installed.
Due to the outbreak of the war no meetings were held between 18th May 1939 and the 9th December 1939. At that time a discussion on the future policy of the Romney Marsh lodge took place. The lodge room at the Assembly rooms had now been taken over for A.R.P work. It was decided that the lodge should still meet once a month and after lodge business had been dispersed with, the lodge of instruction would work a degree. The meeting place would be decided by the GP committee and WBro Marchant would be Worshipful Master for another year.
At the meeting of February 1941 a ballot was taken for an initiate which proved in his favour but could not be present due to injuries caused by enemy action.
The Lodge carried on throughout the war as best they could with only 9 members present at one particular meeting