Freemasonry dates from before 1646 when the founder of Oxford’s Ashmolean museum and supporter of King Charles 1st namely Elias Ashmole, declared that he was made a freemason on 16th October 1646.

Freemasonry accepts anyone who believes in a supreme being what ever his faith. It is not a religion neither is it political. In fact, discussions of a political or religious nature are strictly forbidden in the Lodge.

The main tenets of Freemasonry are Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth.

It is a system of morality veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols.

Freemasonry is about making friends and supporting one another without detriment to ones self or connections.

Freemasonry is practiced world wide.  There is also a United Grand Lodge of Scotland and a United Grand Lodge of Ireland. The British Grand Lodges are senior to all others. Foreign constitutions, if legitimate, are recognized by British Grand Lodges.

A Mason must enquire of the Secretary of his Grand Lodge as to whether any Lodge he may wish to visit overseas is regular, or recognised by the Grand Lodge.

Freemasons Hall in Great Queen Street, London (WC2B 5AZ) is open to the public. It is well worth a visit, as it is a listed Art Deco building.

Telephone for opening times: 020 7831 9811

In the museum can be seen the Masonic Apron of Sir Winston Churchill who was a Master Mason with Studholme Lodge Number 1591.