History of the Lodge

Lodge Saint Andrew Glasgow 465

1867 – 2015

A number of brethren residing in the Townhead/Springburn area met at regular intervals and finally decided to petition the Grand Lodge of Scotland for a charter to constitute a new Masonic Lodge. Consequently, the petition, correctly drawn up and signed, presented to Grand Lodge Committee on 28th December, 1866, on behalf of the petitioners, by Bro. James Wallace, P.M. of Lodge Robert Burns, No 440. At the following convocation of Grand Lodge, held on 4th February, 1867, the petition was approved and the Charter granted from that date. Below is an extract from our 125 history book by Bro Robert Stevenson, P.M.

Foundation and Tradition of the Lodge

There are now three areas of Glasgow, which for entirely different reasons, figure very largely in the history of lodge Saint Andrew, Glasgow, 465. A study of the maps (frontispiece) will indicate that the meeting places of the Lodge during its 148 year existence, have, with now two exceptions, been all situated to the east of the main south to north thoroughfare comprised by High Street, Castle Street and Springburn Road. The two exceptions being firstly Kennedy Street which is situated to the west of the thoroughfare, where the stay of the Lodge in the early years was of very short duration. To our present meeting place of Eastmuir Masonic Hall in Shettleston situated in the east end side of Glasgow.

While these premises were all largely in the east side of Glasgow, the membership of the Lodge, at least during the first hundred years, came mostly from the north side, from Townhead and to an even greater extent from Springburn.

At the start of the 19th century, these two northern areas were still largely rural, with only a few scattered houses around Balgrayhill and Springburn Cross. Gradually, however, industry was beginning to play an important part in Glasgow as a whole, and Townhead and Springburn in particularly. The population of Glasgow in 1801 was 77,000 and by 1861 it had increased to 448,000, a growth rate which was reflected by comparable figures, proportionately, for Townhead and Springburn.

Charles Tennant had started his St. Rollox Chemical Works in Castle Street early in the 19th century. Frederick Braby opened his works in Gerngad (now Royston) Road in 1839. The North British Railway (laterL.N.E.R.) started the Cowlairs Works in 1842, the Caledonian Railway (later L.M.S.) opened the St Rollox Works in 1856, and in 1861 Walter Montgomerie Neilson moved his engine works from Hydepark Sreet in Finnieston to Springburn, settin up Hydepark Locomotive Company, in its prime the largest builders of steam locomotives in Europe, if not in the world.

In addition to above, Walter McFarlane had his foundry in Hawthorn Street and Alan Ure his foundry in Keppochill Road.

In all several thousand men and women were employed in these works, most of whom stayed in the vicinity of their employment.

Just as the population and prosperity of Townhead and Springburn rose and fell, so in similar fashion did the membership and success of Lodge Saint Andrew, Glasgow, 465. A census of the professions and trades of the members of the Lodge from 1867 to 1964, when industry was, for most of the time, at its peak, reveals that 90% of the members were employed in the engineering and allied trades. With the demise of all this industry by 1964, the main source of initiates disappeared and the new members came from much further afield and from completely different professions and trades. The attendances at Lodge meetings also began to fall after 1964, partly because of the industrial decline, but also because of the demolition of the surrounding houses, brought about by the building of the new motorway and the new Glasgow Royal.

However back in 1866, industry was flourishing, and other events were helping to change the face of Glasgow. The new Loch Katrine Water Works was inaugurated by Queen Victoria in 1859, and this was instrumental in keeping the death roll low in Glasgow when a cholera epidemic swept the country in 1866. That year also saw the start of a weekly sailing from Glasgow to New York by the Anchor Line Shipping Company. William Booth started his “Christian Mission “, forerunner of The Salvation Army in London in 1865, followed shortly afterwards in Glasgow. Because of disease and ill-health prevailing, the Government introduced “The City of Glasgow Improvement Act” in 1866, which resulted in a lot of buildings in the High Street, including Glasgow University, being demolished, but the foundation stone for the new University at Gilmorehill was laid in 1868by the then Prince of Wales, later King Edward VII, a member of the Masonic Order. It was in this era and in this environment that the idea of petitioning for a Masonic Lodge in the Townhead/Springburn area, first began to take shape. During this period, several Glasgow Masonic Lodges had come into being, and by 1866 there were 22 Craft Lodges in the City. Among such Lodges were “Thistle and Rose, No. 73”, “Bridgeton and Glasgow Shamrock and Thistle No 275” and “Caledonian Railway No 354”. A number of brethren, belonging to these and other Lodges which met in the centre of Glasgow, found attendance found attendance at these Lodge meetings difficult and time consuming because of the distance involved, traveling from and to Springburn. In 1866 there were transport services to the city by the then prevailing horse-drawn trams, but most journeys were done by cab or on foot. A number of brethren, belonging to the lodges previously mentioned, and residing in the Townhead/Springburn area met at regular intervals and finally decided to petition the Grand Lodge of Scotland for a charter to constitute a new Masonic Lodge. Consequently, the petition, correctly drawn up and signed, presented to Grand Lodge Committee on 28th December, 1866, on behalf of the petitioners, by Bro. James Wallace, P.M. of Lodge Robert Burns, No 440. At the following convocation of Grand Lodge, held on 4th February, 1867, the petition was approved and the Charter granted from that date. It was obvious that the members of the Lodges

Already mentioned having played such an important part in promoting the new Lodges, should form the nucleus of the first office-bearers, and this proved to be the case. There were 12 founder members, some being elected as Office-Bearers, thus:

  • William Douglas (Lodge Thistle and Rose, No. 73) Roll No 1 Right Worshipful Master
  • Francis Halliday (Lodge Bridgeton and Glasgow Shamrock and Thistle No 275) Roll No 3 Worshipful Senior Warden
  • Robert Bogle (Lodge Caledonian Railway No 354) Roll No 4 Worshipful Junior Warden
  • David Bell (Lodge Caledonian Railway No 354) Roll No 5 Treasurer
  • George McCallum (Lodge Bridgeton and Glasgow Shamrock and Thistle No 275) Roll No 6 Secretary

Together with – David Younger, Roll No 2; John Guild, Roll No 7; John Scrogie, Roll No 8; William Turner, Roll No 9; George Murray, Roll No 10; George Alexander, Roll No 11; and James Wallace P.M., Roll No 12.

The name adopted for the new Lodge was “Lodge Saint Andrew, Glasgow, No. 465”.There is unfortunately, no record to say why this particular name was chosen. It may have been influenced by the jewel of the Grand Master Mason which bears the figure of Saint Andrew, or it may have been decided upon because although there were many Lodges at that particular time under the Scottish constitution bearing the name Saint Andrew, this would be the first in the Glasgow province with that name. Whatever the reason, the name “Saint Andrew, Glasgow No 465”, and the colours of green and gold were adopted.

Initiation fees were set at£1.6.6d. (£1.32 1/2p) and contribution to Grand Lodge at 8/- (40p), fees which by present-day standards may sound ridiculous, but when it is realised that a skilled tradesman’s wage for a 54-hour working week was under £2.00, then a more realistic value can be appreciated. The first premises to be used as Lodge rooms, were at 184 Castle aeStreet, in rooms leased from Bro. John Rae, of Lodge “Glasgow Star No 219”, who was the owner of “John Rae’s Wine Tavern” at that address. Bro. John Rae, affiliated to “Lodge Saint Andrew, Glasgow, No. 465” on the 4th July, 1867, his Roll No being 39, and proved a good friend to the Lodge. The Lodge remained there for 5 years, and began to flourish. It is interesting to note that the symbol of the Square and Compasses remained on the wall of the room in the tavern where the Lodge had met right up till the late 1960s when the tavern, in common with many other buildings in the area was demolished to make way for the Townhead Interchange Road system.

IN 1872 the Lodge rented premises at 63 Kennedy Street, but the stay there was very short lived, and by 1873, the Lodge had moved to other premises at 69 Garngad ( now Royston) Road where the Lodge remained until 1883. By the beginning of 1884, a new hall, paid for by the Lodge members, was built at 121 Alexander Parade. This hall was extended in 1907, with a new entrance at 129 Alexander Parade. This was to be the Lodge room until 1971, when road development caused its closure. However, new premises were found at 235 Alexander Parade. Which was the Lodge rooms from 1971 until 1998. At that present time the Lodge rooms consisted of an upper hall and a mid hall, (with appropriate facilities), both of which are used for masonic meetings. The mid hall is also the meeting place of the social club, until such time as the basement premises were to be converted into proper accommodation for the social club. This was never completed and the premises were sold in 1998. The next five years was very turbulent for the Lodge, it went through some very difficult times and moved about, until it was given the opportunity to move to Shettleston, to use the Lodge rooms of Lodge, Eastmuir, No. 1126. This move has proved to be a very profitable one, as the lodge is once again growing with the Lodge having candidates every year with four candidates in 2014, up until now in 2015 we have 3 candidates so far one of which is the I.P.Ms. Son who is 18.

he Lodge is once again thriving. Over the Years Lodge Saint Andrew, Glasgow, No. 465 has visited Lodges in Inverness, Edinburgh, Argyll and the Boarders, as well as Lodges within the Glasgow Province, and Surrounding Provinces, which to this date is still the case with far visits to Lossiemouth and Banff over the last 2years, these have proved to be very successful with the Brethren, thus ever-widening and strengthening the bonds of friendship between Lodges.

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