About Us

Where we meet

St Wilfrid Lodge is one of 200 Masonic Lodges in the Province of Yorkshire West Riding, within the United Grand Lodge of England.

Province of Yorkshire West Riding website

We meet at Castle Grove Masonic Hall, in Headingley, Leeds. This superb Masonic centre comprises Masonic Temples, rehearsal and committee rooms, a large dining hall and a comfortable bar.

Our meetings

We meet every Thursday, except during August and over the Christmas period, for practice evenings. Every second Thursday of the month we have a more formal meeting when we take part in a variety of activities. Our meetings start at 6.30pm and usually finish around 10pm. Every evening concludes with time for getting to know the other members in a relaxed atmosphere with drinks and food available.

Our Social Life

An important facet of St Wilfrid Lodge is its vibrant, active and varied social life where we welcome partners, family and friends. Every year we hold a Ladies’ Night Dinner Dance, Christmas Festivities and Burn’s Night Celebrations. In addition we have also held Murder Mystery Dinners, an Antiques Roadshow, Country Walks & Pub Lunches, Curry Nights, Bowls and Golf Tournaments.

Our history

The end of the war in 1945 saw a great increase in masonic activity, as members returned to their Lodges and waiting lists for admission started to appear.

Castle Grove Masonic Hall was released from Government requisition, however only the Temple and one other room could be used.

St. Michael's Lodge No 4353 was extremely active at this time and there was a strong feeling that they should form a daughter Lodge.   They had 81 members and a two-year waiting list.  Practice nights had an attendance of 40 members and the length of time it took to become Master was growing longer and longer.

After much discussion, on the 23 September 1946 it was decided "to petition for a new Lodge, to be named St Wilfrid, be approved, and the Master and Wardens sign it".  This was carried unanimously.  The petition was then sent to Grand Lodge and approved on the 6th November, with John Edward Gimblett to be first Master.   Herbert Prentice the first Senior Warden and Raymond Curry the first Junior Warden.

It was felt by the Founders that they should follow the example of St Michael's and choose the name of a local Saint for the new Lodge.

St Wilfrid  was born in Yorkshire, ordained in Ripon and studied for some years in Rome.  He was responsible for the building of many churches in the country, including the Abbeys of Hexham and Ripon, as well as beautifying the Cathedral Church of York, where he followed St Chad.  What is not generally appreciated is that there arose a serious disagreement between the Celtic clergy of the North and the South regarding the ritual used in Churches.  This came to a head at the Synod of Whitby in AD 664 where St Wilfrid, with his experience in Rome, laid down the format for religous worship in the Churches of today.

The new Lodge was finally consecrated on the 10th March 1947 at Castle Grove Masonic Hall exactly 25 years after St Michael's was itself formed from Headingley Lodge.

Our members

Currently, we have over 30 members including 2 Grand Officers and 15 Provincial Grand Officers.  We are one of the most diverse Lodges in Leeds. We are lawyers and accountants, property developers and builders, financial advisers and administrators, manufacturers and surveyors, doctors, teachers and IT specialists, as well as other occupations. Our age range extends from the early thirties to the late eighties, some having been members for 40 or more years.

Friendship

Like all Masons we believe that an important part of being a Mason is to visit other Lodges, to witness their ceremonies, often quite different from ours, and to welcome Masons from other Lodges, which includes those in the UK and abroad which are recognised by The United Grand Lodge of England.

Masons wishing to visit St Wilfrid Lodge should contact the Lodge Secretary who will make all the necessary arrangements. We would be delighted to welcome you!

st_wilfrid_iconSt Wilfrid

Wilfrid (634-709) is one of the greatest and also one of the most controversial English Saints. He directly influenced the move away from Celtic to the more orderly Roman church practices and is best known for championing and winning the case for the Roman, as opposed to the Celtic method of calculating the date of Easter at the famous Synod of Whitby in 664.

He became Bishop of York with a See covering the whole of Northumbria, built magnificent stone churches at Ripon and Hexham. He acquired vast landholdings and established monasteries in Northumbria, Mercia, Sussex and the Isle of Wight and converted Sussex, the last vestige of paganism, to Christianity.

Other St Wilfrid Lodges
Our 'Wilfrid' has been used to name many other lodges in the UK and worldwide - and we welcome contact with them all. In attempting to make fraternal contact we are gathering a list of Lodges which have 'St Wilfrid' (or a close variant) in their name.

We are not offering any prize but we will offer a toast to the health of every 'St Wilfrid' we can find. Please email the secretary with your suggestions.

  • St. Wilfrid Lodge 4453 (1922) Oundle, Northamptonshire
  • St Wilfrid Chapter No. 5413 Bognor Regis.
  • St. Wilfrid Lodge 5439 (1933) North Shields, Northumberland
  • St. Wilfrid Lodge 6395 (1946) Leeds, Yorkshire
  • St. Wilfrid's Lodge 7836 (1962) Widnes, Lancashire
  • St. Wilfrid's Lodge 8350 (1970) Harborough, Leicestershire

Charity

From its earliest days, Freemasonry has been concerned with the care of orphans, the sick and the aged. This work continues today.

Masonic charity is exercised at every level: individual Lodges make gifts and give aid to their own communities and every Province also gives large sums of money to regional causes. Nationally, our efforts are channelled through  the Masonic Charitable Foundation.

The Masonic Charitable Foundation

It is not onerous duty however, indeed we are reminded to not give of our money or time at the expense of our families, and it is up to each member how much he wishes to contribute.

To ensure best practice control of donations from the brethren and Lodges and subsequent distribution to other Charities, the funds are handled by the West Riding Masonic Charities Ltd.

How to Join St Wilfrid Lodge

There are many ways of finding out about Freemasonry but perhaps the best way of all is to contact us and we would be pleased to talk to you. We can tell you about our values and philosophy, our commitment to Charity and to the welfare of not only Masons but others in society. Membership is not given automatically and it may not suit everyone. St Wilfrid Lodge will gladly extend a warm welcome to any man over 21 who enquires of us what Masonry embraces and the impact it could have on him.