Craft News Home

300 years of Freemasonry celebrated at Royal Albert Hall global event

Over 4,000 Masons from 136 Grand Lodges around the world embraced Freemasonry’s rich heritage and relevance at the culmination of the United Grand Lodge of England’s Tercentenary year on 31st October 2017 at the Royal Albert Hall

  • Performances by the renowned Sir Derek Jacobi, Samantha Bond and Sanjeev Bhaskar showcased Freemasonry’s unique history
  • Monumental 55ft gold Square and Compasses frame a musical performance by the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra
  • Official Tercentenary celebration presided over by HRH The Duke of Kent, Grand Master.
  • 2017 marks the founding of the world’s first Grand Lodge in London 1717.

October 31 2017: Freemasons from around the world gathered in the Royal Albert Hall to celebrate their Tercentenary. It marked 300 years from 1717, when four lodges had met at the Goose and Gridiron Tavern in St Paul’s Churchyard to form the first Grand Lodge.
Presided over by the Grand Master, HRH The Duke of Kent, over 4,000 Masons from 136 Grand Lodges enjoyed a theatrical extravaganza produced and directed by leading impresarios Matthew Mitchell and Richard Clifford.

The cast was headed by acclaimed actors Sir Derek Jacobi, Samantha Bond and Sanjeev Bhaskar against the backdrop of a specially created colossal 55ft gold Square and Compasses – the universally recognised symbol of Freemasonry. The Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra, along with soprano Fleur de Bray provided the musical accompaniment.

With a combination of entertainment and education, the stunning production featured a dramatic light show incorporating the ‘All Seeing Eye’. The celebration showcased the unique heritage of Freemasonry, highlighting its role and relevance across the ages and in society today.

The Tercentenary event was also streamed live to audiences around the world, including UGLE’s headquarters at Freemasons’ Hall in Covent Garden, London. There are around six million Freemasons worldwide, with over 200,000 in the UK under UGLE.

Speaking of the celebration, Brigadier Willie Shackell, Grand Secretary of the United Grand Lodge of England, said: “The event was a true showcase of what Freemasonry is all about, our unique history and strong traditions and values – integrity, kindness, honesty, fairness and tolerance. I feel that Freemasonry’s role and relevance in society today could not be stronger and we now look forward to our journey through the next 300 years”.

South Wales Grand Master Gareth Jones OBE said: “2017 has been a year of celebration for us all. For the first time since the Second World War, Freemasons processed proudly in their regalia through the streets of Cardiff to show how much we want to be seen to be part of our communities, helping others, especially those in need. I was very proud to lead a delegation of over 50 South Wales members to attend the Royal Albert Hall to join brethren from around the world and to celebrate the wonderful contribution that Freemasonry has made and will continue to make for many years to come.”

There will be a full report and further pictures of the event in the next edition of Y Dalaith. Brethren may be able to find videos of the event on YouTube, and further official footage will be released soon.

September 2017 Lottery Draw

The winning numbers for the September 2017 Festival Lottery (for tickets bought in September 2017), drawn at Swansea Masonic Hall, on Tuesday 31st October 2017 are:

09 11 17 24


Blue Plaque to Commemorate History of Freemasonry within Cardiff

A Blue Plaque has been unveiled on Cardiff Masonic Hall in Guildford Crescent to commemorate 263 years of Freemasonry within Cardiff.

Brian Langley (pictured left) is the Chairman of Cardiff Masonic Hall and was invited to join the Provincial Grand Master Gareth Jones OBE (pictured right) in the task of unveiling the Blue Plaque.

The plaque now sits secured proudly above the front doors of Cardiff Masonic Hall for all to see. It has been proudly shown to all those who have recently visited the Hall as part of the CADW Open Doors Heritage Initiative during September. (more…)

Masonic Charitable Foundation, South Wales results are in!

Once again, we would like to say a big thank you to everyone who took part in the MCF Community Awards by voting and encouraging their friends and families to vote.

The Eight charities nominated in South Wales received a fantastic amount of support from their local communities and we are pleased to announce the following results:

Congratulations to the  National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children Wales  who received the most votes in South Wales and have secured a grant of £25,000!

Touch Trust has been awarded a grant of £15,000

Alzheimers Society South Wales has been awarded a grant of £15,000

Age Connects Cardiff and the Vale has been awarded a grant of £6,000

Thrive Cardiff has been awarded a grant of £6,000

Prostate Cymru has been awarded a grant of £4,000

South East Wales Downs Syndrome Support Group has been awarded a grant of £4,000

The Princes Trust has been awarded a grant of £4,000

How did charities in other areas do?
The full list of MCF Community Awards Results can be found here.

About the MCF Community Awards – tercentenary Fund

To celebrate the 300th anniversary of the United Grand Lodge of England, Freemasons nominated 300 local charities to receive a share of three million pounds.
Depending on the number of votes received, each charity will receive a grant between £4,000 and £25,000.

South Wales Freemasons donate £55,000 to MS Cymru

People living with multiple sclerosis given specialist support thanks to grant from South Wales Freemasons.

A project which will support around 1,300 people living with and affected by multiple sclerosis (MS) in Wales has received a huge boost with a grant of £55,000 from South Wales Freemasons.

The My MS; My Rights, My Choices project, financed by the Big Lottery Fund, is starting this month and will champion the lives of people living with MS in Wales.

The grant from the Freemasons will fund a crucial part of the project, a series of self-management and advice workshops and courses for people with MS, which also have specific sessions for families and carers. These are aimed at providing awareness of rights and choices around health and social care, welfare benefits and employment support. (more…)

South Wales Freemasons urge the public to vote for local charities to share £3 million

An online public vote is being held to decide which local charities within South Wales will receive up to £25,000 each, as part of Freemasonry’s 300th anniversary celebrations.

Freemasons have nominated 8 good causes to receive South Wales’s share of a special £3 million Community Awards Tercentenary Fund. (more…)