Athole Chapter No. 1004

Lodge History

In The Beginning
(from the Centenary Booklet)

At the Douglas Hotel, North Quay, Douglas on the 23rd May 1870 at 4 o’clock in the afternoon, history was made in the Isle of Man, when the first Royal Arch Chapter ever to be established on the Island was opened and Consecrated by the three P.Z.’s from Harmony Chapter No. 220, West Lancs., in the presence of Five Founders and Five Visitors.

The Chapter was opened by E.Comp. W.T.May as Z., E.Comp. J.Hamer (who consecrated the Athole Lodge under the English Constitution six years earlier) as H., and E.Comp. C.Leedham as J. The Consicration being mainly conducted by E.Comp. J.Hamer.

The three Chapter Principals were E.Comp. G.M.Lofthouse Installed as M.E.Z. by E.Comp. J.Hamer, E.Comp. H.P.Mayle, Installed as H., by E.Comp May and E.Comp. R Tutton, Installed as J., by E.Comp. C.Leedham .

The election and investiture of the other officers was held over to a later meeting. It might be noted here that even to this day, all the Officers of a Royal Arch Chapter can be elected by ballot by the Companions, but nowadays, a regulation permits a resolution to be passed at the election Convocation which allows the Three Principals elect to appoint the Officers of the Chapter, with the exception of the Treasurer and when receiving a fee the Janitor. This resolution must be made on each occasion and would not be passed as a bylaw, as our Chapter found out when we tried to make such a by-law a few years ago.

The five Founders of the Chapter, viz.: Companions George M. Lofthouse, Henry Priest Mayle, Richard Tutton, Samuel Webb and William Harris all members of the Athole Lodge who had previously been Exalted in Harmony Chapter No. 220, of which the Consecrating Officers were members.

The five Visitors were Companions J.J.Harwood the then Worshipful Master of the Tynwald Lodge No.1042, T.Gray, B. Flynn, R. Jackson and C. Munro all resident in the Island, the last three were proposed as joining members. Nine Candidates, 8 of the Athole Lodge and 1 of St Maughold Lodge, were proposed for Exaltation.

The Consecrating Officers were elected Honorary Members along with Companion Edward Kayle of the Harmony Chapter No. 220 for their work in connection with the formation of the Chapter. It is worth noting that the election of an Honorary Member of the Chapter has, in the last 100 years at least, been very rarely conferred in the Athole Chapter, with the exception of the Consecrating Officers, has not amounted to more than five or six. In fact concerning Honorary Members, there was a by-law, part of which read, “His Membership shall cease on a vote of the Chapter to that effect, duly confirmed at the following regular Convocation.

This unusual by-law was removed by the order of the First Grand Principal when the whole of our by-laws were remodelled some years ago.

At the first Regular Convocation of the Chapter, all the proposals for joining and Exaltation were found Clear, the Exaltees were Companions J.A.Brown and his father James Brown, G.C.Heron, Thomas Hanley, J.H.McKeand , James McWhannell, George Lorimer, Charles Hamlyn, John Lanaghan, J.R.Patch, C.T.Hanby, J.J.Thornley, J.C.Lamothe, James Aspell and W.A.Coutts. Some had been proposed by letter, all were well known figures in the Island in those days. Six Exaltations were held and all three Lectures delivered.

The rest of the Officers were also elected.

The first Officers of the Chapter were:-
G.M.Loftouse           M.E.Z.
H.P.Mayle                      H.
R.Tutton                         J.
S.Webb      Principal Sojr.
W.Harris                     S.E.
J.C.Lamothe              S.N.
C.Munro          Treasurer.
J.Lanaghan         Janitor.

The other Officers we are familiar with today were not appointed or elected for some years.

In 1919 there were 25 Exaltations and two joining members. In other years occasionally there were as many as eight candidates in one evening, from the same Lodge.

When the Chapter was Consecrated in 1870, the founders decided on an Exaltation Fee of three guineas, which would seem to be a high figure when compared to the Initiation Fee of Athole Lodge, at the time, of six guineas. It was not until 1946 that the Exaltation Fee was increased to four guineas.

The subscription at first was 12/6d., then in 1926 it was raised to £1.1s.0d: in 1946 25/-: and in 1960 to 35/- .

On 23rd October, 1935, E.Comp. J.A. Appleyard, M.E.Z. OF THE Athole Chapter, proposed in the Chapter that Supreme Grand Chapter be asked to form a Provincial Grand Chapter of the Isle of Man. Supreme Grand Chapter granted that wish and on 26th June 1936, a Provincial Grand Chapter was Instituted in the Isle of Man, Fifty years after the formation of Provincial Grand Lodge of the Isle of Man on 29th September, 1886.

Several members of the Athole Chapter were among the first Provincial Officers including E.Comp. J.D. Cowley , P.G.Std Br., who was Installed as Third Principal.

The meeting place of the Athole Chapter has, of course, been the same as that of the Athole Lodge, namely the Douglas Hotel, North Quay, St James Hall , Athol Street, Prospect Hill, Loch Promenade and as at present Freemasons Hall, Woodbourne Road, Douglas.

At first there were five Convocations each year in January. March, May, September and November with the Installation in May. In 1910 new by-laws reduced the number of Convocations to four, as at present January, March, May, and October, meeting on the fourth Wednesday and with the Installation in March. In 1914 the by-laws were again altered, changing the Installation to October.

Lord Raglan, the Governor and Provincial Grand Master of the Isle of Man was exalted in Athole Chapter on 22nd October 1913 by the M.E.Z.,E.Comp. J.D.Cowley; E.Comp. G.A. Thomason, P.Z. gave the Mystical Lecture, E.Comp . W.J.Kelly gave the Symbolical Lecture, and E.Comp. W.Newby, Joshua gave the Historical Lecture.

At the October Convocation in 1917 Lord Raglan was installed by Dispensation into the chairs of Joshua, Haggai and Zerubbabel on the one evening. He presided at two of the ordinary Convocations and was voted a P.Z. Jewel. That Jewel, with his other Masonic Regalia and Jewels, is on display in the Museum, they having been returned by Lady Raglan after his death.

Past Masters

1871   G M Lofthouse
1872   H May
1873   R Tuton
1874   Samuel Webb
1875   John Harwood
1876   T Handley
1877   Geo. C Heron
1878   H P Mayle
1879   John A Brown
1880   G M Lofthouse
1881   W I Wild
1882   J C Brearley
1883   W Laughlin
1884   J A Brown
1885   J W Wood
1886   R Garside
1887   H Brearley
1888   C F Johnson
1889   R Swinnerton
1890   A Dearden
1891   P M C Kermode
1892   C M Callender
1893   W J Brown
1894   W Colquhoun
1895   T Whiteside
1896   J P Callow
1897   W J Kelly
1898   A H Fayle
1899   F A Greville
1900   G Watterson
1901   F Burgess
1902   S Webb
1903   T H Royston
1904   T S Atkinson
1905   W H Benson
1906   G Watterson
1907   T Whiteside
1908   M Carine
1909   G H Robinson
1910   W Kissack
1911   J M Holroyd
1912   A B McKenzie
1913-14 J D Cowley
1915   W Newby
1916   S Taylor
1917   A B Crookall
1918   Lord Raglan
1919   A C Legge
1920   J Y Shaw
1921   W H Kelly
1922   S Plant
1923   J I Killip
1924   J Halsall
1925   H H Dolman
1926   J A Billott
1927   H Q Kennaugh
1928   E C Hudson
1929   J W Matthewman
1930   R D Harvey
1931-32 G Tyler
1933   W R Brennen
1934   J A Appleyard
1935   T A Clague
1936   E H Temple
1937   E N Greenhalgh
1938   J W Dawson
1939   W H Qualtrough
1940   J C Fargher
1941   R H Reid
1942   M H Cannell
1943   G A Cannell
1944   R W Cain
1945   W Gilmore
1946   A C Douglas
1947   F W Bain
1948   J R Uren
1949   E H Cain
1950   J N Cowley
1951   W T Callow
1952   J F Watson
1953   T Morley
1954   F R Kelly
1955   W N Douglas
1956   A C Quiggin
1957   J A Clague
1958   H G Fletcher
1959   J Davidson
1960   A Radcliffe
1961   J S Corlett
1962   P Clowes
1963   A S Christian
1964   W A Harrison
1965   J H Woodfine
1966   W M Cretney
1967   C S Dressing
1968   H T Morley
1969   P D Roberts
1970   J T Kermode
1971   F C Kissack
1972   J A Quiggin
1973   R H Reid
1974   P Gill
1975   S R Shimmin
1976 -77   J Drewrey
1978   G P Rubython
1979-80 E Makin
1981   H Rundle
1982   R J H Fox
1983   N F Howell
1984   E R Boyd
1985   J H Morrison
1986   D P Downie
1987   A F Downie
1988   D P Downie
1989   G Harvey
1990   M J Shimmin
1991   E D R Killey
1992   C M Thompson
1993   C Cunningham
1994   J R Mitchell
1995   A N Cretney
1996   W J Ashton
1997   W F Murray
1998   D A Cracknell
1999   W C Harvatt
2000   W A K Kelly
2001   W F Murray
2002   D J Robertson
2003   P C Bottomley
2004   I Bratty
2005   M L Denning
2006   J D C Clague
2007   D P Downie
2008   S J Whitehead
2009   I Gaynor
2010   H C Easton
2011   J C Webster
2012   K R Blount
2013   G M Toombs
2014   J Cuddy
2015   C Parlato

Contact:

the Scribe Ezra

Colin Thompson,
64 Berrywoods Avenue,
Governors Hill,
Douglas,
Isle of Man IM2 7DB

email: atholech@freemasons.im

Consecrated 23rd May 1970

Meets at Freemasons’ Hall, Douglas, on the fourth Wednesday in the months of October, January, March and May

Installation January