Hall History

History of McCammon Memorial Masonic Hall, Holywood

The Hall was opened on Monday 12th January, 1905 and was dedicated as the “McCammon Memorial Hall” as a memorial to the late Provincial Deputy Grand Master of Down, Rt. Worshipful Brother Thomas Andrew McCammon.

The erection of the building was entrusted to Messrs. J.&R. Thompson under the superintendence of Bro. W. Godfrey Ferguson P.M. and the architect was Bro. Anthony Lucy, M.R.I.A.I.

Rt. Worshipful Brother Thomas Andrew McCammon

McCammon Memorial Masonic Hall & Town Hall, Sullivan Place, Holywood, circa 1905

Thomas Andrew McCammon (b. circa 1850) resided at Church Road, Holywood and became Colonel of 5th Royal Irish Rifles and in later life a Barrister at Law. 

 

The early warranted Brethren in Holywood initially met in various public and private rooms in the town during the early years and in 1843 took up their abode in the Holywood Hotel, then owned by Mr. John Power as a teetotal establishment.

They had many changes of venue, meeting at Wellington Terrace, Kinnegar, then at the Assembly Rooms at the bottom of Shore Street and afterwards the YMCA. They moved from there to the house of Mrs. Anderson, High Street, then to Strand Street School, formerly a Presbyterian Church and by then used by the Holywood Parish Church as a Mission Hall and Sunday School.

Later in 1880, meetings were held at 5 Bath Terrace, where in a front upstairs room the Inner Guard’s peephole could still be seen until recently. In November 1885 the Lodge made a further move to the hall at Ean Hill, Church View, at a rent of £11 per annum. The opening of Ean Hill Hall, by Lodge No.254 took place on 16th November 1885, at a cost of some £230.

This Hall formerly used as a National School House, fulfilled the requirements of the Brethren for almost two decades when it was found, due to an increase in membership and the formation of several new Lodges, Chapters and a Preceptory, that it was necessary to acquire more extensive premises.

The Trustees secured the lease of suitable ground adjoining the Town Hall from Mr. Henry Harrison with a frontage to Sullivan Place, of 50 feet, and a depth of 80 feet. It was decided to erect a new Masonic Hall to be called the “McCammon Memorial Hall” as a memorial to the late Provincial Deputy Grand Master of Down, Rt. Worshipful Brother Thomas A. McCammon. The Hall was opened in the proper manner on Monday 12th January, 1905. The builders were J.& R. Thompson, and the Architect was Bro. Godfrey W. Ferguson.

McCammon Memorial Masonic Hall, Town Hall & Sullivan National School, Holywood, circa 1905

Inside the Lodge Room at McCammon Memorial Masonic Hall

The Lodge Room, McCammon Memorial Masonic Hall, Holywood

The Lodge Room features a number of striking elements, including hand carved solid oak seating and pedestals. 

Every Lodge Room is laid out East to West and North to South, with seating along the walls of all sides. In the middle of the room is a rectangular black and white tessellated pavement along with a few other objects central to the moral teachings of Freemasonry.

The Chair of the Worshipful Master

The Master of the Lodge sits on the East side where he presides over the entire meeting; next to him is the Immediate Past Master who, having been the previous Master, provides advice and support. Opposite the Master on the West side sits the Senior Warden, second in charge of the Lodge, while the Junior Warden sits along the South of the Lodge room. Each officer has moral reasons for sitting where he does, for example the Master is placed in the East to represent the sun, which rises in the East.

Besides the numerous Warrants from the various Lodges that sit within the Hall, in the North is a memorial to all the local Brethren who served for King and Country in the First World War.

First World War Memorial

The Hall regularly has open days when members of the public, (and Freemasons from other Lodges!) can tour the Lodge Room and learn more about it's history and meaning.  Contact us here to find out when we will be having our next open day.