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Freemasonry in Nottingham
Becoming a Freemason in Nottingham
Becoming a Freemason
The Masonic lodge is the basic organisational unit of Freemasonry. The Lodge meets regularly and conducts the usual formal business of any small organisation (approve minutes, elect new members, appoint officers and take their reports, consider correspondence, bills and annual accounts, organise social and charitable events, etc.). In addition to such business, the meeting may perform a ceremony to confer a Masonic degree or receive a lecture, which is usually on some aspect of Masonic history or ritual. At the conclusion of the meeting, the Lodge may hold a formal dinner, or festive board, sometimes involving toasting and song.
The bulk of Masonic ritual consists of degree ceremonies conferred in meetings guarded by a "Tyler" outside the door with a drawn sword to keep out unqualified intruders to Masonry. (This officer, the Tyler, is necessarily senior because at the door he may hear the highest degree ceremonies, and often a less affluent elderly Mason is offered the office to relieve his need for Masonic company, refreshments and/or fees, without having to pay a subscription. He takes minor parts at the door of all meetings and ceremonies.) Candidates for Freemasonry are progressively initiated into Freemasonry, first in the degree of Entered Apprentice. At some later time, in separate ceremonies, they will be passed to the degree of Fellowcraft; and then raised to the degree of Master Mason. In each of these ceremonies, the candidate must first take the new obligations of the degree, and is then entrusted with secret knowledge including passwords, signs and grips (secret handshakes) confined to his new rank.
Another ceremony is the annual installation of the Master of the Lodge and his appointed or elected officers. In some jurisdictions an Installed Master elected, obligated and invested to preside over a Lodge, is valued as a separate rank with its own secrets and distinctive title and attributes; after each full year in the Chair the Master invests his elected successor and becomes a Past Master with privileges in the Lodge and Grand Lodge. In other jurisdictions, the grade is not recognised, and no inner ceremony conveys new secrets during the installation of a new Master of the Lodge.
Most Lodges have some sort of social functions, allowing members, their partners and non-Masonic guests to meet openly. Often coupled with these events is the discharge of every Mason's and Lodge's collective obligation to contribute to charity. This occurs at many levels, including in annual dues, subscriptions, fundraising events, Lodges and Grand Lodges. Masons and their charities contribute for the relief of need in many fields, such as education, health and old age.
Private Lodges form the backbone of Freemasonry, with the sole right to elect their own candidates for initiation as Masons or admission as joining Masons, and sometimes with exclusive rights over residents local to their premises. There are non-local Lodges where Masons meet for wider or narrower purposes, such or in association with some hobby, sport, Masonic research, business, profession, regiment or college. The rank of Master Mason also entitles a Freemason to explore Masonry further through other degrees, administered separately from the basic Craft or "Blue Lodge" degrees described here, but generally having a similar structure and meetings.
There is much diversity and little consistency in Freemasonry, because each Masonic jurisdiction is independent and sets its own rules and procedures while Grand Lodges have limited jurisdiction over their constituent member Lodges, which are ultimately private clubs. The wording of the ritual, the number of officers present, the layout of the meeting room, etc. varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction.
The earliest masonic texts each contain some sort of a history of the craft of Masonry. The oldest known work of this type, The Halliwell Manuscript, also known as Regius Poem, dates from between 1390 and 1425. This document has a brief history in its introduction, stating that the "craft of Masonry" began with Euclid in Egypt, and came to England in the reign of King Athelstan (born about 894, died 27 October 939). Shortly afterwards, the Cooke Manuscript traces Masonry to Jabal, son of Lamech (Genesis 4: 20–22), and tells how this knowledge came to Euclid, from him to the Children of Israel (while they were in Egypt), and so on through an elaborate path to Athelstan. This myth formed the basis for subsequent manuscript constitutions, all tracing Masonry back to biblical times, and fixing its institutional establishment in England during the reign of Athelstan (927–939).
Shortly after the formation of the Premier Grand Lodge of England, James Anderson was commissioned to digest these "Gothic Constitutions" in a palatable, modern form. The resulting constitutions are prefaced by a history more extensive than any before, again tracing the history of what was now Freemasonry back to biblical roots, again forging Euclid into the chain. True to his material, Anderson fixes the first grand assembly of English Masons at York, under Athelstan's son, Edwin, who is otherwise unknown to history. Expanded, revised, and republished, Anderson's 1738 constitutions listed the Grand Masters since Augustine of Canterbury, listed as Austin the Monk. William Preston's Illustrations of Freemasonry enlarged and expanded on this masonic creation myth.
In France, the 1737 lecture of Chevalier Ramsay added the crusaders to the lineage. He maintained that Crusader Masons had revived the craft with secrets recovered in the Holy Land, under the patronage of the Knights Hospitaller. At this point, the history of the craft in Continental Freemasonry diverged from that in England.
Nottingham (/ˈnɒtɪŋəm/ (About this soundlisten) NOT-ing-əm) is a city and unitary authority area in Nottinghamshire, England. Part of the East Midlands region, it is 128 miles (206 km) north of London and 45 miles (72 km) northeast of Birmingham. Nottingham has links to the legend of Robin Hood and to the lace-making, bicycle (notably Raleigh bikes) and tobacco industries. It was granted its city charter in 1897, as part of Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee celebrations. Nottingham is a tourist destination; in 2018, the city received the second highest number of overnight visitors in the Midlands and the highest number in the East Midlands. In 2020, Nottingham had an estimated population of 330,000. The wider conurbation, which includes many of the city's suburbs, has a population of 768,638. It is the largest urban area in the East Midlands and the second-largest in the Midlands. Its Functional Urban Area, also the largest in the East Midlands, has a population of 919,484. The population of the Nottingham/Derby metropolitan area is estimated to be 1,610,000.
Its metropolitan economy is the seventh largest in the United Kingdom with a GDP of $50.9bn (2014). The city was the first in the East Midlands to be ranked as a sufficiency-level world city by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network. Nottingham's public transport system won awards prior to 2015, including the largest publicly owned bus network in England. The city is also served by Nottingham railway station and the modern Nottingham Express Transit tram system. It is also a major sporting centre and, in October 2015, was named 'Home of English Sport'. The National Ice Centre, Holme Pierrepont National Watersports Centre and Trent Bridge international cricket ground are all based in or around the city, which is also the home of two professional football teams; the former world's oldest professional league club Notts County and Nottingham Forest, famously two-time winners of the UEFA European Cup under Brian Clough and Peter Taylor in 1979 and 1980. The city also has professional rugby, ice hockey and cricket teams, and the Aegon Nottingham Open, an international tennis tournament on the ATP and WTA tours. This accolade came just over a year after Nottingham was named as the UK's first City of Football. On 11 December 2015, Nottingham was named a "City of Literature" by UNESCO, joining Dublin, Edinburgh, Melbourne and Prague as one of only a handful in the world. The title reflects Nottingham's literary heritage, with Lord Byron, D. H. Lawrence and Alan Sillitoe having links to the city, as well as a contemporary literary community, a publishing industry and a poetry scene. The city is served by three universities: the University of Nottingham, Nottingham Trent University and the University of Law; hosting the highest concentration of higher education providers in the East Midlands.
The settlement may predate Anglo-Saxon times, as hinted at in a Welsh tradition of an earlier Brythonic name being Tigguo Cobauc, meaning Place of Caves (known also as "City of Caves"). In modern Welsh it is known poetically as Y Tŷ Ogofog and Irish as Na Tithe Uaimh "The Cavey Dwelling". When it fell under the rule of a Saxon chieftain named Snot it became known as "Snotingaham"; the homestead of Snot's people (-inga = the people of; -ham = homestead). Some authors derive "Nottingham" from Snottenga, caves, and ham, but "this has nothing to do with the English form".
Nottingham Castle was constructed in 1068 on a sandstone outcrop by the River Leen. The Anglo-Saxon settlement was originally confined to the area today known as the Lace Market and was surrounded by a substantial defensive ditch and rampart, which fell out of use following the Norman Conquest and was filled by the time of the Domesday Survey (1086). Following the Norman Conquest the Saxon settlement developed into the English Borough of Nottingham and housed a Town Hall and Law Courts. A settlement also developed around the castle on the hill opposite and was the French borough supporting the Normans in the castle. Eventually, the space between was built on as the town grew and the Old Market Square became the focus of Nottingham several centuries later. Defences consisted initially of a ditch and bank in the early 12th century. The ditch was later widened, in the mid-13th century, and a stone wall built around much of the perimeter of the town. A short length of the wall survives, and is visible at the northern end of Maid Marian Way, and is protected as a Scheduled Monument. On the return of Richard the Lionheart from the Crusades, the castle was occupied by supporters of Prince John, including the Sheriff of Nottingham. It was besieged by Richard and, after a sharp conflict, was captured. In the legends of Robin Hood, Nottingham Castle is the scene of the final showdown between the Sheriff and the hero outlaw. By the 15th century Nottingham had established itself as a centre of a thriving export trade in religious sculpture made from Nottingham alabaster. The town became a county corporate in 1449 giving it effective self-government, in the words of the charter, "for eternity". The Castle and Shire Hall were expressly excluded and remained as detached Parishes of Nottinghamshire. One of those highly impressed by Nottingham in the late 18th century was the German traveller C. P. Moritz, who wrote in 1782, "Of all the towns I have seen outside London, Nottingham is the loveliest and neatest. Everything had a modern look, and a large space in the centre was hardly less handsome than a London square. A charming footpath leads over the fields to the highway, where a bridge spans the Trent. … Nottingham … with its high houses, red roofs and church steeples, looks excellent from a distance." During the Industrial Revolution, much of Nottingham's prosperity was founded on the textile industry; in particular, the city became an internationally important centre of lace manufacture. In 1831 citizens rioted in protest against the Duke of Newcastle's opposition to the Reform Act 1832, setting fire to his residence on the site of Nottingham Castle. In common with the UK textile industry, Nottingham's textile sector fell into decline in the decades following World War II. Little textile manufacture now takes place in Nottingham; however, many of the former industrial buildings in the Lace Market district have been restored and put to new uses.
Becoming a Freemason in United Kingdom
Becoming a Freemason in England
Region East Midlands
Ceremonial county Nottinghamshire
City Status 1897
Administrative HQ Loxley House
• Type Unitary authority
• Governing body Nottingham City Council (Labour)
• Council Leader David Mellen (Lab)
• Executive Labour
Nadia Whittome (Lab)
Alex Norris (Lab)
Lilian Greenwood (Lab)
• Lord Mayor Cllr Rosemary Healy
• City 28.81 sq mi (74.61 km2)
Elevation 151 ft (46 m)
• City 321,500
• Density 11,490/sq mi (4,437/km2)
• Urban 768,638 (LUZ:975,800)
• Metro 1,610,000 (Nottingham-Derby)
71.5% White (65.4% White British)
7.3% Black British
6.7% Mixed Race
Time zone UTC+0 (Greenwich Mean Time)
• Summer (DST) UTC+1 (British Summer Time)
Area code(s) 0115
Grid Ref. SK570400
ISO 3166-2 GB-NGM
NUTS 3 UKF14