Our History

At a meeting of Freemasons held at Reindeer Inn, Worcester, in May 1846, it was decided a second lodge should be founded in Worcester. 

Accordingly, Joseph Bennett, a Past Master of Worcester Lodge No 349 (now 280), was invited to assist in the formation of the proposed Lodge, and it was mainly due to the sympathy and accord of the Worcester Lodge that the promoters found no difficulty in proving the desirability for a second lodge.

The petition was signed by the founders, Brothers Robert Chase and Richard Lockett, and also the Worshipful Master and Wardens of Worcester Lodge No 349.  On August 22nd 1846 the warrant was received in Worcester. 

The Lodge Semper Fidelis No 772 on the register of the Grand Lodge of England, was consecrated on September 7th 1846 at the Reindeer Inn, where Worcester Lodge had met for many years.

Inspiration for the name of the Lodge no doubt came from the motto of the city of Worcester "Floreat Semper Fidelis Civitas" (now "Civitas in Bello et Pace Fidelis").  In an address entitled "The City Arms" to the Worcester Diocesan Architectural Society, given in the 19th Century by the City Architect of the day, who had extensively researched the subject, he concluded his address with the words "A record of the history and customs of the ancient and interesting city distinguished as Semper Fidelis".

On May 1st 1848 the Lodge moved from the Reindeer Inn to the Crown Hotel, Broad Street, where it remained for forty years until the Brethren of both Lodges (Worcester and Semper Fidelis) agreed that they should meet on unlicensed premises.  Worcester Lodge were at the time meeting at 95 High Street, and it was agreed that Semper Fidelis should join them at a reasonable rent.  The Lodge met there for the first time on November 7th 1887.

In 1863, when a Grand Lodge revision of numbers took place, Semper Fidelis was re-numbered 529 and Worcester Lodge No 349 became 280.

In 1893 interest in Feeemasonary was such that it was decided with Worcester Lodge to form a Masonic Building Company, to build a Masonic Hall for the greater convenience and comfort of Craft Lodges and other Masonic Degrees.  Shares in the company were subscribed, plans for a site in St Nicholas Street were prepared, adopted, and the building was started.

The first half of the twentieth century was marked by a significant expansion in Freemasonary with the consecration of Page Lodge No 3378 in 1909, Fort Royal Lodge No 4565 in 1923, Unity Lodge No 5812 in 1939, Sabrina Lodge No 6595 in 1948 and St John in Bedwardine No 7458 in 1956.  In addition, the Provincial Grand Lodge Offices, Library and Museum were also accomodated.

1946 group.jpg

Photograph taken at Centenary meeting - 1946.

 

By the late 1950s the facilities offered at the Temple in St Nicholas Street were insufficient to cope, and the decision was taken to seek other premises.  Therefore, Grove House, Rainbow Hill, was purchased and the foundation stone was laid by the Right Worshipful Brother Doctor E. Bunting, the Provincial Grand Master, on October 30th 1958.  The building was completed rapidly, the Temple being almost an exact replica of the St Nicholas Street room.

The dedication ceremony took place on September 4th 1959 and the first regular meeting of the Lodge Semper Fidelis was held in the new Temple at Rainbow Hill on October 5th 1959.

 

The diagram below shows the Semper Fidelis Masonic family

Semper family tree.jpg