Lodge No. 84, Bandon
Meets at The Masonic Hall, Brinny (nr. Bandon),
Second Wednesday of every month, at 8.00 pm
(excluding June, July, August and September)
Lodge Contact: email@example.com
This number was issued to BANDON, Co. Cork, 29 May 1738 where it works to the present day.
The continuity of this lodge is unique in the province; all other warrants have moved from their original area, or have had their warrant substituted for a newer issue, or have been temporarily suspended. Not so with Lodge No. 84 Bandon, first established in a room in the house of Thomas Bourk of Bandon, on 12 June 1738, when ten men came together to form the founding officers.
The Warrant, dated 1738, is still in the possession of the Lodge.
The lodge has a long run of well preserved minutes from its foundation until the early twentieth century, and some interesting facts may be gleaned from these, such as the 1790 resolution
‘that no more than one bottle of wine or a pint of rum in punch shall be allowed each Brother every Lodge day before the bill is called for and settled, except on the Festivals.’
It is interest to observe that the stringency of this resolution was relaxed on Festive occasions. The only recorded instance of the non-observance of a Festival during the eighteenth century was in 1796, when 25,000 Frenchmen were in Bantry Bay.
For many decades from its foundation, the Brethren clothed in Masonic Regalia marched to many public functions in the town, such as the dedication of churches, bridges and other public structures. They attended such works at Kilbrogan and Ballymodan Churches in the town, as also at St Fin Barre’s Cathedral in the city of Cork.
In 1838, the lodge celebrated its centenary, assembled at their lodge room in William’s Inn (now Devonshire Arms Hotel) at 10 am, where they were joined by the officers and deputations from lodges in Cork, Castletownsend and Clonakilty. The entire body of Masons on that occasion totaled 96, of which 29 were from No. 84 Bandon.
In 1864, General Garibaldi (Grand Master of the Masonic Order in the Isle of Sicily) was admitted as an honorary member of No. 84.
Over the ensuing decades as numbers increased – and it is on record that they did increase considerably – the accommodation proved unsuitable for meetings, and a new Lodge Room was opened in South Main Street, 8 June 1881, which remained the meeting venue until 9 April 1890. At that time, the lodge room was changed to Cavendish Row – next to the Courthouse – and the premises was enlarged and redecorated in 1913 at a cost of close to £200, when an impressive and interesting Dedication Service was held. The Provincial Grand Master from 1874 until 1924 was James Francis Bernard, 4th Earl of Bandon, K.P., a member of the lodge.
The lodge continued to meet at Cavendish Row for most of the twentieth century – until 1988 – when rising rates and falling numbers of brethren led to the sale of the building and the removal of the meeting to the old schoolhouse at Brinny, five miles from the town. The lodge meet in the former schoolroom, and during 2006, this was extensively refurbished and modernized, as our photos testify.
All visiting brethren are warmly welcomed to our monthly meetings.