Antient Manor Chapter No 4511 History

C4511The consecration of Antient Manor Chapter No 4511 took place on Tuesday 22 May 1928 at 3.45 pm in the Oddfellows hall, High Street Prescot, marking the progress of Freemasonry in Prescot.

At this time Prescot was a thriving industrial town having built up its prosperity on coal mining, pottery making, farming, watch making and latterly cable making. From the middle of the 19th century watch making began to decline and with the demise of the watch trade Prescot was fortunate in being able to fall back on the newly established cable making industry. The Prescot Wire Company having been established in 1891.

The consecration ceremony of the Antient Manor Chapter followed the usual form of prayers, readings from the scripture, hymns and some anthems rendered by a visiting choir. Following the consecration ceremony and meeting the chapter was closed in accordance with antient custom. The companions adjourned to the Deans House Hotel where an excellent banquet was provided.

A number of founders of the chapter were founder members of the Antient Manor Lodge No 4511 having itself been consecrated some five years previously on 9 April 1923. Members of the lodge became chapter members in the earlier years. Meetings were held regularly on the last Monday in the months of November, January, March and the first Monday in May. At a meeting on 5 May 1930 these arrangements changed on the proposition of J Gornall to the alter by-laws for meetings to be held on the last Monday of September, November, January and March.

The chapter did not meet in the September of 1939. It can only be assumed that this was a result of a communication of 4 September 1939 from Supreme Grand Chapter of England “Having regard to the Emergency Orders of H M Government that until further notice all Masonic meetings are to be suspended.”

However, the chapter did continue to meet at the Oddfellows hall until April 1940, when as a result of the military commandeering the use of the hall, they were obliged to move to the Deans House hotel from the November, returning to the Oddfellows hall for the first meeting after the war on Tuesday 27 March 1945.

The minute books reveal that members have come from a variety of professions, salesmen, engineers, stores manager, foundry foreman, master joiner & undertaker, postmaster, a serving companion in March 1942, butcher, baker, the police force, the teaching profession and a dairy farmer.

In 2003 the chapter celebrated 75 years and continues to meet in the hall purchased from the Oddfellows Society in 1948. Although industry around Prescot has declined over the years the energy and enthusiasm of Antient Manor Chapter continues.