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Minerva celebrates 100 years
The members of Minerva Lodge No 4002 celebrated their centenary at the Litherland Masonic Hall and marked their centenary by presenting the Provincial Grand Master Tony Harrison with a cheque for £4002 to the West Lancashire Masonic Charitable Foundation (MCF) 2021 Festival, making the lodge as Grand Patrons of the festival.
Tony was accompanied by Deputy Provincial Grand Master Phil Gunning and Assistant Provincial Grand Master Frank Umbers. Tony was also joined by the Ormskirk and Bootle Group Vice Chairman Malcolm Alexander. Minerva lodge was founded in 1919 by a number of members from Neptune lodge No 1264. The majority of the members were employed in Marine Insurance, the Timber importing trade and other shipping activities, and adopted Minerva lodge as the new lodge name for her connection with commerce.
The lodge first met at the Bear’s Paw a restaurant and meeting place in Liverpool, and regular lodge meetings were held there until 1940 when this venue and a large part of the city centre was destroyed during an air raid. Subsequently the early records of Minerva lodge were lost and due to the damage caused by the air raid, the lodge to move to the Carlton Club in Eberle Street off Dale Street.
One of the keen early members of the lodge was a senior Police Officer, and by his influence a good proportion of the lodge members in the 1940’s and 1950’s were members of Liverpool City Police although not all of them became Worshipful Master.
The Carlton Club later became the Carlton Masonic Hall Company, this area of Liverpool was scheduled to be completely demolished and redeveloped at the time, and although the redevelopment never took place the whole area became blighted, the site deteriorated and there were financial problems which led to the company to be put into liquidation. This forced a further move into the Masonic Hall on Hope Street in the 1970’s were the lodge met until 2019 when Minerva moved to the Litherland Masonic Hall in the Ormskirk and Bootle Group.
From the lodges founding in 1919, the membership increased gradually to reach a peak of 80 in the late 1940’s, after which there was a steady decline to below 20 in the 1990’s, however the Lodge has seen a recent pleasant increase in membership to the present day to over 20 members. A great night was enjoyed by all the brethren and visitors at the celebration meeting of Minerva Lodge, attended by the Provincial Grand Master and his team which was followed by a wonderful meal amongst great friendship, before returning home after everyone had a very enjoyable and memorable evening.
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