About our Masonic Lodge

Consecrated 9th March 1886

Abbey Lodge – Freemasonry in Chertsey, Surrey.

Abbey Lodge No: 2120 – A Freemasons Lodge in the heart of the community in Chertsey.

Abbey Lodge was founded in 1886.  It is one of the oldest lodges in Surrey and the Masonic Hall in Chertsey is the oldest dedicated Masonic centre in Surrey.

Sign of the Times

The late nineteenth century was a time of considerable class and social distinction.  It was also a period of change, of new ideas and of new technology and advancements in many areas.

At the same time, contrasting these societal changes, it was clear that many traditional lodges had perhaps become set in their ways and parochial in their membership.

If Freemasonry was about anything, it was revolutionary in the sense of a brotherhood based on meritocracy – the “…gold inside the man, not the gold he wears”.

Equality and Inclusiveness 

It is clear that one of the primary aims of Abbey Lodge was to reflect the changes within society and create more inclusive lodges, thereby upholding and adhering to true Masonic principles: people united by virtue, values and common beliefs, whatever their race, religion or background.

The inception of Abbey Lodge came about when several members of St George’s Lodge (the oldest lodge in Surrey), decided that such changes needed to be reflected in a local lodge.

From the outset, Abbey Lodge set out to encourage membership drawn from across the spectrum: titled people, professionals and tradespeople.  This is reflected in its initial membership, drawn from knights of the realm, to clergy, to professionals to tradespeople – a compelling cross-section of society.

Our Style

For over a hundred years, Abbey Masonic Lodge developed a reputation for a good standard of ritual.  We continue to be inclusive in our approach because this supports open-minded learning.

We help members to learn and to understand why ritual is important; we invite challenge and we encourage members to learn from doing.  We do not simply mandate ritual for the sake of ritual.

Founding Fathers

The founding fathers were very aware that how they shaped the formation of Abbey Lodge would be reflected in its unique culture and ongoing longevity.  They very carefully and deliberately, selected members from all walks of life: drawn from knights of the realm, to diplomats, to clergy, to professionals to tradespeople – a compelling cross-section of society.

  • Col Sir Lorenzo George Dundas, KCB – serving army officer
  • James Boor – from South Australia, a man of substance, but of “no profession”
  • Henry Currie Leigh-Bennet – a barrister-at-law
  • Sir Patrick Colquhoun – QC and British diplomat
  • William Angel Thomas – formerly from Carmarthen, Wales, professional
  • William Henry Gardener – Ironmonger, Egham High Street
  • George Fox Spencer – Hotel Proprietor Chertsey bridge hotel

Each contributed 5gns each.  St Georges Lodges gave 3 farthings as a good luck token.

Col Sir Lorenzo George Dundas, KCB

Col Sir Lorenzo George Dundas, KCB

Col Sir Lorenzo George Dundas, KCB in A sepia photograph of an officers group in Lucknow, India in 1867

Col Sir Lorenzo George Dundas was a decorated Officer awarded Crimean War (Crimean medal and clasps, Turkish medal); Honourable Colonel 6th Royal Fusiliers 29 May 1905 and Jubilee medal.

Founding father of Abbey Lodge No:2120

Henry Currie Leigh-Bennett

Henry Currie Leigh-Bennett

Henry Currie Leigh-Bennett (1852 – 7 March 1903,) First Worshipful Master of the Lodge. He was a Conservative Member of Parliament for the English constituency of Chertsey from 1897 until his death in 1903.

First Members and Initiates

The first members and Initiates continued the trend of pulling members from all walks:

  • Worshipful Master  – Henry Leigh-Bennett
  • Senior Warden – George Dundas
  • Junior Warden – William Gardener
  • Treasurer – James Boor
  • Secretary – Rev. Walter W Martin
  • Senior Deacon – George Fox Spencer
  • Tyler – George Mason

Initiates – H J Bidwell (mercantile clerk), A W Crewdson (butcher), W Dix (grocer), E T Madley (printer), T J Rawlings (architect), C Welch (builder), C Lamb (builder).

Charles Lamb was the builder of Chertsey Masonic Hall, the oldest purpose built masonic centre in Surrey.

Today

Abbey Lodge has always had a reputation for being friendly and welcoming.  We do not judge – we welcome men from all walks of life regardless of background, social standing or religion.

We work and socialise with like-minded people; we share our ambitions, enjoy each others company and always strive to do our very best for the benefit of the lodge and the local community in Chertsey.

We do this all in the knowledge of integrity and trust.  We meet four times a year and outside of that we have social events.

Today, we count among our membership accountants, IT professionals, teachers, engineers, plumbers, the unemployed, and a European Master Mind champion.

If you wish to find out more about becoming a Freemason in Chertsey, please email secretary@chertseyfreemasons.org.uk

Call: 01784 435220

Call us today. A member of the lodge will get in touch with you.

Four meetings per year

Abbey Lodge has four Masonic meetings per year on the 3rd Wednesday of January, April, September and November

Our Location

Abbey Lodge, Surrey Masonic Lodge, Masonic Hall Rd, Chertsey, KT16 9DH