Robert Singleton was born in July of 1852 in Garstang, Lancashire, to Robert Clifton Singleton and his wife Susannah (nee Dickinson). He was the second of six children, having four brothers and a sister. On the 1861 census his mother is listed as an Innkeeper’s widow, so she was left with a very young family to tend to.
The oldest and most historic Lodge meeting in Wearside Masonic Temple, we were consecrated on the 14th January 1757.
We are proud Sunderland Freemasons, having always met in the city. Firstly, in some of the many taverns within the old town, then in Park Terrace from 1870 (the Temple that now resides at Beamish), transferring to our current home in 1933, when Wearside Masonic Temple was opened.
News and Updates
Sir Edward Temperley Gourley was Initiated into Palatine lodge on the 10th of October 1861. Little is known about his masonic career other than he sustained his membership over a number of decades; he never became Worshipful Master, so it is likely he enjoyed his time on the sidelines.
He was a notable ship owner and prominent Sunderland figure in the latter part of the 19th Century and was Knighted in 1895 for his political work.
Throughout the long history of Palatine Lodge No. 97, the Lodge has borne witness to numerous historical events and many of its members have helped to shape Local, National and World History.
The Lodge minutes are a rich source of information and a fascinating glimpse into the past, but often, our members interesting life stories have long been lost in time.
Before every meeting, the Lodge publishes a Summons; essentially an agenda, and, on important occasions, the Summons includes a list of Outstanding Events; a reminder of our Lodge’s incredible history.
In Fraternal Remembrance
Bro Joseph Cowey, RGA
Who was killed in France on 29th August 1918
I knew Bro Cowey years before he joined the Craft as a leading chorister at Christ Church, where Sunday after Sunday I heard his fine voice raised in the service and praise of *TGAOTU.
The following is taken from our Volume II History book (1937) and is replicated, as written, here. A postface is added at the bottom to give a little further information.
Sir William Allan was initiated into Palatine Lodge No. 97 in 1890 and remained a member until his death in 1903.
He was an interesting character, his London Times Obituary, dated the 29th December 1903, documents a remarkably interesting life.
Well, after a forced absence due to the COVID-19 restrictions, we had our first meeting back on the 10th September.
Restrictions still in place meant that we were not able to have visitors, and a good number of our own brethren still feel it is unsafe to return. As a lodge we also feel that the amendments required to perform a ceremony would detract too much from the spectacle, and we are not prepared to carry one out in the current circumstances.
A planned double-second but work commitments prevented one of our Entered Apprentices from being able to attend. A single-second was the order of the day.
We were missing our Junior Deacon who was a little under the weather, but we had a fine stand in with one of our Past Masters, who performed the role perfectly, despite having no notice!
A special meeting for us this month. We celebrated the 50th Anniversary of WBro Bob Parsons. As it was Bob's special night, we took the opportunity of having a 'night off' from ritual, thus ending a two year run of 'live' ceremonies. A welcomed respite!
The Lodge was opened and we then admitted our official Fraternal visitors, before receiving the Assistant Provincial Grand Master, W Bro Simon Craig Steele, who was in attendance to present the 50-year certificate to Bob.
Happy New Year! As ever for us, new year and first full outing of the new team. Nothing like putting them straight to the test, as we have done for the past few years, and this year we did it with a double-second. It's incredible to think that it's the second double-second we've done in recent months, and we still have another four people to put through this ceremony! We're planning on doing doubles for those, too.
For the first time in a little while we had a full complement of floor officers, and it was great to see them all perform admirably in their new positions.
Where has 2019 gone? December is upon us and, for Palatine, that can mean only one thing, our Annual Installation.
For the first time since 2015 we have a brand new Worshipful Master, with the installation of our Senior Warden, Master Elect, into the Chair of King Solomon; Brother Paul Staines.
The representative on the evening was friend of the lodge, WBro Ian Telfer, ably assisted, once again, by WBro Richard Davison, as his Director of Ceremonies, both of whom were given a very warm welcome into the lodge.
For the second November in a row, we raised a brother so that he could join the ladder of officers at our Installation meeting in December.
With December being our Installation, we first had the election of officers. Our SW, who would have been WM this year had it not been for a hectic work schedule last year, was duly chosen as Master Elect. Congratulations Paul.
As we've a number of short videos available now, we've decided to give them their own page, available from the What is Freemasony menu, or just click here.
A bunch of us feature in a new video produced by Durham Freemasons, including yours truly. I wasn't planning on being in the video, so if I look a little disheveled, it's because I was totally unprepared to be on camera that day - just filled in for a no-show! If it sparks an interest, please feel free to get in touch. We'll be happy to chat.