As a result of a campaign led by L.H.Dunium Jones to establish an Old Brentwoods’ Masonic Lodge, a meeting of Old Brentwood Masons was held at the Great Eastern Hotel, Liverpool Street, on 6th November, 1931 when it was resolved to form a Lodge. The Old Alleynian Lodge agreed to be sponsors, doubtless through the efforts of the School Medical Officer, W.Bro. Dr. A.J.Gibson, an Old Alleynian, who became the first Master of the Lodge when it was consecrated at Freemasons’ Hall, Great Queen Street, on Thursday, 28th April, 1932 by V.W.Bro. Sir P. Colville Smith, C.V.O., Grand Secretary. Bro. Dunium Jones and Bro. R. F. Swift were appointed Wardens.

Given that Old Brentwoods were, and remain, geographically scattered, but with many working in the City, it was decided that the Lodge would be a London Lodge but the first Regular Meeting of the Lodge, on 9th July, 1932, was held in the Bean Library at Brentwood School, thereby establishing the tradition that the Summer Meeting of the Lodge is held at Brentwood School by dispensation.

This first meeting is commemorated by the stained glass medallion of the badge of the Lodge in the east window of the Bean Library. The badge is taken from the crest of Sir Antony Browne, the founder of the School, and consists of a crowned lion’s paw holding an eagle’s wing; this badge now appears on the Lodge Banner. Sir Antony is eponymously thought to have founded the School in memory of William Hunter, aged nineteen, who was burned at the stake, in 1555, as a result of reading the English Bible in contravention of the Statute of Heretics which, as Magistrate, Sir Antony was responsible for enforcing. The place of execution was marked by the Brentwood Elm Tree, now replaced by an oak, outside the Old Big School. The Banner depicts the “green elm tree” and the “new red wall” in the chorus of the School Song which alludes to Hunter’s death.

The normal meeting place of the Lodge was, at first, the Cannon Street Restaurant but, from the Autumn meeting of 1934 and thereafter until the present day, became Freemasons’ Hall in Great Queen Street. The Summer meeting moved from the Bean Library to the Old Big School and then, in 1958, to the Memorial Hall – which is still in use for our summer meeting.

In 1947 the Old Brentwoods Lodge was involved in the inaugural discussions that led to the formation of the Federation of School Lodges of which the Lodge became a founder member and was proud to host the Federation meeting in September 2007 during our 75th anniversary year.

The Old Brentwoods Chapter was formed in 1951 and applied to be the first Chapter within the Federation in 2002. The Lodge became a founder member of the Metropolitan Grand Lodge of London in 2003, and the Chapter likewise of the Metropolitan Grand Chapter.