In October 2015 St Catherine’s Lodge will be celebrating the centenary of its foundation in the dark days of 1915. As a Lodge it occupies a special place among Freemasons as one of the Sister City Livery Lodges all of which are associated with particular Livery Companies. It was the third such Lodge to be founded with Pellipar, founded in 1897 and affiliated to the Skinners, sponsoring its formation. The other Lodge that predates St Catherine’s is the Cutlers’ Lodge.
The prime mover among the 28 founding members was Felix Figheira, who was Master of the Company for two successive years in 1912 and 1913; he was supported by Richard Loveland (Master 1877) and George Holtzapffel, whose son John Budd was one the first to be proposed for membership, but whose initiation had to wait until 1918 when he returned from war service. The Master of the Company at the time, Henry Marigold and the Upper Warden, Thomas Estall, were both initiated at the second meeting of the Lodge in January 1916. Sir Charles Wakefield, Lord Mayor Elect, was one of the Founders, as were a number of others whose families continue be associated with the Company to this day, the Bartons and Foords amongst them.
The consecrating team on 12th October 1915 was led by Sir Edward Letchworth, Grand Secretary of United Grand Lodge of England, and the Chaplain in attendance was the Rev Preb S Saunders who had revived the annual Patronal Service of the Company at St Helen’s, Bishopsgate in 1913.
As part of the celebrations to mark the Centenary next year, the Lodge is preparing a history and I am keen to hear from any Liverymen who may have anecdotes, photographs or material to contribute either about their own membership of the Lodge or that of family members. I am particularly keen to have photographs of Felix Figheira and George Holtsapffel.
Please send any material, photographs to me by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or to the address listed in the Yearbook: Tangle Trees, 120 Mountnessing Road, Billericay, Essex CM12 9HA. Original material will be returned after copying.
George Kieffer PM