Inside the Freemasons – The Final Episode
The ground-breaking documentary series “Inside The Freemasons” comes to an end on Monday 15th May with the fifth and final episode.
Since the First World War, Freemasonry has lost a third of its membership. Lodges have been closing at a rate of 100 a year and just 2% of Masons were under the age of 30 but Freemasonry is changing and in recent years is attracting new members into the Craft. With unprecedented access, this episode looks at what the future holds for the world’s oldest fraternity…
Apollo University Lodge in Oxford, where former members include Oscar Wilde and Cecil Rhodes, has been successfully attracting students into Masonry for centuries, complete with tail coats and stockings. For David Staples, who was initiated here 21 years ago, it’s the archetype for other universities to emulate.
Persuading Leicester University’s bright young things that Freemasonry is the best use of their spare time and money is more of a challenge but one that Worshipful Brother Andy Green is more than happy to take up.
The United Grand Lodge of England (UGLE) is keen to explore every avenue when it comes to attracting new members and part of their strategy is to encourage new ‘specialist’ Lodges.
In Hampshire, David Lallana, father of Liverpool & England footballer Adam Lallana, is taking Freemasonry to the common man by founding the first ever football themed lodge, complete with a personalised football, their own song and even football boot shaped gavels. Eighteen months in the planning, he’s preparing for the Lodge’s official Consecration Ceremony, which has been filmed for the first time.
David Lallana, a 56-year-old care home director from Dorset and father of Liverpool and England footballer, Adam Lallana, feels a great responsibility to care for others, which is one of the key values of Freemasonry.
He was first introduced to Masonry when he was 31 and wanted to contribute to his community, helping those less fortunate than himself while spending time with like-minded people and having fun.
In Episode 5, David starts his own specialist Football Lodge, complete with wooden football boots for gavels. We witness the Lodge’s consecration ceremony – something not even many Masons will have seen before
DR David Staples
41-year-old Dr David Staples is Clinical Director of Medicine and Emergency Care at Peterborough and Stamford hospitals. David was 19 when he joined his Oxford University Lodge (alumni include Oscar Wilde and Cecil Rhodes) via the United Grand Lodge of England’s Universities Scheme, after an introduction from a housemate at his college.
David originally joined on a whim but soon found it was a unique opportunity to meet and socialise with like-minded people. He found the ceremonial aspect of Freemasonry ‘novel and intriguing’, and enjoyed it so much he stayed. David has now progressed to Deputy Grand Director of Ceremonies.
David notes the best parts of Freemasonry for him are the ‘breadth and range of people you encounter, bond and develop lasting friendships with…and being part of something that is a real force for good, made up of ordinary people spanning many generations and communities’.