We are a vibrant Lodge with forty members. Ages vary from mid 20s all the way up to the 80s. Most members live in and around London but some travel from as far afield as Wales and even Turkey.
There are an eclectic mix of professions and in our number can be counted accountants, barristers, business development executives, firemen, glaziers , independent financial advisors, IT contractors, Lloyd’s underwriters, medical doctors, pilots, private equity investors, roofers, surveyors and taxi drivers.
It is an exceptionally happy, relaxed Lodge and we are very proud of this.
The year is 1786 and Freemasonry was starting to flourish in England. 1786 was not a very notable year in itself but, as far as we are concerned, a most important event took place. Dispensation was sought at the end of 1785 from the Antient Grand Lodge, then known as “The Grand Lodge of the Most Antient and Honourable Fraternity of Free and Accepted Masons", by a Past Master of Atholl Lodge to form a new Lodge of Operative Masons – i.e. brethren who were masons by trade or otherwise engaged in the building business. The Domatic Lodge No. 234 was consecrated at the “Ship Tavern”, Lincoln's Inn Fields. Operative Masons only were to be admitted and at a meeting of the Lodge on April 24th, 1786, two Brothers proposed as joining members were rejected because they were not Operative Masons. This concerned existing members as it restricted their numbers and caused further problems when several brethren changed their vocation. At an Emergency Meeting on 15th December 1789 the Worshipful Master proposed obtaining a new Warrant for the Lodge, known as a Working Warrant, to enable Free and Accepted or Speculative Masons to be members of Domatic Lodge. This was agreed and the new Warrant was obtained in just 9 days!
This second Warrant - our own Warrant displayed to every candidate on his initiation - is dated 24th December 1789 and bears the names of W.Bro. Sir Watkin Lewes (Master Elect), W.Bro. Edward Cook (Senior Warden), and W. Bro. Thomas Abbott (Junior Warden). They were empowered to form and hold a Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons at the "Sign of the Sun", Lincoln's Inn Fields, on the second Thursday of each month. The new Lodge was numbered 258 and when inaugurated there were only 165 other Lodges under the Antient Grand Lodge. The regular Grand Lodge known then as the "Moderns" had 174 so at that time there were only 340 Lodges on the registers of the two Grand Lodges.
The Domatic Lodge therefore had two separate warrants, an event without parallel in English Masonry. The Lodge, one day to be known as the Lion and Lamb, was born. Sir Watkin Lewes, the first Worshipful Master, was a member of the Joiner's Company, Alderman and Sheriff of the City of London in 1772 and Lord Mayor of London in 1780. The following year he was elected Member of Parliament for the City.
The two separate Warrants were worked by the Domatic Lodge until 1795 but must have created some difficulties. At a regular meeting of the Domatic, 27th October 1795, the Worshipful Master ordered the Lodge to be summoned that Friday, October 30th, with a view to dispose of Lodge No. 258. Minutes from the Emergency Meeting record - “The Worshipful Master informed the Lodge that he had ordered the Secretary to summon the Brothers for this evening to take into consideration the disposal of the Warrant of Lodge No. 258 as, it being found that members did not meet to support the two Warrants, and that Lodge No.258 by this reason was become burdensome, it was thought best to dispose of it as an application had been made by a respectable Company of gentlemen”.
The suggestion was unanimously adopted and a Committee appointed to dispose of the warrant in a manner “as they think meet for the good of the Lodge”.
Minutes from 26th January 1796 record:
“Bro. Wright presented the Lodge with the sum of One Pound from Bro. Clark of 244 for having purchased the Warrant No. 258 and afterwards relinquishing the same, which sum was put to the moneys for decorating the Lodge, by unanimous consent of the Members present”. The matter is finally resolved on the 26th April 1796 when the minutes of the Domatic Lodge note: “Bro Wright informed the Lodge that the Committee appointed for the disposal of the Warrant 258 had disposed of the same, that the Lodge No. 258 was to be moved to the ‘Bear and Wheatsheaf’ in Lower Thames Street and that the Secretary should acquaint the Grand Secretary of the same”.
Thus the baby we know as the Lion & Lamb Lodge was sent out into the world to stand on its own two feet. It was obviously intended that we should be a Master Masons Lodge as the early Minutes make no mention of any initiation but refer solely to Lectures.
With 225 years of history this section could run to several pages but will finish by looking at the origin of our name. It was adopted during, or shortly before 1816, and this is confirmed on the Centenary Warrant of 1889. During 1814/15 the new United Grand Lodge was re-allocating numbers to its Lodges and we became No. 325. Grand Lodge also asked each Lodge to adopt a name in addition to its number.
To our Lodge brethren, the Lion is self evident; it is the Lion Rampant of Scotland, itself an emblem on the banner of the Antient Grand Lodge, whose arms had been adopted in their entirety by our Lodge and appear on our present banner. The Lion also appeared on the Armourial Bearings of the Duke of Kent (Grand Master of the Antients) and the Lamb on those of the Duke of Sussex (Grand Master of the Moderns).
Thus the name “Lion and Lamb” was adopted by the Lodge at the time of the formation of the United Grand Lodge. With a nod to the Old Testament quotation, "The Lion and the Lamb shall lie down together”, it symbolises the merging of the “Antients” represented by the “Lion” with the “Moderns” represented by the “Lamb”.