History of the Bundaberg Lodge

By W.Bro. Martin P.S. Haywood PPSGD (EC)

Thanks must be recorded to the past Secretaries of the Lodge who recorded the Minutes from which this History has been extracted.
Also thanks to the Grand Librarian R.W. Bro. Ian Maddox PJGW for his help in locating the photo of our Founders and details of the early Masonic activity in the Bundaberg area.

Thanks also to V.W. Bro. B.R. Brennan AGSW for his review of the text and correction of typographical errors.
And thanks of course for the patience and support from my better half, Kathleen, while I was undertaking this task.


“The Founding Members of Bundaberg Lodge 472.”

  • Master               W.Bro. E.H. Ross
  • I.P.M.                 W.Bro. J.L. Body
  • S.W.                     W.Bro. A. Hyde
  • J.W.                     W.Bro. R.C.M. Howard
  • Chaplain.           Bro. K.E. Hazzard
  • Treasurer.        V.W.Bro. P.H. Brown PDGDC
  • Secretary.         R.W.Bro. W. McKay PGJW
  • D.C.                      W.Bro. F.A. Whitchurch
  • S.D.                      Bro. J.O. Barkus
  • J.D.                      Bro. S.H. Larsen
  • Organist.           Bro. A.W. McLucas
  • I.G.                      Bro S.G.C. Dittmann
  • Stewards.          Bro. G.F. Tibbey and Bro. S.J.P. Bartlett
  • Tyler.                 W.Bro. C.J. Newman PDGDC.

“The other foundation members were:-”

Bro. R.C.M. Howard, Bro. R. Sullivain, Bro. V. Roberts, Bro. D.E. Batchelder, Bro. S. Stibbard, Bro. G. Wagner,
Bro. W.A. Wettengal, Bro. W.W. Pollock, Bro. C.J. Inglis

“Office Bearers 2008-2009 ”

  • Master               V.W.Bro. E.A. McCloskey PDGDC
  • I.P.M.                 W.Bro. W.A. Kirby GStdBr
  • S.W.                     W.Bro. D.L. McKewen
  • J.W.                     Bro. J.K. Rimmington
  • Chaplain.           W.Bro. T.L. Larcombe PSGD
  • Treasurer.        V.W. Bro. B.R. Brennan AGSW
  • Secretary.         W.Bro. M.P.S. Haywood PPSGD E.C.
  • D.C.                      W.Bro. C.G.W. Bartlett PGSwdBr
  • S.D.                      Bro. T.B. Groves
  • J.D.                      Bro. T.R. Harris
  • Ass D.C.            W.Bro. G.C. Rose PGSwdBr
  • Almoner.         W.Bro. D.R. Webster PJGD
  • Organist.           W.Bro. F.E. Peterson PGStdBr
  • I.G.                      Bro. T.R. Kruger
  • Stewards.          W.Bro. J.W. Jensen PGSwdBr and Bro. W.D. Rozynski
  • Tyler.                 W.Bro. G.H. White

Freemasonry in the Bundaberg Region

The City of Bundaberg at " Latitude 25° " where it is never too hot or too cold surrounded by cane farms and because it is the home of the famous or infamous "Bundy Rum" is often referred to as the Rum City. This an area where Masonry has been established for over 130 years. Tyrian Lodge No.27 UGLQ was consecrated on June 7th 1876, under the English Constitution as No. 1628. This Lodge was sponsored by Star of the East Lodge (1407 E.C.) now No. 21 UGLQ which meets in Maryborough.

On 17th June 1885 Mulgrave Lodge was consecrated under the Irish Constitution as No. 323 becoming No. 44 UGLQ.

In December 1887 with 17 founders, many of whom had Scottish affiliations, Athol Lodge No. 53 UGLQ was consecrated.

In 1895 Tyrian sponsored Corinthian Lodge No. 2573 E.C. ( now Isis Lodge No. 93 UGLQ) and in 1914 Corinthian Lodge sponsored Continuity Lodge No. 2573 under the English Constitution (now No. 242 UGLQ)

On the 8th June 1900 Ballantyne Lodge was consecrated as "Ionic of Gin Gin" No. 916 Scottish Constitution. In 1904 they joined the Grand Lodge of Queensland and were renumbered No. 37. When in 1921 the UGLQ was formed there were two Ionic Lodges and so "Ionic of Gin Gin" was renamed Balantyne Lodge after John Ballantyne who was initiated into the Lodge in 1904.

November 1902 Lee Bryce Lodge 946 S.C. (No. 142 UGLQ) was consecrated at Mt.Perry Originally named Lodge Royal Coronation. But because there was already a Coronation Lodge in Dayboro the name was changed to Lee Bryce in honour of the District Grand Secretary, V.W. Bro Robert Lee Bryce.

In 1905 Tyrian Lodge sponsored Sir Augustus Lodge No. 3138 E.C. (now No. 154 UGLQ).

The old Mulgrave Hotel in North Bundaberg was the first meeting place for Tyrian Lodge but after 9 years and at a cost of £1600 they built their own Temple in Woongarra Street, Bundaberg now occupied by the Presbyterian Manse. In 1926 the trustees purchased a two storey building in Bourbong Street, owned by a Mr. W.J. Heathwood and used as a grocery and drapery store.

The building was renovated, and the ground level remaining as shops, which currently rented to "Dick Smiths", whilst the first floor was developed for Lodge purposes. The solid oak furniture was a gift to the Temple trustees from the late Bro. Garnet Buss of Athol Lodge. The Temple was ready for use in June 1926 and was dedicated to Freemasonry by the then Grand Master, M.W.Bro. Justice C. Stumm.

The building in Bourbong Street, housing the Masonic Centre, is controlled by a trust consisting of one member each from Tyrian, Mulgrave, Athol and Sir Augustus Lodges.

History shows that membership of our great fraternity cycles up and down depending on many various factors. Great increases in membership occurred after both the two World Wars. It was almost at the end of this second surge in membership that Bundaberg Lodge was consecrated in 1958 seven years after the end of the second World War.

The founding of Bundaberg Lodge

In 1957 W.Bro. J.L. Body convened a meeting of interested Masons to form a fifth craft Lodge in Bundaberg. The result of this and further meetings and the help of Tyrian Lodge, Bundaberg Lodge No. 472 UGLQ , the youngest lodge in the area , was sponsored by Tyrian Lodge.

A Consecration Ceremony was held on the 2nd August 1958, when the then Grand Master Most W.Bro. H.B. Milliner assisted by Rt.W. Bro. J. Patterson D.G.M. and other Grand Lodge Officers handed over the Lodge Warrant to the Lodge and its foundation members.

Because of his enthusiastic work in getting Brethren together to form Bundaberg Lodge W.Bro. J.L. Body the founding I.P.M. is respectively remembered as the Founding Father of our Lodge.

It is interesting to note that the Third Initiate W.Bro. E.A. McCloskey who is the son in law of W.Bro. J.L. Body is our Master in this our 50th year having served as Master of Bundaberg Lodge on three previous occasions-1967, 2005, & 2006.

From 15 original members or Founders the Lodge grew in membership to 80 in the first 10 years and now after losing most of those founders and many of the other early members to the Grand Lodge Above we now have a reasonably healthy membership of 46.

Bundaberg Lodge 1958-60

The first meeting after the consecration of Bundaberg Lodge was held on 18th August 1958 when the Bylaws of the Lodge were confirmed and forwarded to the Grand Secretary for confirmation by Grand Lodge. Five candidates were proposed for initiation into the Lodge:-

  • Mr. R.J. Hyde
  • Mr. D. Crossett
  • Mr. M.L. Andersen
  • Mr. E.A. McCloskey
  • Mr. L.C. Cockrane

At the third meeting of the Lodge on 15th September 1958 a ballot for Mr.R.J. Hyde proved favourable and he was initiated at the next meeting on 20th October.

Mr.D. Crossett and Mr.E.A. McClosky were Ballotted for on 20th October and Initiated in a double ceremony on November 17th 1958.

The next few meetings were very busy with a double second degree in December for Bros. Hyde and Crossett, a double initiation in January 1959 for Mr. M.L. Andersen and Mr. L.C. Cochrane, a double second degree in February for Bros. McClosky and Andersen, a double third degree in March for Bros. Hyde and Crossett. Bro. Cochrane was passed to the degree of a fellowcraft in April and then a double third degree was done in May for Bros. McClosky and Andersen.

At the February meeting it was agreed that an individual volume of the Sacred Law would be presented to each candidate of the Lodge on being raised to the 3rd Degree and this has continued as a Bundaberg Lodge tradition. The first and second candidates Bros. Hyde and Crossett were presented with their Volumes of the Sacred Law at the regular meeting in March 1959 by Rt.W.Bro. V.H. Stringer AGSW No.1 District.

During this period of the first 9 months of the existence of Bundaberg Lodge a further two gentlemen were favourably balloted for initiation and 6 affiliated members joined.

At the Regular meeting in July after electing the Officers for the next year, it was agreed that a Past Masters Breast Jewel be purchased ready for presentation at the Installation in August. Design No.19 was chosen from the standard patterns offered by J.R.Somers & Son . This pattern has continued to be used as Bundaberg Lodge's P.M. breast Jewel. The cost of this P.M.'s Jewel in 1959 was £13/16/9 and the same design of Jewel in 2008 costs $287.50.

At the November meeting 1959 It was proposed that the December meeting should lapse, so the next regular meeting was in January 1960, when it was recorded that the Lodge received a proposal from Tyrian Lodge that a combined Church service should be held for Local Lodges on 13th March 1960. A Masonic Church Service has now become an annual event, each year one of the local Lodges taking it in turn to lead the proceedings. This year 2008 The Annual Masonic Church parade and Evensong was on Sunday 27th July at 2.00pm at Christ Church Anglican Church in Bundaberg.

At the 15th February 1960 meeting after Bro. George Fredrick Fowkes was raised to the degree of a Master Mason, W.Bro. Brody presented a Grand Lodge Certificate to his son-in law, Bro. Alf McCloskey.

At the 16th May 1960 regular meeting a Social Committee was formed to organize social meetings where wives/partners and children would be invited along with members of the lodge. The first of these social meetings was held at the "Kiosk" Presumably the Cafe of Sidney Bartlett at Bargara. This appears to have been a regular development with a new committee being formed at the regular meeting of 8th October 1960, though unfortunately this has now fallen by the wayside.

Something unrecorded must have occurred as there is no record as to why, but at the regular meeting of 20th June 1960 it was proposed that Ladies be not allowed to attend the forthcoming installation Banquet however this proposal was defeated.

At the November 1960 meeting there was reference to a Masonic Ball, and correspondence with Tyrian Lodge about the organization of this which was left to the social committee, who reported back to the Lodge that arrangements had been made to hold this on 28th January 1961, nothing more was recorded.

At this regular meeting on 21st November 1960 a Grand Lodge Certificate was presented to Bro. Kenneth McDonald Fyfe at the request of Tibrogargan Lodge #305 as Bro. Fyfe had affiliated to Bundaberg Lodge in September 1960 after being initiated, passed & raised in Tibrogargan Lodge.

The regular meeting of 18th July 1960 was designated a Past Master's Night when all the offices were taken over by Past Masters, this has since been a regular occurrence each year to hold a Past Master's Night though not necessarily the same month each year.

Bundaberg Lodge 1961-90

During and throughout this period those records available show that the regular meetings occurred and the work was carried out with decorum. It is interesting to note that our D.C. W.Bro Dudley Garrett was Initiated on 17th July 1961, this being a Past Master's night, and he was passed on 18th September 1961 and raised on 16th October that same year, and soon started his progress towards the chair of K.S. being invested as a Steward in August 1962. It was also during this period that our W.M., V.W.Bro. Alf McCloskey started his progress towards the chair of K.S. being invested as a Steward in 1960 and I.G. in 1962.

It is during this period that many of our esteemed Past Masters on whom the Lodge now relies joined Bundaberg Lodge, W. Bro. John Jensen was Initiated in September 1965, passed in November the same year and raised in January 1966, invested as a Steward in 1969 and eventually reaching the chair of King Solomon in 1986. W.Bro Cedric Bartlett was initiated in February 1967, passed in June that year and raised in December of the same year, invested as I.G. in 1970 and installed as Master in 1975.

W.Bro Gordon Rose was affiliated to Bundaberg Lodge in September 1968 from Yarraman Lodge #225, invested as I.G. in 1978 and Installed as Master in 1983.

1967 saw V.W. Bro. Alf McCloskey as Master for the first time and W. Bro. Dudley Garrett was Master in 1970.

Our Organist W. Bro Frank Petterson affiliated to Bundaberg Lodge from Ballantyne Lodge in February 1981 and although acting as Organist for a number of local Lodges managed to progress from S.D. in 1994 to Master in 1997.

In October 1966 it was proposed and accepted that there should be a Charity account to hold money for Charity separate from other monies belonging to the Lodge.

The regular meeting in April 1968 fell on Easter Monday so by dispensation was altered to Monday 8th i.e. the following Monday.

Around 1966 the street lighting on Bourbong Street had been modernized and W. Bro Mclucas stressed the advisability of considering better blackout procedures for the 3rd degree ceremony as the powerful street lighting was leaking into the Temple.

Our Almoner W. Bro. Doug Webster was initiated in September 1981, passed in December the same year and raised in May 1982, was J.D. in 1985 progressing to being Master in 1988.

This was a strong period in the life of Bundaberg Lodge, membership grew, Initiates progressed, and the founders and early members enjoyed their ritual.

During this period the balance in the Lodge General account varied around $400 and in the charity account around $65. Also during this period there were regular annual donations made to the Blue Nursing Service, the Welfare Association for the Blind, and the Adult Deaf & Dumb Society. Up to 1968 $2 was the usual donation to these Charities but by then this was increased to $4, and in 1973 increased to $10.

In March 1967 $4.20 was donated to a charity called the Bright Horizon and $5 was donated to St. Vincent de Paul Society. In September 1967 $30 from the charity account was forwarded to the Sandgate Infirmary Building Fund and the following year a Life Governor Jewel from the A.M.W.&.O. Fund was obtained and presented to Bro C.L. Smith. In 1973 $30 was donated to the A.M.W.& O. Fund with $50 sent to the Sandgate Infirmary Building Appeal.

The cost of the Installation festive board in 1967 was 75c per head and was held at the Rowers Hall.

Bundaberg Lodge 1990-2008

The Lodge continued in strength attracting good members to carry on the tradition of fraternal work.

W.Bro. Trevor Larcombe affiliated from Biggenden #136 in 1992, became S.W. in 2001 and Master in 2002 and 2003.

W.Bro. Dr. David Willshire affiliated from Southern Compass No. 351 W.A. in 1992 was Master in 1994 & 1995 serving the Lodge as Secretary from 1999 to 2007 the lodge showing great appreciation by the presentation of a Secretary's breast jewel at the installation meeting in August 2007.

Our AGSW V.W. Bro. Bevan Brennan affiliated to Bundaberg Lodge from United Services (Mackay) Remembrance Lodge No. 389 UGLQ in 1999 and served as Master during 2000-2001, & 2001-2002

Bro. Cecil Hunt affiliated from Mulgrave Lodge and W. Bro. Gabriel White affiliated from Continuity Lodge in 2001. Both being respected stalwart members.

W. Bro. Harry Fisher affiliated from Temple No. 31 in 2003 and it is hoped that once work commitments settle down that he will progress to the chair of King Solomon.

Our present J.D. Bro. Terry Harris was initiated in June 2004, passed in November of that year and Raised in April 2005, so we have high expectations that he will eventually reach the chair of King Solomon.

Our present I.P.M. W. Bro. Bill Kirby affiliated to Bundaberg Lodge in 2004 and served as Master in 2007 - 2008

Our J.W. Bro. John Rimmington was initiated July 2004, passed December 2004 and raised April 2005.

Our I.G. Bro. Terry Kruger was initiated November 2005, passed June 2006 and raised September 2006.

Our Secretary W. Bro. Martin Haywood affiliated from Mansfield Lodge No. 7094 E.C. in 2006.

Our S.W. W. Bro. Don McKerwen affiliated from Cohuna Lodge No. 227 Victoria in September 2007 and our S.D. Bro. Trevor Groves affiliated from Balantyne Lodge in March 2008.

So as can be seen there is a strong combination of affiliate members and Initiates willing to take the strain and work to see that Bundaberg Lodge continues in fraternal happiness for the next 50 years.

To celebrate our Golden Jubilee the Lodge will present a donation of $1000 to the Assistant Grand Master R.W. Bro. Col Mander, at the festive Board, towards the Microscope Appeal for the QIMR.

W. Bro. W.A. Kirby will present a Masonic Homes Building Appeal Jewel to the Lodge, for Masters to wear in the future during their year in office.

Also in celebration the Following Brethren have made personal donations to qualify for the following honorifics in the A.M.W. & O. Fund:-

  • Bro. T.R. Kruger                   - Life Vice President
  • W.Bro. C.E. Hunt                  - Life Vice Patron
  • Bro. T.B. Groves                   - Life Vice Patron
  • W. Bro. W.A. Kirby              - Life Patron
  • W. Bro. M.P.S. Haywood   - Life Patron

Past Masters of Bundaberg Lodge

1958 Eric Harold ROSS
1959 Robert Charles HOWARD
1960 Charles James INGLIS
1961 Joseph Oliver BARKUS
1962 William Arthur WETTENGEL
1963 Sidney George Clifford DITTMANN
1964 Keith Edward HAZZARD
1965 Sydney James Patrick BARTLETT
1966 Geoffrey Francis TIBBEY
1967 Ernest Alfred McCLOSKEY
1968 Maurice Leslie ANDERSEN
1969 Frederick Ferdinand BEYER
1970 Dudley Charles GARRETT
1971 Joseph Percy WHITE
1972 Lois Jack SOTHMANN
1973 Arnold James JENSEN
1974 Vincent Scotney George GOTT
1975 Cedric George William BARTLETT
1976 Stannard George COVEY
1977 Arthur SMITH
1978 Maxwell Cyril McKAVANAGH
1979 Maxwell Cyril McKAVANAGH
1980 Kevin John PEEK
1981 Keith Edward HAZZARD
1982 Noel John James CAMERON
1983 Gordon Charles ROSE
1984 Ian Donovan MICHAEL
1985 Kenneth Stephen AVENELL
1986 John William JENSEN
1987 Anthony Ralph MILLMAN

1988 Douglas Roy WEBSTER
1989 Warren BALLANTYNE
1990 Reginald John BALDWIN
1991 Arthur Ivor FROST
1992 Noel John James CAMERON
1993 Gunduz Jem KALIC
1994 Dr David John WILLSHER
1995 Dr David John WILLSHER
1996 Kenneth George SMALL
1997 Francis Eric PETTERSON
1998 Cedric George William BARTLETT
1999 Arnold James JENSEN
2000 Bevan Rex BRENNAN
2001 Bevan Rex BRENNAN
2002 Trevor Lloyd LARCOMBE
2003 Dudley Charles GARRETT
2004 Dudley Charles GARRETT
2005 Ernest Alfred McCLOSKEY
2006 Ernest Alfred McCLOSKEY
2007 William Allan KIRBY
2008 Ernest Alfred McCLOSKEY
2009 Don McKEWEN
2013 Bevan Rex BRENNAN
2014 Francis Eric PETTERSON
2015 Martin Paul Stewart HAYWOOD
2016 Trevor Loyd LARCOMBE
2017 John Joseph DODD