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BALLYMONEY

District of Cary and Dunluce

The hall sits imposingly at the corner of the main street with its clock tower climbing into the sky. The hall is separated from the Masonic Centre which is two doors along to the left when leaving the hall

Address:-

Freemasons' Hall
2 Charlotte Street
Ballymoney
BT53  6AY

hall

Ballymoney Masonic Hall is by far the most famous Masonic building in Carey and Dunluce. It has a long history and stands right in the centre of Ballymoney town at the top of Main Street and indeed houses the town clock tower. The present building was erected in 1755 by the Earl of Antrim. In its long history it has been used as a courtroom and a jail, a market house, a town hall, a library, a school, a place of worship for Roman Catholics and a Presbyterian Sunday school. It gained notoriety as a place of hanging during the United Irishmen's rebellion of 1798. Two United Irishmen were hanged from the clock tower. The Masons of Ballymoney bought the hall in 1907 with a promise that the Council would look after the upkeep of the clock and clock tower. The building is a large three Storey construction of great architectural beauty with large arched windows and the clock tower attached to one end. The centre of the building is much higher than the rest of the building. The campanile now above the clock is in accordance with a continental design and there is a weather vane in the shape of a salmon. Inside on the ground floor there is a very large robing room and toilets. The first floor is approached by a winding stairway and here we have another large dressing room and the Lodge room itself, which is approximately 1000 sq. ft. The walls are panelled half way up to which is an extremely high ceiling and is very tastefully decorated and well fitted out with furniture and carpet. The first Lodge ever formed in Carey and Dunluce was in Ballymoney in 1743. It was Lodge No. 135. The Masonic bodies which sit in the hall today are two Craft Lodges, No. 57 and No. 330, one Royal Arch Chapter, one Council of Knight Masons and one Preceptory. The contents of the hall include a very nice box type Master's chair made from old mahogany by John McElreavy in 1817, at a cost of 20.00. In the anti room hangs the only three proper tracing boards in Carey and Dunluce. They are 3.5 ft. wide 6 ft. high and are painted on canvas and were presented in 1908. They are a most beautiful example of tracing boards. On the stairs there is a large heavy carved wooden coat of arms of the McDonell family, who were the Earls of Antrim.

There are also various glass cabinets holding Masonic medals and regalia, but for me the most precious thing in Ballymoney hall is an Illuminated Album presented to a Worshipful Brother Robert Adarns in 1923 for his services to Lodge No. 57. The album consists of thick wooden pages decorated with colourful scripts and designs; it has 18 water-colour paintings of all the places of beauty in North Antrim by the Irish artists Carey and Thompson. Adjacent to the Hall, on the 17th June 1995, a foundation stone was laid by the Right Worshipful Provincial Grand Master, R.J. Thompson and on the 7th of December 1995 a new Masonic Centre was opened by The Most Worshipful Grand Master, D.H. Templeton.

Thanks to Irish Masonic Records v3

The Lodges meeting in Ballymoney Masonic Hall:-

Unless otherwise stated Lodges do not meet June, July or August

57 Ballymoney
meets each month on the 2nd Wednesday at 7.30 pm (6.30 pm in January)
330 Ballymoney
meets each month on the 3rd Friday at 7.30 pm (6.00 pm in January)