FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
ABOUT OXFORDSHIRE FREEMASONRY
No, absolutely not. As a general rule, it's up to you to ask to join. You may already know a Freemason or two, and it you're intested just ask them to tell you more about joining.
If you have no links to Freemasonry, that's OK too. just contact our Membership Officer Dave Robinson who can introduce you to a suitable local Lodge.
Yes we do.
The tradition was passed down from the practical workwear of operative masons of old. Today it's our badge, and there are many kinds.
In Craft Freemasonry these are divided into 3 kinds. White reflects the primary stage of Entered Apprentice, then we add light blue ribbon and rosettes from Second Degree or Fellowcraft and beyond, including Master of the Lodge.
Once a Freemason receives 'promotion' or 'honours' the apron becomes dark blue (or even red or maroon) and it becomes a little more more elaborate.
It is not necessarily always the case that you have to achieve becoming Master of a lodge to be honoured this way.
No, our membership comes from all backgrounds.
Most Freemasons are not wealthy, and some with very modest incomes.
It's also true to say that Freemasonry will not make you wealthy.
We have around 10 meeting places in local Oxfordshire towns.
Our permanent halls and centres are in Witney, Thame, Caversham, Woodstock, Burford, Bicester, Oxford, Henley-on-Thames, Banbury, Chipping Norton. (One Lodge also meets in an Oxford hotel.)
Yes. You don't have to be invited or come from a family of Freemasons. We're open to everyone.
If you know existing Freemasons, simply ask them about joining a Lodge. If you have friends who are far from Oxfordshire, then contact our Membership Officer for an introduction to a local Lodge. We can always help.
Yes you can.
We welcome joiners from any and every faith.
This does not mean altering or compromising your existing religion in any way.
However, belief in a Superior Being is mandatory, so atheists and agnostics cannot join under our Constitution.
Elsewhere and on the Continent this may not be an obstacle.
Yes you can.
Visiting is one of the most enjoyable parts of Freemasonry.
When you become a Freemason, you will receive invitations to visit other Lodges. You will also invite guests to yours.
We're highly sociable and friendly. Travelling and meeting and making new friends is the essence of Freemasonry.
There's a start up or joining fee of a couple of hundred pounds, then a yearly recurring membership fee. This varies from lodge to lodge, but is about £150 PA or less in Oxfordshire.
Dining at each meeting is around £20, but you don't neccessarily have to stay and eat. Most Lodges meet between 6 and 9 times each year.
Most Lodges require a plain dark grey or black suit, white shirt, black tie, and finally black business shoes. It's simply the kind of kit you might wear at a formal business meeting and is universally acceptable.
Attending a Lodge anywhere in the UK has a sense of occasion, and the emphasis is smart rather than casual.
Some Lodges specify a dinner jacket suit with bowtie, and on occasions 'head waiter' style black jacket and stripy trousers.
There are many exceptions...
The Henley on Thames boating lodge wear colourful striped blazers!
The dress code is generally specified on your invitation or 'summons'.
Men over 18 (recently changed from 21), of good character and holding belief in a Supreme Being.
People of all backgrounds, faiths, and ethnic groups are very welcome.
You will of course need to be sociable, and keen to help others via our charities and by giving service in our communities.
Parallel to the men's Orders, are two women's Grand Lodges mirroring our own entry requirements and objectives. Information on these is elsewhere on this site.
Privacy is a matter for the individual.
But yes, we are positively encouraged to share information about Freemasonry.
Personal recommendation is the most powerful medium, and explaining who we are and what we do always attracts new members.
We have a policy of honesty and openness.