Heritage Category: Listed Building

Grade: I

List Entry Number: 1279903

Date first listed: 20-Jun-1975



Ordnance survey map of PHOENIX LODGE (FREEMASON'S HALL)
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Sunderland (Metropolitan Authority)

National Grid Reference: NZ 40394 57228



NZ4057 QUEEN STREET EAST 920-1/12/176 (West side) 20/06/75 Phoenix Lodge (Freemasons' Hall)


Freemasons' hall. 1785. By John Bonner, replacing 1778 Lodge destroyed by fire; entrance lobby and offices added 1925. Front range incised render with ashlar plinth and painted ashlar dressings; right return brick; rear wing limestone rubble with brick dressings. Dark grey slate roof main and rear ranges; purple slate on right pent roof. L-plan with front lodge room, right wing, and right rear dining room; entrance and offices addition in rear angle. Front range Palladian style. EXTERIOR: main elevation to S probably originally symmetrical with one tall storey, 3 blind windows, and lower pent extensions of which only the right remains; right return has basement. Sill band supports central tall arched recess with plain stone head on impost blocks; aedicule set in recess has pediment on scroll brackets; masonic symbol removed from tympanum of arch. Flanking blind windows have plain stone surrounds. Eaves gutter cornice and blocking course. Lower right bay set back slightly has projecting stone sill to blocked window at right, C20 ventilator inserted; eaves band and gable coping to eaves level of central block. Small roundel in gable peak of dining room which rises behind and above pent extension. Main roof hipped, with 2 rear and one truncated right end chimneys; right bay roof pent. Right return: pent wing has basement entrance and wide blocked entrance, one blind and one blocked window above; rear wing has slightly elliptical heads to 3 blocked tall piano nobile windows with ventilators inserted; elliptical head to wide basement entrance; plain inserted basement door and 3 blocked windows. INTERIOR: lodge room, in front range, has plaster panelled walls and moulded cornice, 2 Adam-style chimney pieces in rear wall with fluting and swags, dado rail, 6-panelled doors in architraves. Ceiling has central roundel with sunburst symbol; 2 fret-work round ventilator grilles. Arched recess at W end with 1785 organ in balustraded balcony. At E end, in an arch of engaged columns and architrave containing double sunburst in tympanum, triple niches. The central contains the Worshipful Master's throne which has fluted Doric Order supporting entablature with early symbols of speculative Masonry in metopes, and broken pediment containing shield of Operative Craft. This combination is of unique Masonic interest. Outer niches contain seats with boarded curved backs. 12 chairs from St John's Lodge, Newcastle upon Tyne. Rear wing (Festive Board) has high boarded dado with rail; cupboards in rear wall with fielded panels; inserted C20 Tudor-style stone chimney-piece holds cast-iron fireback dated 1588, with initials IFC and two anchors, fleur-de-lys and roses, flanked by vines; C20 inserted ceiling. The oldest surviving Freemasons' Hall in the country, and a remarkably complete interior. (Buildings of England: Pevsner (revised Williamson): County Durham: Harmondsworth: 1983-: 455).

Listing NGR: NZ4039457228


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number: 391553

Legacy System: LBS


Books and journals
Pevsner, N, The Buildings of England: County Durham, (1983), 455

End of official listing