Crawfordsburn Temperance (LOL 1091)
The lodge was formed in 1905, initially becoming a member of Holywood District No.14. However, at that time the County Down Grand Lodge was unhappy at the prospect of new lodges in the Bangor area joining Holywood District and the following year, 1906, eventually gave it’s approval for the formation of a new Bangor District. In addition to 1091 other founding lodges of Bangor District were 589, 677, 695, 769, 933 and the now extinct 1038.
The lodge originally met in the old Crawfordsburn school room on the first Tuesday in each month and while the early minute books are missing some of the original attendance books are still in the lodges possession.
The first available minutes actually date from 1914 and regular reference is made to a name particularly synonymous with the Crawfordsburn lodge- Bro. John Carters (Senior). Bro. Carters, in fact served as Worshipful Master with great distinction for 22 years from 1910 to 1932 and during that time clearly lead the lodge by example.
During the years of the First World war membership was very low, but under the leadership of Bro. Carters the lodge continued to function, meeting on a quarterly basis only. The post war years saw the lodge beginning to grow and monthly meetings were well attended. From an early date the lodge owned its own arch, which straddled the village main street between the present Orange hall and the Inn, and a pair of Lambeg drums which accompanied the members every ‘Twelfth’ for quite a number of years. The cost of hiring a band in those days was clearly prohibitive.
By the late 1920’s the lodge had changed it’s meeting night to the first Monday in each month and dues were fixed at the princely sum of 6d. 1932 was a particularly auspicious year which saw the lodge purchase the present Orange hall for a sum which is thought not to exceed £500. Regular social events were organised to clear the debt and it is to the great credit of the members at that time that is was cleared in a relatively short period. Stalwarts such as Brothers Ernest Ferguson, George Thompson and George Graham were very much to the fore at this time.
Whilst the Lodge continued to function during the war years of the Second World war there was certainly a lull in activity. It was not until the late 1940’s and early 1950’s that the lodge began to flourish again, due in no short measure to the efforts of brethren such as Albert Graham, Alex and Tommy Massey, James Heyburn, Billy Boal (Senior), Charlie Williamson and Tommy Mooney. One major coup at the time was the attendance at the January 1953 installation of officers of a youthful Bro. Brian Faulkner, MP, who of course was later to become Prime Minister of Northern Ireland and one of our greatest Unionist protagonists. It sis interesting to note that in his speech at this meeting, Bro. Faulkner called for “more loyalty to the Order and the Flag” and is a call which must surely be repeated today.
The lodge continued to flourish in the 1950’s by which time the Lambeg drums had been dispensed with and private bands were engaged to accompany the lodge each twelfth.
Into the 1960’s and the lodge seemed to benefit greatly from an influx of members transferring from other lodges. Membership rose to over 100 with a peak of over 130 in the early and mid 1970’s. The first suggestion that the lodge should form it’s own band was made after the twelfth demonstration in 1973 and by Easter 1974 the Crawfordsburn Protestant Boys Flute Band was on the road. New uniforms had been purchased with the aid of various fund raising events.
The band has now been renamed the Robert Graham Memorial Flute Band in memory of Robert Graham who was president of the band and father of Arthur and Norman Graham who were long serving members of the band and are still active members of the Crawfordsburn lodge.
The lodge is still flourishing to this day.