The restoration included the addition of a glass atrium as a foyer and entertainment area, restoration of the lodge room, renewal of the kitchen and all other areas including the hall. There are also two meeting rooms with AV equipment and it is hoped external hire will help support its future.
Paraphrasing from Freemasonry Victoria # 129;
Seventeen years after the town of Williamstown was laid out, the first lodge in Hobsons Bay area was founded - Hobsons Bay Lodge No. 921 – constituted under the English system on 31 July 1854. This was about 19 years after Melbourne was founded in 1835.
On 8 December 1857, the Lodge of Industry No 1048 (English Constitution) held its first meeting at the Builder’s Arms Hotel in Williamstown. In 1862, it joined forces with Hobsons Bay Lodge, retaining the name of Lodge of Industry. The new lodge met for some time at the Napier Hotel as well as the Pier Hotel and the Telegraph Hotel in the early years.
The Lodge relocated to the Club Hotel in Thompson Street in 1883 and then to their very own hall on Electra Street Williamstown. In 26 August 1890, the original foundation stone of the current Masonic Centre in Electra Street was laid with the Dedication (Opening) Ceremony being conducted 8 April 1891.
This progress is recorded in Foundation and other commemorative stones and plaques on the building, as well as honour boards in stone with gold lettering inside. The typical blue marker and text found on historical buildings can deservingly be found on the Williamstown Centre. It simple text reads MASONIC HALL Williamstown’s first Freemasons' Lodge was formed in 1854, the second, Lodge of Industry, in 1857, absorbing the first in 1862. The third, (Excelsior Lodge 1866) amalgamated with the second to form the Excelsior Lodge of Industry (1873) and they built this Temple in 1889.
The renovation is a credit to all involved and I challenge them to leverage this investment with candidates and sound financial management.
Note - all pictures on this page can be clicked for a closer view.