50 year Jewel presentation Lodge 448


Saturday 11th May 2019 2.00 pm

Queens Hall


Become a mason

Frequently Asked Questions

The following are only some of the questions that have been asked to date. It is acknowledged that there will be a need for much more detailed information to be made available particularly with regard to financial costs, funding and structural status etc. All of these matters will be covered in detail by The Project Management Committee at any presentation that they are invited to deliver.

Is there a Project Management Committee and who is it made up of?

The Project Management Committee consists of the following Brethren:

Chairman - RW Bro David Selby, Provincial Assistant Grand Master
Vice Chairman - RE Comp Alan Ferris, District Deputy Grand King
RW Bro Joe Murdock, Provincial Grand Treasurer
RW Bro Brian W Gardner, Provincial Deputy Grand Master
VW Bro Ciaran McAteer, Provincial Grand Registrar
RW Bro William Kirk, Provincial Grand Superintendent of Works
RW Bro Richard Gray, Junior Grand Warden and Past PGM of Down
RW Bro Ian Kirkpatrick, Past Provincial Grand Superintendent of Works
W Bro Brian McConville, Director of the current owner
W Bro Johnston Monteith, representing The Mount Masonic Hall Committee
W Bro James Wilson, Solicitor
Bro Jonathan McGrandle, Architect
W Bro Mark Hillis, Fundraising specialist


Will Provincial Grand Lodge or the Project Management Committee be holding any information evenings for the members to attend and hear first hand what the project involves?

All of the Hall Management Committees of Rosetta, Ballymacarrett and The Mount Masonic Halls have received a presentation on the project and been provided with an opportunity to view the building.  All have been invited to attend a meeting of the Project Management Committee and have any queries or concerns addressed.  The offer has also been made to host an information evening for all of the Brethren in each of their respective halls in order to provide full information to the Brethren first hand.   The first presentation will take place on Friday 30th November at 7.30 pm at The Mount Masonic Hall, Park Avenue.


When can we view the building?

Galwally House will be open to all members for viewing every Saturday from Saturday 1st December 11 am to 1 pm until further notice except on Saturday 29th December. 


Are there enough rooms in the building to facilitate all of the Lodges, Chapters etc. that may be affected?

Yes - There are potentially six meeting rooms available but it is anticipated that only three or four will be required.


Are there enough car parking spaces for all members cars?

Yes - there are presently 92 car parking spaces with an opportunity to provide an additional 20 from areas of unused ground. There is also a bus stop adjacent to the entrance.


Does the building provide for disabled access?

Plans to facilitate disabled access are in place so that upon completion the building will have full access including a lift to all floors.


Does the purchase include the ground or is it just the building?

The proposed purchase includes the grounds as defined by the current boundary.


Is Galwally House a listed building and how will this impact upon renovation plans?

Galwally House is a Grade B2 listed building. This places certain restrictions on the alteration of the exterior facade but it is not expected to adversely affect the success of the project.  Exploratory planning consultation meetings have already taken place to address any concerns.


Will members end up paying more in terms of hall rent?

A number of sources of revenue will fund the day-to-day running of the building - hall rent from members is only one.  The building will operate as a business with proposed ventures such as a restaurant, conference centre, weddingvenue not to mention the proposed renting of the many offices that are in the building.  Hall rent from members is generally dictated by day to day running costs - given that this one building has the potential to replace four, the day to day running cost per member is expected to be significantly less.


Will there be a lounge bar area?

It is anticipated that there will be a fully functioning restaurant, bar and social club.


What happens if one of the existing halls chooses not to support the venture?

The project will still proceed as planned.  Sufficient funding has been identified to ensure that the project can proceed should one or even two of the main halls choose not to come on board.  The facilities in terms of parking, disabled access, meeting rooms and lounge refinements upon completion are expected to be superior to that which members presently experience, so it is hoped that the members of Rosetta, Ballymacarrett and The Mount Masonic Halls will embrace this project enthusiastically.It is, however, the overarching principle that together we are stronger and can achieve more that we aspire to and hope that our membership acknowledge this.


Is it only the 3 main Belfast Halls that are invited to participate?

No not at all - the building is sufficient to accommodate members currently sitting in other halls who may consider this as an appropriate time to contemplate their future in their present hall.


What if my Lodge, Chapter or Preceptory wants to be involved in the project but the Hall Committee of my hall don’t?

Should a Hall Committee not be in a position to report the unanimous opinion of all of their respective members then individual units will be offered the opportunity to indicate their support and ensure their long term interests.


Are other Provincial Grand Lodges involved in this project?



Is the project supported by the leadership of the other branches of the Order within the Province and Grand Lodge?

All of the heads of branches of the various Masonic disciplines within the Province, their Deputies, The Grand Master, The Deputy Grand Master and The Grand Secretary have received a presentation on the project, have had the opportunity to ask questions and to view the building.  All have given their full support to the project.


When will moves to Galwally House commence?

It is expected that the administrative functions will be transferred to Galwally House over the summer recess of 2019.  After the intentions of the membership of the halls are known transitional arrangements can then be planned.


When do the members of the existing halls need to make their decision?

There is no pressure whatsoever in making this important decision.  The offer to present a detailed plan to the membership of each hall has been made known to the respective Hall Committees and all members will have an opportunity to view the building.  It is hoped that a response to support the project would be forthcoming before the end of March 2019.


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