Scarlet Cord

The Ancient and Masonic Order of the Scarlet Cord


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The current Ancient and Masonic Order of the Scarlet Cord is based on an earlier Order, The Royal Order of Knights of the Scarlet Cord, developed in the British Isles in 1889, which was itself derived from 18th Century documents from the Amsterdam Masonic archives.

The rituals and ceremonies were rewritten and enriched by His Honour Judge Fredrick Adolphus Philbrick, KC, and were performed as appendant grades to the Order of the Secret Monitor. The rituals of the Order are taken from Old Testament times, commencing at the period of Joshua, the fall of Jericho and the story of Rahab. The main purpose was to raise considerable sums of money for the Secret Monitor Benevolent Fund, which still plays a significant role in Masonic welfare provision today. The Order ceased working in 1929.

A paper on the original Order written and delivered in 2001 by Peter Glyn Williams, the then Grand Supreme Ruler of the Secret Monitor, stimulated interest in the long-forgotten rituals. In 2006 a Secret Monitor Conclave was Consecrated with the sole purpose of reviving the old Order and conferring updated versions of the original six grades, some of which only remained in fragmented form. A huge appetite for the grades among Secret Monitors led to the Order being inaugurated as a separate Sovereign body in a magnificent ceremony in the Grand Temple at Freemasons’ Hall on 21 July 2010.

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Scarlet Cord

Installation of a new Provincial Grand Summus for Durham and Northumberland

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Right Distinguished Companion Michael Allan Jacques (centre left), Provincial Grand Summus for Durham and Northumberland with Most Distinguished Companion Ian Stanley Currans, Grand Summus (centre right)

Most Distinguished Companion Ian Stanley Currans, Grand Summus of the Ancient and Masonic Order of the Scarlet Cord, was accompanied by his Deputy Grand Summus, Assistant Grand Summus and a team of Grand Officers to Byker Masonic Hall in November to Install Michael Allan Jacques as Provincial Grand Summus for Durham and Northumberland.

A typically warm welcome was extended to the visiting team when they arrived and from the outset the atmosphere was one of good cheer. Michael is a well know personality in the Province and as the Grand Summus introduced him into the meeting with some light-hearted comments everyone relaxed and settled in for an enjoyable Installation ceremony.

At dinner conversation and laughter filled the room. When it came to the Toasts Right Distinguished Companion Jacques paid tribute to his predecessor, Right Distinguished Companion Robert Muir Henderson. He then moved on to present the Most Distinguished Grand Summus with a wonderful coal sculpture of a rugby player. The Deputy Grand Summus and Assistant Grand Summus were treated to bottles of “Newcastle Champagne” the famous Newcastle Brown Ale, or “Dog” as it’s known locally.

Given the conviviality both in the meeting and at the after-proceedings it was clear that the Order is in good heart in that part of the Country and will no doubt grow even stronger under Right Distinguished Companion Jacques’ leadership.


M.Dist.Comp. Ian S. Currans
Grand Summus

R.Dist.Comp. Francis C. Spencer
Deputy Grand Summus

R.Dist.Comp. Howard S. Markham
Assistant Grand Summus


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