The Order is based on the historic records of the life and the legend of King Athelstan. The focus of the Order is to show how this early reference to the importance of Masonry in English history was significant for the development of speculative Freemasonry.
The Masonic Order of Athelstan portrays the story of a Master Mason being called to York in 926 AD to receive the Ancient Charges from the king. Throughout its ceremony the ritual contains a great deal of symbolism that is still seen in some Lodges today and a great deal that is not currently worked.
The Order, in England and Wales, is structured so that its Provinces, wherever possible, reflect and represent the original Kingdoms and Gilds (original spelling of Guilds) as they were set up by King Athelstan during his reign as "The First King of all the English". Our Provinces do not therefore correlate directly with the English County divisions; our Provinces amalgamate and include areas from existing counties to provide Provinces large enough to support and sustain the required ten Courts.
Throughout Masonic ceremonies, there are many legends that are used to tell a story and portray moral values. The ceremonies within this Order are no different. The Athelstan ceremony focuses on the legend of the York Assembly of 926 AD and uses this as the framework and conduit for our own ceremony. The story is the summoning of the Master Mason to the York assembly for further 'instruction' of Masonic ritual and symbolism and in doing so follows the historic development of the Craft over the following centuries.
The aim of the Masonic Order of Athelstan is to encourage and prompt its members into actual further study and research. As such each candidate is carefully chosen due to their interest in Masonic history and is ‘Instructed’ into our Order.
Membership of our Order is strictly invitational and members are expected to take a wide and committed interest in all aspects of freemasonry, there are therefore mandatory requirements for each member to have current, active and ongoing membership of both Craft and Royal Arch Chapter Masonry. To this end we are fully committed to supporting the United Grand Lodge of England and expect each and every member of the Order to give full support and allegiance to the UGLE.