The first Constitution was granted on 8th March, 1735, and was consecrated by the Provincial Grand Master from Swalwell, Joseph Lacock, the number allotted being No.132 on the Roll of Grand Lodge.

The old Minute Book dated the 24th June,1735 with the original Warrant and other precious documents and property of the Lodge went missing before the year 1770.  It is supposed that the unsettled state of the country during the disturbances of 1745 broke up the meetings, and the Lodge fell into decay.  A Charter of Confirmation of the lost Warrant was therefore granted on 1st October, 1771, by the Grand Master of England, the Duke of Beaufort and a new Constitution was granted on 16th October, 1773.

The authority for our Masonic purposes lies in a book restored and rebound in 1885.  It includes many pages of hand-painted headings with illuminated borders done by a Bro. Dalziel, an eminent Artist and member of the Lodge.  It is customary for the Master to add his signature to this book during his Installation and it  rests during each meeting on his pedestal.  There have been several changes in the recorded Grand Lodge role number. That in this book is 56 dating from 1832 but from 1863 it became 48 as it is today.

Bro. W.J. Hughan in his paper “Freemasonry in the early 1600 and 1700s” originally published in 1906, makes mention at the end of his paper of two northern operative pre Grand Lodges in existence during this period: the Alnwick Lodge and the Swalwell Lodge.

The old operative Lodge, recorded as being held at Winlaton in 1725 and at Swalwell from 1735 – 1845, in its early records had much in common with its senior one Alnwick, its “Orders of Antiquity” and its “Apprentice and General Orders” being virtually reproductions of still earlier “Old Charges.”  The three “fraternal signs” are mentioned and the minutes generally from the third decade of the 18th century are of considerable value and interest.  As the members accepted a Charter from the Grand Lodge of England in 1735, being now, and for a long time past, known as the Lodge of Industry No. 48 Gateshead.  It is thus a link in the union between Grand Lodge and its operative ancestors.

The complete paper can be found HERE