Officers and Past Masters of London’s Lodge of Nine Muses No. 235 presented a charitable gift of £1,000 towards the National Trust’s Stowe renovation project on 8th May 2019
This presentation was made following a general appeal publication sent out in 2018 by the National Trust to all their members and visitors for any help, reference and information relating to Apollo and the Nine Muses. The Trust is in the process of restoring the Gardens of Lord Viscount Cobham at Stowe, Buckinghamshire, renovating the temples, monuments and replacing lost sculptures.
Past Master of Lodge of Nine Muses David Connell said: 'I contacted the National Trust at Stowe asking them if they had any knowledge of the existence of the Lodge of Nine Muses set up in 1777, not long after the formation of the gardens.
'I also informed them that we had a book of engraved illustrations of Apollo and the Nine Muses going back to that period. This was exciting news for them, and they asked to see these illustrations and be given background information on the Lodge. I mentioned that there is some discussion whether the lodge was named Lodge of Nine Muses following the setup of these gardens.
'A presentation to the lodge was proposed and arranged and Gillian Mason and Alaina Cornish - in charge of the Stowe Gardens Renovation Project - visited the Lodge on 22nd January 2019 at Mark Masons' Hall. They were very interested in seeing our treasures going back to 1777. We had a White Table festive board that evening because of this presentation, attended by members, friends and family of the lodge.'
Following this presentation, the donation of £1,000 was given at Stowe Gardens by members of the lodge. As part of the Stowe Landscape Programme, the National Trust intends to return replica statues and recreate this setting as close to the original as possible.