Independent Order of Odd Fellows Plaque

The Oddfellows are one of the oldest Friendly Societies, but their early history is obscure; the earliest definite historical record of the Oddfellows is a manuscript, dated 1748, of the rules of the Loyal Aristarcus[1] Lodge No.9 which met in inns in the Southwark, Hatton Garden and Smithfield areas of London.

The Tutbury Lodge was a member of the Independent Order of Oddfellows Manchester Unity Friendly Society – the Loyal Sir Oswald Mosley Lodge MU No. 909.  

The Lodge met at the Oddfellows Hall, Tutbury which occupied the last building at the southeast end of the High Street.  At its peak it had about 400 members (the building now houses a hairdressing salon).  Click on the image on the left for a larger image.

The wooden boards detailing the deaths of all IOOF Brethren in peace and war were removed when the Lodge Hall closed and are displayed in Tutbury Museum.

The Burton Chronicle of 3rd April 1920 reported a marble War Memorial being erected in the Lodge Room.  When the Tutbury Lodge Hall was closed, the Memorial was transferred to St. Mary’s Priory Church where it now rests in the Lady Chapel (second picture).

In July 2014 Chris Tipper arranged for the plaque to be cleaned by Art Stone Memorials of Drakelowe, Burton-on-Trent.  Mr. Mervyn Eaton, secretary of the Burton-on-Trent branch of the Oddfellows, of which Chris is a member, arranged a contribution from the Oddfellows of £100 towards the £280 costs, the TWMPC contributed £80 and there was an anonymous donation of £100.

The third picture shows the plaque prior to cleaning and the fourth picture shows it after cleaning – a considerable difference.

Click on the thumbnails on the left for a larger image.

[1] Aristarchus of Samos (circa 300 BC) was an ancient Greek astronomer and mathematician who presented the first known model that placed the Sun at the centre of the known universe with the Earth revolving around it.