West End Ritual Association
West End ritual was probably first published in the 1870's but, in common with many published rituals, represents a working considerably older. It appears to have had its rise in one or more Lodges of Instruction operating in the Mayfair and Kensington areas hence its name.
Various ritual books were published in later years purporting to be West End but for a variety of reasons the ritual was tending to become corrupted. A number of eminent 'West End' Masons came together to express their concern at this corruption of their Ritual and between them formed an Association to be devoted to reverting to and retaining pure West End. Thus the Association of West End Ritual Lodges was inaugurated on 27 April 1967.
In pursuance of one of the Aims and Objects of the Association a version of the Ritual was prepared which could be referred to as the 'Authorised' West End Working.
On 11 June 1986 Grand Lodge required the removal of the physical penalties from all the obligations. This necessitated a thorough revision of all Rituals and the Association took this opportunity to review the 'authorised' edition of West End Ritual in its entirety so that, as well as complying with the edict of Grand Lodge, it could be brought more into line with the earliest version of 'West End' available and certain errors, misprints and omissions could be righted and certain other, established, practices be incorporated.
The rubric has been considerably extended and, it is hoped, simplified and an Appendix containing additional matters which should prove of assistance has been added.
It should be stated that the Association does not see its role as that of dictating how a Lodge should work 'West End'. It is conscious that many Lodges have their own variants of 'West End', indeed it is such variety that is at once both the strength and the pleasure of West End ritual. However, there are certain aspects where West End differs quite substantially from other workings and it is the intention of the Association that these should be preserved, but that in all other respects West End Lodges should be free to continue their traditional practices.
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