Knight Templar Priests

Order of Holy Wisdom is Before You

Become a member of this holy order which dates back to the 18th century.

The Orders, in their modern form, did not set out to be deliberately exclusive, but the thirty one Appendant Degrees each have their own ceremonial working and it was determined, by our Founders, that a Mason needed to be of a certain standing and qualification within Freemasonry to comprehend and appreciate these especial degrees.

History of the Order

The recently reintroduced ceremony of the Order of Holy Wisdom differs from the Appendant Degrees in that there is a specific question/requirement in the ritual regarding membership of the Knight Templar Priests. This ceremony was worked in the 18th century, but it required a lot of costly equipment and at least two rooms for the ceremony to take place. The new abridged ritual maintains the spirit of the original whilst eliminating much of the cost involved.

In the early days it was also known as the Priestly Order and was referred to within the ceremonies of The High Knights Templar in Ireland in 1755.

The Order first saw the light of day in Scotland in 1800 in Kilmarnock and then extended to Glasgow and Edinburgh.
In 1807, the Early Grand Conclave of Scotland issued a warrant to Joppa Encampment of Knights Templar in Sunderland with authority to work a number of degrees including Knight Templar Priest. In 1812 members at Newcastle upon Tyne petitioned the Grand Conclave of England for a Warrant. This was granted in the name of Royal Kent Encampment.

Evidence exists of its being worked in the late 18th and early 19th Centuries in England, Scotland, Ireland, Corfu, France and probably the United States and Canada. The Order then became moribund in the 1890s, the last known working being in Lancashire.

Prior to 1894, The Order of Knight Templar Priest traced its origins back to the Anahilt Union Band in County Down, Ireland, in 1792. Over 60 Union Bands have been traced in Ireland with only a small number being under the Irish Early Grand Encampment and even fewer being banded with one or more Lodges. During this period there was no ruling body.


Royal Arch Chapter

Order of the Temple

More Information

On Good Friday, 23 March 1894, Henry Hotham, a Yorkshireman and prominent Mason, was apparently the last known Knight Templar Priest. Being the last Installed Master or High Priest, he admitted nine Knights into the Order (under the authority of one of the Original Rules of the Order).

The revived Tabernacle being conscious of the efforts of the Council of Allied Masonic Degrees in London to found a Grand Council of Rites agreed that, with its then 24 Appendant Degrees, to become the Royal Kent Tabernacle Time Immemorial. As a consequence the first of the modern Tabernacles, Royal Kent T.I., was formed. After a short period of control by the Grand Council of the Allied Masonic Degrees and, by mutual consent, it separated and became The Grand College.

The development of the Order was very slow at first but it soon began to take on its now extensive international form, with the first four New Zealand Tabernacles being between 1930 and 1944 and Australia joining in 1949.

Progress of the Order continued very slowly but steadily from 1951 for the next 10 years, but, in the early 1960s, under dynamic new leadership, the pace of expansion increased, and has continued to this day, with the number of Tabernacles now at 273, and on each continent of the World, including England, Scotland, Wales, New Zealand, Australia, Hong Kong, Canada, South Africa, The Bahamas, Holland, Germany, Spain Greece, Malta, Jamaica, Barbados, Guyana, Singapore, Malaysia, Brazil, Togo, Bolivia and Ivory Coast.

Grand Superintendent and High Prelate

Em. Kt. Pt. Thomas William David Railson, KCPC

Province of Northumberland

Get In Touch

To find out more about the order, contact should be made with the District Recorder.

Knight Templar Priests Tabernacles

Tabernacles Number Venue
Royal Kent TI Fern Avenue
Finchale 3 Gateshead
Brinkburn 28 Morpeth
Lindisfarne 81 Berwick upon Tweed
All Saints 101 Burnopfield
St. George of Throckley 124 Throckley
Accordion TitleThe Prior’s Haven 134 North Shields
Wudcestre 140 Ashington
Venerable Bede 155 Durham
St. Cuthbert 174 Darlington
Bernicia 183 Blyth
Durham & Northumberland District 232