After consulting with the Historic Buildings Advisory Committee, the Minister of Home Affairs, Sen. The Hon. Michael Fahy, JP, has proposed that The Princess Royal Union Lodge be designated a Grade HM or Historic Monument Listed Building.
The Minister’s decision to proceed with this listing designation under Section 30 of the Development and Planning Act 1974 allows for a public consultation period, ending March 31st 2016.
Any comments may be sent to the Permanent Secretary (Home Affairs), c/o Forward Planning, Department of Planning, Dame Lois Browne-Evans Building, 5th Floor, 58 Court Street, Hamilton, HM 12.
Upon the conclusion of the public consultation period, the Minister will make his final decision on the listing designation.
Princess Royal Union Lodge - fondly known as 'Samaritan’s Hall' - has been a stalwart in the Warwick community for almost 100 years and during that time it has served as :-
- a school room for numerous generations of students;
- a church meeting place;
- a youth club and entertainment hall for teenagers;
- a place for community gatherings;
- a social hall for concerts, recitals and plays;
- and the meeting place for the officers and members of the ‘friendly society’.
The lodge is situated at the foot of Cobb’s Hill near B.T. Stovell’s Hall. It was built by several family members of the Wilson-Dill-Deshields families from the Cobb’s Hill Warwick area. The Princess Royal Union Lodge was established in 1899 but the building wasn't officially dedicated until 1924.
The land belonged to Alletta Blanche Bassett Wilson of Warwick and an indenture was made between her and The Trustees of the lodge under Mr. Ralph Campbell Dill and others for the sum of £180. It was paid for with funds from the Trustees themselves.
"The lodge is predicated upon the principle of fraternity and was far ahead of the times in its attitudes of equality with regards to gender, race and social status," explained Lodge Member Michael Bradshaw. "Members of our early church communities in Warwick were heavily involved in the lodge. Early members understood the great affinity that existed between the ‘friendly societies’ such as the Good Samaritans and the major tenets of Christianity."