EACH MAY MEETING , OAK LEAVES ARE PLACED ON THE ‘FESTIVE BOARD’ TABLES.
On 29th May 1773 the Members of what was The Lodge No. 263 met initially at the “Sun”
then marched in procession to a new Lodge room in Priestgate, Darlington. At this
time the country was celebrating the Centenary of the Restoration of Charles II to
the throne, so the name Restoration was chosen to differentiate this Lodge from other
The Lodge was Consecrated in 1761 and an OAK LEAF was chosen to form a link with
the Restoration Period when King Charles II was crowned 100 years prior on 23rd April
1661. ( He was declared King on 8th May 1660 )
King Charles II was defeated at the battle of Worcester on 3rd September 1651.
He evaded capture by the Parliamentary soldiers for six weeks, during which the famous
incident of the fugitive King hiding in an Oak Tree at Boscobel House occurred. This
was no mean feat as he was ‘of dark countenance’ and stood at six feet three tall,
not an easy man to hide. After six weeks of freedom he escaped to France by travelling
from Shoreham to Fecamp on a small coaster, The Surprise.