Every year Grand Stewards are chosen from nineteen Red Apron Lodges and appointed by the Grand Master.
They are usually the Masters of those Lodges. During their year of service they rank as Grand Officers; thereafter, they are Past Grand Stewards but not past Grand Officers. However Past Grand Stewards’ are senior to Senior London, London or Provincial Grand Rank.
The Book of Constitutions states in paragraph 36(a):
“Upon the annual installation of the Grand Master, he shall appoint nineteen Grand Stewards and for this purpose, one brother shall be recommended annually to the Grand Master for appointment by each of the nineteen Lodges, which enjoy the privilege of recommendation for that office. Every brother so recommended must have been a subscribing member of the recommending Lodge for not less than five years at the time of the commencement of his Grand Stewardship and must have attained the rank of Master. The name, address and Masonic rank of every Brother recommended shall be transmitted by his Lodge to the Grand Secretary on or before 31st March and should any Brother decline the office or be incapable of discharging the duties thereof or fail to receive the approval of the Grand Master, the Lodge, which recommended him, when informed of the circumstance, shall within 14 days transmit the name, address and Masonic rank of another Brother to supply his place.”
A Grand Steward is invested at the Annual Investiture. He is introduced by his predecessor to the Grand Master and the other Rulers in the Craft prior to the Festival. Grand Stewards attend Grand Lodge at every Quarterly Communication.
The Grand Stewards form a Board of Grand Stewards at the start of their year and elect a President, Secretary and Treasurer.
Grand Stewards are also enabled to join Grand Stewards’ Lodge. This Lodge, uniquely in the English Constitution, has no number. It has been in this position since 18 April 1792 when it was “placed at the Head of the List by order of the Grand Lodge” and given the name it now holds.
Click here to read about the Origin of the Grand Stewards.