This temple replaced the Henry Byrde Memorial Hall, which served St. John’s Lodge of Colombo for a period of 43 years and
which was erected in 1910 as a memorial to W.Bro. Henry Byrde PDGW., who died in 1907. Prior to this, Masonic meetings in Kandy had no permanent meeting place and were often held in various mercantile establishments of the day, especially in the upper floor of John Walker & Co.
The subsequent lack of space in the Henry Byrde Memorial Hall, which often caused the younger brethren to be relegated to the corridor during Festive Boards, led the construction of a new Temple.
The foundation stone the Kandy Masonic Temple was laid at Seibel Place, Kandy by R.W. Bro. Robert Coleridge Scott, CBE., District Grand Naster of Ceylon on the 20th of October, 1951.
The architects of the building, Bro. H.F. Billimoria, MBE. and W.Bro. J.R.C. Backhouse, were both in constant attendance during its construction. The entrance to the Lodge room has the original doorway brought from the old Henry Byrde Memorial Hall. The walls have numerous portraits and photographs, ranging from the Boer War; including group photographs taken every year for more than 75 years. The original banner obtained in 1939 which incidentally bears the court of Arms of the United Grand Lodge hangs at the corner of the south wall enclosed in a glass case.
The Kandy Masonic Temple has a residential flat attached with a double bedroom and an additional section popularly known as “dormitory” with several beds and other amenities. The residential facilities at the Temple have recently been refurbished and upgraded.
The Kandy Masonic Temple is administered on similar line to the VMT; with three elected Trustees and a Committee of Management.