Masonic Lodge and graveyard to open to visitors in South Queensferry

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Atmospheric locations in the shadow of the Forth Railway Bridge will be thrown open to the public for one weekend only.

South Queensferry’s Vennel churchyard which dates from the 17th century is expected to act as a magnet for sightseers.

And so will the adjacent Queensferry Lodge St Margaret after its members agreed to allow visitors for this brief period.

For both Ferry institutions will be part of Edinburgh’s Open Doors Day which takes place on Saturday and Sunday (September 29 and September 30)

The churchyard will be of particular interest to anyone with a passion for maritime history.

That is because a number of sailors and sea captains are buried on the grounds.

And that is only one of several points of interest in this sacred historic site.

A spokesperson said:“There also are four recesses in the World War 1 memorial which are ‘bee boles’ where straw beehives were kept.

“To the east of the graveyard is an area where people from neighbouring parishes gathered to listen to sermons preached from an old yew tree.

“Members of Queensferry’s History Group will be on hand to show visitors round the churchyard.

“Inside the masonic lodge, visitors will have the opportunity to see historic artefacts and regalia belonging to the lodge and learn more about masonic activities.

“ The history group and the Queensferry Trust will also be on hand to explain the work and activities of both groups to visitors.”

On Saturday, environmental group GreenFerry will be serving refreshments in the community garden project at Hawthorn Bank which is next to the graveyard.