Freemasonry is one of the world’s oldest and largest non-religious, non-political, fraternal and charitable organisations. Its roots lie in the traditions and ceremonies of the medieval stonemasons who built our cathedrals and castles. Some rituals are still celebrated today.
Men of any race, religion or sexual orientation can join Freemasonry; all they need is a belief in a supreme being and to be over the age of 21. Whilst each member of Freemasonry is, of course, allowed to have his own religious and political beliefs, the discussion of such matters is strictly forbidden in the lodge.
Under the United Grand Lodge of England, Freemasonry is restricted to men, however there are two separate Grand Lodges which are restricted to women (the Order of Women Freemasons and the Honourable Fraternity of Ancient Freemasons)