What is significant? The Essendon Masonic Lodge No.238, comprising the building as designed by Roy K. Stevenson and Alan Bogle in 1939 and any surviving fabric of the 1922 Lodge or the earlier Baptist Church, at 840 Mt Alexander Road, Essendon is significant. It is a two-storey brick building in a Stripped Classical style. It sits flush with the property boundary. The facade has a planar, stripped classical geometry, emphasised by the straight parapet at the top which entirely conceals the roof. The composition is framed by vertical sections on either end of the facade that are slightly set back and lower in height, and broken up with recessed lines to create abstracted rusticated piers. Interest is provided by subtle curved elements and brick colour contrasts and patterning. The plinth of the building (up to window sill height) is of clinker bricks in a Flemish bond, with every fifth course recessed, providing a horizontal version of rustication. The rest of the facade is of deep cream bricks. The facade is symmetrically arranged, with two groups of three multi-paned steel windows on either side of the front entry. The first floor has four windows with multi-paned steel windows with some panes of blue glass. The entrance is reached by several steps of salt-glazed tiles, and is framed by a simplified classical aedicule with a straight parapet. The parapet and oval engaged columns bulge outward in a stylised manner. The entrance doors have horizontal panels and sit below a highlight window. The first floor windows also have a slight convex curve to their concrete window sills and panels of solider-coursed bricks above them. At the base of each window is a line of pierced Greek cross/fret motifs. The front section of the building has a transverse gable roof. Behind this is the hipped roof section comprising the Lodge Rooms.
Alterations and additions made after 1940 are not significant.
How is it significant? The Essendon Masonic Lodge No.238 Hall is of local historic, social and aesthetic significance to the City of Moonee Valley.
Why is it significant? It is historically significant for its associations with freemasonry, which played an important cultural role in Victoria and this large and impressive building demonstrates the popularity of freemasonry during the interwar period. It is of historic significance as the second Lodge established in Moonee Valley and is also of interest for its previous use by the Baptist Church. (Criteria A & H)
It is of architectural and aesthetic significance as a fine and intact example of a masonic temple in the interwar Stripped Classical style, which is a style associated with Masonic temples. (Criteria A & E)