The Cricket Lodge of Essex, or more familiarly ‘CLOE’, came out of a conversation with our late Provincial Grand Master, Rodney Lister Bass, and our new Provincial Grand Charity Steward designate, Chris Hicks, who is a keen cricketer and umpire
The conversation was about 'Themed Lodges' and the success of the new Lodge of XV No.9944 for rugby enthusiasts. The late Provincial Grand Master was also a keen cricketer, having played for many years for Wickham Bishops, and gave the project his blessing with the aim being to encourage men interested in Cricket to join and become Freemasons and for the Lodge to help local youth cricket with support and assistance.
The idea was publicised and a number of potential founders formed a team. Within a short space of about two months over 30 Freemasons had shown an interest in being Founding Members of a Cricket themed Lodge in Essex. At the first Founders Meeting it was decided to offer the Primus Master to the then PGM, which he accepted. It was also decided to be a working Lodge, meet on Saturday mornings outside of the domestic cricket season and to try and have the Consecration and regular Installation Meetings at the County Cricket Ground in Chelmsford.
It was decided to limit the number of Founding Members to 40 and have at least another 10 already signed up as Joining Members. When this number was reached discussions started with the Lodge of XV members to ask if they would be the sponsoring Lodge. This they agreed on and the Petition for a new Lodge was duly completed by the Petitioners in early 2020 and sent to Lodge of XV to be formerly proposed, agreed and signed. The plan was to submit to the United Grand lodge of England (UGLE) in March 2020 for the June 2020 Quarterly Communication (UGLE business meeting) and then Consecrate in September 2020.
Then Covid-19 struck and knocked all plans for six!
Two weeks before the agreed signing date of the Petition, the Grand Master, HRH The Duke of Kent, suspended all Masonic Meetings, so the signing was cancelled. The Petition was eventually signed on 4th September 2020 under Covid-19 restrictions. It was then rushed to the Provincial Grand Secretary, Philip Lovelock, along with all the supporting documentation who submitted it to UGLE in time for the December 2020 Quarterly Communication meeting. The Consecration Meeting was planned for early 2021.
Then Covid-19 hit again!
The Founding and Joining Members designate had to wait until 2nd September 2021 to see the notification from UGLE that the Petition had been granted and the new Lodge Number of 10009 allocated. The Consecration Meeting date of Friday 6th May 2022 has been agreed with Provincial Grand Lodge and will be held at Southend Masonic Centre, Saxon Hall. The real work now begins to get everything ready.