Wessex Lodge was consecrated at The Masonic Hall, Victoria Street, Basingstoke on 30th April 1968 by the R.W.Bro. Major General R. L. Bond, C.B, C.B.E., D.S.O., M.C., Hon.F.R.A.M., who was the Provincial Grand Master for Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.
It was formed to assist in the accommodation of the increasing number of masons and others interested in joining who had moved to the area as a result of the expansion of Basingstoke as an overspill town.
Of the 28 Founders, 17 were Past Masters.
Those central to the founding were Tom Prichard (who acted as Secretary prior to the consecration), Arthur Warr, Jack Longley, Herbert Allen, Dai Beynon, Harry Brunning, Freddie Brooks and Reg Simms.
Following the Consecration W.Bro. Arthur Warr was installed as the first Master and he appointed Bro. The Rev. Raymond Clues as Senior Warden and Bro. David Smethurst as Junior Warden.
It may be of interest to note that:
1. 87 attended the Consecration (Provincial Party 25; Founders 28; Guests 34).
2. The menu for the day (i.e. for lunch, tea, dinner with wines) cost 37/6 per head (£1.87).
3. The subscription was £5.00 p.a.
On 8th April 1993 the 25th Anniversary Meeting of the Lodge was celebrated.
The passage of time had reduced the number of Founders to eight, of whom five were able to be present. As it was Past Masters’ Night, each was invited to fill an office and during the evening presentations were made to mark the occasion.
The name ‘Wessex’ was taken from the river that in former days, rising in the West Ham area, flowed through the bottom of the town. The Logo is based on a bridge known as Wessex Bridge at Old Basing which had trees on both banks. The River Wessex still flows to this day, travelling northward from Basingstoke and joining the River Thames just east of Reading.