It was in the middle of 1989, that a group of distinguished Warrington Freemasons met under the guidance of the late William Henry Cartwright JP to consider the possibility of founding a new lodge to be held at Warrington, in the Province of West Lancashire.
The fraternal fellowship had grown through their meetings to several degrees. Those meetings resulted in some 20 Freemasons agreeing to be the founders of the lodge, and again, as a result of those meetings Academy Lodge No 9382 was eventually consecrated on Thursday 20 April 1991 with the senior founder, Willian Henry Cartwright JP as the first WM of the lodge.
Because of the COVID-19 restrictions prevailing at the time when Academy Lodge should have been celebrating the 30th anniversary of its consecration – 20 April 2021, a belated celebration took place in May 2022.
Prior to the 30th celebration, the lodge Bible had been refurbished through the generosity of two of the remaining founders of the lodge, Raymond Baines and Eric Kehoe. This particular volume was gifted to the lodge by the widow of Donald McDonald-Walker, who himself was a founder member of the lodge, but sadly passed away before the lodge was consecrated.
The lodge banner was made by founder member Henry Boscow and his wife Dorrie. What Dorrie didn’t know for a long time was that whilst Henry was looking for material, he spotted the correct blue colour for the main background material in the wardrobe. It was a nightgown which Dorrie had bought. Harry cut out the whole back from it and he once said to Eric: “I don’t know how long it will take me to get out of the dog house.”
Immediately after opening the lodge, there was a small ceremony to restore the original, refurbished Volume of the Sacred Law to its rightful place on the master’s pedestal, followed by a prayer by the lodge chaplain, Gerald Norden. Once completed the brethren joined the ladies and partners, who were down in the lounge bar partaking in canapes and prosecco, before progressing into the banqueting hall, where the hall staff were ready to serve a delightful 3-course meal with dinner wine and coffee.
A celebration cake, commissioned by the founders, was ceremoniously cut by the WM Darren Poole, accompanied by lodge founder, Eric Kehoe. A toast to the founders was proposed by Darren Poole. The response to the toast was to have been given by Raymond Baines, unfortunately, Raymond was unable to travel from his home in Somerset, and so his response was read out by a fellow founder Eric Kehoe.
Entertainment for the evening was given by magician Alex Fisher who not only did he provide close up ‘sleight of hand’ to the diners at their respective tables during the meal but also, after the meal was over, he performed from the stage and much to the amusement of all, he involved suitably embarrassed guests.
A raffle organised by the lodge social committee raised several £100’s. The WM thanked everyone for their support and everyone retired in a happy mood.