The Beginnings of the Essex Chapter can be traced to the petition submitted to the Rt.Honorable the Earl of Zetland, MEZ of the Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons in England on the 7th June, 1847.

The Chapter was given the number 343 (later changed to 276), the warrant being made out on the 14th February, 1848.

The first meeting was held at the Black Boy Inn in Chelmsford on 10th May, 1848 and consisted in the opening of the Chapter by special officers and the reading of the warrant of constition from Grand Chapter. This was followed by the installation of the three Principals of Essex Chapter who then proceeded to elect and exalt 10 members of the Lodge of Good Fellowship and receive one joining member. The officers of the year were appointed and invested. A vote of thanks was passed to the Consecrating Officers: E. Comp Savage (PZ Chapter No. 206 and Vice President of the Board of General Purposes) and Comps Graham and Evans both of Chapter No.7.

The original intention of the Founders was to have held four meetings a year with meeting held on various days on the month. Since February 1933 there have been three meetings a year held on the second Tuesday of the months February, May (Installation) and November.

The Chapter has met in various locations during its’ existance: The Black Boy Inn, The Saracens Head Hotel, The George Hotel, The White Hart Hotel, the Crane Court rooms, the Shire Hall and finally  Freemasons’ Hall, Rainsford Road when it was completed in 1930, its’ present meeting place.