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Counsel’s Opinion on Traditions of Admission to Borough Freedom

Counsel’s Opinion on Traditions of Admission to Borough Freedom

Charles Sparrow QC 1973 and 1991 Claiming freedom otherwise than through a father. I am of opinion that, as a general principle, freedom by birth may be established through a grandfather or other ancestor more remote than a father. And I consider that freedom as a “son of a freeman” is available in the same way. At the outset it seems to me important to reflect that, in every place, one is dealing with a matter of custom, which will…

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NOTES on Rules of Admission to Freedom

NOTES on Rules of Admission to Freedom

The Freeman (Admission) Act 1763  The Freeman (Admission) Act 1763 is an Act of the Parliament of Great Britain (3 Geo III c. 15). The Act withheld the right to vote in Parliamentary elections, in those boroughs where honorary freemen could vote, from any freemen admitted to the freedom within twelve months of the first day of the election; it did not affect the rights of ordinary freemen, admitted by the custom of the borough in question. The Act was passed in response to a number of…

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The Admission of Sudbury’s Freemen

The Admission of Sudbury’s Freemen

(Information taken from ‘Suffolk County Town: A Sudbury Miscellany’ by Allan W. Berry; ‘A Short History of the Borough of Sudbury’ compiled from materials collected by W.W. Hodson, by C.F.D. Sperling; ‘History of Sudbury Suffolk’ by C.G. Grimwood and S.A. Kay; Sudbury ‘Cocket Books’ transcribed by Allan W. Berry The Freedom of Sudbury is a concept of rights and obligations derived from custom and tradition. A Freeman of Sudbury, (the title applies to both men and women), is any person…

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Freedom and Slavery

Freedom and Slavery

A Statement on behalf of Freemen and Guilds of England and Wales 1) ‘Freedom’ in the context of the Guilds of Freemen in England and Wales, has no connection with the release from the bondage of slavery, but rather the completion of a term of servitude through apprenticeship and the hereditary rights acquired through it. Nor must it be confused with the ‘honorary Freedom’ conferred on individuals by some cities, towns, or boroughs. 2) The power to create Freemen is…

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Safeguarding the Tradition of Borough Freedom

Safeguarding the Tradition of Borough Freedom

To the Council of the Executive of F.E.W (15-02-2020) I feel duty bound to bring attention to the weakening of regulatory control over Admissions to Borough Freedom. Firstly, I am one who is ambivalent over the various forms of freemen within our Association. I also recognise the dichotomy affecting our wishes to increase the numbers within our Society. Everyone of us recognise the diminishing nature of take-up of freedom in the modern day. However, this surely must not be allowed…

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Illicit Borough Freedom

Illicit Borough Freedom

For many years the Executive of our Association has been disturbed by the corrupt admissions of ‘Unentitled Freemen’. The dwindling uptake of responsible freemen has generated discussions among the Gilds leading to considerable concern regarding sustainability. Most gild committees are made up of elderly experienced freemen, faced with finding responsible replacements. We must all recognise that Borough Freedom status requires a genuine applicant to be either a descendant or an authorised apprentice. Since the Municipal Corporations Act, 1835 and subsequent…

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LOCAL DEMOCRACY, ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND CONSTRUCTION ACT 2009

LOCAL DEMOCRACY, ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND CONSTRUCTION ACT 2009

EXPLANATORY NOTES                                                                      INTRODUCTION  These explanatory notes relate to the Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act, which received Royal Assent on 12th November 2009.  They have been prepared by the Department for Communities and Local Government in order to assist the reader of the Act.                                 CHAPTER 5: LOCAL FREEDOMS AND HONORARY TITLES  Introduction and background  63. This Chapter makes amendments to provisions in the Local Government Act 1972 concerning freemen (local freedoms), and honorary aldermen and honorary freemen (honorary titles).  …

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Shelley Family Origins

Shelley Family Origins

DNA indicates the family originates from Northern Europe and Anglo-Saxon in establishment. The surname Shelley has been attributed to an English locality of that name*. Three locations named Shelley anciently existed, in Suffolk nr Sudbury, in Essex nr Ongar and in the West Riding of Yorkshire. The earliest of these places, recorded in Old English, is ‘Schelfeage’ in Suffolk c 995. In the Domesday Book it is Sceveleia. The name precisely describes the home manor location. ‘Shelley’ is derived from…

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Freemen’s Dictionary and Glossary of Terms

Freemen’s Dictionary and Glossary of Terms

(Old English Trade Descriptions) As a result of a question raised in the Open Forum at the 2012 FEW AGM as to what the difference between a Freeman and a Burgess was, I produced the following paper. To this I have added a dictionary of olden terms relating to civic and trade descriptions for ease of reference. Burgess or Freeman – is there a difference? Some confusion arises out of the use of these two expressions. The terms can be…

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Patron of FEW – The Right Honourable, the Earl Bathurst

Patron of FEW – The Right Honourable, the Earl Bathurst

Popular among the important members of Gloucestershire and Cotswold society, Earl Bathurst is known for his amiable and forthright personality. Hard working, fair minded, and a man of the people with a clear approach to duty and among other things currently an avid supporter of ‘Help the Heroes’. Locally, Lord of Cirencester, serving on several charitable boards, he is a director of the Housing Society and Trustee of the St Lawrence Hospital Trust. As an ambassador of agriculture, his limits…

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