Tuesday, 13 May 2014

City Council seeks new Freemen and Freewomen for Lancaster

Applications are being invited for one of Lancaster’s most historic traditions.

Each year Lancaster City Council continues the longstanding custom of admitting new Freemen and Freewomen of the city. 

Traditionally the honour of becoming a Freeman or Freewoman carried a number of privileges including the right to ‘pasture a limited number of beasts’ on the Marsh, to enter the city free from the payment of tolls and also to bring goods through toll gates for sale at the Lancaster Market. The roll has been open to women since 2011. 

Nowadays the role carries few rights, but remains popular amongst those who are proud of their heritage.

Both men and women are eligible to apply for the honour if they meet one of the following criteria:

·         To be the son or daughter of a Freeman or Freewoman.
·         To have served an apprenticeship to a Freeman or Freewoman of the City for a period of seven years.
·         To have been born within the old city boundaries.
·         To have lived within the old city boundaries for a period of 7 consecutive years.

In each case, the applicant has to be at least 16 years of age.

New Freemen and Freewomen will be entered at a special court of admission on July 12, starting at 10am, and applications are now being invited.

Applicants are also required to attend the court in person and must bring with them a person who is willing to stand and vouch for their identity – for example a spouse, sibling or friend - and swear an oath of allegiance to Her Majesty The Queen and to the mayor and the city.

• Application forms are available from the Mayor’s Office by telephoning 01524 582070 or by email to Lvines@lancaster.gov.uk .

For more about this historic tradition see previous story: Lancaster Freewomen are on the Roll 

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