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Magna Carta Barons Association

by janet on 1 October 2013 · 0 comments

In June 2015, the 800th anniversary of the sealing of Magna Carta at Runnymede will be celebrated by many national and local events.

Eight hundred years ago, 25 barons were elected by the baronial opposition to King John to ensure that he honoured the charter. Without them, it might just have been another piece of parchment long forgotten by history. For the first time since 1215, representatives from what were those barons? chief manors, including Walkern in Hertfordshire, met in Leicester on 27 September to form the Magna Carta Barons Association.

Magna Carta Barons Association at Wygston's House, Leicester. Photo courtesy of the Leicester Mercury.

When the barons rebelled, their manors were small communities of villeins and serfs tied to his land and castle. The towns and villages that developed on them over the next eight centuries were formed by generations of ordinary people working the same fields, living in the same houses, attending services in the same parish churches, and being laid to rest in the same cemeteries.

In 2015, these towns and villages will not only be celebrating the anniversary of Magna Carta and the role their barons played, but also eight hundred years of their own history. Commemorative plaques, heritage signage, walks, themed exhibitions, school history projects, talks, medieval banquets and festivals are just some of the activities their local communities are planning for this very special occasion in their shared histories.

The 17 founding members of the Magna Carta Barons Association are:

Alnwick (Northumberland)

Belvoir (Leicestershire)

Castle Hedingham (Essex)

Clare (Suffolk)

Curry Mallet (Somerset)

Helmsley (North Yorkshire)

Huntingfield (Suffolk)

Leicester

Long Crendon (Buckinghamshire)

Pontefract (West Yorkshire)

Skipton (North Yorkshire)

Stansted Mountfichet (Essex)

Thirsk (North Yorkshire)

Topcliffe (North Yorkshire)

Trowbridge (Wiltshire)

Walkern (Hertfordshire)

Warkworth (Northumberland)

For more information about them, their barons and the other Magna Carta Baron towns and villages, see www.magnacartabarons.info.

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