Bideford Manor Court Ceremony - its history and how we have modernised it to work with today's Town Council operations
Saturday 21 March 2020 at 10.30 am
Originally an Anglo-Saxon court of jurisdiction known as the “Court Leet”, the Manor Court dates back to around the 5th century. It was more commonly known through the more southern parts of England and its purpose then would have been to round up the miscreants and send them on to their punishment. The Court Leet did not have the power to punish.
In today’s times, the principal purpose of the Court, apart from preserving the traditional ceremony, is to receive Presentments (ideas to improve the town) from the electors within the parish of Bideford for deliberation by the Council in the interests of the Town. These Presentments will be considered and presented to the Court by the Jury, the members of which are required to be electors within the parish of Bideford. All jurors will be sworn in at the Court for that purpose.
The continuance of the Ceremony is a tradition of significance and, being one of only a handful of Manor Courts throughout the country, it is hoped that it will have the continued support of the people of Bideford especially as so many such events are being lost with the passage of time.
Manor Court 2020 will take place on Saturday 21st March 2020 at 10.30am in the Town Hall, Bideford and then afterwards at the Royal Hotel.
If you have any ideas that you think could improve Bideford for residents and visitors alike, do please drop a line to the Town Clerk, Town Hall, Bideford, EX39 2HS.
You do need to live in Bideford yourself and your presentment needs to be in before 12 noon on 9th March 2020.
Please click on the link below to download or print the pdf document: