Freemen of Chester

30th April 2018

When the Lord Mayor of Chester, Councillor Razia Daniels, admitted 21 people to the Freedom of the City of Chester last week, she was following an ancient tradition. The rolls of Freemen up to 1805 have been published as Volumes 51 and 55 of the Society's publications. The earliest named people being made Free were from 1392, when John Tayte, Hugh de Prestcote and William de Laghok were admitted to the Freedom by the Mayor, Gilbert Trussell. Laghok was from Speke in Merseyside and Prestcote was a fletcher or arrow-maker. There is no record of what ceremony they enjoyed, but the current crop of Freemen swore that they would "be not assenting nor abetting to any confederacy nor conspiracy against the city nor my neighbours". The editor of Volume 51, which was published in 1906, believed: "This has probably been the form for a long time".