A historic Leicestershire community dating back to 1107

New Register of Freemen

scroll.jpgThe Board of Deputies and Gild are jointly compiling the latest edition of the Register of Freemen. Previous Registers contain the names of those that were Made Free over several centuries.
Due to data protection requirement, only names, Village/Town/City, occupation (previously addresses were listed) and the 2 generations of Freemen that the Freedom is taken from will now be listed. This includes all those Made Free from 13 October 1996 up until the present time.
If any Freemen has any issue with their details being printed please contact the Clerk to the Board of Deputies immediately on 0116 283 4017. The Register has previously been printed in book form but will now be made available on CD.

Who can become a Freeman of Leicester?

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Until quite recently the Hereditary Freedom of the City of Leicester passed only through the male line but as a result of the Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act 2009 it became possible for women to also be granted the Freedom.

The consequences of the new legislation for both Leicester City Council and for the Leicester Freemen’s Charity were the subject of discussion between the two parties and joint agreement was reached about the criteria for admission as Freemen of Leicester.

Before the legislation was passed into the law books the routes into the freedom were three fold;

1. All sons of a freeman could inherit the freedom from their father provided that the father was a freeman before the birth of the applicant.

2. Legal opinion was sought to overcome the limitations of route 1 and it was deemed that all males could successfully apply for freedom providing that there was a continuous direct male line back to an ancestral freeman.

3. Freedom could be achieved through an apprenticeship providing that the indenture was with an individual freeman, not a company.

The new legislation has made it illegal for daughters of freemen to be treated any differently to sons and Leicester City Council approved a motion in full council on 25th June 2009 allowing for the admission of daughters.

The agreement reached between the City Council and representatives of the Board of Deputies clarified who is eligible to become a freeman and who is not eligible.

1. All sons can inherit the freedom through their father regardless of when the father took his freedom.

2. All sons can inherit the freedom through their mother providing that the mother is a freeman.

3. All daughters can inherit the freedom through their father regardless of when the father took his freedom.

4. All daughters can inherit the freedom through their mother providing that the mother is a freeman.

5. Both sons and daughters can inherit the freedom from a male ancestor providing that there has been a direct and continuous line of males all of whom would have been eligible to take their freedom during their lifetime. (see diagram 1)

6. Both sons and daughters can inherit the freedom from a female ancestor providing that there has been a direct and continuous line of males or females all of whom would have been eligible to take their freedom during their lifetime. (see diagrams 2 and 3)

The City Council consider all applications to ensure that the required criteria is met.  

Diagram 1

Male ancestor (Freeman)

*

Son (did not take his freedom)

*

Son (did not take his freedom)

*

Son (did not take his freedom)

*

Son or daughter eligible to become a freeman

Note; The number of generations between the ancestral freeman and the applicant can be any number providing that the line can be proven by documents.

Diagram 2

Male ancestor (Freeman)

*

Son (did not take his freedom)

*

Son (did not take his freedom)

*

Daughter (did not take her freedom but not deceased before the date the City Council approved the admission of daughters)

*

Son or daughter eligible to become a freeman

Diagram 3

Male ancestor (Freeman)

*

Son (did not take his freedom)

*

Son (did not take his freedom)

*

Daughter (deceased before the date the City Council approved the admission of daughters)

*

Son or daughter not eligible to become a freeman

Where to make your application

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Any application to become a Freeman of Leicester should be made to:-

Member & Civic Support Office

Leicester City Council,

City Hall, 3rd Floor 

115 Charles Street

Leicester,

LE1 1FZ

 

 

What information is required?

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You will need to provide the following information:

Full name and address

Full birth certificate

Full birth certificate of the person that you are claiming the Freedom from.

Freedom certificate (of the relative from whom you are claiming the Freedom)

The marriage certificate is required where there is a difference in the name of the person taking up their Freedom from the person that the Freedom is being taken from.

Description of your trade or profession

If any of the above information cannot be found then please contact the Civic Administrators who are at the above address.

The Member & Civic Support Office will advise regarding what action should be taken.

Telephone 0116 454 0020 for general information

Gallery of Making Free Ceremonies