Magna Carta

A report on our village events and exhibition can be downloaded here

The year 2015 marks the 800th Anniversary of the sealing of Magna Carta by King John.  Robert de Vere, Earl of Oxford who lived at Hedingham Castle, was one of the 25 barons elected as the first guarantors of Magna Carta when it was sealed at Runnymede in June 1215.

The 800th anniversary was celebrated with local and national events. There is detailed information at You can find out more information about the Magna Carta Barons here:

Eight hundred years ago, Twenty Five 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 met in Leicester on 27 September 2015 to form the Magna Carta Barons Association.Magna Carta Barons Association

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 celebrated 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 organised 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)
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

Contact: Peter Sinclair (Chairman),, 01763 849067: 41 High Street, Barkway, Hertfordshire, SG8 8EA