Local Government in a North Cotswold Parish-Winchcombe in the Late 18th. and Early 19th. Centuries

White, Robert W (2009) Local Government in a North Cotswold Parish-Winchcombe in the Late 18th. and Early 19th. Centuries. Masters thesis, University of Gloucestershire.

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During the late 18th and early 19th centuries there were significant changes in the way Winchcombe was governed. At the beginning of this period the manor and borough of Winchcombe were under the control of an absentee lord of the manor - with law and order maintained by local men serving as borough constables - whilst the parish of Winchcombe was administered by farmers and traders under the auspices of the vestry. In the decades that followed, the declining influence of the manorial court leet contrasted with the growing authority of the vestry, not least because of the latter's burgeoning role in the management of the poor law. In consequence, in the early years of the 19th century the decline of the court leet had become terminal, while the vestry was effectively in control of both town and parish and was also the paymaster of local constables. By the mid 19th century further changes to the levers of power had taken place. Winchcombe's court leet had been revitalised, although it had little influence on local matters, whilst the authority of the vestry over parish paupers had been diminished by the impact of the Poor Law Amendment Act of 1834. Law and order was in the hands of the newly formed county constabulary which meant that the constables, none of whom in Winchcombe were local men, were accountable to a remote police authority. This period is the gap in Winchcombe's historiography which I have attempted to fill. It was a time of great change and is only sparingly covered by the literature, but by analysing information gleaned from a variety of primary sources the development of local government in this part of rural Gloucestershire can be deduced.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Related URLs:
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
Depositing User: Anne Pengelly
Date Deposited: 19 Apr 2022 10:47
Last Modified: 19 Apr 2022 10:47
URI: https://eprints.glos.ac.uk/id/eprint/10929

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