Did you know...
The annual freemen’s outing is a popular event which now attracts hundreds, including freemen from overseas. Visits are often to properties which have received substantial grants from the freemen’s charity.
The key privileges of the Freemen, the right to vote in elections and trading rights, were swept away by the Reform Acts of 1832 and 1835. The Norwich Freemen still kept Town Close Estate – which is now a charity that gives grants to local organisations.
It’s an old tradition that freemen had the right to be hanged with a silk noose!
From the early 15th century, the freemen governed Norwich in relative harmony for 250 years – in marked contrast to other large rival towns in England such as Bristol, York and Newcastle.