On February 29th, 1244, King Henry III signed Wellington’s first market charter. It was amongst the earliest awarded to a Shropshire town and, as a town that still boasts one of the biggest and busiest markets in the county eight centuries later, it’s an occasion worth marking.
So, the first Saturday of March each year is celebrated as Charter Day, when you can come into Market Square and see…
- 11.15am: Wellington Brass Band
- 11.30 am: The King’s Herald arriving on horseback to deliver the charter to the lord of the manor
- 12 noon: The new town ale taster, town crier and ‘clerk of the market’ appointed by the jurors of the Manor Court.
- 12.15: Wellington Brass Band closes the ceremony
It all adds a bit of colour to what can be a cold and grey time of year, and it’s another reminder of Wellington’s long history as a market town. In the evening, from 5pm, we’ll be rounding off the day at the award-winning Cock Hotel on Watling Street where the new ale taster will be holding court. Farmers, food producers and retailers have been invited, and everyone’s welcome!