Charter Day

Music, dancing, the king’s rider and the Manor Court – it’s all coming up at this year’s Charter Day, which takes place on the first Saturday of March – in 2017, that’ll be 4th March.

So what’s it all about? Well, 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.


Programme for 4th March 2017:

In Market Square:

  • 11.00: Medieval-inspired street theatre from The Shrewsbury Mummers
  • 11.30: The King’s Herald arrives on horseback to deliver the charter to the lord of the manor
  • 11.45: Morris Dancing from the Ironmen & Severn Gilders
  • 12.00: Order! Order! The town ale taster, town crier and ‘clerk of the market’ are appointed by the Manor Court
  • 12.20: More Morris Dancing from the Ironmen & Severn Gilders

At All Saints Parish Hall, Lychgate Walk:

  • 10.00 – 14.00: Drop in on the annual Community History Day, where local history groups will be on hand to talk about their current projects and help you out with those local and family history questions

On the Ale Taster’s Ceremonial Pub Crawl:

  • 13.00: Roll-up for the Bun-Baking Context at The Pheasant, adjudicated by the Ale Taster. All entries to be submitted by midday!
  • 13.45ish onwards: follow the Ale Taster’s entourage of esteemed ale drinkers to other real ale haunts around town.



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.