World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Liberty (division)

Article Id: WHEBN0003260257
Reproduction Date:

Title: Liberty (division)  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Liberty of the Savoy, Tower division, Greater London, Ely, Cambridgeshire, Bindon Liberty
Collection: Former Subdivisions of England, Liberties of England
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Liberty (division)

A liberty was an English unit originating in the Middle Ages, traditionally defined as an area in which regalian right was revoked and where the land was held by a mesne lord (i.e., an area in which rights reserved to the king had been devolved into private hands). It later became a unit of local government administration.[1]

Liberties were areas of widely variable extent which were independent of the usual system of hundreds and boroughs for a number of different reasons, usually to do with peculiarities of tenure. Because of their tenurial rather than geographical origin, the areas covered by liberties could either be widely scattered across a county or limited to an area smaller than a single parish: an example of the former is Fordington Liberty, and of the latter, the Liberty of Waybayouse, both in Dorset.

In northern England, the liberty of Bowland was one of the larger tenurial configurations covering some ten manors, eight townships and four parishes under the sway of a single feudal lord, the Lord of Bowland, the so-called Lord of the Fells.[2][3] Up until 1660, such lords would have been lords paramount.

Legislation passed in 1836 ended the temporal jurisdiction of the Archbishop of York and the Bishop of Ely in several liberties, and the Liberties Act 1850 permitted the merging of liberties in their counties. By 1867, only a handful remained: Ely, Havering-atte-Bower, St Albans, Peterborough, Ripon and Haverfordwest. St Albans was subsequently joined to the county of Hertfordshire in 1875.

The Local Government Act 1888 led to the ending of the special jurisdictions: the Isle of Ely and Soke of Peterborough became administrative counties, while the three remaining liberties were united to their surrounding counties.


  • Inner and Middle Temples 1
  • List of liberties 2
  • See also 3
  • References 4

Inner and Middle Temples

Inner Temple and Middle Temple, which occupy an area in London known as The Temple, describe themselves as liberties based on letters patent from 1608 and retain a large degree of independence to the present day.[4] They are extra-parochial areas, historically not governed by the City of London Corporation, and are today regarded as local authorities for most purposes.[5] They are also outside the ecclesiastical jurisdiction of the Bishop of London. They geographically fall within the boundaries of the City of London, but can be thought of as independent enclaves.

The local government functions of the Inner and Middle Temples are allocated by the Temples Order 1971 (S.I. 1971 No.1732) which provides that the Sub-Treasurer of the Inner Temple and the Under-Treasurer of the Middle Temple may exercise any function of an Inner London borough defined in either of ss.1(4) or 6 London Government Act 1963 which is not expressly excepted by an Act or Order. Exceptions in the 1971 Order include various matters associated with housing, planning, public welfare and health; the effect is usually to direct such excepted powers or responsibilities to the Common Council of the City of London. The City of London Police have policed the Temples since 1857 by consent rather than by imposition.[4]

List of liberties

See also

Northern Liberties Township, Pennsylvania


  1. ^ Sir Thomas Edlyne Tomlins, John Raithby (1814). "The statutes of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland: Volume 5 - Page 427". 
  2. ^ "Our Lord of the Fells". Longridge & Ribble Valley News. 8 December 2010. 
  3. ^ "That Wicker Man Moment". Forest of Bowland official website. 20 January 2011. 
  4. ^ a b "Middle Temple as a Local Authority". Retrieved 7 October 2012. 
  5. ^ Martin Laker (2009). "What place is that then?" (PDF). Retrieved 7 October 2012. 
  6. ^ "Descriptive Gazetteer Entry for Orton". Retrieved 22 October 2012. 
  7. ^ 'Rufford - Runwick', A Topographical Dictionary of England (1848), pp. 711-716. URL: Date accessed: 29 December 2010
  8. ^ National Archive England Census 1881 Staffordshire, Wolverhampton, Trysull. Description of Enumeration District 10
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.