Glastonbury celebrates 300 years of its charter: photos at Tercentenary event in town hall, hosted by Conservation Society
To help celebrate the tercentenary of Queen Anne granting the town
its charter in 1705, the Glastonbury Conservation Society hosted an evening
at the town hall on Wednesday March 30, to hear Dr Robert Dunning, the
county and Abbey historian, explain how Glastonbury, unlike many other towns, came to
have a mayor. Around 150 people including VIPs turned out to hear the talk.
Left to right: John Coles, Glastonbury town councillor, John Brunsdon,
chairman of Glastonbury Conservation Society and a councillor, and Dr
Robert Dunning, county historian and chairman of Glastonbury Abbey
Roger Cookman, chairman of Wells Civic Society, Elaine Cookman, and
Major Ian Rands, vice-chairman of Glastonbury Conservation Society.
Nick Cottle, mayor of Glastonbury, Nancy Parker, president of
Glastonbury Chamber of Commerce, and David Pipes, chairman of Street
Parish Council, in front of the portrait of Peter King, who was largely
responsible for obtaining the town’s charter from Queen Anne in 1705 and
was the first of the seven "capital burgesses" named in it.
Martin Bax, mayor of Frome, John Peverley, chairman of Frome Civic
Society, and Jacqueline Peverley, a Frome councillor.
Harvey Siggs, mayor of Wells, Sue Siggs, Fiona Densham, high sheriff of
Somerset (on her first engagement after taking up the office), and
David Pipes, chairman of Street Parish Council, and David Thomson, chief
executive of Mendip District Council.
Queen Anne on her throne (played by Muriel Mudie), flanked by Michael
King and Victor Jones, the Glastonbury macebearers.
John Brunsdon brings Queen Anne up to date on the town’s history since
she granted its charter in 1705. Mr Brunsdon was himself mayor in 1980
and 1983 and is a Freeman of the town. He also serves on Mendip District
In the front row of the audience of 150 at the town hall: Lady Gass,
lord lieutenant of Somerset, Nick Cottle, mayor of Glastonbury, Fiona
Densham, high sheriff of Somerset, and Andrew Densham.
The Glastonbury macebearers, Michael King and Victor Jones.
The macebearers demonstrated that contrary to popular belief, the mace
is not used to bash the heads of the unruly: “
This is what you do,”
said Mr King, swinging the much more lethal handle end into your
photographer’s unsuspecting midsection and then bashing him.
Tom Billing, town councillor and deputy mayor, will become Glastonbury’s
300th mayor this spring. Behind him in the council chamber of the town
hall is the portrait of the first Recorder (1705–08) of Glastonbury,
Peter Lord King, Baron of Ockham and Lord High Chancellor of Great
Britain, through whose influence the charter of incorporation was
granted to the borough by Queen Anne in 1705. The painter was Sir
Godfrey Kneller (1648–1725).