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Rule Book and Guidance Notes

Updated: Jul 3, 2022

Rules and guidance for Court Members in carrying out their duties

Court & Law Day 2019 - photo by John Germon

The Ashburton Courts Leet and Baron are one of the last remaining Courts explicitly authorised to appoint a Portreeve and other Officers and share with Southampton and Bideford the right of making Presentments with respect to matters of local concern. As in the past, these matters take place on Annual Court and Law Day, held on the fourth Tuesday in November. Though these Courts have no legal or administrative functions within local government they have a means of influencing the local authorities for the good of the town through the presentments they make.

Maintaining our Traditions

After the Norman Conquest many boroughs got permission for their Court Leet to elect their Portreeve as is done in Ashburton to this day.

To help meet their statutory obligations and faithfully maintain Ashburton's important traditions, the Courts Leet and Baron are guided by a comprehensive rule book that sets out the timing and procedures for all required Courts meetings and events.

Court Rules (1976, ammended 2002)
Download PDF • 354KB

Guidance Notes for the Portreeve & Bailiff

The Portreeve and Bailiff are usually in office for no more than a year and so may have little opportunity to become fully familiar with every detail of their responsibilities. To help them carry out their duties there is a short set of guidance notes which briefly cover all important aspects of the roles.

Guidance Notes
Download PDF • 4.04MB


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