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Family tradition restored as women take advantage of new law to get freedom of Colchester
A FAMILY was reunited from across the globe as they met to take up an historic title.
Previously, the title of freeman of the borough of Colchester could only be passed down through the male line.
But following Government legislation, women with family links to Colchester can now also lay claim to the freedom of the borough.
And the descendants of Charles Sadler have taken the opportunity to do just that.
Mr Sadler became a freeman of the borough in the 19th century and his son, also Charles, became a freeman in 1897.
Charles’ son, Harry, also followed in the tradition taking the title in 1935 and this was passed to his son, Gus.
However, Gus had two daughters and it was thought the family link to the freeman of the borough was lost forever.
But a change in the law in 2009 altered 600 years of male-only descendancy granting daughters and grandaughters the right to be admitted as freeburgess of Colchester.
Now all Harry Sadler’s daughter, Gladys, 80, from Torquay, and his seven grandchildren have taken up their rights and have restored the family tradition.
At a ceremony at Colchester Town Hall the eight became freeburgesses of Colchester after swearing an oath promising to maintain and promote the interests of the borough.
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