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Market Place

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The Marketplace
Boston, Lincolnshire PE21 6EN United Kingdom

Trading fairs or “marts” have been held in Boston since at least the 12th Century – the earliest historic record of a fair or “mart” is in 1132. It ran from St. Botolph’s Day (12th June) to 24th June. In 1218 a Patent was granted for Boston’s Fair. The earliest maps of Boston date from that time and the “Market Place” is indicated on them in its current location.

In 1545 Boston obtained its Charter of Incorporation from Henry VIII, via his son Edward VI. On 1st June John Robinson took office as the first Mayor of Boston, the 12 aldermen were sworn in and the Recorder and Town Clerk appointed. Amongst his other roles the Mayor was declared “Clerk of the Market”.

The original document beautifully illustrated and with its impressive royal seal, is kept in the Guildhall in South Street.  The charter contains the following reference:

“We have granted also… unto the said Mayor and Burgesses, and their successors, that they and their successors, for ever, shall have a free Market twice a week, that is to say, upon the Wednesday and Saturday…”

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