On 1 April 2019 Forest Heath District Council and St Edmundsbury Borough Council will be replaced by a single district council called West Suffolk Council. It will entirely replace the borough and district councils but will continue to deliver the same services while finding improved ways of supporting communities, businesses and the local economy. Over the next few weeks you may notice changes to the website, forms, letters and emails, and there will be limited access to some of our online systems as we prepare for the creation of the new council.
Secrets and intrigue in medieval Bury St Edmunds played a part in the birth of the Magna Carta. In 1214 a group of barons met secretly in St Edmunds Abbey to swear an oath to urge King John to accept a 'Charter of Liberties.'
The charter laid down laws regarding the treatment of nobles, church officials and individuals. A year later a direct descendant of the Charter of Liberties was signed on the banks of the River Thames – the Magna Carta.
The Magna Carta ('the Great Charter') sought to limit the powers of the monarch and ensure that England was governed according to the feudal laws at the time. The importance of this charter can be felt today through its resonance in English law. Every 15 years Bury St Edmunds celebrates the part it played in the foundations of English law.
For more details and information on Bury St Edmunds' role in the Magna Carta story, visit: Magna Carta Trust