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Barons Courts Make 21st Century Legal History

July 13th saw the first sitting of Scotland's Baronial Courts of the 21st Century ... as the Barons of Prestoungrange and of Dolphinstoun, with their Baron Bailie, commenced hearings of Petitions and Complaints at the Caput of their Baronies, The Prestoungrange Gothenburg on July 13th.

"Sergeand, Fence The Courts"

With the cry "Sergeand, Fence The Courts" the historic Trinity Session, scheduled to run now until November 27th, began. Suitors [being expert witnesses in the matters under consideration], vassals from the ancient baronial lands, petitioners, complainers and defendants - all took their seats and the Clerk of the Courts read out the list of matters brought to the attention of the Courts by noon the previous day, July 12th. The maximum penalties the Courts can impose are up to 3 daylight hours in then stocks and fines or amerciamentis of up to 40/-.

Pictured first below are the Baron Sergeand announcing the Courts Order of Business and the Baron of Prestoungrange declaring the Courts in Session. He then called upon Dr Joanna Kozuba-Kozubska, formerly a Governor with HM Prison Service, for her professional advice on the relative merits and demerits of the stocks versus amerciamentis.

Click to enlarge the pictures

The Courts conducted themselves in line with the recommendations [Rob. III. ex lib. Sconen] of Sir Crispin Agnew of Lochnaw Bt., Q.C. in The Baron's Court, 1994 as published by the Convention of the Baronage of Scotland ISBN 0 9514545 28, with their right of jurisdiction or curiis et earum exitibus derived from the Heritable Jurisdictions [Scotland] Act 1746.

The Matters To Be Considered and Resolved

The matters the Clerk read to the Courts were as follows, all of which were to be addressed and concluded upon immediately on July 13th or held over for the subsequent Sitting already set for 12 noon on July 27th. Suitors led by Andrew Ralton of Scotways gave advice to the Courts - he concerning Rights of Passsage along the Baronial Foreshore. Secondly Roy Pugh gave evidence in respect of the Courts' consideration to a Class Petition seeking an Absolute Pardon for more than 80 persons convicted of witchcraft in Prestonpans.

The final picture shows the Head Brewer giving his spirited defence to the Complaint that he had mislead three ale drinkers in Prestonpans as to the difference between a contemporary Fowler's Wee Heavie and the ales brewed in his new microbrewery that honour John Fowler & Company.

Click to enlarge pictures

01: Authorisation to Re-enact as a Bagpipe Opera - TULSA

02: Absolute Pardon for Witches and their Cats

03: Affirmation of the boundaries and extent of the ancient Lands and Crown Baronies

04: ByrLaws for The Prestoungrange Gothenburg & Declaration of July 23rd as Gothenburg Day henceforth

05: Collection of 1753 Impost of 2d per pint of Fowler's Ales sold from May 8th 2004

06: Entitlement to Plant Duthus Badges and Slughorns for the Baronies and all other Acquired Property Rights

07: Creation of an Official Register of the Dignity of Barons in Scotland

08: Orders for the Proper Continuation of the non-Judicial Role of these Baronies after November 28th 2004 inter alia (i) The Courts as a Charitable Institution conducted under Crown Baronial Charter; (ii) Providing Public Right of Passage along the Baronial Foreshore; (iii) Protecting the Dignity of Baron; and (iv) Establishing a Biennial Scholarship.

09: Declaration of November 28th henceforth as Barons' Day

10: Consideration of All Complaints Received

11: Proclamation of Compleat Discharge of Feu Duties in the Baronies; and Motion for Cessation of the Authority of the Judicial Divisions of the Courts - both to become effective at midnight on November 27th 2004.

Published Date: July 13th 2004

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