Charter 400

The Charter Festival 1621 – 2021  – a celebration of our city

The 1621 Charter marked a momentous occasion in the development of Worcester City. On 2 October 1621, James I put his seal to the Charter that granted Worcester the rights and constitution that established the basis of the modern governance of the city and county of Worcester. Although many of the rights existed since 1189 (Richard Charter) this Charter is widely recognised as ‘creating’ the city of Worcester.

The government of the city was entrusted to a Mayor, “six lawfull and discreet citizens” as Aldermen, a Sheriff and two Chamberlains, a body of twenty four including the Mayor and Aldermen and a body of forty eight including the two chamberlains.

The actual Charter is held by Worcestershire Archive and Archaeology Service at The Hive. A precis of the Charter can be found here. The Charter was on display for public viewing in the Guildhall from September to December 2021.

The Worcester Charter of 1621 is a short film showing the Charter and explaining the significance to Worcester.


Photographs from the 400th anniversary in 2021

To document the anniversary year The Tall Photographer was commissioned to create a short film

Past Mayors of Worcester attending Charter Day 2.10.21

Commission artwork by Christine Harmer – Time Suspended

Choral Evensong in Worcester Cathedral – Three Choirs Festival 24.7.21 to 1.8.21

Charter on display in the Guildhall 12.9.21 to 31.1.21

Commissioned artwork by Michelle Flint – A Charter Tapestry

Commissioned artwork by Gibson Kochanek Studio – Timeline,  on display in Crowngate

Charter themed entries into the Worcester Show 14.8.21

Charter Reading at the Victorian Fayre Opening Ceremony 2.12.21

Evening Civic Celebration in the Guildhall 2.10.21