Lane Laws of Aldwincle

In 1772  at  the  Inclosure  the  herbage  growing  and renewing in  the lanes was given by  the Commissioners  to the inhabitants of these parishes that keep Cows

After the hedges had  grown  strong  the  restriction  to  lead  them  in  strings was given  up  as  not  being  any  longer  necessary.

In 1834  the occupiers  of  the  lanes  drew  up  some  rules  for  the  better management  of  the  lanes  and  which  were  signed  by  the principal  inhabitants and were  considered to be as binding as law.’

 Copy of the Lane Laws

We, whose names are hereunto annexed, desire that the following Rules be observed by all Persons who turn Cows into the Lanes at Aldwincle.

1. That a meeting of the Cottagers be called early in the spring, to appoint  a Man  and  a  boy,  to  keep  all  the Cows that  are turned into the Lanes .

2. That  all  persons  refusing  to  send  their  Cows  by  the Man appointed by a majority of the Cottagers, shall be compelled to lead them in strings according to the Law.

3. All Cows having horns, shall have hobs on, or not be taken out by the keepers.

4. The Man and boy shall spud the thistles, growing in the Lanes.

5. The keepers shall take the Cows out at six o’clock in the morning, and bring them home at eight o’clock in the evening.

6. All Cows that are not ready, when the keeper shall call for them in the mornings, shall be sent after them.

7. All Cows that are out after eight o’clock in the evening with, or without keepers shall be impounded.

8. If any person shall keep his Cows, or any of them at home one,  or   more  days  in  the week,  he  shall  pay  the  keepers  for them the same as though they were not kept at home.

9. Lastly,  No  person  shall  turn  more  than  two  Cows  into  the Lanes and the time of turning out to commence not sooner than the  tenth  of  April,  and  to  end  on  the  twenty  second  of November in every year.

 Amendement 1873

In March 1873  there was  a  slight amendment to the rules

4.  The Man and Boy shall cut up the thistles and other weeds growing in the lanes.

5.  No  person  shall  turn more  than  two Cows  into  the Lanes, and all other animals, whether Horses, Asses, Sheep or Swine, are prohibited  and any  such, being  found  in  the Lanes, either strayed or being kept, shall be impounded.

‘By these rules every householder is authorised to turn out  two Cows  –  and  the man  keeping  them  is  not  allowed  to take but two and anyone sending more than two is compelled to  lead  them  in  strings  according  to  the  ancent  law.

 Amendment 1905

Note of a meeting held on April 15th 1905 :-

At a meeting held in the Red Lion.  It was  proposed  by Mr Hudson  and  seconded  by  Mr  Brown  that  a  Cottager  be allowed  to  turn  out  three Cows  if  he  required  provided  that there is not above twenty turned out.

Carried unanimously.