The Mayor of Winchelsea, Jurat David Merrifield, will represent the town at Westminster Abbey on 6th May 2023. 

Coronation procession of Richard I

Representatives, ‘barons’, of the Cinque Ports have been present at coronations since medieval times.  Until 200 years ago it was their privilege to hold the ceremonial canopy over the monarch.  in 1821, an anxious George IV noticed that the barons at his coronation didn’t seem to be totally in control of the canopy.   He was convinced they were going to drop it on his head.  Strong drink is alleged to have played a part.

After that, the barons, though always present, ceased to have any formal role.  Mayor, Anthony Mallows Freeman (below) attended in 1953, wearing the coronation waistcoat now on display in the museum.

Anthony Mallows Freeman 1953