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Posted by Roger Donne on 25/2/2017, 7:48 pm, in reply to "Re: Info"
Googling for 'freedom of the borough Barnstaple' brings up the following reference http://www.devonfhs.org.uk/forewords/N027.pdf
which appears to be a foreward to a joint DFHS/ DRO publication. As John has said, the document states that "freedom was gained by inheritance, by serving a recognised trade apprenticeship within the town
, by purchase, or by order of the mayor and corporation" and indicates also that a register of freemen and burgesses of Barnstaple is held at the North Devon Record Office in Barnstaple.
Barnstaple also gets a mention in an 1840 report from a House of Lords Select Committee under the subject heading "Health of Towns: Freemen of Cities and Boroughs" available free online as a Google ebook which also comes up under the above Google search terms.