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Woburn Abbey: Celebrating Magna Carta Anniversary

Woburn Abbey celebrate our political freedoms and civil liberties! Guided tours will take place 14 June!
Lord Russell was arrested and, despite numerous pleas, beheaded for treason

The political freedoms and civil liberties that began with the Magna Carta have been supported by the Russell family over the centuries; they were a prominent Whig family who passionately believed in liberty.

Explore their contributions to the freedoms we enjoy today on a special trail through Woburn Abbey, home to the Dukes of Bedford. Learn how, in 1683, William, Lord Russell joined the Rye House Plot against the perceived absolute monarchy of the Stuarts; he was arrested and, despite numerous pleas, beheaded for treason.

The year after William of Orange’s arrival in 1688 as William III, the king pronounced the trial illegal; you can view this royal document at the Abbey. The family was rewarded with a Dukedom in 1694.

Learn also about Lord John Russell PM, see the desk where he wrote many speeches celebrating civil liberties and the cartoon of his grandson, the philosopher and champion of humanitarian ideals, Bertrand Russell.

Tour is free with admission. Guided tours will take place 11:00, 1:00 and 2:00pm on 14 June.

After go to the Duchess’ Tea Room for a LiberTea to continue your liberty discussion!

 

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