Newport Borough Council Records

Scope and Content

Records of Newport Borough Council, 1739-1892.

Administrative / Biographical History

A castle was built in Newport by Robert Fitz Hamon, first Lord of the Manors of Morganwg, Brecon and Usk, in the late 11th century. The first known charter conferred on the town was that given by Hugh Despenser in 1324, confirmed by half a dozen others over the next two centuries. The borough was run by a Mayor (or Reeve) and bailiffs. In 1623 Newport received its first Royal Charter, from James I. This created a Corporation which consisted of a mayor and twelve aldermen who governed the Borough and were responsible for law and order. They were assisted by a Recorder and two Bailiffs. This system of government lasted in essence until the passing of the Municipal Corporations Act 1835. This reconstituted the Corporation as an elected Borough Council, comprising a mayor, aldermen and councillors. During the 19th century the Borough grew in size from 239 acres to 4924 acres by taking in parts of the surrounding parishes of St Woollos, Christchurch and Nash. In 1892 Newport was awarded the status of a County Borough.


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Compiled by Rhys Jones for the ANW project. The following sources were used in the compilation of this description: Gwent Record Office, Newport Borough Council, 1739-1892, catalogue; Jackson, W. Eric, The Structure of Local Government in England and Wales (London: Longmans, 1949); Davis, Haydn, The History of the Borough of Newport: from swamp to super-town (Newport, 1998).

Other Finding Aids

Hard copies of the catalogue are available at Gwent Record Office.

Conditions Governing Use

Usual copyright regulations apply

Appraisal Information

All records have been retained


Accruals are not expected

Geographical Names