The Carmen's fellowship is rooted in the past. They were there when the City itself was born.
Traditionally, the trade dates back to the 13th century.
At that time, the Crown compelled Carmen to carry Royal chattels. As the pay was derisory, bribes were paid so that Carmen could be ‘excused’, an early form of draft-dodging.
In 1272, the City of London Corporation intervened and passed a bye-law controlling carters, which obliged them to accept both Royal and Civic service.
Other trades organised - Saddlers, Loriners, Farriers and Paviors, and in 1376 'a mysterie' of Woodmongers emerged.
Carters quarrelled, the Crown commandeered carts and the streets were getting filthier.
It was time for change.
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