Acts and Ordinances of the Interregnum, 1642-1660. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1911.
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[17 September, 1642]
Whereas divers Commoners (being Citizens) of the City of Worcester, in the Name of themselves and other their Fellow Commoners, have presented their humble Petition to the House of Commons; shewing the great Danger, which they and the said City are in, by the Resort of divers Commissioners of Array Popish Recusants, Cavaliers, Soldiers, and other dangerous Persons and Delinquents, unto the said City of Worcester; and therefore have desired Liberty and Power, from the Parliament, to put themselves into a Posture of Defence, and to train and exercise themselves, and such Voluntiers and others, within the said City and Liberties thereof, as shall be willing to serve and use their Arms, for the Defence of the King and Parliament, under the Command of one Captain Rea (a Citizen of the said City); and the said Captain Rea to appoint such other Officer and Officers under him as he shall think fit and necessary for the said Service: All which the Lords and Commons assembled in Parliament do well approve of, and do much commend the Care and Diligence and good Affection of the said Petitioners, and do therefore Ordain, That the said Petitioners, and other Commoners within the said City, under the Command of the said Captain Rea as aforesaid, shall have the like Power and Authority touching the Premises, as hath been given, by former Orders of both Houses of Parliament, to the Town of Shrewsbury, and other Cities and Towns within this Kingdom; and do further Order and require the Mayors, Sheriffs, Aldermen, Citizens, and Commoners of the said City, to take special care, that Watch and Ward be duly kept (each Commoner in his Course), from Time to Time, at the several Gates and Passages of the said City, for the apprehending of all dangerous and ill-affected Persons; and the Mayor, Sheriff, and Aldermen of the said City, are required to seize, and take into their Hands and Custody, the Magazine of the said City, and so much of the Magazine and Arms of the County of Worcester as is remaining in the said City, or in or about the Cathedral Church or other Places adjoining to the said City, and also all such Arms, Ammunition, Money, or Plate, as hath been, or shall be, brought into the said City, or Suburbs thereof, by any Commissioners of Array, Cavaliers, or other dangerous and illaffected Persons, or that shall be likely to be employed against the Parliament, and particularly the Arms, Money, and Plate of the Lord Coventry, within or about the said City; and that they, the said Mayor, Sheriff, and Aldermen, of the said City, do retain and keep all such Arms, Ammunition, Money, and Plate, as aforesaid, in their safe Custody, till further Order be taken by both Houses of Parliament: And it is further Ordained, by the said Lords and Commons, that no Commissioners of Array, or other dangerous or ill-affected Persons, be permitted to take any Houses, Lodgings, or Dwellings, within the said City, or Suburbs thereof; and the said Mayor, Sheriff, Aldermen, and other Inhabitants of the said City, are hereby required and enjoined to see this Ordinance duly observed; and for their so doing, they, and every of them, their Aiders and Assistants, shall be protected and saved harmless, by the Power and Authority of both Houses of Parliament.
And all and every Person and Persons, that shall be arrested, proceeded against, or otherwise molested or troubled, by Colour of the Commission of Array, or other Commission from His Majesty, for doing any Service to the Parliament, shall have Power, and are hereby authorized, to make Resistance, by Force or otherwise, as Cause shall require, and to call others, out of the said City or County, or elsewhere, to assist them.
And it shall be lawful for all and every other Person and Persons to assist them accordingly; and all Officers, and other Persons, are required to be aiding and assisting to them in this Behalf, and to use their best Endeavours for the apprehending of all such Persons as shall execute any such Commission as is before mentioned, or be aiding thereunto, and to bring them up to the Parliament; and all and every such Officer, and other Person and Persons, which shall do any Thing in Execution of this Ordinance, shall be protected and assisted by both Houses of Parliament.