Company Membership

Traditionally, young people were apprenticed to a Weaver who, when satisfied that they were competent to practice their trade, made them Freemen. As they became more senior in the Company, they became Liverymen – in other words, they were allowed to wear the Livery of the Company on important occasions. The Weavers’ Company today remains proud of both its historic and current links with the Weaving industry, with approximately half of our  membership today connected with the Textile Industry in the fields of design, manufacturing or education.

The Company is one of the smaller of the City Livery Companies, with membership of the Livery standing at 125. The membership numbers within the Freedom and Apprenticeship are even smaller and remain fluid. Fraternity remains important to the Company and all members are encouraged to attend events and also to support the Company’s various activities.

How to Join


Entry to the Company is generally through the Freedom, attained by one of three routes:

  • By Apprenticeship – on completion of a seven-year indentured apprenticeship to a Master who is a Liveryman.
  • By Patrimony – for any person born after the date of a parent’s Freedom, having themselves reached the age of 25.
  • By Redemption – following recommendation by a Member and then confirmed by the Selection Committee.


  • Liverymen are elected from the body of Freemen. It is hoped that most eligible Freemen will progress to become members of the Livery. On average, one or two Freemen are elected to the Livery each year.


  • The Assistants are in turn elected from within the Livery. The Court of Assistants, numbering up to 24, is the governing body of the Company and also Trustees of the Company Charities. Each year, four members are elected to become the two Bailiffs and two Wardens, who meet regularly and act as the Company’s executive committee. The senior Bailiff is known as the Upper Bailiff and serves for a year, handing over in October to their understudy, the Renter Bailiff.
The Weavers' Company Crest

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