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The details of each sale were settled by the Court of Augmentations which was responsible for the disposal of former monastic lands for the crown.

Nicholas Bacon was Solicitor to the Court of Augmentations from 1537 to 1546, and he had local connections.

During the time of the abbey any form of local self determination by the townspeople of Bury existed solely through the Candlemas Guild and later the Guildhall Feoffment Trust.

The property of the Abbey of St Edmund was surrendered to the Crown on 4th November 1539 but much of the wealth had already been confiscated in the previous year.

The Sheriff had never had a direct control over the area of the Liberty.

Instead, there had been a Steward of the Liberty, at least since the days of William the Conqueror.

He had been a rich wool merchant, trading in Flanders, and had built Hengrave Hall on the proceeds from 1525 to 1538.

The house was left to his wife, Margaret, and his only son, also called Thomas, who was born soon after his death.

In Lavenham, Ipswich, Hadleigh and Bergholt, the independent weavers were restless.

After about 1120 it seems to have become an hereditary post.

By 1536 the post of Steward of the Liberty had passed into the hands of Thomas Howard, 3rd Duke of Norfolk.

The word of the monarch now held sway in the Liberty, but the area continued to hold itself somewhat separate from the rest of Suffolk.

This situation continued up until about 1970, and the hereditary Stewardship of the Liberty also continued until that time, although its importance was purely nominal by then.