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New rule implemented to resolve Thetford council’s “hatgate”

Thetford Town Councillors in their ceremonial outfits before an event last year.

Thetford Town Councillors in their ceremonial outfits before an event last year.

Archant

An ongoing row over headgear at a council has come to an end after it ruled all councillors shall have to keep their hats on during ceremonial meetings.

Fran Robinson, Thetford town councillor Fran Robinson, Thetford town councillor

Thetford town councillor Fran Robinson took issue with a “sexist” tradition of the 800-year-old mayoralty which states women have to seek permission from the mayor to remove their hats on ceremonial occasions, while men do not.

The issue had stirred up controversy within the council chamber, which came to a head when one councillor left a ceremonial meeting after Mrs Robinson arrived without her cocked hat.

But the matter has now been settled with a new resolution that both genders will have to ask permission to remove their hats.

The decision was made at a meeting of Thetford Town Council’s civic committee on Tuesday, January 17.

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