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Seigneur gives up right to treizieme

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SARK'S Seigneur has agreed to relinquish the ancient right of treizieme in exchange for an index-linked payment of £28,000 a year.

SARK'S Seigneur has agreed to relinquish the ancient right of treizieme in exchange for an index-linked payment of £28,000 a year. If proposals from the Finance Committee are approved next month, it will be the island's exchequer, rather than the Seigneur, which will benefit from one-thirteenth of the purchase price each time one of the 40 tenements or 30 freehold properties is sold.

The remainder of Sark's 300 or so properties are leasehold but neither their occupiers nor the owners of land are permitted to raise money on them - a restriction the committee said had no justification in the modern world and which was acting to Sark's evident disadvantage.

In its report, the committee links its planned land reforms - which also include the concept of a tax when leasehold properties change hands - to the removal of the tenants' automatic right to a seat in Chief Pleas.

It argues that if the right to a seat is no longer human rights-compliant, then the restrictions imposed on property by the 1611 letters patent should also be removed.

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