Police called to ‘lockdown-defying’ bookshop with Magna Carta quote in window

The Mustard Seed tearoom and Christian bookshop is invoking the 13th-century charter of rights (Image: Andrew Topping / Nottingham Post)

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Police were this afternoon seen outside a bookshop which has reportedly remained open through lockdown in defiance of the law.

The bookshop has signs in its windows quoting the Magna Carta as its reason for staying open.

The Mustard Seed tearoom and Christian bookshop claims it is invoking the 13th-century charter of rights to keep selling books despite coronavirus restrictions put in place to save lives and stop the spread of the disease.

The Gedling venue remained open on Saturday – the day after receiving a £1,000 fine and being ordered to close, reports Nottinghamshire Live.

Non-essential shops must close under England's second national coronavirus shutdown.

Pubs, restaurants and cafes must also shut unless they can sell takeaway food and drink to be consumed off-site.

Police said officers arrived on Saturday to fine people inside the tearoom.

The notice displayed on the Mustard Seed's front window
(Image: Andrew Topping / Nottingham Post)

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The Mustard Seed was told by council officials to close on Friday and was issued with the fine after remaining open during the lockdown.

The venue has quoted its rights under common law and used the Magna Carta 1215 to claim it cannot lawfully be closed down by authorities.

On the shop's front window there are two signs explaining its reason for remaining open and serving customers food and drink.

One quotes Article 61 of the Magna Carta and says that the Government is not there to "rule us".

The notice claims any business has the right to "enter into lawful dissent" if it feels it is being governed "unjustly".

It reads: "As the business owners, we are exercising our rights to earn a living.

"Under Article 61 of Magna Carta 1215, we have a right to enter into lawful dissent if we feel we are being governed unjustly.

"Contrary to common belief, our sovereign and her government are only there to govern us and not rule us."

"This must be done within the constraint of our common law and the freedoms asserted to us by such law.

"Nothing can become law in this country if it falls outside of this simple constraint.

"I am not under any obligation, nor will I, answer any questions or give you any details.

"I am a living persons and statutory regulations only apply with my consent."

The notice adds that the business owner will "conditionally accept your demands" if a number of factors are met by authorities.

This includes proving whether Covid-19 is "proven to exist", proof is provided of which law prohibits it from operating, proof of contract "where I agree to participate in these guidelines", and evidence that remaining open "constitutes a Public Health Threat".

A separate notice claims anybody who enters the premises to take enforcement action "enters here as trespassers" under common law.

The shop quoted the Magna Carta claiming it could remain open despite coronavirus laws
(Image: Andrew Topping / Nottingham Post)

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When visited by the Nottinghamshire Post earlier this week, a spokesperson for the business told a reporter she did not wish to provide an official statement.

However, she said that she was "standing up for common law" in the country and claims that the pandemic was part of the "new world order".

She added that "someone has got to stand up and say something" and argued that the current lockdown restrictions are "unlawful".

Leader of Gedling Borough Council, Labour Councillor John Clarke, said: “The council is investigating complaints from a large number of people.

“It’s in relation to the fact that it’s open. It’s just a pure defiance of the law of the state.

“I think a police van’s down there at the moment but I don’t know whether any action’s been taken.”

Police were called to the scene to support Gedling Borough Council officials at 1.45pm on Saturday, November 14.

A spokesman for Nottinghamshire Police said earlier: “There were a number of people inside the cafe.”

The force said the incident was to do with the Mustard Seed tearoom and Christian bookshop.

Mirror Online has approached Nottinghamshire Police for comment.

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