Representative of ward within the town of Morton. The Alderman serves on the Berman's council, administers local justice and leads some of the communal religious events.
Although the Aldermen tend to be drawn from the upper ranks of society this is not a reuirement. What is a requirement is that the Alderman had the trust of their Ward in matters of common sense and honesty. Most aldermen have distinguished themselves on one of the town's trade guilds but, again, this is only an opportunity to show their qualities and not a requirement (indeed in the wards not dominated by a single trade, an unguilded candidate has an advantage as not being perceived as beholden to a trade interest rather than the Ward.
Aldermen are selected by the Pledgemen of the Ward. The apporach followed varies and different wards have different traditions - some follow a similar "semi-democratic" process to that for picking pledgemen, others choose by lot.
The Alderman's duties are threefold:
- To represent the Ward's interests on the Berman's council.
- To adjudicate on minor disputes within the ward, or on occasions between wards. This keeps matters out of the courts and, with the exception of the vested interests of the Lawry many will happily accept potentially less rigorous process for speed and cost advantages.
- To carry out the rites required for the Household God of the ward.
Accoutrements & Equipment
Aldermen, per se, have no badge of office though they along with the co-opted councillors wear an enamelled badge with the town's crest on their left shoulder when engaged in council business. It is seen as rather crass behaviour to wear the badge at other times.
Grounds for Removal/Dismissal
Aldermen serve for a one year term but can be removed from office if they loose the support of their Ward - how many are needed for this depends on the ward and circumstances but the a call backed by all the pledges (save the Alderman's) is the typical level cited.
Religious RitesEach ward has a Wardhall, which serves a range of purposes - it is the religious centre for the god of the ward but also a day to day community centre which may be used for a wide range of purposes. In its role as the "home" of the ward's household god it contains a Shrine, usually a wall mounted cabinet facing the main door. Depending on the ward this may have tokens from the individual households or from the pledges.
The Alderman will administer the usual rites - hearthtime and evens daily and managing the incoming and depearting pledges or households. The main distinction is that everyone else is not expected to be present. In some cases it will just be the Alderman, in others one or more pledges may send representatives. This is however an opportunity for communal pleas or thanksgiving and in times of need or general rejoicing the halls are packed.
Shrine of a Household God