Size and population

The freehold notionally covers a broad swath of south London, extending from the Thames down as far as the M25, although in practice the centre of power is far smaller and the more extreme boundaries incorporate any number of more isolated motleys which pay only lip service to the freehold if they even acknowledge it at all. The area under more direct control falls inside the A205 ring road and extends as far as Greenwich and Lewisham to the east, Dulwich to the south and Wimbledon to the west.

The freehold consists of approximately 100-150 changelings, although the exact figure fluctuates as individuals either leave London in search of a more remote freehold or arrive in the city from more rural areas seeking the support of others of their kind.

On an average year as many as five new escapees from the Hedge arrive, typically in pairs or threes, meaning that an average year sees two escape groups arriving. This number is lower than might be expected from such a large city due both to the limited activity north of the river, a general policy against frivolous opening of gates into the hedge loosely enforced by all four courts and the activities of unaligned bands of bridge burners. In practice, many more escapees might find their way to areas outside the direct control of the freehold and not be noticed by the establishment as they find their way elsewhere or are recaptured while still inexperienced.


Both Alike in Dignity Trevelyan