This state of affairs appears to have continued until the accession of James I., and in 1595 the bailiff and constables of Hexham were removed as being "infected with combination and toleration of thieves."
In 1539 a charter incorporated the bailiff and inhabitants.
The high bailiff refused to make a return, and the confirmation of Fox's election was delayed by the somewhat mean action of the ministry.
It was formerly the capital of Vogtland, or Voigtland, a territory governed by the imperial vogt, or bailiff, and this name still clings in popular speech to the hilly district in which the town lies.
No charter granting self-government to Wiveliscombe has been found, and the only evidence for the traditional existence of a borough is that part of the town is called "the borough," and that until the middle of the 19th century a bailiff and a portreeve were annually chosen by the court leet.