This Ordinance makes provision with respect to the vesting in the Crown, development or alienation of reclaimed lands on the foreshore of Sierra Leone. Reclaimed lands are lands that were formerly part of the sea. The Governor may- (a) construct wharves along or out from the foreshore or in the sea-bed adjacent thereto; (b) reclaim any part of the foreshore or sea-bed or in any tidal river, creek or channel therein; (c) erect buildings upon any areas of land reclaimed from the sea; (d) dredge the sea-bed or any tidal river, creek or channel therein; (e) alienate, lease or otherwise dispose of any part of any reclaimed area. The Ordinance also makes provision with respect to the handling claims by private persons to land subject to this Ordinance. The construction of wharves shall be prohibited except in accordance with the provisions of this Ordinance. The Governor may make such leases of the foreshore and related waters or beds that do not create a substantial infringement of public rights.
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The British set up a trading post near present-day Freetown in the 17th century. Originally the trade involved timber and ivory, but later it expanded into slaves. Following the American Revolution, a colony was established in 1787 and Sierra Leone became a destination for resettling black loyalists who had originally been resettled in Nova Scotia. After the abolition of the slave trade in 1807, British crews delivered thousands of Africans liberated from illegal slave ships to Sierra Leone, particularly Freetown.