Property system was spread throughout British empire but has since been almost completely scrapped in the former colonies

The British empire spread leasehold to every corner of the globe – but now England and Wales remain the last redoubt of a system regarded as a feudal relic everywhere else.

In Ireland, much-hated ground rents extracted by the Anglo-Irish aristocracy, and dating back to the Cromwellian era, were partly behind the rise of the Land League in the late 19th century, and the country’s fight for independence.

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