Are the Lord Mayor and Mayor of London Different Roles?

The Lord Mayor of London and the Mayor of London are two distinct roles, although they work closely together. The Lord Mayor is an ancient office that has been in existence since 1752, when Sir Crispin Gascoigne first took up residence. This role is completely separate from the directly elected office of Mayor of London, which is a political office that oversees a much larger area known as Greater London. The Lord Mayor has no political affiliation and is responsible for giving hundreds of speeches and attending numerous receptions and events throughout London and beyond.

He or she also wears the SS necklace, a chain of 28 gold emblems shaped like the letter S, though the origin of this tradition is unclear. The Lord Mayor is elected by the City of London, rather than appointed by the sovereign, since John issued a royal charter in 1215. This makes it one of the oldest continuously elected civic offices in the world. The directly elected Mayor of London was created in 2000 as part of the reforms to the Greater London Council, which was abolished in 1986 by the Local Government Act 1985. Of the 69 cities in the United Kingdom, 30 have mayors (or lords rectors in Scotland). The current Lord Mayor is Sadiq Khan, who works closely with him on various initiatives.

These include the introduction of congestion charges on private vehicles driving through central London from Monday to Friday, as well as the creation of the London Climate Change Agency, the London Energy Alliance and the International Big City Climate Leadership Group (now known as C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group). The Lord Mayor is also head of the Lieutenancy Commission, which represents the sovereign in the City of London (other counties usually have lieutenants, unlike commissions). He or she also attends the Treloar Trust (named after Sir William Treloar, mayor in 190) in Hampshire each year. The City Hall of London is a former office originally created by King John in a failed attempt to put the city on his side.

It was expanded in 1567 and, in its current form, has 28 esses (the “S” of Lancaster), Tudor-type roses and knots of the garter with tassels (alternating) and also a rake from which hangs the Jewel of the Mayor's Office. The main function of this role today is to represent, support and promote businesses and residents of the City of London.