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Bulletin from the RT Hon the Lord Mayor

20 November 2020, Read the full bulleting (PDF) here

An abridged version is below:

Fellow Liverymen
On Saturday 14th November I went without pomp or ceremony to the Law Courts to make my Statutory Declaration before the Lord Chief Justice for a second term of office as Lord Mayor, following a similarly administrative procedure in lieu of the famous Silent Ceremony the day before. So begins my second Mayoralty! Though I am naturally disappointed that we did not have the opportunity to celebrate together with a Lord Mayor’s Show, I am extremely grateful for all the messages of support and goodwill I have received on the advent of another year at Mansion House.

This second Mayoralty begins at a time when all of us remain deeply worried about the ongoing impact of the current situation, not just for its effect on the Livery, but its implications for the City and the wider economy…I therefore thought it might be helpful to outline here just what we in the City of London Corporation have been doing, to reassure you that we are working hard to mitigate the long term economic and social impact of the pandemic and to drive a recovery:

  • We continue to talk to Government on a daily basis about our concerns and the concerns of the business community… I have been appointed to the reconfigured Board of Trade (which met last month) which we are using as a platform to make sure Government understands London’s investment needs and trade opportunities.
  • Since the pandemic began we have made a significant contribution to the Pan London Strategic Coordination Group, which leads the response to COVID in London.
  • As a landlord we have been working with our tenants in City buildings on rental relief while the economic uncertainty continues.
  • We have established a COVID testing facility in Guildhall Yard to bolster the testing capacity available to employees and residents in the City and neighbouring boroughs.
  • Our strategy for the next five years is articulated in London Recharged: Our Vision for 2025, the report we released last month, which makes recommendations for business, government and the public sector to drive the recovery… The report can be read here
  • I have set up a Culture and Commerce Taskforce, which will seek to identify the ways in which culture and commerce can work together to support the regrowth of the creative sector and strengthen the City’s competitiveness as a place to do business post COVID.
  • We are putting in place measures to support London’s long term-resilience through our Climate Action Strategy, our Fintech Strategic Review and our Social Mobility Taskforce, ensuring that London has the skills and the economic landscape to ride out the current storm in the long term.
  • Last week I hosted virtually the Green Horizon Summit. Speakers included HRH The Prince of Wales, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Mark Carney and Christine Lagarde.

The Lord Mayor’s annual briefing to the masters and clerks of the Livery, taking place virtually next week, will be an opportunity to discuss these issues in an open forum…. I am delighted that companies and individual liverymen are continuing to show determination to address these challenges themselves. Some recent examples include:

  • The Livery Kitchen Initiative, about which you heard so much during the first lockdown, has moved into a second phase of activity, supplying daily meals to communities experiencing food poverty in north and east London.
  • Securing Future Prosperity, a pan-livery project coordinated by the Management Consultants Company, is now live after a successful pilot. The programme is deploying the considerable capabilities of liverymen to act as pro bono expert Guides to small businesses who are struggling with the current circumstances.
  • The Framework Knitters Company’s ‘Knit for Community’ initiative has seen over 400 volunteers from 32 Livery companies knit over 12,000 squares to be made into blankets to benefit charities working with vulnerable communities in London and across the UK.

The theme for my second year is Global UK: The New Future. It recognises that we have had a year of challenges but that we cannot afford to stand still. As
well as working towards a recovery, I will continue to champion innovation, culture and trade opportunities for London and the UK. In doing so, I hope to build on the foundations of my first year with a focus squarely on the future.

Thank you for your ongoing goodwill and involvement. It means an enormous amount to me and the Lady Mayoress and we look forward to engaging with as many of you as possible during the coming year.

With warm wishes from me and Hilary.

Alderman William Russell
The Rt Hon the Lord Mayor

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