Lord Mayor’s Show, procession and fireworks
This year, the London Lord Mayor’s Show, procession and fireworks take place on Saturday November 8.
Every year, since 1215 when King John granted the citizens of London the vote to elect their own Lord Mayor, a procession has taken place marking the journey from the City of London to Westminster where the new Mayor pledges allegiance to the Crown.
By the sixteenth century, the procession had become a popular pageant with the new Lord Mayor first making the journey by boat, then on horseback until Sir Gilbert Heathcote fell off and broke his leg. The magnificent State Coach subsequently commissioned from Joseph Berry of Holborn cost £1,065 and has been used in every parade since and when not in use for the procession, is on display at The Museum of London.
Nowadays, the London Lord’s Mayor’s show procession is watched by over half a million spectators and is broadcast live on the BBC. Thousands of people representing many organisations across London march and dance to bands or travel on colourful floats along the three mile route. Starting from Mansion House at 11am, it makes its way through the historic streets of the Square Mile in the City of London to the Royal Courts of Justice on the Strand. At 11.45am the State Coach leaves Guildhall and travels to Mansion House to pick up the new Lord Mayor, joining the procession near the back. Going out, the parade travels past St Paul’s Cathedral, where the Lord Mayor will pause to receive a blessing. On the way back, between 1pm and 2.30pm, the route goes via Embankment.
As is traditional, to mark the end of the Lord Mayor’s Show and the beginning of a new mayoral year, London’s newly confirmed Lord Mayor will launch a splendid fireworks display over the river at 5.15pm. It’s one of London’s most spectacular annual displays and you’ll be able to see the fireworks for miles, but for the best view of all head down to the riverside between Waterloo and Blackfriars Bridges, either on Victoria Embankment or on the South Bank.
Tickets for the grandstand are on sale now.
Tubes: St Pauls is on the outward route, Blackfriars or Mansion House on the return route, and Bank is on both.