City remembrancer

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The Remembrancer is one of the City of London’s Chief Officers; the role dates back to 1571. His traditional role is as the channel of communications between the Lord Mayor and the City of London on the one hand and the Sovereign, Royal Household and Parliament on the other. The Remembrancer is also the City's Ceremonial Officer and Chief of Protocol.

The Remembrancer’s department at the City of London is broken into three distinct branches of work - parliamentary, ceremonial and private events. The parliamentary office is responsible for looking after the City of London's interests in Parliament with regard to all public legislation, while the ceremonial office’s objectives are to enable the Lord Mayor and City of London to welcome high profile visitors both domestically and internationally. Functions staged range from small receptions to major state dinners. Finally, the private events team co-ordinate the hiring of the Guildhall for private banquets, receptions or conferences.

The current Remembrancer is Paul Double. He joined the City of London from the Bar and earlier government service. His recent work in Parliament has centred on the legislation to implement the changes to the City's electoral system.

Criticism[edit]

In an opinion piece in The Guardian newspaper, George Monbiot made the following criticism:

This criticism is from an article where the wider context is the medieval and unreformed nature of The Corporation of The City of London, where the remembrancer is included as one of its anachronisms.

The City in general, and the Remembrancer in particular, have no power to overrule Parliament, which has the right to make legislation affecting the City if it wishes. For example, the City needed to request a private Act of Parliament in 2002 to modernise its system of local elections; an Act which inter alia notes that "The objects of this Act cannot be attained without the authority of Parliament".[2]

Avaaz protest[edit]

The global civic organization Avaaz launched a campaign for the abolition of the post of City Remembrancer in March 2013. They claimed the post gave privileged access to Parliament for the bankers of the city of London. Their campaign was entitled "Kick bankers out of parliament". [3]

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