Friday, 28 June 2013

Common Hall: Election of Sheriffs 24 June 2013

Common Hall took place at Guildhall at noon in order to elect the Sheriffs and other officers for the ensuing year.  Fully robed Masters, Prime Wardens and the Upper Bailiffs of the several Livery Companies were in the procession that started at 1150 with the Livery Committee, followed by the Masters of the twelve senior Companies (known as the Great Twelve) who were seated on the Hustings. We others sat in the front rows in the Hall.  The next procession consisted of the Lord Mayor, Sheriffs and officers.  Officers include the Ceremonial Remembrancer, the Chief Commoner, the Sheriffs Chaplains, the Comptroller & City Solicitor, Recorder, Chamberlain, Town Clerk, Aldermen above and below the Chair, and the Lord Mayor.  The Common Cryer asks all those who are not Liverymen to leave the hall immediately 'on pain of death', then opens proceedings.  Details of what is to take place is given by the Assistant Town Clerk.  This year there was no contest for the Shrievalty and no contest for Bridge Masters, Ale Connors and Auditors.  I do know what the role of an Ale Conner consists of! Do you?!

We all say 'Ay' with a show of hands to the election and the two Sheriffs advance to the front of the Hustings to declare their consent to take upon themselves their office.  The Common Serjeant declares the Sheriffs to be elected.  Those elected this year are our own Sir Paul Judge, Alderman and Marketor, and Adrian Waddingham, Citizen and Actuary.  Both gave excellent short acceptance speeches.  The dates of the election of the Lord Mayor on 30 September is confirmed.  We are asked to note through  the Livery, Masters, Prime Wardens and Upper Bailiff, the Court of Aldermen has expressed its support for Alderman Fiona Woolf for the Mayoralty in 2013/14, Alderman Alan Yarrow for 2014/15 and Dr Andrew Parmley for the Shrievalty in that year. Good news indeed.

The Common Cryer then dissolves Common Hall with the words 'God Save the Queen'.  We all depart, Masters disrobe, and some forty-five Marketors left for an excellent lunch at Clothworkers Hall.  Our host was the Master, Robin Booth, and we were joined by the Educators. All in all it was a fine morning.  Many of us then went on to the Annual Flag Raising in Guildhall Yard, afterwards joining the Armed Forces for tea.  It was a splendid occasion in the life of the Livery!


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