Lord mayor is a title of a mayor of what is usually a major city in a Commonwealth realm, with special recognition bestowed by the sovereign.[1] However, the title or an equivalent is present in other countries, including forms such as "high mayor". Aldermen usually elect the lord mayor from their ranks.[2][better source needed]

Commonwealth of Nations

Letters patent granting lord mayoralty to Oxford.
Sir John Stuttard, Lord Mayor of London during the 2006 Lord Mayor's Show
The Right Worshipful Lord Mayor of Leeds Sir Charles Lupton


In Australia, lord mayor is a special status granted by the monarch to mayors of major cities, primarily the capitals of Australian states and territories. Australian cities with lord mayors are Adelaide, Brisbane, Darwin, Hobart, Melbourne, Newcastle, Parramatta, Perth, Sydney, and Wollongong.


In Canada, the only town with a lord mayor in the traditional sense is Niagara-on-the-Lake, as recognition of its role as the first capital of Upper Canada.[3] Unusually, the council of Brantford, Ontario took it upon itself to appoint an honorary Lord Mayor Walter Gretzky in addition to the elected mayor.[4] This is the only example of a council granting the cachet itself, rather than it being granted by a higher authority, such as the Crown or national government.

United Kingdom

Main article: List of lord mayoralties and lord provostships in the United Kingdom

In England, Wales, and Northern Ireland, it is a purely ceremonial post conferred by letters patent. Most famously it refers to the Lord Mayor of London, who only has jurisdiction over the City of London, as opposed to the modern title of Mayor of London governing Greater London.


In Uganda, the only jurisdiction with a lord mayor is Kampala, in recognition of its status as the capital city of the country.


In Ireland, the posts of Lord Mayor of Dublin (granted under the Kingdom of Ireland) and Lord Mayor of Cork (granted when this city was part of the United Kingdom) still exist, and are symbolic titles as in the UK.

Province of Maryland

Annapolis, the only city in the Thirteen Colonies to receive a royal charter, used the title 'lord mayor' prior to the American Revolution.[5]

Equivalents in other languages

Style of address

The style of address for the office of the lord mayors of Belfast, Cardiff, Bristol, the City of London, and York is The Right Honourable. All other lord mayors are The Right Worshipful. This refers only to the post, rather than the person.[1] The title Sir can be used for salutations when a lord mayor is being addressed.[6][7]

See also


  1. ^ a b "Lord Mayor". Debretts. Retrieved 19 February 2016.
  2. ^ Salter, Frank Kemp (2007). "10: Chairman's command of meeting procedure: the challenge of aggression". Emotions in Command: Biology, Bureaucracy, and Cultural Evolution. Transaction Publishers. p. 316. ISBN 978-1412822473. Retrieved 8 August 2019.
  3. ^ Beech, Monique (August 4, 2007). "Oh, Lordy!; Niagara-on-the-Lake's mayor is the only one in Canada referred to as 'lord,' but as reporter Monique Beech discovered, the title's official status isn't clear". St. Catharines Standard. Archived from the original on 2013-10-02.
  4. ^ "Chapter 10: Lord Mayor – Honorary Position". Brantford Municipal Code (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-04-26. Retrieved 2011-12-08 – via Municipal World.
  5. ^ "Potter's American Monthly: An Illustrated Magazine of History, Literature, Science and Art". J. E. Potter and Company. 31 January 1872. Retrieved 31 January 2018 – via Google Books.
  6. ^ Bentley, Phyllis Eleanor (1962). "Committees". Collins. p. 155. Retrieved 29 August 2018. Mayor (...cities in the UK....the Right Worshipful] - the Mayor of _____, Begin: Sir (or Madam). Refer to as Your Worship.....
  7. ^ "Addressing People of Title". Letters Library. Library Online Inc. Retrieved 29 August 2018. Addressing People of Title - Mayor (excluding United States mayors) - Salutation: Dear Sir/Madam: or Dear Sir/Madam Mayor