An Exclusive Guide to the Lord Mayor’s Show

One of our city’s oldest traditions, The Lord Mayor’s Show (which has not missed a year since 1852) marks the start of a new term for the newly appointed Lord Mayor. If you are looking for things to do in Chelsea this autumn, this is one event that is not to be missed.

An annual celebration, that originally took place along The River Thames, sees the streets of London’s square mile come to life for one morning only in order to welcome the new spokesperson and leader of the Corporation of the City of London, as he or she travels through the streets to the Royal Courts of Justice at the Strand to swear allegiance to the sovereign.

A terrific tradition, cheered on by thousands and watched by millions live on the BBC each year, The Lord Mayor’s Show gets grander with age and is not to be missed if you are in the capital on 12th November this year.

Read our guide to making the most of this special celebration in the city.

  1. Despite what the schedule suggests, the procession leaves Westminster at 9am, so this could be a good time to head over and catch sight of the spectacle before the crowds gather and things get busy.
  2. If it starts to shower, then find somewhere warm to watch the parade from instead. There are plenty of cosy bars and eateries dotted along the river, so grab a drink or a warm bowl of soup and welcome the Lord Mayor from somewhere a little drier.
  3. Don’t underestimate the views from a bridge. Be sure to wrap up warm and head up to either the Hungerford or Millennium Bridge or settle down on one of the many benches along Victoria Embankment to watch the parade.
  4. There are several lavatories and first aid tents along the processional route, should you need them, and these are all marked for your convenience on this handy, printable map. Be sure to bring this along with you on the day.
  5. The City of London Guides offer lesser-known walks around the area in exchange for a donation to the Lord Mayor’s Appeal. These set off from 1 Poultry at 3pm and are well worth the walk.
  6. The fireworks display, which takes place between Waterloo Bridge and Blackfriars Bridge at 5pm is our favourite part of the day. Book a table at the OXO Tower for the best views or wrap up warm and marvel at the spectacle from the banks of the Thames.
  7. Finally, we would suggest that you do not drive to the event. This includes ordering a taxi or an Uber. The roads around the city will either be closed or very busy, so it is best to walk or take public transport.

The Lord Mayor’s show is one of the city’s most wonderful and longstanding traditions. If you are looking for things to do in Chelsea, then head down the river to catch a glimpse of the newly appointed Lord Mayor and his fanciful procession.

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