9 November 2019
The Lord Mayor’s Show is 804 years old. It has been a fixture of London life for centuries, from its origins as a way to keep the city under control - didn’t work - through mediæval carnival and imperial spectacle to become the world’s greatest unrehearsed civic procession and its longest-running TV show.
The modern Show is a joyful and diverse civic parade of over 6000 people, with dozens of marching bands, military detachments, carriages, dance troupes, inflatables, giant contraptions and ceremonial displays. Every year is different and surprising, combining London’s ancient pomp, rowdy patchwork heritage and modern dynamism to create a spectacle unlike anything else in the world.
The Show runs from 11 onwards in the City of London but to get the best view you need to get there by about 10.15 (or book grandstand seats).
The procession runs from Mansion House (at Bank Junction) to the Royal Courts (on the Strand) and back again, then there are guided walks and family entertainment all day.
The 692nd Lord Mayor of London will be Alderman William Russell of the Bread Street ward. He is Lord Mayor Elect until the day before the Show, when he takes office in the Silent Ceremony. Click through to find out more about the new Lord Mayor and his plans for the year.
The Lord Mayor's procession has just been announced. We'll have more details as the Show approaches but you can see the processional running order now.
Once again the Show will offer two family Show Zones, at Paternoster Square and the new Bloomberg building. They will include fairground rides, giant games, street food stalls, craft workshops and a full size entertainment stage. The programme runs all day, fits neatly around the procession and provides a perfect base for a day out with the family. Look out for more details next week.
Seats are still available. Book yours now to give your feet a rest and enjoy the best possible view of the Show.
Leave your car at home! The roads are all closed, there’s nowhere to park and the rest of London is all jumbled up. Several tube and train stations will bring you out right on the processional route: St Pauls is on the outward leg, Blackfriars or Mansion House are on the return leg and Bank is right in the middle of everything.
The Lord Mayor’s Show shuts down the City of London for most of the day. There is no road access at all, either in or out, many bus services are diverted and every parking bay is closed. We regret the inconvenience this causes but the security of the Show is taken very seriously and no exceptions can be made.
The Lord Mayor’s Show is naturally accessible and enjoyable by everyone, and you will see many disabled people both taking part and joining the crowds to watch. Special parking arrangements are available for blue badge holders, and the grandstands include spaces set aside for wheelchair users. See our access page for maps, advice and useful contacts.
Find out more about the rowdy and disobedient history of London and the Lord Mayor's Show, from the days when Westminster was a village on the Thames and the Show gave us the word float through Dick Whittington and the Great Fire right up to the young men who joined the tail of the procession to march away to the wars of the 20th century.