Oxford History: Mayors & Lord Mayors

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Lord Mayors of the City of Oxford

1962–today


”Since 1963 [Oxford] has boasted a Lord Mayor, instead of a plain Mayor, a distinction which it shares with
18 other English cities and which means, pomp apart, nothing whatsoever” (James Morris, 1965)

Lord Mayor's Parade 2009

Above: New Lord Mayor of Oxford Mary Clarkson with outgoing Lord Mayor Susanna Pressel on her right parading through Queen Street on 25 May 2009. Behind them are the new Deputy Lord Mayor John Goddard and Sheriff of Oxford Elise Benjamin

Below: Three former Labour Lord Mayors at the Remembrance Day Parade in St Giles on 13 November 2005: Carol Roberts (1998/9), Maureen Christian (2000/1), and Gill Sanders (2002/3)

Three lady Lord Mayors

The first Lord Mayor of Oxford was Evan Owen Roberts. He was elected plain Mayor in May 1962, but served as Lord Mayor from 23 October 1962 for the last five months of his year of office. This following is a list only, and there is no plan to add biographies. Where, however, the Lord Mayor in question happens to have a full entry in the Oxford Dictionary for National Biography (2004), the words “See ODNB” have been added.

Only four women served as Mayor up to 1962, but since that date there have been another eighteen women, shown in red below. Elise Benjamin was Oxford’s first Green Party Lord Mayor.

  • 1962/1963: Evan Owen Roberts
  • 1963/1964: Alec Percival Parker. Died 1973
  • 1964/1965: John Leonard Norman Baker (University Councillor). Died 1971. See ODNB
  • 1965/1966: Mrs Florence Kathleen Lower
  • 1966/1967: Air-Vice-Marshall William Foster Macneece Foster. Died 1978
  • 1967/1968: Francis (Frank) Vincent Pickstock (Labour). Died 1885
  • 1968/1969: Peter Spencer Spokes (Conservative)
  • 1969/1970: Percy Dudley Bromley. Died 1986
  • 1970/1971: Michael Maclagan (University Councillor). Died 2003
  • 1971/1972: Thomas James Meadows
  • 1972/1973: Arthur Bernard Connors
  • 1973/1974: Frederick George Ingram (Conservative). Died aged 100 on 20 February 2013
  • 1974/1975: Mrs Olive Frances Gibbs (Labour, 1st of two terms). Died 1994. See ODNB
  • 1975/1976: William George Robert Fagg (Labour)
  • 1976/1977: Miss Ann Hazel Spokes, later Mrs Ann Spokes Symonds (Conservative)
  • 1977/1978: Mrs Dora Minnie Carr. Died 1991
  • 1978/1979: William Eaton (Bill) Simpson. Died 1981
  • 1979/1980: John Arundell Hamilton (Conservative). Died 1999
  • 1980/1981: Gordon Woodward (Conservative). Died July 2002
  • 1981/1982: Henry Briskol Nicholson Myers Nimmo (Labour). Died in office 12 December 1981
                     Mrs Olive Frances Gibbs (Labour, 2nd of two terms, December 1981 to May 1982 only). Died 1994
  • 1982/1983: Anthony William (Tony) Williamson (Labour)
  • 1983/1984: Mrs Janet Gillespie Todd (Conservative).   Died May 2006
  • 1984/1985: Frank Arnold Garside (Conservative). Died 1988
  • 1985/1986: Roger Alan Dudman (Labour). Died 1990
  • 1986/1987: John George William Parker (Labour). Died 1989
  • 1987/1988: Mrs Elizabeth Florence Mary Standingford (Labour)
                     In place of her husband Bert Standingford (Labour) who
                     died on 19 May 1987 when he was Lord Mayor Elect
  • 1988/1989: Nellie Dorothy (“Queenie”) Whorley (later Mrs Comfort) (Conservative)
  • 1989/1990: Patricia Anne Tempest Yardley (Conservative)
  • 1990/1991: Mrs Queenie Lewingdon Hamilton (Conservative)
  • 1991/1992: Alan David Pope (Labour)
  • 1992/1993: Mrs Barbara May Gatehouse (Labour)    Retirement 2009
  • 1993/1994: John Gordon Power (Labour)
  • 1994/1995: William Walker Buckingham (Labour)
  • 1995/1996: Joseph Charles (Joe) Blewitt (Labour)
  • 1996/1997: Beryl Ivy Keen (Labour)
  • 1997/1998: William John Baker (Labour) Died 2014
  • 1998/1999: Carol Roberts (Labour)
  • 1999/2000: Mrs Valerie (Val) Smith (Labour)   
  • 2000/2001: Mrs Maureen Christian (Labour) Died 30 January 2009
  • 2001/2002: Peter Moss (Labour). Died 1 April 2006
  • 2002/2003: Mrs Gillian Ann (Gill) Sanders (Labour)   
  • 2003/2004: Patrick (Pat) Stannard (Labour)
  • 2004/2005: Bryan Keen (Labour)   
  • 2005/2006: Robert John (Bob) Price (Labour)   
  • 2006/2007: Jim Campbell (LibDem)  
  • 2007/2008: John Tanner (Labour)   
  • 2008/2009: Susanna Pressel (Labour)
  • 2009/2010: Mary Clarkson (Labour)
  • 2010/2011: John Goddard (LibDem)
  • 2011/2012: Elise Benjamin (Green)
  • 2012/2013: Alan Armitage (LibDem). Resigned 4 March 2012;
    Mohammed Abbasi elected Lord Mayor on 13 March 2013 for two months
  • 2013/2014: Dee Sinclair (Labour)
  • Lord Mayor elect for 2014/15: Mohammed Abbasi

Lord Mayor’s Parade

This takes place in Oxford each year on the Bank Holiday Monday at the end of May,
soon after the new Lord Mayor starts his or her term of office.

Lord Mayor’s Parade 2007

Lord Mayor’s Parade 2008

Lord Mayor’s Parade 2009

Lord Mayor’s Parade 2010

The election of Lord Mayor usually takes place in May each year (immediately after any city council elections). Section 37 of the Representation of the People Act 1983 established the date of local elections throughout the country as the first Thursday in May (but this can be postponed by Statutory Instrument to June if it is necessary that the election coincides with those to the European Parliament)

Oxford City Council: Lord Mayor of Oxford

©Stephanie Jenkins

Last updated: 5 February, 2014

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