We have had Mayors for over 450 years since the first Charter in 1553. The first Mayor was a man called John Lockey. Some Mayors have served for less than a year for a variety of reasons such as changes in local government arrangements, the outbreak of war or if they died in office. Others Mayors have served twice or even for three successive years as one mid-Victorian Mayor managed to do.
The Charter also appointed 10 other men (Principal Burgesses) to assist the Mayor in running the City. The Mayor had both Executive and Judicial Roles. They were not elected democratically but were nominated for life by friends and contacts of the other existing Burgesses. The executive structure is similar to the situation today where we have an Executive Cabinet of 8 Senior Members, although the Cabinet and indeed all 58 Councillors are elected for 4 year terms. The Mayor’s role is no longer Executive or Legal. It is ceremonial and is to represent the City and District Council locally, nationally and indeed internationally at important events.
The Crest may be taken as allusion to the meeting of the barons in St Albans Abbey prior to Magna Carta. The crest shows a demi figure of a knight armed according to the period concerned and in his left hand he holds a document which has been sealed in reference to Magna Carta. The crest arises from a mural crown – frequently employed to indicate municipal entities of real importance such as Cities.
The Supporters make reference to the Abbey by way of having an Abbot in liturgical vestments – with his crozier pointing inwards as is correct for abbatial jurisdiction, and wearing a plain mitre as is the custom of Abbots. The other Supporter may be taken as allusion of John the Printer dressed as for the period and holding in his hand an ink-ball – an instrument used in printing. Both supporters stand on a compartment which is divided up in the centre and which has to the left a ploughed field as a reference to the agricultural area contained within the District, and on the other side a cobbled street in reference to the mediaeval City and so the foundations, as it were, of the present City – the compartment is a play on the rural and the metropolitan.
There have been 472 Mayors. These are recorded on vellum rolls and are displayed outside the Council Chamber at the Council offices in the Civic Centre.
| No.||Year||Mayor||Deputy Mayor|
|472||2015/2016||Salih Gaygusuz||Gill Clark|
|471||2014/2015||Geoff Harrison||Janet Churchard|
|470||2013/2014||Annie Brewster||Brian Gibbard|
|469||2012/2013||Eileen Harris||Julie Bell|
|468||2011/2012||Aislinn Lee||Geoff Harrison|
|467||2010/2011||Maxine Crawley||Beric Read|
|466||2009/2010||Chris Oxley ||Mohammed Iqbal Zia|
|465||2008/2009||Bert Pawle||Maxine Crawley|
|464||2007/2008||Kate Morris||Geoff Harrison|
|463||2006/2007||Alison Steer||Martin Frearson|
|462||2005/2006||Malcom MacMillan||Eileen Harris|
|461||2004/2005||Gordon Myland||Bert Pawle|
|460||2003/2004||Jenny Stroud||Alison Steer|
|459||2002/2003||Keith Stammers||Mrs Hazel Ward|