Well, today was the swearing in ceremony at the Court of Aldermen. It was a warm and friendly event, and I was guided by many, but will single out our Deputy, John Bennett, who very kindly introduced me to the Court and soothed my nerves throughout. I set out the text of my response below:
My Lord Mayor, my fellow Aldermen. It is with some trepidation that I face this challenging role. I have much to learn, much more than I thought when I decided to stand for election in Broad Street a short while ago. Just over three decades ago I was a transient, happy, even ignorant immigrant to the City of London, here to do a job, not intending to stay permanently. Yet, I became entranced by the wonders of the City and discovered a community that treats all comers fairly and where “Dictum Meum Pactum” is not just a phrase from a dead language. Behind all the pomp and circumstance, I can attest that the true traditions of the City are those of Dick Whittington; an open and tolerant community of people where honest trade is respected and rewarded – or as Thomas Jefferson said at his inaugural speech which inspired my Worshipful Company of World Traders’ motto – “Commerce and honest friendship with all.”
I thank Sir David Lewis for leaving the Ward in such fine shape. I am honoured to have the support of three excellent Councilmen, including my friend and Deputy, John Bennett, John Scott and Christopher Hayward. I know that I have your support and look forward to learning from you and working with you in finding ways to increase the City’s attractiveness to businesses and residents. Regretfully, I shall probably make a few false steps along the way. May I petition in advance your understanding and guidance when I do so. May I thank you all for your encouragement and I look forward to serving with honour.
And I passed by St Margaret Lothbury where our parish church holds the Ward Notices to take a picture in honour of David, with the electoral result notice beneath:
I guess this is along the lines of “The Alderman has retired, long serve the new Alderman”.