Mayor of London

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Mayor of London
Boris Johnson, current incumbent
Boris Johnson MP

since 4 May 2008
Style Mr Mayor, Sir [1]
Appointer Electorate of Greater London
Term length Four years
Inaugural holder Ken Livingstone
4 May 2000
Formation Greater London Authority Act 1999
Succession First Thursday in May quadrennially
Deputy Deputy Mayor of London
Roger Evans
Salary £143,911

The Mayor of London is an elected politician who, along with the London Assembly of 25 members, is accountable for the strategic government of Greater London. Conservative Boris Johnson has held the position since 4 May 2008. The position was previously held by Ken Livingstone from the creation of the role on 4 May 2000 until his succession by Johnson.

The role, created in 2000 after the London devolution referendum, was the first directly elected mayor in the United Kingdom.

The Mayor of London is the mayor of the entirety of Greater London, including the City of London, for which there is also the ceremonial Lord Mayor of the City of London. Each London Borough also has a ceremonial mayor or, in Hackney, Lewisham, Newham or Tower Hamlets, an elected mayor.


The Greater London Council, the elected governance for Greater London, was abolished in 1986 following the Local Government Act 1985. Strategic functions were split off to various joint arrangements. Londoners voted in a referendum in 1998 to create new governance structures for Greater London. The directly elected Mayor of London was created by the Greater London Authority Act 1999 in 2000 as part of the reforms.


The Mayor is elected by the supplementary vote method for a fixed term of four years, with elections taking place in May. As with most elected posts in the UK, there is a deposit, in this case of £10,000 which is returnable on the candidate's winning at least 5% of the first-choice votes cast.


The 2000 campaign was incident-filled. The eventual winner, Ken Livingstone, went back on an earlier pledge not to run as an independent after losing the Labour nomination to Frank Dobson. The Conservative Party had to replace Lord Archer of Weston-super-Mare as their candidate when he was charged with perjury; Steve Norris was selected as his replacement.

Mayor of London election 4 May 2000 [2]
Party Candidate 1st Round  % 2nd Round Total  First Round Votes  Transfer Votes 
Independent Ken Livingstone 667,877 39.0% 108,540 776,417
Conservative Steven Norris 464,434 27.1% 99,703 564,137
Labour Frank Dobson 223,884 13.1%
Liberal Democrat Susan Kramer 203,452 11.9%
Christian Peoples Ram Gidoomal 43,060 2.4%
Green Darren Johnson 38,121 2.2%
BNP Michael Newland 33,569 2.0%
UKIP Damian Hockney 16,324 1.0%
Pro-Motorist Small Shop Geoffrey Ben-Nathan 9,956 0.6%
Independent Ashwin Tanna 9,015 0.5%
Natural Law Geoffrey Clements 5,470 0.3%
Independent win


In 2004, the second election was held. After being re-admitted to the Labour Party, Ken Livingstone was their official candidate. He won re-election after second preference votes were counted, with Steve Norris again coming second.

Mayor of London election 10 June 2004 [3]
Party Candidate 1st Round  % 2nd Round Total  First Round Votes  Transfer Votes 
Labour Ken Livingstone 685,548 36.8% 142,842 828,390
Conservative Steven Norris 542,423 29.1% 124,757 667,180
Liberal Democrat Simon Hughes 284,647 15.3%
UKIP Frank Maloney 115,666 6.2%
Respect Lindsey German 61,731 3.3%
BNP Julian Leppert 58,407 3.1%
Green Darren Johnson 57,332 3.1%
Christian Peoples Ram Gidoomal 31,698 2.2%
Independent Working Class Lorna Reid 9,452 0.5%
Independent Tammy Nagalingam 6,692 0.4%
Labour gain from Independent


The incumbent Labour Mayor, Ken Livingstone was defeated by Conservative candidate Boris Johnson who became London's 2nd Mayor.

Mayor of London election 1 May 2008 [4]
Party Candidate 1st Round  % 2nd Round Total  First Round Votes  Transfer Votes 
Conservative Boris Johnson 1,043,761 43.2% 124,977 1,168,738
Labour Ken Livingstone 893,887 37.0% 134,089 1,027,976
Liberal Democrat Brian Paddick 235,585 9.8%
Green Siân Berry 77,347 3.2%
BNP Richard Barnbrook 69,710 3.2%
Christian Peoples Alan Craig 39,249 1.6%
UKIP Gerard Batten 22,422 1.2%
Respect Lindsey German 16,796 0.7%
English Democrats Matt O'Connor 10,695 0.4%
Independent Winston McKenzie 5,389 0.2%
Conservative gain from Labour


Conservative Mayor Boris Johnson was reelected to a second term in office, defeating former Labour mayor Ken Livingstone. Livingstone announced his retirement from politics in his concession speech.

Mayor of London election 3 May 2012 [5]
Party Candidate 1st Round  % 2nd Round Total  First Round Votes  Transfer Votes 
Conservative Boris Johnson 971,931 44.0% 82,880 1,054,811
Labour Ken Livingstone 889,918 40.3% 102,355 992,273
Green Jenny Jones 98,913 4.5%
Liberal Democrat Brian Paddick 91,774 4.2%
Independent Siobhan Benita 83,914 3.8%
UKIP Lawrence Webb 43,274 2.0%
BNP Carlos Cortiglia 28,751 1.3%
Conservative hold


The 2016 London mayoral election is scheduled for 5 May 2016.[6]

Incumbent Mayor Boris Johnson is not running for re-election for a third term in office, as he was elected the Member of Parliament for the Conservative Party in Uxbridge and South Ruislip in the 2015 general election.

List of Mayors

Colour key
(for political parties)
Name Picture Term of office Elected Political party Previous occupations
Ken Livingstone Ken Livingstone - World Economic Forum Annual Meeting Davos 2008 (cropped).jpg 4 May 2000 4 May 2008 2000 Independent Technician at the Chester Beatty cancer research laboratory

Leader of the Greater London Council
MP for Brent East

2004 Labour
Boris Johnson Boris Johnson -opening bell at NASDAQ-14Sept2009-3c cropped.jpg 4 May 2008 Incumbent 2008
Conservative Graduate Trainee: Wolverhampton Express & Star, The Times

Writer: The Times, The Daily Telegraph
Columnist: The Spectator, GQ
Editor: The Spectator
MP for Henley-on-Thames

Powers and functions

Most powers are derived from the Greater London Authority Act 1999 with additional functions coming from the Greater London Authority Act 2007, the Localism Act 2011 and Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011.

The main functions are:[7][8]

The remaining local government functions are performed by the London borough councils. There is some overlap, for example the borough councils are responsible for waste management, but the mayor is required to produce a waste management strategy.[9] In 2010 the Mayor launched an initiative in partnership with the Multi-academy Trust AET to transform schools across London. This led to the establishment of London Academies Enterprise Trust (LAET) which was intended to be a group of 10 Academies, but it only reached a group of 4 before the Mayor withdrew in 2013.

Service Greater London Authority London borough councils
Education YesY
Housing YesY YesY
Planning applications YesY
Strategic planning YesY YesY
Transport planning YesY YesY
Passenger transport YesY
Highways YesY YesY
Fire YesY
Social services YesY
Libraries YesY
Leisure and recreation YesY
Waste collection YesY
Waste disposal YesY
Environmental health YesY
Revenue collection YesY


Ken Livingstone

Initiatives taken by Ken Livingstone as Mayor of London included the London congestion charge on private vehicles using city centre London on weekdays, the creation of the London Climate Change Agency, the London Energy Partnership and the founding of the international Large Cities Climate Leadership Group, now known as C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group. The congestion charge led to many new buses being introduced across London. In 2003 Livingstone oversaw the introduction of the Oyster Card electronic ticketing system for Transport for London services.[10]

They have also included the London Partnerships Register which was a voluntary scheme without legal force for same-sex couples to register their partnership, and paved the way for the introduction by the United Kingdom Parliament of civil partnerships. Unlike civil partnerships, the London Partnerships Register was open to heterosexual couples who favour a public commitment other than marriage.

As Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone was also a supporter of the London Olympics in 2012, and is known to encourage sport in London; especially when sport can be combined with helping UK charities-like The London Marathon and British 10K charity races. However, Livingstone, in a Mayoral election debate on the BBC's Question Time in April 2008 did state that the primary reason he supported the Olympic bid was to secure funding for the redevelopment of the East End of London. In the summer of 2007 he brought the Tour de France cycle race to London.

Boris Johnson

In May 2008, Boris Johnson introduced a new transport safety initiative to put 440 high-visibility police officers on bus hubs and the immediate vicinity.[11] A ban on alcohol on underground, bus, Docklands Light Railway, and tram services and stations across the capital was announced.[12]

Also in May 2008, Boris Johnson announced the closure of The Londoner newspaper, saving approximately £2.9 million. A percentage of this saving will be spent on planting 10,000 new street trees.[13]

In 2010 Boris Johnson extended the coverage of Oyster Card electronic ticketing to all National Rail overground train services [14]

Also in 2010 Boris Johnson opened the Santander Cycles formerly the (Barclays Cycle Hire) scheme with 5,000 bicycles available for hire across London. The scheme gained the nickname of "Boris Bikes" by both Londoners and members of the various media.

In 2011 Boris Johnson set up the Outer London Fund, a money pot of up to £50 million designed to help facilitate better, more effective local high streets.[15] Areas in London were given the chance to submit proposals for two separate pots of money, which would be granted to them if their bid was successful. Successful bids for Phase 1 included Enfield,[16] Muswell Hill [17] and Bexley Town Centre.[18] The recipients of Phase 2 funding are still to be announced.

In January 2013 Boris Johnson appointed journalist Andrew Gilligan as the first Cycling Commissioner for London.[19]

In March 2013 Boris Johnson announced £1 billion of investment in infrastructure to make cycling safer in London, including a 15-mile (24 km) East-West segregated 'Crossrail for bikes'.[20]

In the General Election of 7 May 2015, Boris Johnson was elected as MP for Uxbridge and Ruislip South with 50.2% of the vote on a turnout of 63.4%.[21] For this he receives the basic MP's salary of £67,060 per annum plus expenses to cover staff, office expenses, accommodation if he does not have a London home and travel.[22]


The Mayor of London's salary is £143,911 per year, which is similar to that of a government Cabinet minister.[23]

See also


  2. "2000 election results for the Mayor of London and the London Assembly". London Elects. 5 May 2000. Retrieved 17 February 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. "2004 election results for the Mayor of London and the London Assembly". London Elects. 10 June 2004. Retrieved 17 February 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. "2008 election results for the Mayor of London and the London Assembly". London Elects. 2 May 2008. Retrieved 17 February 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. "London Elects - Declared Results". Greater London Authority. 4 May 2012. Retrieved 17 February 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. Playing a strategic role in planning | Greater London Authority. Retrieved on 2013-12-06.
  8. What can the Mayor of London actually do?. Full Fact (2012-04-03). Retrieved on 2013-12-06.
  9. The Mayor's Waste Management Strategies | Greater London Authority. (2011-11-18). Retrieved on 2013-12-06.
  10. James Rogers (19 August 2003). "London fare freeze to boost smartcard use". Computer Weekly. Retrieved 19 September 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  11. GLA Press Release - New action on transport safety
  12. GLA Press Release - Plan to ban alcohol on the transport network
  13. GLA Press Release - Closure of The Londoner newspaper
  14. Oyster Oyster pay as you go on National Rail
  15. "Outer London Fund". External link in |work= (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  16. "Successful Outer London Bids". External link in |work= (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  17. "Will Muswell Hill have a Town Square?". External link in |work= (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  18. "Bexley Outer London Fund". External link in |work= (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  19. Andrew Gilligan appointed 'Cycling Czar' by mayor Johnson. BikeRadar (2013-01-28). Retrieved on 2013-12-06.
  20. 'Crossrail for bikes' set for London
  21. . BBC website Missing or empty |title= (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  22. . Parliament website Missing or empty |title= (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  23. Greater London Authority - Annual Budget

External links