The statement made by Chloe Smith, the Secretary of State for the Constitution and Devolution, in the House of Commons on 8 June 2021.
I am pleased to announce that the UK Government are today launching a civic honours competition to mark Her Majesty the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee in 2022. This includes competitions for city status and Lord Mayor (or Provost) status.
City status and Lord Mayor (or Provost) status are civic honours granted by The Queen acting on the advice of Her Ministers under the royal prerogative. The granting of both city status and Lord Mayor (or Provost) status is purely honorific and comes with no additional funding or powers. Since the 1970s, these awards have been granted through competitions and are usually held to coincide with jubilee years, most recently for Her Majesty’s diamond jubilee in 2012.
Entry guidelines and an application form have been published on www.gov.uk. In their applications, local authorities are being asked to give particular reference to their area’s:
Cultural infrastructure, interesting heritage, history and traditions;
Vibrant and welcoming community;
Record of innovation;
Sound governance and administration;
Associations with royalty; and
Other particularly distinctive features, age, residents or communities who have made widely recognised significant contributions to society and cultural infrastructure.
All local authorities across the United Kingdom who believe that their town or city deserves consideration for these rare honours are invited to apply. The city status competition will also be open to eligible applications from the Crown dependencies and overseas territories.
The guidelines specify a standard format for entries. Local authorities are urged to use the standard format, which is intended to limit the costs of entering the competition and to introduce a fair basis for comparison between entries. The closing date is 8 December 2021.
The honours will continue to be rare marks of distinction conferred, on ministerial advice, under the royal prerogative, rather than rights to be earned by the meeting of specific criteria. All valid entries will receive individual consideration on their merits and the Government look forward to announcing the results of the competitions in 2022.