The area of the Square Mile is divided into 25 wards each of which are represented by a number of Members. Allocation of Members is determined by the size of the electorate and comprises one Alderman, with the remaining allocation made up by Common Councilmen.
The City of London gave a number of parliamentary undertakings to secure wider electoral reform than was provided for in the City of London (Ward Elections) Act, the legislation promoted by the City of London Corporation to change the City’s electoral system. These included a commitment to review the boundaries of the four residential wards to preserve the residential character of those wards and a further pledge to review the boundaries of the remaining wards.
A ward boundary review was undertaken in 2003, and as part of that process the City of London carried out a reduction in the number of Members. A further boundary review was undertaken in 2010, as a result of which the area of Vintry Ward was slightly enlarged to the north west. Please click here to view the revised Vintry Ward boundary map.
Vintry Ward has one Alderman, Dr Andrew Parmley, and two Common Councilmen, William Fraser and Tom Hoffman.
Vintry Ward and its Alderman
Dr Andrew Parmley, Lord Mayor of the City of London 2016/17
The City of London is divided into 25 Wards. In medieval times the Wards were also known as Aldermanries because each was governed by an Alderman. In those days the Alderman was responsible for law and order and for the cleanliness of his Ward; so he paid personally for the constable, cleaners, street lighters, and beadle in his Ward. The new Lord Mayor of London, Dr Andrew Parmley, is the Alderman for Vintry Ward, the smallest of the City’s Wards, and he is supported by two Common Councilmen, William Fraser and Tom Hoffman.
Vintry Ward takes its name from the Vintry which in earlier times was a large stone and timber building, situated by the Thames, where the merchants of Bordeaux landed and stored their wines. To the west of the Vintry was the Vintners’ Hall, together with the Vintners’ Company’s 13 almshouses for poor people. Over many centuries the Vintners’ Company has been a constant presence within the Ward. Sir Reginald de Conduit (1334), John de Oxenford (1341), John de Stodeye (1357), and Sir William More (1395) were the earliest City merchants and members of the Vintners’ Company to serve in the office of Alderman of Vintry Ward and Lord Mayor of London, and Andrew Parmley is the 24th Vintner in almost 700 years to become Lord Mayor of London.
During the 16th century Vintry Ward was also home to other livery companies or guilds. In Upper Thames Street was the Joiners & Ceilers’ Hall which was destroyed in the Great Fire of 1666. Leading north from the Vintry was Broad Lane, at the top of which stood the Parish Clerks’ Hall, and nearby was the Plumbers’ Hall and Fruiterers’ Hall, all of which were subsequently demolished. Next to the Plumbers’ Hall was Worcester House belonging to the Earls of Worcester. At the top end of Vintry Ward was Horsebridge Street, with the Cutlers’ Hall in Cloak Lane, and the Turners’ Hall nearby. The Turners’ Hall was demolished in the 18th century and, at a later date the Cutlers moved to Warwick Lane next to the Old Bailey. In Knightrider Street was the old Glaziers’ Hall and next to it was Ormond Place where the Earls of Ormond lived. Other modern livery companies such as the Carmen, the Solicitors’ and the Builders’ Merchants now have their offices within the Ward, but the Vintners’ Company is the only one still to have its Hall there.
In earlier times Vintry Ward had several churches, including St Thomas Apostle, St Martin Beremand, Trinity Church, and St James Garlickhythe, so-called because this was the corner of London where garlic was sold. St James Garlickhythe, is the only church still standing, and the new Lord Mayor, a teacher and musician by profession, is Principal of the Harrodian School, as well as being the organist of St James Garlickhythe for over 30 years.
In 2012 Andrew Parmley led a fundraising appeal for a new ring of eight bells, which were granted the title “The Royal Jubilee Bells”. These bells, cast by the Whitechapel Bell Foundry, were temporarily installed on a barge and rung on the River Thames during the Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant, part of the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II, and afterwards were installed permanently in the tower of St James Garlickhythe.
Besides the livery companies and the church, Vintry Ward today is also home to lawyers, accountants, stockbrokers, fund managers, international banks, and the London Chamber of Commerce & Industry, as well as restaurants, coffee houses and sandwich bars.
Andrew Parmley was elected a Common Councilman for Vintry Ward in 1992 and became its Alderman in 2001 upon the retirement of former Lord Mayor, Sir John Chalstrey. He has served on many of the committees of the Corporation of London. He has been Chairman of both the City of London School for Girls and the Guildhall School of Music & Drama. He is a very active Liveryman being a Past Master of the Musicians’, Glass Sellers’, and Parish Clerks’ Companies, as well as serving as the Swan Warden of the Vintners’ Company. He is also an Honorary Liveryman of the Blacksmiths,’ Joiners and Ceilers’, Horners’, Water Conservators’ and Educators’ Companies, and is Joint Patron and Past Chairman of the Vintry and Dowgate Wards’ Club.
Vintry Ward wishes the new Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress a very happy, successful and fulfilling year in office.