Our role in London
The City of London forms part of London as a whole, along with the 32 London boroughs who have responsibility for local government services within their local area.
London covers an area of 607 square miles with a population of over 8.5m and is administered by the Greater London Authority (GLA). Based in City Hall, the GLA is governed by the Mayor of London, currently Sadiq Khan, and the London Assembly. It provides the wider strategic direction for the capital and its policies cover all 32 boroughs and the City of London.
The Square Mile
The City of London, also known as the Square Mile, is the financial district of London.
It is the ancient core from which the rest of London developed. It has been a centre for settlement, trade, commerce and ceremony since the Roman period, producing a unique historic environment of exceptional richness and significance.
One of the reasons the Square Mile is unique, is the number of people who live, work and visit. In just 1.12 square miles, the City of London counts around 8,000 residents, 513,000 daily commuters and 10m annual visitors. The City of London boundaries stretch from Temple to the Tower of London, on the River Thames including, from west to east Chancery Lane and Liverpool Street.
The City of London Corporation
Based in Guildhall, the City Corporation looks after and promotes the City of London. It is headed by the Lord Mayor with the Court of Common Council being its main decision-making body. We are a uniquely diverse organisation, with a role that goes beyond that of an ordinary local authority. We have our own government (the oldest in the country with origins pre-dating Parliament), our own Lord Mayor and independent police force.
As the governing body of the Square Mile, we are dedicated to a vibrant and thriving City, supporting a diverse and sustainable London within a globally-successful UK. We aim to:
- Contribute to a flourishing society
- Support a thriving economy
- Shape outstanding environments
By strengthening the connections, capacity and character of the City, London and the UK for the benefit of people who live, work and visit here. Our reach extends far beyond the Square Mile’s boundaries and across private, public and voluntary sector responsibilities. This, along with our independent and non-party political voice and convening power, enables us to promote the interests of people and organisations across London and the UK and play a valued role on the world stage.
Find out more about our vision in our Corporate Plan.
What we are responsible for
We provide local government services for residents and City workers based in the Square Mile, but not those of other boroughs. If you are unsure which borough you need to contact, find your local council will help you find the website for your local authority.
However, our unique role means that our reach does extend beyond the City to include:
- More than 11,000 acres of green spaces, including Hampstead Heath and Epping Forest
- Billingsgate, Smithfield and New Spitalfields wholesale food markets
- The Heathrow Animal Reception Centre
- Housing across London
- A range of schools and academies
- And we are London’s Port Health Authority
Services covering the whole Greater London area