Latest News » CEO Becomes a Freeman of London
Mike Smith accepts Freedom Of The City Of London
Incorporated Insurance Group’s Chief Executive Officer, Mike Smith, became a Freeman of the City of London at a ceremony on 28th February 2013.
The ceremony is one of the oldest ceremonies still in existence today as it is believed that the first Freedom was presented in 1237. The medieval term ‘freeman’ meant someone who was not the property of a feudal lord but enjoyed privileges such as the right to earn money and own land. Town dwellers who were protected by the charter of their town or city were often free – hence the term ‘freedom of the City’.
The Freedom ceremony took place in the Chamberlain’s Court at Guildhall and was conducted by the Clerk of the Court, Christopher Bilsland. Mike Smith and other proposed Freemen, their nominators and guests were escorted to the Court by the Beadle, who wears the traditional top hat and frockcoat. There the Freeman were invited to read the Declaration of a Freeman and to sign the Freeman’s Declaration Book. The Clerk then extended his right hand of fellowship to the new Freemen greeting them as ‘a Citizen of London’.
Worshipful Company Of Insurers Clothing Ceremony
This was followed by a clothing ceremony at the Drapers Hall held by the Worshipful Company of Insurers.
Mike Smith commented ‘ I was delighted to be asked to be part of such a prestigious event which forms part of the city’s rich history. I am proud that London remains at the centre of the world’s insurance industry and hope that IIGL will continue to grow to become a leading force in the market’.
Mike and his wife Lisa later attended a luncheon hosted by the Worshipful Company of Insurers at the Drapers Hall to celebrate the ceremony with over 150 members and guests.