Theme Week London – City of London

Tuesday, 12 April 2011 - 09:48 am (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, Architecture, London, UNESCO World Heritage
Reading Time:  7 minutes

City of London skyline © David Iliff

City of London skyline © David Iliff

The City of London is a small area within Greater London, England. It is the historic core of London around which the modern conurbation grew and has held city status since time immemorial. The City’s boundaries have remained almost unchanged since the Middle Ages, and it is now only a tiny part of the metropolis of London, though remains a notable part of central London. It is often referred to as the City (often written on maps as “City”) or the Square Mile, as it is just over one square mile (1.12 sq mi/2.90 km2) in area. These terms are also often used as metonyms for the United Kingdom’s financial services industry, which has historically been based here. In the medieval period, the City was the full extent of London. The term London now refers to a much larger conurbation roughly corresponding to Greater London, a local government area which includes 32 London boroughs as well as the City of London. The local authority for the City, the City of London Corporation, is unique in the United Kingdom, and has some unusual responsibilities for a local authority in Britain, such as being the police authority for the City. It also has responsibilities and ownerships beyond the City’s boundaries. The Corporation is headed by the Lord Mayor of the City of London, an office separate from (and much older than) the Mayor of London.

The City is today a major business and financial centre, ranking on a par with New York City as the leading centre of global finance; throughout the 19th century, the City served as the world’s primary business centre, and continues to be a major meeting point for businesses to this day. London came top in the Worldwide Centres of Commerce Index, published in 2008. The other major financial district in London is Canary Wharf 2.5 miles (4.0 km) to the east. The City has a resident population of around 10,000, but around 330,000 people work there, mainly in the financial services sector. The legal profession forms a major component of the western side of the City, especially in the Temple and Chancery Lane areas; these are where the Inns of Court are located, of which two — Inner Temple and Middle Temple — fall within the City of London boundary.

The Latin motto of the City of London is “Domine dirige nos”, which translates as “Lord, direct (guide) us”. The City has its own flag and coat of arms. The red sword is commonly supposed to commemorate the killing of Peasants’ Revolt leader Wat Tyler by the Lord Mayor of London William Walworth in 1381, but in fact is the symbol of the martyrdom of Saint Paul, London’s patron saint.

City of London skyline © David Iliff The City of London © GazKinz - SkyscraperCity.com Bank station © Sunil060902 Canary Wharf © Eleassar Dragon statue at Temple Bar © MykReeve Finsbury Circus © Reguiieee KCL Maughan Library © Dieschoenemuellerin Leadenhall Market © David Iliff London Skyline © Mewiki Mansion House © Adrian Pingstone Millenium Bridge © Adrian Pingstone Paternoster Square © Grenavitar
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The City of London © GazKinz - SkyscraperCity.com
The City of London has a unique political status, a legacy of its uninterrupted integrity as a corporate city since the Anglo-Saxon period and its singular relationship with the Crown. Historically its system of government was not unusual, but it was not reformed by the Municipal Reform Act 1835 and little changed by later reforms. It is administered by the City of London Corporation, headed by the Lord Mayor of London (not the same as the more recently created position of Mayor of London), which is responsible for a number of functions and owns a number of locations beyond the City’s boundaries. Unlike other modern-day English local authorities, the Corporation has two council bodies: the now largely-ceremonial Court of Aldermen and the Court of Common Council.

The City vies with New York City as the financial capital of the world and many banking and insurance institutions have their headquarters there. The London Stock Exchange (shares and bonds), Lloyd’s of London (insurance) and the Bank of England are all based in the City. Over 500 banks have offices in the City, and the City is an established leader in trading in Eurobonds, foreign exchange, energy futures and global insurance. The Alternative Investment Market, a market for trades in equities of smaller firms, is a recent development. In 2008, the City of London accounted for 4% of UK GDP. London is the world’s greatest foreign exchange market, with much of the trade conducted in the City of London. Of the $3.98 trillion daily global turnover, as measured in 2007, trading in London accounted for around $1.36 trillion, or 34.1% of the total. The Pound Sterling, the currency of the United Kingdom, is globally the fourth most traded currency and the third most held reserve currency.

A growing number of tall buildings and skyscrapers exist in the City, principally for use by the financial sector. Almost all are situated in the eastern side of the Square Mile, in what is the City’s financial core. In the north of the City there is a smaller cluster comprising the Barbican Estate’s three tall residential towers and the commercial CityPoint tower — another residential tower at Milton Court is under construction adjacent to CityPoint. In 2007, the 100 m (328 ft) tall Drapers’ Gardens building was demolished and replaced by a shorter tower. Learn more about List of tallest buildings and structures in London.

Here you can find the complete Overview of all Theme Weeks.

To inform you about latest news most of the city, town or tourism websites offer a newsletter service and/or operate Facepage pages/Twitter accounts. Read more on The City of London, London Tourist Information Centre, City of London, Square Mile pubs and bars, Old Spitalfields Market, London 2012 and Wikipedia City of London. Learn more about the use of photos.




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