Being a Freeman of the City of London remains a unique part of London’s history and many people who have lived or worked in the City have been proud to be admitted as a Freeman. Today most of the practical reasons for obtaining the Freedom of the City have disappeared, but it maintains its desirability.
The Freedom of the City of London is administered by the Clerk to the Chamberlains’ Court at Guildhall. All Freedom applications (other than those by Patrimony or Servitude) to the Chamberlain’s Court are then approved by the Court of Aldermen.
It is a pre-requisite to becoming a liveryman of any livery company that you must first have become a Freeman of the City. The usual order would be:
• Freedom of the (livery) Company
• Freedom of the City
• Livery of the Company
A liveryman is a freeman of the City of London, who is entitled to wear the livery of the ancient guild or city district to which he belongs and to vote in the election of Lord Mayor, chamberlain, and other municipal and honorary officers.