On Saturday 11 November, over 50 Paviors and their families assembled with the Paviors’ float and steamroller in St Martin’s Le Grand for the 2017 Lord Mayor’s Show.
This year, those walking were expecting to brave the forecast rain but, though cold, the weather turned out to be dry, and steadily improved as the day went on. The inflatable St Anthony’s Pig made its entrance around 10.30 and everyone made ready for the start of the festivities. Being Remembrance Day, the Parade Marshal announced, and all observed, a two-minute silence. Then the parade moved off, with the Paviors’ float and pig No. 42 in the procession. Riding in the front of the float were the Master and Mistress Pavior, and the Upper and Renter Wardens. Following on behind were the inflatable pig and the 50 Pavior walkers.
The steam roller “Monarch” pulled the float down Gresham Street and to the Guildhall, where the Aldermen and Councillors were amassed. Then, it moved on to the Mansion House to salute the new Lord Mayor in front of the television cameras. There was good TV coverage of the Paviors’ steamroller, float and pig on BBC1. The route was lined with large numbers of spectators on both sides of the roads and there was much high-fiving and interaction with them along the whole route. The procession passed St Paul’s Cathedral and the Law Courts, and stopped for refreshments on the Embankment. The break was much appreciated.
After lunch, the parade restarted and travelled up Great Victoria Street, and back to the Mansion House and Gresham Street, finally returning to the starting point on St Martin’s Le Grand. The crowds in the afternoon section were still quite large and, again, lined both sides of the roads. The event was a thoroughly enjoyable and entertaining experience. As the procession is 2½ miles long, but the route is only 1½ miles in each direction, there was time afterwards for many Paviors to watch the end of the procession passing Blackfriars Station.
Paviors and their families then moved down to the Blackfriars Pier to board MV Erasmus for an afternoon cruise down the River Thames to enjoy refreshments of both food and beverages. There were around 100 Paviors and their guests on board so this proved to be a most pleasant way to meet friends both old and new. The Thames area looked extremely well in the late afternoon sunlight and the cruise was a fascinating way to see London in all its glories.
This year was the first time in a number of years that a full view of the fireworks could be enjoyed. The show commenced at 5.15pm on the dot, and was quite spectacular, so greatly enjoyed by all. Those unable to be there missed a tremendous experience and one that will be savoured over the winter months ahead.
Particular thanks are due to the sponsors of the Paviors’ float: Byrne Bros, Weightmans, Sir Robert McAlpine, Erith, Murphy and the Ashley Charitable Trust.