Boris Johnson and London Assembly Chair Jennette Arnold hosted the first ever London-wide Citizenship ceremony at City Hall earlier today, awarding a certificate and commemorative gifts to those taking their oath of allegiance.
After the ceremony Mr Johnson said: “As the great grandchild of an immigrant I am extremely proud to welcome the new British citizens from every London borough to the UK. This ceremony is an important way of encouraging them to play a full part in the communities they live in and contribute to their new country.”
“There are huge benefits from immigration for our economy, society and the cultural life of our capital. Just look the amazing range of restaurants in London, they are the best in the world thanks to the incredible innovation and entrepreneurship of immigrants from all corners of the world.”
Before 2004, an oath or affirmation of allegiance was made privately in the presence of a person who had the power to witness oaths and a certificate of registration or naturalisation as a British citizen was then sent to the successful applicant by post. In 2004 the Government introduced citizenship ceremonies.
Ms Arnold commented: “Today’s Citizenship Ceremony has been a wonderful opportunity to recognise the important contribution migrants make to our city as well as welcoming 33 Londoners to British Citizenship.”
“As I migrant from Montserrat I take particular pride in participating in today’s ceremony on behalf of our city as Chair of the London Assembly”