Council and Democracy

Lord Mayor of Oxford

The Lord Mayor is the first Citizen of the City of Oxford. The first recorded Mayor of Oxford is Turchillus, 1122-1123, and mayors' names stretch in an unbroken line until 1962 when the dignity of Lord Mayor was granted to Oxford by Queen Elizabeth ll. 

Lord Mayor, Deputy Lord Mayor and Sheriff of Oxford

The Lord Mayor of Oxford is Councillor Mohammed Abbasi.

Lord Mayor of Oxford

The Deputy Lord Mayor is Councillor Craig Simmons.

Deputy Lord Mayor

The Sheriff of Oxford is Councillor Rae Humberstone.


What are the duties of the Lord Mayor?

The Lord Mayor represents the Council at civic and ceremonial events. He/she spends a great deal of time promoting the City, the key initiatives of the City Council and supporting a wide range of Oxford based voluntary and other organisations. 

The Lord Mayor generally carries out in excess of 300 engagements each year. These engagements cover a wide spectrum of events from high profile Royal visits and leading the City's annual Remembrance Sunday service, to small community group meetings and charity events. 

The Lord Mayor also chairs meetings of full council.

The post of Lord Mayor of Oxford is different to that of the Mayor of London in that it is a ceremonial post carrying no political power. The political head of the City Council is the Leader of the Council. 


How is the Lord Mayor Chosen?

The Lord Mayor is elected annually in May when all city councillors meet together at the Annual Meeting of Council. The Lord Mayor must be a councillor and is chosen on length of service. Each Lord Mayor's term of office is for one year, during which time he/she also continues their ward duties. 


Mayoral Invitations

The Lord Mayor welcomes invitations to attend events, no matter how small or large. If you have an event you would like the Lord Mayor to attend, please contact the Civic Office Holders' PA on 01865 252414 or Email us.

Unfortunately, due to demand, it is not possible for the Lord Mayor to attend every event to which he/she is invited. In these circumstances, it is generally possible for the Deputy Lord Mayor or the Sheriff of Oxford to attend instead.

Please view our Civic Engagements page to see the Lord Mayor's upcoming events.


Lord Mayor of Oxford Biography - Mohammed Abbasi


Mohammed Niaz Abbasi (Oxford City Councillor)


1 July 1942 in a remote village "Ghoi" about ten miles from Murree (District Rawalpindi, Pakistan)


His primary education was from local schools (Ghoi) and "Sehr Bagla".  His metric schooling was received from the Government High School in Murree. In 1959 he went to Karachi to complete his education at Islamia College.  On 14 July 1963 he came to England and settled in Oxford and started a job with the GPO telephone company. 

After attending various courses he was promoted to the role of full technician.  In 1969 he went to Libya to serve in the ministry of telecommunication until the end of 1971.  He then returned to Oxford and the GPO telephone company, he had previously worked for, until 1975.  He has always been an active community worker and joined the Labour Party in 1987 for a more effective role in the service of the community.

He was elected as a City Councillor for St. Mary's ward between 2002 - 2004 where he managed to secure the festival lights on Cowley Road, which are alight every year for Eid and Christmas alike.  In 2006 he was re-elected as a City Councillor and this time for Cowley marsh ward, which he has continued to serve to this day. 

Since he has been a City Councillor he has served in various committees of the City Council and he has also served as a Governor of the Oxford and Cherwell Valley College between 2003-2007.  He is a trustee of the Elder Stubbs charity in Oxford.


He speaks fluent, English, Urdu, Arabic and Persian.

Civic posts

Councillor Abbasi is the first non-white person to serve Oxford as Deputy Lord Mayor from May 2012 until 13 March 2013 when he had the opportunity to serve as the Lord Mayor of Oxford until May 2013.

From May 2013 he served as the Sheriff of Oxford until 9 June 2014. From 9 June 2014 he will have the honour of serving the City of Oxford as the Lord Mayor for a second time - 2014-2015.


Help Raise Money for Lord Mayor's Charities

The Lord Mayor has chosen two charities to support during his term of office - Restore and Unlimited Oxfordshire.


Restore is an Oxfordshire charity with extensive experience of providing innovative rehabilitation, employment and training support for people with mental health problems. They are a charity owned by the people who use their services. Their trustees are elected by their membership and run the organisation on their behalf.

Mental illness affects one in four of us in our lifetime, but people can and do recover. Restore is a part of a community of Oxfordshire organisations with a commitment to supporting people to recover, develop skills, stay well, participate in and contribute to the life of our county, volunteer and find employment.

Mental health issues can include psychotic illnesses such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder (previously known as manic depression), depression and anxiety disorders. Taking their lead from the Disability Discrimination Act they work with anybody who feels their mental health problem “has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on their ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities”.

Their service users and staff organise community events to help tackle the stigma and discrimination around mental health issues. They believe everyone has talents and abilities, and the capacity to make a valuable contribution to society.

Visit the Restore website.

Unlimited Oxfordshire

Unlimited Oxfordshire is focused on 'Opening Doors and WideningHorizons' for people with physical and sensory disabilities, to enable them all to have the same opportunities as other residents, to enjoy social events and activities. Together they can help to bring awareness to the community and educate them on the changes needed to allow easier access for us all.

Visit the Unlimited Oxfordshire website.


Contact Us

If you would like to help the Lord Mayor of Oxford in this work or get involved in either of these two charities or donate money to them please contact the Civic Office Holders' PA on 01865 252414 or Email us.

Page last updated 28 August 2014

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