Greater London

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The London metropolitan area is governed by the Greater London Authority.

It covers the 23 London boroughs. The head of the Greater London Authority is the Mayor of London, currently Ken Livingstone. He and the London Assembly are elected by popular vote.

This current organisation replaces the Greater London Council, which was abolished by Margaret Thatcher in 1986 on the grounds that it was inefficient. Observers commented that it might also have been because elected Labour party members were commonly in the majority, and therefore controlled the council, and because it was headed by Ken Livingstone.

The Greater London Authority was created to improve the coordination of the various London boroughs and the Mayor of London's role is to give London a single person to represent it.

The Greater London Authority must be distinguished from the City of London, which only controls the square mile. While the Greater London Authority has a modern constitution, the organisation of the City of London has barely changed since medieval times, and is mainly controlled by City business interests.

See also:

/Talk.