Any chance we can pressure the Government to consider amending the Lord Lieutenancies Act 1997, such that it equates to the proper traditional ceremonial counties please? It made no sense that the artificial 1972 Local Government administrative areas were chosen when allocating the current Lord Lieutenants, especially given the assurances made in 1974, that the true counties still exist and were not in fact being ‘replaced’.
The function of a Lord Lieutenant is to represent HM The Queen. Duties are often ceremonial with links to military, religious or sporting heritage.
When ‘Cleveland’ was abolished in 1996, the position of High Sheriff reverted to ‘North Yorkshire’ and County Durham titles. The legacy of ‘Tyne and Wear’ however, lives on, though this unpopular and redundant administrative area no longer exists. Therefore, the Lord Lieutenant and High Sheriff of ‘Tyne and Wear’ continue to preside over parts of Northumberland and County Durham! The legislation of 1997 was an opportunity to correct this ridiculous anomaly, but sadly missed.
This is one of the things the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Historic Counties is investigating. It certainly would be a high-profile way to support the real counties’ identity, whilst simultaneously diminishing that of the 1974 administrative areas.