Livery & Freedom

The Company is a "living" guild and numbers among its members both professionals and amateurs who are actively involved in the craft. All are united by the common bond of horticulture and gardens.

His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales, HRH the Earl of Wessex and HRH Princess Michael of Kent are Royal Liverymen. Their Majesties the King and Queen of the Belgians are Royal Freemen of the Company, reflecting the strong links between the two countries in the world of gardening.

As a City of London Livery Company, there are close links with the Corporation of London and members of the Company are strongly represented on the Court of Common Council. Since 1891, the year in which the Company was granted City Livery status, 11 Lord Mayors have been Gardeners. Of these, eight served as Master.

Admission to the Company is usually by one of four routes: Patrimony, Servitude, Redemption or Presentation. Candidates for admission to the Freedom and advancement to the Livery are subject to interview and recommendation by a committee appointed by the Court. A fifth category of membership is that of Honorary Freedom (Freedom Honoris Causa) which the Court has the power to award to persons who have distinguished themselves by public service or individual merit.

New member being welcomed
A new member is welcomed into the Livery by the Master and Wardens.