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Deputy leader receives MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List

Mon, 15/06/2015

Westminster City Council's Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for the Built Environment, Councillor Robert Davis DL, has been awarded an MBE for services to local government and planning.

He said: "I am truly humbled to have received this honour, especially given that it is extremely rare for a Westminster City Councillor to receive such an award specifically for services to 'local government and planning'. However, I could not have achieved it without the tremendous support of a roll call of hugely capable councillor colleagues and a superb team of officers.

"In my thirty three years of being a local representative, I have had the great fortune of working with a succession of very talented people. The recognition I have received is as much a testament to their achievements as it is of my own.

"Planning and the built environment are my life’s work and I have had the great privilege of undertaking it in Westminster – the best city in the world. My abiding principle has always been to deliver public spaces that inspire and create a sense of destination. I believe central London is going through a real renaissance at the moment and it is incredibly rewarding to get up each day and play my part in it."

Robert Davis was first elected as a Councillor on Westminster City Council in 1982 and is currently the longest serving member of the Council. He has held the planning brief in Westminster continuously for 14 years. Robert was the civil partner of the late Sir Simon Milton, who passed away in 2011 having served as Deputy Mayor of London and the Mayor’s Chief of Staff (2008-2011). Sir Simon was also Leader of Westminster City Council (2000-2008).

Key achievements:

  • Cabinet Member for planning since 2001
  • Westminster City Councillor for over 33 years
  • Created West End LIVE, the largest musical theatre festival in the world, more than a decade ago
  • Oversaw the £21m rejuvenation of London’s iconic Leicester Square
  • Has led multi-billion pound growth projects throughout Westminster, creating thousands of jobs, homes and offices
  • Created Special Policy Areas to protect the heritage of Savile Row and the area of St James’s
  • Led the Regeneration of Piccadilly and Marble Arch
  • Instrumental in the creation of the new St James’s Theatre in Victoria and the forthcoming Nimax Theatre on Charing Cross Road
  • Was the youngest Lord Mayor of Westminster from 1996-97
  • Chairman of the London Mayors’ Association (1998 – present)
  • Appointed as one of Her Majesty’s Deputy Lieutenants in 2006
  • Improved the quality of architectural design in Westminster through his Design Excellence Initiative which raised the bar in standards
  • One of the driving forces behind London’s New Year’s Day Parade
  • Led the Council’s Green Plaque scheme to honour those that have played a part in making London what it is today
  • Co-founder of the Sir Simon Milton Foundation, which aims to create opportunities for young people including the construction of a university technical college, and addresses loneliness and isolation amongst older people
  • Created Westminster’s City of Sculpture initiative to bring arts and culture to the streets and parks of London 


Cllr Robert Davis DL

Deputy Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member for the Built Environment at Westminster City Council

Cllr Robert Davis has served as a Councillor on Westminster City Council since 1982 and is currently the longest serving member of the Council. He is Deputy Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member for the Built Environment with specific responsibility for Planning, the Mayoralty and Special Events. Cllr Davis also chairs the principal Planning Application Committees.

Cllr Davis was Lord Mayor of Westminster in 1996-1997 and currently serves as a rota Deputy Lord Mayor. He is also a Deputy Lieutenant for Greater London.

Additionally, he chairs the London Mayors' Association and the Board of the Open Air Theatre in Regent's Park, as well as being a Trustee of Mousetrap Theatre Project, the Savoy Educational Trust and the Sir Simon Milton Foundation which was set up in the name of his late civil partner Sir Simon Milton (former Deputy Mayor of London).

In 2014, he was voted 'Conservative Councillor of the Year' in a national newspaper.

He was educated at Gonville and Caius College Cambridge and at Wolfson College Cambridge before training as a solicitor at the College of Law in Lancaster Gate.

Cllr Davis recently retired as a partner in Freeman Box, where he specialised in property law.

Last updated: 5 August 2016