Lord Provost of Edinburgh re-commits to Malawi

09 August 2022

The SMP was delighted to meet with the new Lord Provost of Edinburgh, Councillor Robert Aldridge, on the 9th August to discuss the Scotland-Malawi relationship. In the meeting, Lord Provost Aldridge kindly accepted the SMP’s invitation to serve as a Hon Co-President of the SMP. This is continuing a tradition, almost 20 years old, in which the Lord Provosts of Edinburgh and Glasgow serve as the Honorary Presidents of the charity.

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The SMP is hugely grateful to the Lord Provost, his office, and the City of Edinburgh, for their continued support. The charity’s offices are within the City Chambers and, with the support of the Lord Provost, the network is able to use the meeting and conferencing facilities in the building. There are over 180 SMP members in the city of Edinburgh, including 40 schools.

In May, Councillor Robert Aldridge was elected as the 258th Rt. Hon. Lord Provost and Lord Lieutenant of the City of Edinburgh, an office which dates back to the 13th century. He is the longest serving Councillor in Edinburgh, having been elected to Council in 1984.

As the civic head for the city and Edinburgh’s ambassador on the world stage, the Lord Provost has both domestic and international responsibilities. He was keen to pass his best wishes to all at the Scotland Malawi Partnership and he looks forward to working closely with the national network to help strengthen the bilateral relationship.

Social justice, partnership working, climate action and equality are strong priorities for Lord Provost Aldridge. The SMP will work with the City of Edinburgh and the Edinburgh Partnership to explore potential new collaborations around the Edinburgh Climate Commission.

A great strength of the bilateral relationship is the innovative way that government (central and local), parliament and civic society and business work together in one common effort. The SMP is hugely grateful for the strong, continuing support of the two Lord Provosts, as we develop our vision for the coming years and the exiting next chapter of the bilateral friendship.

The meeting with the Lord Provost of Edinburgh took place just 24hrs after the SMP met with the Glasgow Lord Provost, who similarly committed to continuing her Hon Co-Presidency.

The SMP is governed by an elected Board of 16 trustees, it has four honorary roles: the Lord Provosts who serve as Hon Co-Presidents, and HRH Princess Anne and the President of Malawi (ex officio) who, together, serve as Hon Co-Patrons.