WORCESTER is competing against 15 other cities in the competition to win Lord Mayoralty status.

The Lord Chancellor's department, which is running the competition, announced the full list of entrants yesterday afternoon.

Those competing against Worcester for the honour include Bath, Cambridge, Chichester and Derby.

Also in the running are Exeter, Gloucester, Lancaster, Lincoln, St Albans, Salford, Southampton, Sunderland and Wolverhampton.

The honour is only rarely offered, with a total of just 16 being created in the last century.

Golden Jubilee

Bids were invited earlier this year as part of the Queen's Golden Jubilee Celebrations.

Success would carry no practical benefits but it would give the city a "mark of distinction" and allow the mayor to be called "Lord Mayor".

A spokesman for the organiser said: "A Lord Mayoralty is not a right which can be claimed by a city fulfilling certain conditions.

"But, while there are no criteria for the grant of a Lord Mayoralty, Her Majesty has agreed that applications from cities of less than 10 years' standing are unlikely to succeed.

"Other factors that will be taken into account when assessing the bids are whether the city has a character and dignity of its own."

The Lord Chancellor hopes to announce the results in the early months of next year.