Precedence, etiquette and protocol
Protocol is not intended to add unnecessary formality to an event or engagement but rather eliminate any confusion and ensure that people feel comfortable.
The Lord-Lieutenant represents The King and, when attending an event in her official capacity in Rutland, should be received with the same degree of etiquette and protocol as any member of the Royal Family.
Where the Lord-Lieutenant is unable to attend and is represented by the Vice Lord-Lieutenant or a Deputy Lieutenant, the same etiquette and protocol should apply.
Arrival and greetings
The Lord-Lieutenant will often arrive at events and engagements by car, meaning that parking will be required nearby. Please give due consideration to arrival and parking arrangements.
The correct forms of address for the Lord-Lieutenant:
- written: Dr Sarah Furness, His Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant of Rutland
- salutation: Dear Lord-Lieutenant
- in a speech (opening remarks): My Lord-Lieutenant, Ladies and Gentlemen
- conversation: Dr Sarah Furness should initially be addressed as 'Lord-Lieutenant' and thereafter as 'Dr Furness' or 'Ma'am' (pronounced as in jam)
If the Lord-Lieutenant is represented by her Vice Lord-Lieutenant or a Deputy Lieutenant, the same etiquette is adopted accordingly i.e. ‘Dear Vice Lord-Lieutenant’, ‘Dear Deputy Lieutenant’.
If the arrival is to a formal gathering or service, particularly if there is to be a procession involving other civic dignitaries, the Lord-Lieutenant takes precedence as a direct representative of the Crown and would be the last to enter.
If the audience or congregation is seated, it is customary to stand until the Lord-Lieutenant is seated. At the conclusion, the Lord-Lieutenant would be the first to exit. Again, the same protocol should be extended to the Lord-Lieutenant’s representative.
For seating in church, the Lord-Lieutenant is usually seated at the front of the nave on the south side. In the case of funerals, if the family is on the south side, the Lord-Lieutenant sits on the north side at the front and on the aisle edge. The Lord-Lieutenant would exit the church immediately after the family.
At other functions, the Lord-Lieutenant should be seated in the same place as you would seat a member of the Royal Family: quite simply as the principal guest.
During the course of a visit
The host will often accompany the Lord-Lieutenant for the duration of a visit or event, perhaps handing over at various stages to individuals with special roles.
At the end of the visit or event it would be usual for the host to escort the Lord-Lieutenant to the departure point before any final farewells.
Description of Lord-Lieutenant in printing and inscriptions
It may be the case that printing or inscriptions are required as part of an event.
Although 'Dr Sarah Furness' should not be abbreviated, the title of the Lord-Lieutenant's office can vary depending on the circumstances in which it is being used. In full, this is: ‘His Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant of Rutland' but this could become ‘H.M. Lord-Lieutenant of Rutland’ or simply ‘Lord-Lieutenant of Rutland’.
We recommend you consult the Lieutenancy Office prior to an event if any printing or engraving is required.
The Lieutenancy Office
For further information or advice regarding the Lieutenancy:
Kate Haworth, Deputy Clerk to the Lieutenancy, Rutland County Council, Catmose, Oakham, Rutland LE15 6HP
Tel: 01572 758 203
You can send invitations to the Lord Lieutenant of Rutland via this office.