The Speaker

As the Council has a directly elected mayor with executive powers, the role of Speaker fulfils many of the ceremonial and public duties traditionally associated with the Mayor.

The Speaker of the Council is a serving councillor elected to the office for one year by fellow council members at their annual meeting.

They chair full council meetings, attend numerous events, welcome visitors to Hackney and preside over citizenship ceremonies.

The Speaker of Hackney is Councillor Anya Sizer. The Deputy Speaker is Councillor Sheila Suso-Runge.

Speaker of Hackney – Councillor Anya Sizer
Speaker of Hackney – Councillor Anya Sizer
Deputy Speaker of Hackney – Councillor Sheila Suso-Runge
Deputy Speaker of Hackney – Councillor Sheila Suso-Runge

Events and engagements

To find about any forthcoming events contact the Speaker’s Office.

Invite the Speaker to an event

Whether you are a local community group, school or charity, inviting the Speaker to your event will lend an air of dignity and ceremony. The Speaker will try hard to attend either in person or by sending the Deputy Speaker.

Events which the Speaker attends include presentations of certificates, including citizenship ceremonies, police passing-out parades, religious services, the annual Remembrance Sunday parade, building openings, fetes, concerts, sporting events and civic receptions among many others.

The Speaker also visits schools in the borough to talk about the work of the Council and civic responsibility, and conducts tours of the Council Chamber and the Speaker’s Parlour for community groups.

Nominated charities 2023 to 2024

Each year the Speaker selects charitable causes to support, both by fundraising and by attendance at events. This year the Speaker has chosen to support Hoxton Hall, Ministry of Stories and St Joseph’s Hospice.

Hoxton Hall

The varied programme of professional shows, alongside its youth arts work and heritage events are testament to the rich and varied past of Hoxton Hall. Hoxton Hall has been the pillar of the Hoxton community for many years, and has seen many changes reflecting the diversity and voices of the people of Hoxton. This has all been under the direction of key strong leaders and groups.

Registered charity no: 1107196

Ministry of Stories

Ministry of Stories champions the writer in every child, and helps young people in east London discover their confidence, imagination and potential through the power of their writing.

Registered charity no: 1138553

St Joseph’s Hospice

St Joseph’s Hospice was founded by the Sisters of Charity who came from Ireland in 1900 to care for the poor and dying of East London. They opened the doors to the Hospice five years later in 1905. St Joseph’s Hospice cares for and supports people affected by serious illness.

Registered charity no: 1113125


Donate to the Speaker’s nominated charity

Donations to the Speaker’s charities can also be sent to the Speaker’s Office. Cheques should be made payable to the Speaker’s charity.

Young Speakers of Hackney –  Martha Newman and Nisa Altun

The two Young Speakers of Hackney are selected from Hackney Youth Parliament members. As well as being a voice for the parliament, they work towards improving the lives of young people in the borough, by championing the youth voice, attending council meetings and working directly with the Mayor and Speaker.

Hackney Town Hall tours

Guided tours of Hackney Town Hall take place regularly. Tours also take place as part of Open House London each year.

Up to 30 people can attend a tour, which also includes a visit to the Hackney Town Hall vaults, a historical display on civic life in the borough.

Please note we hope to resume tours in September 2022. Watch this space.

Hackney Town Hall Open House London virtual tour with 2021 to 2022 Speaker of Hackney Cllr Michael Desmond

Children’s tours

Specialist tours for primary school children are also available. They link in with the citizenship curriculum to help further children’s understanding of democracy. To book a tour for your school please contact us at the details on this page.

Please note we hope to resume tours in September 2022. Watch this space.

Page updated on: 1 December 2023

Speaker of Hackney

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Speaker's Office
Hackney Town Hall
Mare Street
E8 1EA


Opening times

  • Mon to Fri 9am - 5pm