Royal Almonry

Royal Almonry

The Royal Almonry is a small office within the Royal Household of the Sovereign of the United Kingdom, headed by the Lord High Almoner, an office dating from 1103.

The Lord High Almoner is a diocesan bishop of the Church of England. The current holder of the office is the Lord Bishop of Manchester, the Rt Rev'd Nigel Simeon McCulloch, appointed 1997. There is also an hereditary Grand Almoner, an office dating from 1685 and vested in the person of the Marquess of Exeter, but this is not an office of the Royal Almonry and he has no role to play. The actual work of the office is undertaken by the Sub-Almoner, who is also the Sub-dean of the Chapel Royal, Deputy Clerk of the Closet of the Ecclesiastical Household, and Domestic Chaplain at Buckingham Palace.

There are in addition a Secretary, and Assistant Secretary, both offices of which are shared with other Royal Household appointments. There are also half a dozen wandsmen.

The Almonry is responsible to the Keeper of the Privy Purse for the arrangements for the annual Maundy service.

Lord High Almoners

"incomplete list"

* 1509- : Thomas Wolsey
* 1619- : George Mountain (or Montaigne)
* 1675-1684: John Dolben
* 1687-1688: Hon. Philip Howard
* 1761-1777: Hon. Robert Hay-Drummond
* 1777-1808: William Markham
* 1808-1837: Hon. Edward Venables-Vernon
* 1882-1906: Lord Alwyne Compton
* 1933- : Cosmo Gordon Lang
* 1953-1970: Edward Michael Gresford Jones
* 1970-1988: Richard David Say
* 1988-1997: John Bernard Taylor
* 1997-present: Nigel Simeon McCulloch


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