Our Vibrant Capital week made me reflect on my 53 years in London since i was born near the site of the London Stadium on a cold winter's day in February.  

The way my life and career have evolved, I have never spent more than 2 weeks out of London in that time. I have lived in four boroughs, been to school/university in three boroughs, worked with fifteen boroughs and  I think that gives me some perspective, albeit not one from an objective distance.   

I was brought up and went to school in the suburbs "Sound of the Surburbs" by the Members was the soundtrack to my early life.  It wasn't very diverse or very radical in its thinking.  

My working career started in a dark era of the late 80s with London losing population, the Kings Cross fire and the Clapham rail crash. 

Things really started to change with the deregulation of the City of London and the beginning of the digital era.  London started to grow and boom and hasn't really looked back.  This has led to lots of achievements and lots of challenges.  

What always struck me from my first day at working in 1986 was our diverse the workforce was even back then - very few colleagues were born in London like me but they were attracted by its glamour, its hope and opportunity and above all its opportunity to be the person you  wanted to be.  

There are many communities in London, but no uniform, no expectation of conforming to a particular model or way of thinking.  London has always welcomed immigrants - the link between this and his success are so numerous and it’s difficult to single out individuals or groups, rather randomly i will name Shakespeare, Oscar Wilde and Mo Farah, all of immigrant background but all making such a contribution.  

For London to continue to thrive, there are many things to address, travel, stress, housing and infrastructure, but to me - the real strength of London as been the people we have welcomed here, the people who grow our businesses and our cultural life and the people who are London.  We will always thrive, as long as we always welcome  new people and new ideas.