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Home People Kelly Group chairman participates in Sheep Drive after receiving Freedom of the...

Kelly Group chairman participates in Sheep Drive after receiving Freedom of the City

Kelly Group chairman Tim Kelly has participated in the historic Sheep Drive over London Bridge, after being awarded Freedom of the City in July 2022.

The honour was presented to Donegal-born Tim in recognition of his professional achievements and tireless charity work. He was nominated by lord mayor Vincent Keaveny and lady mayor Amanda Keaveny, who also acknowledged Kelly Group’s ongoing business operations in the City of London.

On September 25th, newly appointed freeman Tim was able to participate in a historic tradition, driving sheep over London bridge while friends, family, and colleagues looked on.


Hosted by the Worshipful Company of Woolmen and led by the lord mayor, the 2022 Sheep Drive gave Tim and others a chance to exercise their time-honoured right as freemen. The custom dates back to Medieval times, when those awarded the Freedom of the City could drive their sheep across London bridge to market without paying a toll.

Today, the Sheep Drive is a charity event, with all proceeds donated to The Woolmen Charity and The Lord Mayor’s Appeal.

Dating back to the 1200s, freeman status is a similarly historic honour, and Tim was proud to receive his award during a ceremony at the Guildhall earlier this year. He commented: “I’m extremely honoured to receive the Freedom of the City Award and to join the many outstanding women and men who previously received this very prestigious title.

“I’m very proud of the continual work we have delivered within the City for 30+ years and I am very much looking forward to supporting the City of London for many years to come.”

Kelly Group has a track record of delivering projects in England’s capital city. Established in 1985 by Tim and his brother Bernard (who were soon joined by siblings Fiona and Declan), ‘Kelly Brothers’ originally supported the burgeoning cable television market. Its first installation was carried out for Croydon Cable in New Addington, London.

Kelly Communications expanded its offering in the early nineties, launching a complete network turnkey, planning, construction, and maintenance service. This led to the development of a group structure.

A dedicated rail division followed in the early 2000s. Originally specialising in network, signalling, and communications, Kelly Rail now offers a range of rail infrastructure services. It has continued to expand its portfolio, and recently began work on two major national rail infrastructure security projects at Network Rail and ScotRail stations.

Lord mayor Vincent Keaveny paid tribute to Tim’s achievements as chairman of the group, adding that he was “delighted to support his Freedom of the City of London.”

To learn more about Kelly Group, visit

Tim Kelly, Chairman of Kelly Group, takes part in the 2022 Sheep Drive
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