A 500-year-old City of London organisation is at the centre of a celebrity-led campaign to force an inquiry into its alleged lobbying links with government.

Academics and celebrities have urged parliament's anti-sleaze watchdog to investigate the ancient post of the City Remembrancer which, they claim, has "unfettered and unmonitored" access to government and Whitehall.

The post, currently held by Paul Double, is part of the City of London Corporation and dates back to 1571. It has a ceremonial role and a seat in the Commons chamber with officials but also acts as the channel of communication between the City and parliament.

And it is that part of the job that has sparked controversy, with campaigners claiming it has privileged access to senior politicians and civil servants without any independent oversight.

The group has written to the chairman of the Committee on Standards In Public Life, Lord Bew, urging him to investigate.

One of the signatories, Thom Yorke, the lead singer of Radiohead, said the time had come to "reveal the revolving doors between government and the City".

Bew is also being asked to investigate City UK, a lobbying organisation closely linked to the City of London Corporation with claims it promotes tax avoidance and has meetings with senior ministers and civil servants.

Other signatories include actor Dominic West, playwright David Edgar, three Labour MPs, the Green MP Caroline Lucas, academics, charities and community groups. Copies of the letter have also gone to David Cameron, Nick Clegg and Ed Miliband.

A spokesman for the City of London Corporation told the Independent: "As an organisation providing a range of services for the nation, including green spaces, culture, supporting charities as well as promoting the UK's financial and professional sector, we are affected by a number of legislative areas.

"The Remembrancer's office communicates on behalf of the City to parliament on these matters but does not have any special entitlement to influence legislation or meet with politicians."

Global "people power" campaign organisation Avaaz launched a campaign for the abolition of the post of City Remembrancer in March under the banner "Kick bankers out of parliament".