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Swearing In Of High Sheriff


News: Swearing In Of High Sheriff

Tuesday, 23rd March 2004
(PR 1195)

On Wednesday 31 March in Cabinet Room 'C' at County Hall, Preston, a new High Sheriff for Lancashire will be sworn in.

Gail Simpson Stanley of Ruff Lane, Ormskirk will continue an office stretching back to at least the middle of the 10th Century by becoming the 4th Lady High Sheriff of Lancashire.

The High Sheriff is appointed by Her Majesty the Queen in Her right as Duke of Lancaster. At the installation ceremony, the Queen's Commission will be read in the presence of two Commissioners, and the High Sheriff will then make a declaration to "Execute the good laws and statutes of the Realm". The Commissioners will ascertain whether the declaration has been correctly delivered and the Lord-Lieutenant of Lancashire will then hand over to the new High Sheriff the Sheriff's Patent, which is his authority to act throughout his year in office.

Although many of the powers of the High Sheriff have been eroded over the years by the emergence of local government, the police force, the Court Administrator's Office and the Lieutenancy, the High Sheriff, apart from his important social and ceremonial duties, still has significant functions. The High Sheriff's main duty is 'to protect and assist in upholding the dignity and well being of Her Majesty's Judges and to represent the Queen's executive powers in respect of the administration of justice in the county'.

Mrs Stanley was born in Yorkshire and educated at Whitcliffe Mount Grammar School, Cleckheaton, where she was Head Girl. She then studied at Liverpool University and shortly after graduating, married John Stanley, now Professor of Hand Surgery at Manchester University and senior Consultant at Wrightington Hospital, near Wigan.

Professor and Mrs Stanley have two children, Sian and James, both of whom are doctors.

Mrs Stanley's early professional life was spent in education, but she has been involved in the voluntary sector all her life.

She is presently a Magistrate member of Lancashire Police Authority, Chairman of the Professional Standards Committee and also has special responsibilities for the 'Independent Custody Visitors' Scheme'.

Since 1980 she has been Chairman of the West Lancashire Branch of the BHF (British Heart Foundation) and the Committee, under her Chairmanship, has raised well in excess of £ ¼ million for research into heart disease.

In 1982 she became a Magistrate in Ormskirk Court, serving on every panel and committee within that Court's system, culminating in her appointment as Bench Chairman in 1999.

Mrs Stanley is currently a member of the "West Lancashire Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnership", a member of the 'Local Strategic Partnership' and is the present Chairman of the 'Remuneration Panel'.

Her Committee responsibilities extend further through her involvement with the Prince's Trust and Bacup and Rawtenstall Grammar Schools Appeal Committee.

She is a former Governor of Aughton and Town Green Junior School and Ormskirk Grammar School.

In 2004 she was appointed as a Deputy Lieutenant of the County of Lancashire.

Mrs Stanley's 'mission statement' is below.

Note to Editors

Reporters and photographers are invited to attend the ceremony, which will be held at 12 noon prompt.
For further information, telephone 01772 533537



I am delighted and honoured to have been appointed as the High Sheriff of Lancashire for the year 2004-5

During the past few months, I have been considering how this ancient office can have relevance to the 21st century. I have concluded that, although many of the law and order and legal responsibilities attached to the office have changed, there still continues to be a responsibility towards communities in supporting law and order.

I see myself as doing this in two ways -

1. By supporting the charities and local groups who endeavour to improve the quality of life of the people of Lancashire.

2. By drawing together the different partners involved in community safety. This has to be a shared responsibility of everybody who lives in Lancashire.

I am very aware of the vast amount of good work that is carried out in our communities by people who give willingly of their time and energy, often without any reward. It is my wish to support these organisations in my year of office.

I shall also be fully supporting Crimebeat, the High Sheriff's Charity, which encourages young people to be involved in crime prevention schemes. As I know anti social behaviour to be a major problem in Lancashire, it is my intention to focus on schemes which tackle this problem.

If you would like to have further information on the High Sheriff role or Crimebeat or feel that I can be of further service please ring (01772) 618886.


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