Mr. Timothy Wates DL, who is the first High Sheriff to be appointed in Surrey by a King in over seventy years, was installed at a ceremony held at Guildford Cathedral on the 23rd of March, after being handed over the badge of office by his predecessor. Tim commented: “It is a high honour to be installed as High Sheriff – I will put my all into the role and am very much looking forward to seeing and supporting the full Surrey. My theme for the year will be mental health.  I will focus particularly on the interface between the Surrey Police and people suffering an acute mental health crisis and, with the Police, will sponsor research in this which will be completed in the summer of this year. I would like to acknowledge my predecessor His Honour Christopher Critchlow DL for his fantastic year in office and also thank him for his warm support for me as I have prepared for the role over the past few months”

The outgoing High Sheriff, His Honour Christopher Critchlow DL, spoke about his year in office.   “In accordance with historic tradition, the High Sheriffs of 2022/23 were called upon to read the Proclamation of the Accession of the New Sovereign, King Charles III, following the passing of HM Queen Elizabeth II. This I did from the steps of Guildford Cathedral on 11th September 2022, and it was the most significant role I had to play during my year of office.”   

“My other abiding memory will be of the delightful people I met all around the county during my visits to charities and organisations, many of whom are volunteers. Their unselfish work is inspirational and uplifting. My thanks go to all who work for their community in whatever capacity. Furthermore, we should all be grateful to the Army, 30% of which is based in Surrey, for the fine work they are doing, in various situations.”  

“As my year ends, the 27’ high Knife Angel statue stands outside the Cathedral, bringing a message of peace and a warning against the pain and suffering that violence brings; not just to the direct victims of it, but also to family and friends. The Angel appeals to the young people of Surrey in particular, hoping they will help to ensure our society remains as safe as possible. Surrey is a beautiful county and it’s one of the safest in which to live. As I have been privileged to see, it’s also fortunate in havingso many people who care about others less fortunate than themselves.”   

As incoming High Sheriff, Tim has appointed Mrs. Caroline Breckell MVO DL as his Under Sheriff, The Rev Patrick Samuels as his Chaplain, and Police Cadet Abigail from the Surrey Heath Unit as his Cadet for the year.  Abigail takes over from Grace who this year supported the High Sheriff at many events as well as volunteering within the community.  Following the speeches, the new High Sheriff undertook his first official task of presenting prizes to the young winners of the Knife Angel Art Competition. 

Photography by NewBold PR and Media.