Project Description

Hon. Richard Godber

In position 2003 – 2004

Buckinghamshire is a county full of contrasts from Thames Valley in the south, Chilterns in the middle, Ouse valley and Milton Keynes in the north. I had no concept of how varied and fascinating my year would be and how far it was from north to south and no decent route!

I followed the process of Law and Order through the Police,Crown Prosecution Service Courts ,Probation, Parole board and prisons. Four very different prisons from Woodhill High Security, Aylesbury Young Offenders and Grendon where there is psychotherapy and Springhill which is “Open”.

Schools were also involved with Crime Beat to enable young people to gain confidence and self esteem and become more responsible citizens.

My time as High Sheriff

I was the first High Sheriff living in the Milton Keynes area since it became a unitary authority and I was keen to have my legal service at the new church Christ the Cornerstone . This took some organising as it was quite unique to have a formal procession in a church in the round but was well managed by my Chaplin Rev Ian Pusey and Under Sheriff John Leggett who in those days was responsible for most events. I was honoured to have a friend The Lord Bishop of Ely, The Right Rev Anthony Russell to preach.

One of my highlights was the Episcopal Ordination of our new bishop Dr Alan Wilson in Westminster Abbey where we were privileged to sit in the choir stalls so had a marvellous view of this impressive ceremony

The Chief Constable held the first Service of Thanksgiving for the Emergency Services in the Thames Valley attended by all three Lord Lieutenant’s, High Sheriffs, and representatives from Police, Fire, and Ambulance which emphasised the close relationship between the emergency services.

The achievements and essential role of the voluntary services cannot be praised enough. It is their determination and devotion of that makes the wheels turn to support all manner of needs and interests. I have sung with the girl guides, met groups at the hospitals, and had supper with the TA to name but a few.
I had a Summer Luncheon, courtesy of MK Parks Trust and raised funds for Bucks Association of Boys Clubs- Clubs for Young People and our local Macmillan Hospital Appeal.

I had varying different encounters with the mayors and leaders of Councils whether it was visiting offices or starting a pancake race! .
The Queens Award for the industry was won by Aston Martin and I was thrilled to witness this local success.

It has been an amazing privileged year with many memories to treasure.