October 2020 may be remembered for being the wettest October on record, but this did not deter the High Sheriff from battling the constraints of the weather and coronavirus and reaching out to as many people of Hertfordshire as he could. It has not been an easy year, so many of the events and pageantry that make up the High Sheriff year have been cancelled and the fundraising which is such an important part of the budget for so many charities has gone by the wayside too. High Sheriffs and the voluntary sector fit together, and I deeply regret not being able to support the fundraising activities of the charities of Hertfordshire as a key part of my year.
Nonetheless, there is no point crying over spilt milk and we must celebrate what we have achieved and not look back over what we have not – High Sheriffing aside – this should be a mantra for us all as we come into the tail end of this annus horribilis.
Memories of the month with the charities would be the work of Recover and their self funding business model in restoring old furniture; visiting the New Hope Sanctuary for the homeless in Watford with elected Mayor of Watford Peter Taylor and the redoubtable Resolve Charity in Hatfield who supplied us with delicious cakes from their Sparks Café.
In addition, we held productive meetings with Quintin McKellar Vice Chancellor of the University of Hertfordshire, toured the campus and saw how a university of this size and scale adapts so efficiently to the threats of a pandemic, we met with the Coroner for Hertfordshire, Geoffrey Sullivan, at his offices and Owen Mapley the Chief Executive of Hertfordshire County Council at County Hall.
It was a pleasure to visit St Albans Cathedral for the Mayor of St Albans Civic Service and meet the Dean and many of his clergy, and to attend the Harvest Festival celebrations with One Vision at Stanborough Park Church, Watford. On a more light hearted note the High Sheriff joined the Lord-Lieutenant and the Chairman of the MCC for a presentation to Redbourn Cricket Club on their reaching the final of the Village Cricket Club cup, played at Lords and they were only narrowly beaten.