THE High Sheriff of Hampshire Sarah Le May is calling for public servants, individuals, volunteers, charities and community groups to submit their entries for her community awards.

The High Sheriff Awards aim to make the county a better and safer place for all residents.

Ms Le May said: “The awards honour those who deserve special recognition for their good work and who go beyond the call of duty in their everyday activities. Nominations are now open for those law and order-related projects that enhance safety and cohesion in our local communities, and I look forward to recognising the hard work of local people and local organisations that work so hard to make Hampshire a better and safer place to live and work.”

The awards will be presented by the High Sheriff at a ceremony on Thursday March 19 at Ashburton Hall in Winchester. Nomination forms can be downloaded from the HIWCF website: and returned to before Friday January 31.

Grant Cornwell, chief executive for HIWCF said: “HIWCF is delighted to partner the High Sheriff in organising these annual honours, recognising those that make our Hampshire communities a better place to live. Every year, we are inspired by the work of those receiving an award, which last year included police constables, probation officers, street pastors, search and rescue dog handlers, stalking services and rape and abuse centres. The award ceremony enables us to take a moment to truly appreciate the efforts of these people that work so hard to make a real difference to those experiencing tough times.”

The High Sheriff is one of the oldest Crown Offices, dating back to before the Battle of Hastings. As the Sheriff’s powers increased, they were considered to be a threat and in 1540 Henry VIII created Lord Lieutenants to take over the military duties. To this day both the Lord Lieutenant and the High Sheriff are appointed by, and are representatives of, the Sovereign with the High Sheriff being responsible for law and order - keeping the Queen’s Peace.

Other unpleasant tasks remained the duty of the Sheriff including overseeing executions until the death sentence was abolished in 1965.