Past High Sheriffs

2022/23 High Sheriff

Lady Edwina Grosvenor.

Southampton, Hampshire

Lady Edwina Grosvenor was announced as the High Sheriff for Hampshire on the 16th March 2022. Lady Edwina is a criminologist and prison philanthropist who graduated in 2005 from Northumbria University having studied Criminology and Sociology and has developed a career in prison reform. Her work has taken her all over the UK and around the world, visiting different models of criminal justice and witnessing first hand examples of best – and worst – prison practice.  From the children residing in Nepalese prisons to the death row residents in the US high security institutions, Edwina has made it her mission to act as a witness to prisons wherever she may be. 

Between 2007-2010 Edwina supported and advised the Bishop for Prisons, James Jones in the House of Lords. She was one of the Corston Coalition of Independent Funders seeking to drive implementation of the Report through Government.  Edwina advised the Governemnt on the Women’s Advisory Board for Female Offenders under The Secretary of State for Justice. During this time, a progressive female offender strategy was published which emphasized the need to reduce the number of women in prison, to understand trauma in a gender specific sense and it also moved towards a recognition that the vast majority of women in prison should and could be better cared for in the community. 

She is a founding investor and Ambassador of the Clink Restaurant chain, which trains prisoners for work in the catering industry. The four large fine dining restaurants, which are open to the general public, are built in prisons and staffed by men and women who are still serving time in order to train them in the necessary skills to secure a job in the catering industry upon release. The Clink has a 90% success rate with its graduates. 

Edwina is the founder and Chair of One Small Thing, an organisation that aims to redesign the justice system for women and their children. It seeks to educate criminal justice staff on the impact of trauma and influence for a more compassionate approach system wide. One Small Thing is currently building Hope Street, which will be a pioneering purpose-built residential community across Hampshire designed with women and children at its heart. Hope Street will provide rehabilitative services to the women in a holistic environment providing a much needed place in the community where women can recover without the need for their children to be removed into care. Planning permission was granted in the autumn of 2020, and construction is underway with a proposed completion at the end of 2022.

Edwina sits on the advisory board to the Centre for Criminology in the Faculty of Law at the University of Oxford. She completed her master’s degree in Criminology and Crime Scene Management at Solent University in August 2021 achieving a distinction and became a founding member of the Global Philanthropic Advisory Board in January 2022. She is also Patron of Paladin, which is the country’s only national stalking advocacy service.

Lady Edwina said: “It’s such a privilege to take on the role of High Sheriff for Hampshire. With its historical roots embedded in crime prevention and more recently evolving to support our communities, there is a natural synergy between being High Sheriff and what has been a lifetime passion for me of justice reform.

“I hope to use my year to visit and connect with people across diverse communities and look forward to learning more about the brilliant work undertaken across the board by the voluntary sector.”

2021/23 High Sheriff

Phillip Sykes.

Steventon, Hampshire

Phillip Sykes was announced as the High Sheriff for Hampshire and commenced his term of office on the 24th March 2021.

Phillip is a chartered accountant and insolvency practitioner who after a long career in restructuring as a partner at BDO, Arthur Anderson, and Moore Stephens is today a senior consultant with the Restructuring Advisory group at RSM Southampton since 2015 acting as an expert witness in insolvency and fraud litigation. Additionally in 2015-16, Phillip was President of the Association of Business Recovery Professionals (R3) and continues to serve on a number of R3 committees. Some of his most notable appointments include the administration of Reader’s Digest and the German and Austrian Woolworths groups and acting as trustee in bankruptcy for Kevin Maxwell. Phillip was also the senior international adviser to the Indonesian Bank Restructuring Agency during the Asian banking crisis in 1998-2000. He is also a trustee of a number of local charities, including the Brendoncare Foundation which runs 10 care homes in the South of England.

Phillip moved to Hampshire in 1995 and lives in Steventon with his wife Caroline, a GP in Basingstoke, where they both have three grown up children and a granddaughter who live in London. He and Caroline are both keen riders and as keen animal lovers keep two dogs and three tortoises. Between 2006 and 2011 Phillip had the privilege of being District Commissioner of the Garth South branch of the Pony Club.

Phillip Sykes stated when he was appointed:
“I am enormously looking forward to my year as High Sheriff and, like the rest of the country, am hoping that the end of lockdown is in sight so that I can fulfil the role to the best of my ability. It is a tremendous privilege to support the Crown and judiciary across Hampshire and to lend my support across our vibrant and diverse communities.”

Hampshire High Sheriff Phillip Sykes was greatly honoured to have been the presiding officer at the Verderers’ Election on 26 November at which Robert Stride, Richard Deakin and Anthony Pasmore were duly elected.

2020/21 High Sheriff

Sue Colman.

Basingstoke, Hampshire

Sue Colman was the High Sheriff for Hampshire between 2020-2021 where she expressed at the start of her High Sheriff duties with the following:

“On 8th April 2020 I was due to make a solemn declaration to a High Court Judge in the Winchester Crown Courts, accompanied by family, friends and dignitaries, with a herald trumpet fanfare adding some pomp and ceremony, after which my term as High Sheriff of Hampshire would commence with great celebration! Instead, on Wednesday, 24th March, in light of the current situation, I made my declaration in front of a computer screen, in a high up bedroom in our home where there was enough signal to manage a Zoom meeting with the simplest of legal requirements in place.

Relatively trivial changes in the light of other daily news and yet part of the landscape of change which Covid 19 has forced upon us all.

As part of my declaration I said these words – “I will truly and faithfully support the Judiciary and all who maintain The Queen’s Peace, who administer justice, and who protect and support their fellow citizens.” The ways I may have been able to do this in a ‘normal’ year are for now on hold – although I looking forward to being able to travel the length and breadth of Hampshire, once social distancing has done its work, and we are all able to meet face to face again. However, I intend to find different ways to encourage and support all the same.

The remit of High Sheriff extends to every place in which justice is key – and so I am looking forward to celebrate, honour and praise all the excellent ways justice is administered in Hampshire, and the people who so selflessly do this for us every day. Also, however, alongside justice is the reality that there are areas in our society where we see injustice. One of these areas for me, beginning life as I did as an adopted person, is the injustice clearly apparent in some of the statistics about outcomes for Looked After Children. From “Compared to the general population care leavers are less likely to be in education, employment or training and more likely to have a criminal conviction, and may have experienced unnecessary criminalisation. Care leavers are estimated to represent between 24% and 27% of the adult prison population. This is despite less than 1% of under 18s entering local authority care each year.” These young people are also more likely to reoffend within a year of leaving prison. For me this is an injustice that a challenging and so often painful start in life should mean a greater likelihood of offending and reoffending.

Early Intervention, through our statutory services and the charity sector, addresses this great injustice. It is my aim, this year, to identify, support and encourage all who are engaged in reducing the likelihood of the children in our care system becoming residents in our prisons, whether as mentors or foster carers, teachers or counsellors; or through our Youth Offending Programmes, Family Courts and Social Services.

Rather unusually, though not uniquely for a High Sheriff, I am also an ordained minister in the Church of England, and I am the first ordained High Sheriff of Hampshire! Whether, when reading this, you are a person of any faith, or of no faith, I hope you may find it an encouragement to know that I am holding all those involved in our Justice System in my prayers and thoughts each day.”

Sarah Le May

2019/20 High Sheriff

Sarah Le May.

Winchester, Hampshire

2018/19 High Sheriff

Mark Thistlethwayte.

Hambledon, Hampshire

Hon Mrs Mary Montagu-Scott

2017/18 High Sheriff

Hon Mrs Mary Montagu-Scott.

Beaulieu, Hampshire

2016/17 High Sheriff

Tom Floyd DL.

Basingstoke, Hampshire

2015/16 High Sheriff

Louisa Portal

Basingstoke, Hampshire

2014/15 High Sheriff

Major General Jamie M J Balfour CBE DL

Durley, Southampton

2013/2014 High Sheriff

Rupert E A Younger Esq


2012/2013 High Sheriff

Hallam Mills Esq


2011/2012 High Sheriff

Nigel G McNair Scott Esq

Old Basing

2010/2011 High Sheriff

Alan C Lovell Esq

Bishop’s Waltham

2009/2010 High Sheriff

Dr Clare V Bartlett

East Meon

2008/2009 High Sheriff

M D C C Campbell Esq MBE DL

Shalden, Alton