Nick Alston CBE DL, the High Sheriff of Essex, was invited to learn more about East Anglia RFCA at our Chelmsford office by our Chief Executive Col Ray Wilkinson.
The role of High Sheriff involves supporting and bringing together public sector and voluntary sector organisations within law and order, public safety, and crime prevention. High Sheriffs might also support the Lord-Lieutenant on the occasion of royal visits, or present Court Awards. In Essex, the High Sheriffs’ Fund (administered by the Essex Community Foundation) makes grants to voluntary organisations and groups to support initiatives concerned with community safety in the county.
High Sheriff of Essex is a voluntary office appointed by the Queen for one year, and in this time, Nick will focus on a “volunteering” theme. The articles on his website champion the people and events that contribute to making Essex communities safer.
During Nick Alston’s visit to East Anglia RFCA, we learned that he attended a well-known Essex Grammar School with a CCF unit. Nick didn’t join as a cadet, but his university studies in Material Sciences in Cambridge led him to join the Royal Navy as a commissioned officer. He is Chair of Trustees of Essex Community Foundation, a Governor at Anglia Ruskin University, previously chaired the Mid-Essex Hospitals Trust and until recently was Chair of the drug and alcohol charity, Open Road.
Chief Executive Colonel Ray Wilkinson shared a brief history of the RFCA, and an overview of our staff’s and members’ current initiatives. In discussion, several opportunities to build on common connections for the benefit of Reserves and Cadets were identified and at the end of his visit, Nick said: “I’d like to thank the RFCA team for the work that they do; they make it possible for reservists, cadets and cadet volunteers to train in safe spaces across Essex. I have no doubt that all our counties in the region benefit from the skills and enthusiasm of the reservists and cadets.”
To understand more about the RFCA’s connections with civic dignitaries, local influencers and public service providers, explore our Engagement pages.