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New High Sheriff of Norfolk wants to raise profile of small charities

PUBLISHED: 15:34 31 March 2019 | UPDATED: 16:00 31 March 2019

The new High Sheriff of Norfolk, Lady Adnew, Burnley Hall, East Somerton. PICTURE: Jamie Honeywood

The new High Sheriff of Norfolk, Lady Adnew, Burnley Hall, East Somerton. PICTURE: Jamie Honeywood

Jamie Honeywood Archant Norwich Norfolk

The new High Sheriff of Norfolk has been sworn in at a ceremony held at Burnley Hall in East Somerton.

The outgoing High Sheriff, Charles Watt, at the swearing in of the new High Sheriff of Norfolk, Lady Adnew, Burnley Hall, East Somerton. PICTURE: Jamie HoneywoodThe outgoing High Sheriff, Charles Watt, at the swearing in of the new High Sheriff of Norfolk, Lady Adnew, Burnley Hall, East Somerton. PICTURE: Jamie Honeywood

Clare Margaret Agnew, the Lady Agnew of Oulton, will take up the traditional role from her predecessor Charles Watt.

The 58-year-old said the focus of her year will be supporting charities.

Lady Agnew has worked with the Citizens Advice Bureau.

She said the reason she said yes to the role of High Sheriff was because she would like to raise the profile of the organisation.

The Under Sheriff, Malcolm Savory, at the swearing in of the new High Sheriff of Norfolk, Lady Adnew, Burnley Hall, East Somerton. PICTURE: Jamie HoneywoodThe Under Sheriff, Malcolm Savory, at the swearing in of the new High Sheriff of Norfolk, Lady Adnew, Burnley Hall, East Somerton. PICTURE: Jamie Honeywood

“In general what I do is supportive stuff, going to groups, going to prisons,” she said.

“I don’t have any power. It’s trying to convene good stuff to happen.”

The role of High Sheriff is 1047 years old, one of oldest roles in the country.

“I see my role as trying to shine good light on small charities that need more publicity. If i go to open a charity, that can help,” Lady Agnew said.

The new High Sheriff of Norfolk, Lady Adnew, Burnley Hall, East Somerton. PICTURE: Jamie HoneywoodThe new High Sheriff of Norfolk, Lady Adnew, Burnley Hall, East Somerton. PICTURE: Jamie Honeywood

She said that the High Sheriff can give support for people doing good stuff and raise issues other people cannot.

“In general terms I would like to use the role to raise the profile of citizens advice,” she said.

The new High Sheriff also said that because she lives near Great Yarmouth her focus will be on the seaside town, but she will not ignore the rest of the county.

Lady Agnew, born Clare Buxton in the windmill at Cley in 1960, was brought up on the coast in east Norfolk.

After school in Somerton, Yarmouth and Berkshire, she read archaeology and ancient history at Durham University before moving to London for several years, working for a picture framer and then in HR for General Electric.

In London she met her future husband, Theodore Agnew.

They spent ten years working in Ipswich, where their two children, Madeleine, 23, and Edwin, 19, were born, and Diss.

The Agnews then bought a farm in East Somerton in 2004, next to her childhood home at Horsey.

As the children got older she began advising for the Citizens Advice Bureau and is on their development board.

She is on the advisory council of the Norfolk Churches Trust, managing three stately car boot sales and many other fundraising and other events for them.

She is a patron of Norfolk Homestart, originally called Great Yarmouth Homestart.

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