- Lady Bathurst , the former High Sheriff of Gloucestershire, becomes the first ambassador for the Commissioner’s Fund
- “Some of the projects are truly inspiring and if lending my support as an ambassador for the Commissioner’s Fund helps then I’m delighted to do what I can”, said Lady B.
- The Commissioner’s Fund has supported more than 400 projects since its launch in 2013 and has contributed more than £12m to community based projects and voluntary sector organisations
- PCC Martin Surl said, “I am proud of what the Commissioner’s Fund has achieved and having Lady Bathurst’s support can only enhance its reputation”.
Among her many ‘causes’ during her year as High Sheriff of Gloucestershire, Lady Bathurst was a staunch supporter of the Police.
Now, as the first ambassador for the Commissioner’s Fund, ‘Lady B’ as she is affectionately known, is supporting local communities in their attempts to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour.
In taking on the new role, she has kept a promise to herself not to abandon some of the projects she was involved with during her year as High Sheriff.
(From L to R) Willie McIvor, the Mobility Store; Lady Bathurst; Kelly Hennessy-Ford, Keep Safe; PCC Martin Surl and Carol Groom also from the Mobility Store
She said, “I was privileged to meet many wonderful people during that period, and was lucky enough to be able to help in many areas. I was also able to see the huge number of projects that wouldn’t have survived without the financial support of the Commissioner’s Fund.
“My work in prisons has shown me that many have been let down too often by those who have passed through their lives and deserted them. I didn’t want to add my name to that list, just because my tenure [as High Sheriff] has come to an end”.
The Commissioner’s Fund draws on 1% from the Police and Crime Commissioner’s (PCC) annual budget and funding from the Ministry of Justice. Grants from the fund can cover a range of costs such as practical work, feasibility studies or research projects, group or partnership development, awareness raising, training, equipment and materials, marketing and promotion.
Lady Bathurst said, “The PCC’s idea of encouraging local people to come up with their own ideas to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour in their own communities is brilliant. Some of the projects are truly inspiring and if lending my support as an ambassador for the Commissioner’s Fund helps then I’m delighted to do what I can”.
Lady Bathurst’s first job as Commissioner’s Fund Ambassador was to present a commemorative plaque to ‘Keep Safe’ at the Mobility Store in Bourton on the Water. Keep Safe is an organisation which started as a small group of 10 memory clubs in the Cotswolds. With the support of the Commissioner’s Fund, it now operates throughout the county, involving businesses and giving confidence to over 12,500 vulnerable adults who carry the card.
Keep Safe is one of more than 400 projects supported by the fund since it was launched in 2013, a figure which is likely to rise to 450 once the current bidding round is complete. With other funds also managed through the Commissioner’s Fund, the PCC’s office will have allocated £12,483,849 to community based projects and voluntary sector organisations by April 2021.
Police and Crime Commissioner Martin Surl said, “I am thrilled Lady Bathurst has agreed to be part of our team in this way. I am proud of what the Commissioner’s Fund has achieved and having Lady B’s support can only enhance its reputation”.