Lincolnshire’s new High Sheriff became one of the latest in a long line of sheriffs to be literally ‘hand pricked’ by the Queen during an ancient ceremony at Buckingham Palace last week.
Last November, John Bernard Burke of Knaith, near Gainsborough, was nominated in a ceremony at London’s High Court to take his place in history as one of the latest incumbents of the oldest secular office in Britain.
And on Wednesday 14th March, that nomination was officially confirmed by the Queen as she used a silver bodkin to ‘prick’ her name on a list of all new High Sheriffs for England and Wales written on parchment.
In the weeks following this ceremony, the High Sheriff will make a declaration in accordance with the 1887 Sheriffs Act and take office after that.
High Sheriffs rank among top dignitaries in their areas and are also expected to attend at royal visits to their counties, as well as being entitled to act as returning officers in parliamentary elections.