Mike Patching is recognised for his outstanding contributions to the local community
The High Sheriff of Oxfordshire issues awards each year to people who have made a difference to their community over many years, and whose contribution has not been recognised in some other formal way.
The Parish Council put Mike’s name forward for this award for his valuable work over the years. Some of the many activities and projects includes:
- Chairing the Michael Hardinge Trust , and the overall management of the Old School with all the fund raising and community efforts that this Horley Charity provides under Mike’s stewardship. These included the Summer BBQ with live music, the Children’s Concert, Summer Games, nature competitions and many more child centred events and activities.
- Working with local schools to provide educational visits and trips about nature and the countryside for children both in school and around Horley. Also assisting in cycling proficiency testing amongst other things.
- Supporting Horley Footlights, where Mike has helped on and off stage in all aspects on putting on a production.
- Support for the Cricket Club keeping the pitch in peak condition for summer matches and maintaining their mowing equipment and organising the annual Children’s Games there.
- Providing regular updates in the Horley Views magazine on the Michael Hardinge Trust and a features on nature and the countryside every season.
- Contributions to the team that created the Horley Circular Walk.
- Support for the Church and Ladies Guild in organising the Summer Fetes and Christmas Markets, Chamber Music Festivals and Barn Dances, as well involvement in special projects such as the Bells Restoration and other community efforts to ensure the use of our very special Grade 1 listed church St Etheldredas.
The office of High Sheriff is a ceremonial role involving a mix of charitable and community functions. It is the oldest secular office in the country outside of the monarchy but without the extensive powers it used to have. It is unfunded, voluntary and non political. The current High Sheriff 2015/16 is Tom Birch Reynardson. There will be a formal award ceremony in Oxford on 29 February which Mike will attend.
Congratulations Mike, very well deserved and thank you for all your efforts over the years; it is very much appreciated. We hope you will share your pictures of the ceremony and what this award means to you and Sue.