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The Office of High Sheriff of Lancashire

The High Sheriff of Lancashire has ancient origins and is personally appointed by the King in his Right as Duke of Lancaster. The office, as Keeper of the Kings Peace, is unpaid and held for one year.


What is the protocol for High Sheriff’s precedence in the county?

The High Sheriff in any county is by right second only to the Lord Lieutenant (or deputy acting as Lord Lieutenant) but gives precedence to Mayors at their own civic functions. When in attendance upon High Court Judges at the Crown Court the High Sheriff has precedence.

The Lord Lieutenant and the High Sheriff are both appointed by, and are representatives of, the Sovereign in the county. The Lord Lieutenant is responsible for civil and civic matters, whilst the High Sheriff is responsible for law and order, i.e. for keeping the King’s Peace.

As a representative of the Sovereign the High Sheriff should be received at any event with the same degree of etiquette and protocol as a member of the royal family when the High Sheriff is attending in an official capacity in their own county.

How do I address a High Sheriff?

Written: (title and name), High Sheriff of Lancashire

Salutation: Dear High Sheriff

In a Speech: In the preamble the High Sheriff should be referred to as High Sheriff e.g. a speech might begin, “High Sheriff, Ladies and Gentlemen…”.

Conversation: On formal occasions High Sheriff