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Thursday 23rd January 2020
“I had the great pleasure of spending an amazing afternoon at Sunbeams Music Trust near Penrith.
“Annie and Michael Mawson own and run this terrific charity which brings together adults and children with a variety of physical/mental abilities and/or limitations. Their members sing and play instruments to their hearts’ content! It was a wonderfully inspiring experience and I was so pleased to have witnessed what is a weekly event for the many groups Sunbeams hosts. Each day of the week sees different groups attend Sunbeams’ wonderful new facility at Redhills. In addition to providing a musical environment for those able to reach the Sunbeams venue, the team also visits care homes and other housing facilities across the county, taking their music therapy to many more participants.
“Having spent time with those at Sunbeams yesterday, listening to them produce the most joyous singing and playing, I must commend Annie and her team. It was a truly happy experience that left me smiling broadly!
“Thank you to everyone I met there for such a fantastic afternoon!”
Visit to 4Eden, 13th January 2020
“On Monday, I had the absolute pleasure of visiting 4Eden in Penrith. The easiest way to describe 4Eden is to say that they provide day services and activities to 80+ children and adults who need services due to a variety of limitations and/or abilities.
“However, it would be unfair to just leave the description to what I have said. 4Eden is a most unique charity which is striving to be financially independent of the usual funding options by developing creative options for their members and the community. They currently have a main building, two cafés – one of which is scheduled to open in February – offering fantastic food and drinks for all; a fix-it type company – doing anything from landscaping to fixing/improving household items; and they are working towards opening a brewery – with the plan to brew and sell beer with their own label. Their members are given the option to participate in many ways. I was impressed to see that one of their members is now working with them as an apprentice. Yes, getting paid (by 4Eden) to work for/with them.
“It was an incredible atmosphere! And a totally supportive environment where their members have bloomed.
“I have to comment on the amazing, positive nature of 4Eden’s team (staff). And I totally commend the energy and determination of their lead, Jacqui.
“Lastly, while I visited, it was heartwarming to see the casual interactions with many community people who had stopped by the café for lunch and drinks.
This is a charity with a difference! Look them up to learn more about them!” https://www.4eden.co.uk/
Cumbria Crack, 13th December – Marcia exercises her powers as High Sheriff to act as Returning Officer for Penrith and the Borders election results
Cumbria Crack, 25th November – Women’s Entrepreneurship Day
News & Star with The Cumberland News, 16th November – Judge’s Service, Carlisle Cathedral
News & Star with the Cumberland News, 16th November – Thanksgiving Dinner
Cumbria Crack, 12th November
Times and Star, 12th November
Westmorland Gazette, 10th November
10th November – In honour of Black History Month, here are two short videos of local Unity festivals, in Kendal and Carlisle.
Cumbria Crack, 6th November
Cumbria Crack, 28th October
The Voice, 28th October
Tullie House Museum and Art Gallery, 26th October
Marcia was invited to provide photographs and artefacts for the M-Unit Exhibition in the Community Gallery as part of Black History Month celebrations. The exhibition, held on 26th October, displayed portraits of people with BME (Black Minority Ethnic) heritage living in Carlisle, along with personal objects and keepsakes to reveal their personal stories.
BBC News, 26th October
ITV Border News, 21st October
Cumbria Crack, 15th October
News release, 15th October
American musical treat for High Sheriff
The Border Concert Band entertained High Sheriff Marcia Reid Fotheringham on Saturday night with a programme of music specially chosen to reflect her American upbringing.
With music by Sousa, Gershwin and Bernstein, among others, the band took the audience on an energetic musical journey through selections from Broadway shows such as West Side Story and My Fair Lady, and films including Star Trek, The Good, The Bad and The Ugly and Once Upon a Time in the West, rounding off the programme with Stars and Stripes Forever, the official march of the United States of America.
Marcia said of the concert: “I want to thank the band and their conductor Tom Howe for their fantastic performance and for playing such wonderful music. Each each piece they played had particular memories for me – I can recall where I was and what I was doing when I first heard it. Finishing up with Stars and Stripes Forever was a master touch, and then when I requested just one more number, the band obliged with Puttin’ on the Ritz!”
The free concert, at St Aidan’s Church, was held to raise funds for both the High Sheriff’s chosen charity, Cumbria Community Foundation, and for the band, and the audience showed their appreciation with a very generous retiring collection.
The band can next be heard in concert at Christ Church in Silloth on Saturday 2nd November, and they will also be performing at the Festival of Remembrance in St Cuthbert’s Church, Carlisle on Friday 8th November.
That’s Cumbria, 14th October
News & Star, 10th October
Cumbria Crack, Tuesday 8th October
News release, Monday 7th October
Mountain legend Doug Scott’s Himalayan achievements lead to practical community support
At a special High Sheriff event in Tullie House Museum on Saturday evening, local climbing legend, Doug Scott kept his audience spellbound with anecdotes from his long association with the sport of climbing.
In a relaxed interview with fellow climber Jim Fotheringham (husband of High Sheriff, Marcia Reid Fotheringham), Doug reminisced on his 66-year-long love affair with mountains, from tackling Montblanc aged eighteen along with a friend (but no map), through an early expedition to the Tibesti range in Chad using a road map of North Africa, to his legendary descent of The Ogre with both legs broken.
A member of the first British team to scale the SW face of Everest in 1975, Doug’s expeditions across the world’s mountain ranges have earned him a revered place in British climbing history. His achievements have been recognised with a CBE, the John Muir Lifetime Achievement Award in March 2006, and The Royal Geographic Society Patron’s Gold Medal, although he did confide that his very first honour was winning a Bonny Baby competition, securing the princely sum of 7/6d for his parents!
Doug’s strong views on the ethics surrounding 21st century climbing were discussed. The audience heard of his dismay at the installation of bolts on previously climbed routes, expedition-style sieging and the commercialisation of climbing, with the sheer numbers and resultant queues on Everest destroying the unique experience that climbers were seeking.
Doug’s long association with Nepal has led to him setting up his charity Community Action Nepal. He explained that the mountain people of Nepal are among the poorest on the planet. With limited transport infrastructure and the Nepalese government historically focused- on fighting a civil war, their communities were increasingly neglected. Doug’s charity is dedicated to “helping mountain people to help themselves” raising their standard of living and strengthening indigenous, community-based culture. To this end, the charity has delivered over 45 projects ranging from healthcare posts and schools to porter rescue centres and other community and welfare projects.
The event ended with an auction of spectacular prints portraying many of Doug’s climbing feats and signed by the climbers involved, with all proceeds going to CAN. Money raised from tickets sales for the event will be shared between CAN and Cumbria Community Foundation, the High Sheriff’s chosen charity for her year in office.
Cumberland News, Friday 20th September
News release, 12th September
High Sheriff celebrates Cumbria’s high-flying businesswomen
High Sheriff of Cumbria, Marcia Reid Fotheringham spent Tuesday afternoon meeting with 13 of the county’s top businesswomen.
The women are among the 29 Cumbrian-based finalists in the prestigious Enterprise Vision Awards 2019, to be held in Blackpool on 27th September, and they represent a wide range of categories within the business world from the retail sector and creative industries through training, health and welfare to hospitality and customer service. There are also finalists in the solo and small business categories, and this year witnesses the largest number of Cumbrian finalists so far.
Marcia met the finalists at the Roundthorn Country House Hotel, Penrith where they enjoyed afternoon tea and the chance to network ahead of the ceremony.
She said of the businesswomen: “There is no doubt that Cumbria is rich in talent and today’s meeting with these amazing ladies is further proof of that. The level of professionalism and sheer energy is outstanding, and it’s been fascinating to hear of their achievements so far and their plans for the future. I wish them all the best of luck for the award ceremony!”
The Enterprise Vision Awards, described as ‘the largest awards dedicated to female entrepreneurs outside London’, will be held at Blackpool’s Winter Gardens. Last year saw Cumbrian businesswomen win in four of the categories.
Eden Valley Opera Company’s concert, Saturday 7th August
Marcia was invited to attend the concert and here are her thoughts following the event:
“The Angels Sang…
“Last night, Julie and I attended a fantastic recital at St Andrew’s Church in Penrith. We were invited to attend this event by HH Peter Davies. Judge Davies is the proud father of Joe Davies, who is the artistic director and conductor of the Eden Valley Opera Company, the performers last night.
“The main work of the programme was the Duruflé Requiem, with works by Lotti, Bach, Gibbons and Tavener in the first half and in addition, Joe’s own composition of Lux Aeterna.
“Once the recital began, all we in the audience heard were the voices of angels. The choir sang beautifully with a wonderfully blended sound that just amazed everyone. We were spellbound! And the two soloists during the Duruflé Requiem, Helena Sarah Townsend and Jonathan Hill, both sang with exquisite sensitivity and superb control.
“Two solo cello works were also performed in the first half by Neil Sild, who had stepped in at the last minute, the original cellist being unable to play through illness. Neil’s accomplished performances were a complete delight.
“A photo of the choir (below) shows Joe Davies standing on my left and Neil Sild on my right. Helena is second from the right in the front row and Jonathan is directly behind Joe. The others in the photo are the choir – the ones who created the wonderfully harmonious sound. Many of these young people are from the county, making all of us so proud of what talented Cumbrians can do. Missing from the photo is the organist, Ian Pattinson whose accompaniment of the Requiem was so integral to this stunning performance.
“The choir performs around our area. Joe informed us that the group’s next major venture is Cumbria’s first Opera Festival scheduled for September 2020, so do watch out for promotional information. If you want to find out more about this very special ensemble, visit their website: www.cumbriaoperagroup.com
“I was extremely pleased to have spent a Saturday evening with a great friend listening to such a breath-taking, joyful performance and I must thank the proud father, Judge Davies, for inviting me!
News and Star, 27th August 2019
Marcia presents award to mum who ‘saved child’ from fiend https://www.timesandstar.co.uk/news/17861227.mum-saved-child-fiend/
News and Star, 20th August 2019
Carlisle MENCAP’s fundraising barbecue
Sir Ian McKellen at Theatre by the Lake, 20th August 2019 Marcia was a guest at a special fundraising performance of Ian McKellen On Stage at Theatre by the Lake, Keswick on 20th August. She received the following thanks for her support from the team at the theatre: “We raised over £19,300 through the event, which will go towards our work with young people. Over the year so far we’ve already welcomed many schools, community and youth groups to the theatre, and visited them in the local area – and we look forward to doing much more of this thanks to your generous support. We are hugely grateful to Ian for all his work in supporting theatre and performance in the UK – and for choosing TBTL to be part of his 80th birthday tour. And we are hugely grateful to you, our audience, in joining us for such a wonderful occasion, and helping to raise these funds to support our Cumbrian communities.”
Marcia paid a return visit to HMP Haverigg in early August
“On Monday, 12th August 2019, I went to prison again! It’s not what you might think!
“My first visit to HMP Haverigg was to celebrate participation and completion of a University of Cumbria course. That was a course which included ‘regular’ students and men in custody (also students) who had successfully completed a course on Criminal Psychology. All of those who participated seemed proud of their achievements. I credited HMP Haverigg and the University of Cumbria for working out such an opportunity – and certainly credited those who participated.
“(I must start my bit about this visit by saying that Jim [my husband] and I spent the night before the expected visit day in Barrow – to shorten the journey time on the day. We allowed an hour to travel 23 miles. Under most circumstances, that would have been plenty of time. However, on this day, five cars ahead of us on what is the small main road, A595, between Barrow and Millom, a huge truck had jack-knifed! The road was suddenly and amazingly blocked! Jim did what he’s good at – the map came out! We took extremely tiny roads – which looked like single tracks – through the valley and were constantly stopped because on these teeny-tiny roads, others had received the news about the main road being closed. After too many adventures, we finally made it to HMP Haverigg about two hours late! I was quite annoyed – until I received a really warm welcome from HMP Haverigg’s Governor and staff.)
“So now this visit. This collaboration is special – and it’s about doing things for others. The partner this time was Cancer Research UK. Cancer Research UK’s superstore in Barrow in Furness had identified a problem – a lack of volunteers to manage the increasing amount of stock they had received. While having a large amount of stock is a good problem, not being able to get stock organised and in their store was not good and resulted in them missing out on valuable revenue for the charity. With that problem in mind, an excellent solution was identified. HMP Haverigg’s men would receive, sort and return the stock to the superstore making the stock ready for putting directly in the store. This solved a problem for Cancer Research UK. But HMP Haverigg would also solve a problem – and present opportunities for the HMP Haverigg men. Obviously, those who sort the stock would gain or build on already identified skills. But HMP Haverigg and Cancer Research UK went further – they decided HMP Haverigg will also have a store which will sell clothes to their men at a cost equivalent to that of Cancer Research UK’s community stores but still vastly lower than the catalogues available for men to purchase from.
“This is a fully functioning store within the prison footprint. That means that the men, especially those without external family or other support, will have the opportunity to buy clothes and improve their general appearance – while in custody. I learned that the men, while wearing a uniform during the days, wear their own clothes in the evenings and on weekends. They needed good, regular clothes. In addition, the HMP Haverigg shop will be managed and items will be sold by the men (with supervision by staff). Again, this will give those who participate the opportunity to learn the required valuable skills to successfully manage a shop. This gives them skills and experience they can use upon release.
“This project will allow HMP Haverigg men to indirectly donate their prison earnings to charity whilst also getting some benefit themselves. It will give the men a sense of normality and access to something they would have only thought possible in the community. All proceeds (yes 100%) from the HMP Haverigg shop will go to Cancer Research UK.
“Some might ask – why bother?
“In reality, there is more than enough research which validates the fact that helping others is actually beneficial to mental health and wellbeing. It can help to reduce stress, improve emotional wellbeing and even benefit physical health. Helping others promotes positive physiological changes in the brain. It allows engagement in a meaningful activity and improves self-esteem and competence. And it changes one’s focus away from one’s own problems.
“As I have learned from talking to the staff (including the Governor) and visiting HMP Haverigg, they are committed to providing a rehabilitative culture for the men in their custody. They would prefer to not see these men in custody again. They want them to grow and gain skills which will help to make them successful in our communities upon release.
“I spent time visiting what I can only describe as a really organised store. There were sections of specific, separated clothes; they offered all that one would expect in a men’s shop – at phenomenally reduced prices. It was a pleasant place in a separate building – which allowed some privacy as men opted to look around for items they want or need. I have to say, this is a first in the UK for the prison service. It’s a great first and I wish them total success.
“I have to thank HMP Haverigg’s Governor, Tony Corcoran and Elliot Sutton, Rehabilitative Culture Lead, as well as Cancer Research UK who invited me to this very special opening.
“And if you have read all of this, I thank you too!”
Marcia visited a number of Cumbria Community Foundation projects on 8th August
“The projects included I CAN – fantastic young people who want to raise mental health awareness for other youngsters. One of their main aims is to reduce the length of time that youngsters have to wait to see a therapist when they are in need. (Currently, referred youngsters have to wait 6-9 months to be seen.) They have also made three excellent short films which help others understand what young people need: to be listened to! Settlement at Castle Hill (Castle Hill Trust) is an excellent group which manages a historic house and provides a variety of adult education and talks to anyone interested. They also have Joyce’s garden – a place where members can grow their own flowers, plants and vegetables. Grow Well, a small plant and vegetable garden project managed by members. They have plans, supported by the Allerdale Council, to expand in to opening and developing the house (currently closed).”
News release, 6 August 2019
Local Musicians’ Support for High Sheriff
The county’s homegrown musical talent was well represented at the High Sheriff’s latest fundraiser on Thursday evening for her chosen charity Cumbria Community Foundation.
Marcia Reid-Fotheringham welcomed almost 100 concert-goers to the evening at Greystoke Castle.
A programme full of variety followed, featuring Maddy Prior and her band; Penrith-based The Misdemeanours; and classical guitarist Jim Booth from Brampton.
Marcia commented, “With Neville Howard generously donating the venue and the musicians giving their time, we’re hoping to have raised nearly £1000 from the evening, all of which will go to help those in our communities who find themselves in need of some assistance. And we had a great evening too! You certainly don’t have to go outside Cumbria to enjoy excellent music – we are so lucky!”
Marcia visited the Eden Valley Hospice on Friday 26th July and was profoundly moved by what she found. These are her thoughts about the experience.
“I left home for the visit to Eden Hospice with some anxiety. I felt I was visiting a place where people go to die – and that it might be extremely sad and hard (for me). After being there for less than five minutes, it was easy to see how wrong I was!
“I found that Eden Hospice is a caring place with a happy and supportive atmosphere and environment. The team/staff – all of them who consist of clinical, professionals and volunteers, present with smiles, bright eyes and kindness. They are all really interested in ensuring that whoever walks in – for whatever the reason – they answer any questions and help fully. While they have what I call an ‘army’ of volunteers, they say more are needed. I can understand why some would volunteer at Eden Hospice. It is a place to help people live to their best!
“We were escorted around the building by Patricia (Trish) Livsey, CEO. She was a most welcoming person – with lots of details, facts and figures to give out on request. She answered all our questions with total sensitivity. She also seemed to have an abundance of energy as she walked us from the children’s unit, the adult’s unit, the day room, through the gardens, the very special bathrooms, to the clever sensory and tactile spaces, etc., etc. We ended in the fundraising office.
“Every aspect of the entire environment was carefully thought out and, generally, purpose built. Eden Hospice is the only place in Cumbria that addresses the critical needs for children. It was clear that whether working with/for children or adults, the intent at Eden Hospice is to serve the person’s entire family – in the most sensitive, inclusive way. This really was a place to celebrate life! In addition to providing end of life assistance to all, they also provide lots of respite care and day services for those in need.
“On the morning that Jim and I visited, there were about 20 young people in identical t-shirts walking around the gardens. We learned that these young people had raised some money and donated a tree to Eden Hospice. They also decorated a little part of the garden with beautifully painted stones and hanging items on trees. It was fantastic to see young people who had no other reason for being there – other than to be nice – happily donating their money, time and energy to others.
“I know Trish would want me to say, their facility needs to be updated and, in places, modernised. While that may be true, the environment was so clean and cared for, I couldn’t tell that more was needed. However, it was clear that funding was a necessity. Eden Hospice is only 20% funded by the NHS and the rest comes from what they raise through applying for funding and/or donations. And it seems to be hard work to raise money for a very comprehensive, costly facility.
“I was so touched by the work I observed at Eden Hospice that I have decided that instead of raising money for the Cumbria Community Foundation (my chosen charity), I will make an exception and forward any raised money from my Thanksgiving event to Eden Hospice. (In case you’re wondering, I’m planning ‘A Very British Thanksgiving’ to be held on 30th November at the Tithe Barn, Carlisle. You can get additional details, as they develop, about this on my website.)
“I have to thank all staff and volunteers at Eden Hospice. They deserve much acknowledgement and credit for the wonderful, caring work they do. They taught me a lot – and I’m grateful and humbled by having spent time with them.”
Cumberland News, 26th July
An interview with Marcia about the need to recruit more magistrates
News release, Tuesday 23rd July
High Sheriff’s Jazz and Soul Fundraiser
The county’s High Sheriff, Marcia Reid Fotheringham, furthered her aim of raising money for Cumbria Community Foundation with a hugely successful jazz and soul music evening at Kirklinton Hall on Saturday.
One hundred guests enjoyed the talents of local bands The Marcangelo Trio, Roz Sluman and Big Shoes, and Soul Junction while at the same time raising £1,100 for the charity.
Marcia said: “The night was a real success – the music was fabulous, and it was great to see everyone dancing. The serious purpose behind the event was to support Cumbria Community Foundation, but we had a fantastic time doing it!”
The High Sheriff’s next fundraising event is ‘An Evening with Maddy Prior and Friends’ on Thursday 1st August at Greystoke Castle. Maddy and her band will be joined by local group The Misdemeanours for the evening. Once again great food will be on sale provided by The Lost Chef, Andrew Pollock, while guests are invited to bring their own drinks with them.
Tickets costing £15 are available from www.eventbrite.com
ITV Border website, 17th July
Unity Festival in Carlisle
Cumbria Crack, Thursday 11th July
Marcia takes part in the Unity Festival in Kendal
News and Star, 7th July
A visit to the puppet theatre at Upfront Gallery
News release 8th July 2019
High Sheriff celebrates county’s charities
Charity workers and volunteers from across the county were recognised and thanked for their dedication and unstinting work at a garden party held by the High Sheriff, Marcia Reid Fotheringham at Tullie House on Thursday 4th July.
More than 50 charities were represented, and guests were able to enjoy the hospitality while taking the opportunity to hear about the Cumbria Community Foundation, the High Sheriff’s chosen charity for this year, and to network with their counterparts in other fields.
Marcia said: “So much unsung work is carried out by these amazing people. They are quietly transforming lives in our communities and I wanted to acknowledge the valuable work they do and publicly thank them for their dedication, while giving them the chance to meet colleagues working with other charities. There was a real buzz in the crowd, so I’m happy that everyone enjoyed themselves!”
The Lord Lieutenant, Claire Hensman, was also present at the event and addressed the guests, adding her thanks for the work that they undertake.
Cumberland News, Friday 21st June 2019
Sir John Barrow School Newsletter, 17th June
Cumbria Crack, 20th May 2019
Cumbria Crack, 3rd May 2019
Westmorland Gazette, 20th April 2019
|High Sheriff kicks off her year with a visit to Growing Well charity at Low Sizergh The Westmorland Gazette CUMBRIA’S new High Sheriff Marcia Reid Fotheringham made her first official engagement in the South Lakes with a visit to mental health charity …|
News and Star, 19th April 2019
News and Star 2nd April 2019
North West Evening Mail, 2nd April 2019
Marcia’s interview with ITV Border, broadcast on Tuesday 26th March 2019.
News release 18th March 2019
Marcia Reid Fotheringham to be installed as High Sheriff
On Thursday 28th March 2019, Marcia Reid Fotheringham will be installed as the next High Sheriff of Cumbria. The ceremony will take place at the Nisi Prius in Carlisle.
Marcia will be only the third black High Sheriff to be appointed in England and Wales – the first Mr Nathaniel Wells, served Monmouthshire in 1818 and the second, Mrs Peaches Golding, Bristol in 2010.
Born in London and raised and educated in the United States, Marcia moved to Cumbria in 1996 to marry husband Jim Fotheringham of Brampton. Following a career as a psychologist and family therapist, she has served as a magistrate in the county since 2001, latterly undertaking the role of Chair of the North & West Cumbria Bench.
Marcia believes this says a great deal about the county’s warm and welcoming environment and is determined to fully reciprocate the honour and privilege that has been conferred on her.
She says: “This appointment can be interpreted as an indication and desire for Cumbria to demonstrate its willingness to acknowledge and celebrate diversity. As High Sheriff, I would like my year to be a most memorable and beneficial one for the entire community of Cumbria.”
Blood Bikes presentation Saturday 26th January 2019
On Saturday 26th January 2019, Marcia was invited to attend the presentation of a blood bike to Cumbria and Lancashire by the Provincial Grand Lodge of Cumberland & Westmorland.
After the presentation, Marcia was surprised and delighted to also receive a donation to her chosen charity, Cumbria Community Foundation, of £5,000.