Supriya Ghosh

High Sheriff of Down

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High Sheriff of Down

The High Sheriff of Down is the Sovereign's judicial representative in County Down. Initially an office for lifetime, assigned by the Sovereign, the High Sheriff became annually appointed from the Provisions of Oxford in 1258. Besides his judicial importance, he has ceremonial and administrative functions and executes High Court Writs.



The first (High) Shrivalties were established before the Norman Conquest in 1066 and date back to Saxon times. In 1908, an Order in Council made the Lord-Lieutenant the Sovereign's prime representative in a county and reduced the High Sheriff's precedence. Despite however that the office retains his responsibilities for the preservation of law and order in a county.

While the office of High Sheriff ceased to exist in those Irish counties, which had formed the Irish Free State in 1922, it is still present in the counties of Northern Ireland.

High Sheriffs

  • 1610: Richard West
  • 1620: Nicholas Ward
  • 1624: Nicholas Ward
  • 1641: Peter Hill
  • 1655: James Trail
  • 1656: Bernard Ward (son of Nicholas HS 1620)
  • 1657: Roger West (son of Richard HS 1610)
  • 1661: Robert Ward (son of Bernard HS 1656)
  • 1662: Nicholas Ward (son of Bernard HS 1656)
  • 1667: Robert Ward
  • 1669: William Waring of Waringstown
  • 1670: William Montgomery
  • 1675: John Hawkins of Rathfriland
  • 1690: Bernard Ward (killed in duel, 1690)
  • 1699: John Haltridge
  • 21st century

  • 2000: The Hon. Mrs. Daphne Montgomery of Rosemount, Greyabbey, Newtownards
  • 2001: Richard John Gordon, Whiterock Road, Killinchy,
  • 2002: Nicholas Edward Lindsay of Mill Point, Finnebrogue, Downpatrick:
  • 2003: David Graham Shillington of Skeagh Road, Dromore
  • 2004: Mary Gordon Haughey, Ballyedmond Castle, Rostrevor,
  • 2005: James Derek Shaw, Elmfield, Gilford
  • 2006: Mrs Mary Fionnuala Cook of Banbridge
  • 2007: John Dudley Francis Fisher, Rathturret, Warrenpoint
  • 2008: Alan Raymond Gillespie
  • 2009: Lady Augusta Nicholson, Ballyalloly House, Ballyalloly Road, Comber
  • 2010: David Corbett, Tyrella House, 90 Clanmaghery Road, Downpatrick, BT30 8SU
  • 2011: Ian Webb, Killymard, Circular Road East, Holywood, Co. Down, BT18 0HA
  • 2012:
  • 2013: Ivan Cunningham
  • 2014: Simon Brien
  • 2015: Patrick Cross of Downpatrick
  • 2016: Philip Baxter of Lisburn
  • References

    High Sheriff of Down Wikipedia

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