THE chair of Fortalice has been installed as High Sheriff of Greater Manchester.

Diane Hawkins, a Deputy Lieutenant of Greater Manchester, was appointed personally by the Queen last month.

Due to Covid restrictions, her ‘installation’ took place quietly in her garden at home on Sunday.

Retired solicitor Diane has contributed to several charitable organisations, over the last 20 years including Fortalice refuge and Bolton Scout Trust.

She said: It was a glorious day and I am delighted to start in my new role.

"My predecessor, Eamonn O’Neal, did a ‘magnificent job through the pandemic.”

A Justice of the peace since 2005, Diane was originally appointed to the Bolton bench.

She now sits in the Family Court and is currently the deputy chair of Greater Manchester Family Panel. During her year of office as High Sheriff, she will be on leave of absence from the judiciary.