business

Listers chief appointed High Sheriff

Birmingham Post Rich List regular Keith Bradshaw says he accepts the post with 'genuine humility' and plans to address community cohesion during tenure

Keith Bradshaw has been appointed as High Sheriff of the county of West Midlands

One of the city's most successful businessmen has been appointed to the ceremonial role of High Sheriff of the county of West Midlands.

Keith Bradshaw is now the Queen's judicial representative in the county.

Mr Bradshaw, who was born in Aston, co-founded the Listers car dealership group in 1979 with business partner Terry Lister in Coventry since when it has grown into one of England's largest independent dealer groups.

He again featured in the Birmingham Post's annual Rich List earlier this year, with an estimated worth of around £180 million.

The Sheriff is an annual appointment by warrant from the Privy Council and the role can trace its origins beyond the tenth century when the 'reeve' was the keeper of the King's peace throughout the county.

Speaking at the formal ceremony marking his entry into the office, Mr Bradshaw pledged his support for community cohesion, the voluntary sector, emergency services and the judiciary.

"I grew up in Aston during an era when the region used to make things," he told the ceremony at Birmingham's Queen Elizabeth II Law Courts.

"I married a Black Country girl and we are both passionate about the West Midlands.

"So many great things originated here and I want to encourage as many people as possible to get on the front foot and represent our strengths and values.

"It is with genuine humility that I will endeavour to be worthy of the historical office of High Sheriff and I could never have imagined that I would be standing here today.

"I feel strongly the West Midlands has been the making of me and I want, via this office, to do whatever I can to honour that obligation.

"My main theme will be to work towards addressing the issues of social cohesion in our communities."

Mr Bradshaw attended school in Birmingham and went on to become a chartered accountant after his school declined to invite him to join its sixth form college.

He remains as chairman of Listers Group and has interests in electronic manufacturing through Laney Headstock Distribution and a family property business which includes Nurton Developments and GB Developments.

His charitable roles including chairing the trustees of the Library of Birmingham and Deputy Lieutenant of the West Midlands.

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