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Posted on: 6th March 2014

Lord Risby of Haverhill Officially Welcomed as Patron to Open Road

Open Road held an event last Friday, 28th February 2014, at their centre in Haverhill where they officially welcomed Lord Risby of Haverhill as its Patron at a special event.

Lord Risby was the guest of honour and joined by Vicky Ford MEP, Mayor Cllr Roger André, the Deputy Mayor of Haverhill Maureen Byrne, Cllr Anne Gower Cabinet Member for Housing & Social Care Member for Haverhill North, along with Lynda Bradford, Head of Health Improvement at Public Health Suffolk and Andy Eley the Deputy Chief Operating Officer from the Clinical Commissioning Group for Suffolk along with representatives from the local Police and partner organisations.

Lord Risby, a former MP for Haverhill, will take on the role of patron of Open Road and will become a strong supporter of the organisation and an advocate for strengthening the substance misuse agenda. Lord Risby says, “I was delighted to accept the role of Patron of Open Road. All communities include individuals with problems of addiction, and most particularly drugs, which can do so much damage to young people in particular, and their families. Those of us who are concerned with this very much welcomes the activities of Open Road in Haverhill, which I completely support”.

Lord Risby invited Vicky Ford MEP to visit the centre and see first-hand the work that is being done locally to reduce the harmful impact of drugs and alcohol on people and society. Mrs Ford said “Open Road is an inspirational example of the successful, collaborative work being done in Essex and Suffolk including the Norfolk & Suffolk Probation Trust, to help change lives and reduce reoffending in our region.” 

Lord Risby gave a passionate speech about his interest in the Drug and Alcohol arena and his affinity with Haverhill and the importance of outreach services such as these. Vicky Ford MEP went on to commend Open Road on their excellent work and to say that it’s vital that services like this continue. 

Cllr Anne Gower, Borough and County Councillor, helped to arrange the event and added "I am delighted that Lord Risby of Haverhill has agreed to be patron of Open Road which brings a valuable service to those who have a drug addiction in the town and surrounding area.  Not having to go to Bury or beyond for help is a great advantage to those people who do want to seek help.  I am also pleased to see Vicky Ford MEP at Open Road as I know she has a genuine interest in the wellbeing of Haverhill and its people.”

Staff, volunteers and service users were on hand to welcome guests and tell them lots more about the services on offer.

Sarah Wright, Open Road’s CEO says: “We are delighted and honoured that Lord Risby has become a patron of our charity and look forward to working with him to raise awareness of the issues surrounding substance misuse.”

Notes to Editors:

Open Road is a registered charity and leading provider of drug and alcohol treatment services in the East of England. In 2015 Open Road will be celebrating 25 years of delivering high quality services to empower individuals and families to recover from the harmful impact of drugs and alcohol. Every year Open Road helps thousands of individuals and their families to combat their drug and alcohol addictions, offering a range of one to one support, group therapy and harm reduction services. Open road currently employs over 100 staff and has a team of over 200 volunteers who actively support our work.

For further information about Open Road please contact us.