General Lord Dannatt is new president of Norfolk Churches Trust

The former head of the British Army has been appointed president of an organisation that works to protect Norfolk's architecturally precious churches and religious monuments.

General Lord Dannatt is the new president of the Norfolk Churches Trust following the retirement of Sir Timothy Colman, who held the office for the last six years.

Lord Dannatt was a soldier for 40 years and has been involved in most of the recent conflicts. His final appointment was as chief of the general staff.

On retirement from the army in 2009 he became Constable of the Tower of London and is a Deputy Lieutenant for Greater London. In 2011 he became a crossbench member of the House of Lords. He is president and founder patron of Help for Heroes.

With his wife, Philippa, Lord Dannatt now divides his time between London and his Norfolk home in Keswick.

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As well as running the family farm just south of Norwich, Lord Dannatt is president of the YMCA Norfolk, president of The Soldiers' Charity Norfolk, and patron of The Royal British Legion Norfolk.

In 2008 he was president of The Royal Norfolk Agricultural Association. He has been on the Advisory Board of the Norfolk Churches Trust and is a church-warden of All Saints Intwood and Keswick.

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About his new role, Lord Dannatt said: 'I am honoured to follow Sir Timothy Colman as president of the Norfolk Churches Trust and I am more than willing to do whatever I can to help the trust achieve its objectives.

'Norfolk is blessed with many fine and historic churches but some are in need of financial and professional help and I look forward to helping the trust in assisting these churches and their congregations.

'It is a privilege to be part of such an energetic organisation that has already done so much good in the city and the county.'

Norfolk Churches Trust chairman Bolton Agnew said: 'We are delighted that Lord Dannatt has agreed to be our next president. We are indebted to Sir Timothy Colman for his commitment to the trust over the last six years and for being so generous with his time and for taking so much interest in the work of the charity.'

The Norfolk Churches Trust exists to protect – through financial aid and advice – Norfolk's religious monuments and churches.

Norfolk contains the greatest concentration of medieval churches in the world – built as a result of the vast wealth created by wool.

Of the 921 that were originally built, 659 of the churches remain.

In 2010/11 the trust awarded �259,792 to 58 churches in the county.

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