News | 19 July 2022
Barbara Wilding CBE, QPM has been awarded an Honorary Fellowship by Cardiff Metropolitan University.
Barbara Wilding is the former Chief Constable of South Wales Police, the first woman ever to hold the post, serving from 2004 until 2009.
At the time of her retirement, she was Britain’s longest-serving female police officer. Barbara began her career in 1967 as a cadet in the Jersey Police and was appointed as a constable in 1970.
Speaking about the accolade at Cardiff Met’s Class of 2022 graduation at the Wales Millennium Centre, Barbara said: "It’s a great privilege after all the years that I have been involved with the University - I never ever thought I would be standing here receiving this honour so it really is a great privilege. It’s lovely to know I am going to be tied into the University in perpetuity, and will keep up to date with everything that is going on and hopefully be able to contribute again in a different way than I have in previous years."
The following year she transferred to the Metropolitan Police where she served as a detective, before becoming Assistant Chief Constable with the Kent Constabulary in 1994. In 1998, she transferred back to the Metropolitan Police as Deputy Assistant Commissioner, serving as Director of Strategic Resources and also Specialist Operations (commanding the Security and Protection Directorate, including protection of government ministers and members of the royal family).
In 2015, while serving as Chair of Cardiff Metropolitan University’s Board of Governors (as well as High Sheriff of Mid Glamorgan), Barbara also became our Chancellor, her term of office concluding in November 2021 with Cardiff Met being awarded the prestigious title of UK and Ireland University of the Year 2021 in the Times Higher Education Awards.
"As I stand down, I am immensely proud of the journey the university has undertaken during my time as Chair and latterly Chancellor," Barbara said at the time. "It has been a privilege to have played a part in its growing achievements and increased standing in the high education sector. To witness Cardiff Met named as the UK’s University of the Year is something I am especially proud of."