Rising Star Hazelle is an inspirational figure

An inspirational figure on the cricket pitch, golf course and in helicopter hangars, Lieutenant Commander Hazelle Garton has been named one of the Forces’ Rising Stars of 2019.

The air engineer officer was singled out by judges of the We Are The City awards, which champions the UK’s leading female figures in all walks of life.

Each year it picks 100 role models from across industry and professions – public sector, media, digital, banking and so on – out of more than 1,000 nominees.

Lt Cdr Garton, who’s been in the Royal Navy since 2008, was named in that top 100 – and in the top five in the defence world.

She is a truly remarkable and yet very humble individual, who has already achieved so much during her time in the RN

Commander Polly Hatchard

She is one of the UK’s greatest female cricketers – she only retired from the county level last year, standing down as one of the top ten all-time wicket takers in the women’s county championship; she continues to captain the Royal Navy and UK Armed Forces ladies’ teams.

The latter role took her to captaining a tour of Kenya where the naval officer also helped provide coaching for around 200 local children living in slums and worked with community group Opening Boundaries to raise awareness of domestic violence (45 per cent of women in Kenya have experienced it).

Where Hazelle’s leadership ensured the team played under the tag of ‘bowling out domestic violence’ (where 45% of women in Kenya have experienced it).

On top of all this, Hazelle also plays golf off a 10 handicap for the RN and her local side.

And then there’s the demanding day job working in the Merlin Delivery Team at DE&S Yeovil, ensuring that the state-of-the-art helicopters leave the facility for front-line Fleet Air Arm squadrons to the highest possible standard.

“I was shocked and humbled to have been recognised simply for doing the job that I love and having the privilege to captain UK Armed Forces and Royal Navy women’s cricket on tours that have been used as a vehicle to make a difference to young people’s lives,” said Hazelle.

Her boss, Commander Polly Hatchard, put her forward for the award – and is delighted with the outcome.

“I am so proud of Hazelle’s achievements,” she said. “She is a truly remarkable and yet very humble individual, who has already achieved so much during her time in the RN and I know she is capable of so much more.

“As a busy air engineer officer, she applies limitless flair, drive and total focus on delivering amazing quality and as a sportswoman, she’s taken Royal Navy women’s cricket and golf to extraordinary levels.”