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Minutes of the Board of Trustees - 6 November 2014

Minutes of the Board meeting held on Thursday 6 November 2014

Present (in person)

Gautam Dalal
Professor Dexter Dalwood
Lady Heseltine 
John Nelson
Charles Sebag-Montefiore
John Singer

Present (by phone)

Mark Getty (Chair)    
Sir Michael Hintze
Professor Anya Hurlbert
Lord King of Lothbury
Hannah Rothschild
Monisha Shah
Caroline Thomson


Lance Batchelor

In attendance

Dr Nicholas Penny - Director
Kate Howe - Secretary to the Board and Legal Counsel

  1. The Chairman welcomed Lord King to the first Board meeting of his second term of office as a Trustee of the National Gallery.
  2. The Chairman reported to the Board on the outcome of soundings which he had been asked to take at the September meeting in relation to the Board members who had indicated their willingness to stand for the role of next Chair.
  3. The Board considered the options open to them in relation to the selection and appointment of the next Chair.
  4. The Board agreed that, now the Board was at full strength, they wished to proceed with a process of selection and appointment of the next Chair from amongst their own number, as the 1992 Museums and Galleries Act required them to do. In relation to the timing of the selection and appointment, the consensus was that this should be done at the November board meeting, so that the identity of the next Chair would be known before final interviews for the next Director took place.
  5. In terms of process, it was agreed that the candidates from the Board who had expressed a willingness to stand would each make presentations (of no longer than 15 minutes) at the beginning of the November Board meeting; the Board would also hear from the current Chair and the Director, and non-candidates would have a discussion in the absence of candidates before a secret ballot took place. In advance of the meeting, the Secretary to the Board would circulate, by way of reminder, the process which had been recommended by the Governance committee and approved by the Board and which was based on the process adopted in 2008 when the current Chairman was selected.
  6. It was agreed that a letter should be sent by the Chairman to the Minister for Culture following the meeting explaining the decision arrived at by the Board and inviting a representative from DCMS to attend the next Board to observe the selection and appointment process. The letter should be copied to the Prime Minister’s office.