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Minutes of the Board of Trustees - September 2007

Meeting held Friday 7 September 2007

The Board met to discuss issues arising out of the process of appointment of the next Director in the absence of staff. They met to consider the report of the Nominations Committee in the absence of staff, save for the Acting Director and the Secretary to the Board.

Minutes of the last meeting and matters arising

1. The Board approved the minutes of the meeting held on 6 July 2007 subject to minor amendments. They were later signed by the Chairman.

Matters arising

Minute 2, Process of appointment of the next Director. The Chairman had agreed an increased level of remuneration to the Acting Director for the period of his Acting Directorship

Minute 3, Nominations Committee report. The Board had agreed at the July meeting that, before it made a final decision on skills gaps to be filled, it would be helpful to know who the Tate would be appointing to join the Board from the end of July. The Chairman reported that he had received a letter from the Tate Chairman, Paul Myners, dated 8 August confirming that the Tate Board had decided on 11 July that Mr Myners should be appointed as a National Gallery Trustee with effect from 1 August until approximately the end of September at which time he would be succeeded by Patricia Lankester.

Minute 4, Director’s report. The Chairman confirmed that a paper was being prepared on the viability of an electronic visitor counting system.

Minute 9, Proposed corporate partnership. A response was still awaited from the proposed partner.

Process of Appointment of the Next Director

2. The Board agreed that they would consider the report of the selection panel in November. 

Report of Nominations Committee

3. The Chairman reported that four new Trustees were sought, one each with experience in the fields of fundraising, corporate governance, buildings and communications. The draft role and person specification had been agreed with DCMS.

Saxton Bampfylde were to assist in the search, and the roles would be advertised on the DCMS website and the national press. It was hoped that the first appointment might be made in January 2008.

Director’s report

4. Visitor numbers: the Director reported that visitor numbers were low, and that this might in part be attributed to security problems in July. The numbers for Dutch portraits were disappointing. The Board requested that the way in which images for exhibition posters were chosen should be re-examined; there was no requirement for the same image to appear on posters as on the front of catalogues.

The Board approved the proposals to apply to the AFNGL for a grant of $7,500 in support of a supplemental volume of the catalogue for the Renaissance Siena exhibition and a further grant of $10,000 in support of the Velázquez research symposium and conference.

Tate Agreement

5. There was a discussion of this issue.

Potential Acquisitions

6. The Board considered the offer of a gift of a painting to the Gallery, but agreed the offer should be declined with thanks as the painting did not meet the requirements of the Gallery’s Acquisitions Policy.

Report on Conservation External Review Body

7. The Board requested that consideration be given to posting the findings of the Conservation external review body on the Gallery’s website, along with details of the membership of the body, subject to the consent of the members. The Board asked that the Acting Director should thank the members of the body, on behalf of the Board, for all their work.

Digital Access to the Collection

8. The Board considered and thanked the Head of Collections Management for his useful report on digital access to the Collection.

Quarterly Management Report

9. The Board noted the quarterly management report.

Minutes of Committees of the Board

10. The Board noted the minutes of the Audit Committee and of the Finance Committee on 2 July 2007.

Loans out

11. The Board noted the report on loans out.

Picture movements

12. The Board noted the report on picture movements.

Pictures for treatment

13. The Board agreed that 'The Virgin and Child' by Benvenuto di Giovanni (NG2482) and 'Carlo and Ubaldo see Rinaldo conquered by Love for Armida' by Anthony van Dyck (NG877.2) were ready to go back on display after treatment. The Board also saw 'Three Female Witnesses' by Peter Paul Rubens (NG 57.2) and 'The Virgin and Child' by Lorenzo di Credi (NG 593) in the course of treatment.

Any other Business

9. There being no other business, the Chairman declared the meeting closed.

Copies of previous Board minutes can be obtained from the Libraries and Archive department.

Confidential and sensitive information has been excluded from these published minutes in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998 and the Freedom of Information Act 2000

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