Lancaster University Chancellor's robes in glass cabinet within the Library building


Council is the governing body of the University. It is the legal entity and ultimate authority of the University and it is unambiguously and collectively accountable for institutional activities, taking all final decisions on matters of fundamental concern within its remit.

Council members fulfil their roles in accordance with the Charter, Statutes and Ordinances. Sector expectations and requirements for Council are set out in the Committee of University Chairs Higher Education Code of Governance and the OfS Regulatory Framework.

The Deputy Chief Executive (Operations) is the formal Secretary of the University. Any enquiries about the constitution and governance of the University should be addressed to her via the Director of Strategic Planning and Governance, Simon Jennings, on or 01524 592021.

Tab Content: Council Members

Council are collectively responsible for the University. Members need to be satisfied that processes and procedures are in place which are sufficient and effective in running the business of the University. As the University is an exempt charity, all Council members are Trustees of the University.

Learn more about our governing body including the role of Council members, biographies on members by visiting our Council members page.

Tab Content: Charter and Statutes

The constitutional framework within which we operate is based upon our Charter, Statutes and Ordinances.‌

The Charter, first granted in 1964, sets out the purpose and powers of the University. The Statutes underpin the Charter and both the Charter and the Statutes are approved by the Privy Council.

Ordinances support the Charter and Statutes and are created and approved by the Council. Other regulations may be created and approved by Council or by other committees on delegated authority from the Council.

Tab Content: Delegation of Authorities

The powers of Council are outlined in the Charter, Statutes and Ordinances (see in particular Statute 10). Council has also approved a statement of primary responsibilities. The Council has reserved certain types of decision to itself and these are defined in Ordinance No. 4 (Matters reserved to Council for decision).

The Council has delegated other decisions as defined in the Scheme of Delegation and Decision-Making Powers Appendix 1 of the Financial Regulations, in the Schedule of Financial Delegations in Appendix 2 of the Financial Regulations and in the terms of reference of Council Sub-Committees.

The organogram of decision making sets out delegated authority visually.

Tab Content: Council Standing Orders

The Council Standing Orders are the written rules which regulate the proceedings of Council.