Visitatorial Board Panel

The Visitatorial Board is able to hear employment matters (complaints and dismissals) where there is a question of academic freedom to be resolved, though for a first hearing the staff member may elect to instead have the matter heard by an employment review panel. The panel consists of four members selected from a panel of 12 members of Congregation, who must be engaged in teaching or research. The chair must be a person who is not a member of Congregation and is a barrister or solicitor of at least five years' standing or with judicial experience. The role of the chair is essentially to bring legal experience and an external voice to the panel: this includes making appropriate directions in advance of the hearing, deciding on how the hearing shall run and signing off the board’s decision. The chair also has a right to request that the staff member be suspended pending the outcome of the hearing where they deem this appropriate.

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Membership as at HT 2024 will be as follows

  Name Conditions of appointment Until
Chair Dame Elizabeth Slade An external chair appointed by the High Steward MT 2024
[1] Dr Elizabeth A Gemmill, Kellogg, Faculty of History One of a panel of twelve persons who shall be members of Congregation required to engage in academic teaching and/or research either by their written contracts of employment or by established and agreed practice and who shall be elected by Congregation MT 2024
[2] Professor Robert Gilbert, Magdalen, Nuffield Department of Medicine As above MT 2025
[3] Professor Tom Sanders, St Hugh's, Mathematical Institute As above MT 2025
[4] Dr Anne E Ferrey, Kellogg, Nuffield Department of Medicine As above MT 2026
[5] Dr David Metcalfe, Wolfson, Nuffield Department of Orthopaedics As above MT 2027
[6] Professor Anne Davies, Law Faculty As above MT 2027
[7] Vacant As above  
[8] Vacant  As above  
[9] Vacant  As above  
[10] Vacant As above  
[11] Vacant As above  
[12] Vacant As above   
Secretary: Planning and Council Secretariat (Louise Hasler)

Note: A Visitatorial Board comprises an external chair appointed by the High Steward, sitting with four members of the panel selected by lot. 

The Visitatorial Board meets very rarely (the last time was in 2016). The board’s remit used to be far wider but was significantly limited when Statute XII was amended in 2017.


For the regulations of the Visitatorial Board Panel, please click here:




For the statutes of the Visitatorial Board Panel, please click here:



Contact us

Louise Hasler

Assistant Registrar (Governance)

Planning and Council Secretariat


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