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The Secretariat comprises four teams - Governance Support, Corporate Affairs, Legal Affairs and Student Cases. Together, their primary responsibility is assisting the University Secretary in promoting the best standards of corporate governance throughout the institution.

Governance Support:

This team's responsibilities include ensuring that principal decision-making bodies are provided with timely information, analysis and advice. It also oversees the constitutional operation of the University as a whole, by administering:

  • Main University committees
  • Corporate governance
  • Freedom of Information procedure
  • Grievances and other staff complaints (academic and related)
  • Third stage disciplinary procedure (for academic and academic-related staff)
  • Constitutional arrangements (Faculty and School)
  • Company secretariat services
  • Obituaries

The team is headed by Melody Mellor (Head of Governance Support), and includes George Brassay, Jenny Foggin, Helena Smith, Rebecca Messenger-Clark, Helen Pickersgill and Dawn Thompson.


Corporate Affairs:

This team supports the effective management of the University. This involves business planning and outward-facing activities. The team's responsibilities include:

  • Administering the University's protocol on freedom of expression
  • Risk management; in particular, critical incident/business continuity planning and insurance
  • Events management (such as honorary degree ceremonies and prominent public lectures)

The team is headed by David Wardle (Deputy Secretary), and also includes Catherine Cho, Guy Dixon, Jenny Birkinshaw, Louise McCunniff and Daksha Chavda.

Legal Affairs:

The Legal Affairs team is headed by the University Solicitor, Adrian Slater, who provides the University with in-house legal advice.

View further information on the Legal Affairs team (including on the University's data protection procedure)

The team also includes Caroline Coulsey, Melanie Steed, and Tracey Crombie.

Student Cases:

This team is responsible for the administration of the University's procedures in relation to the following:

  • Academic appeals (by taught and research students)
  • Administering the University's Student Complaints Procedure
  • Special cases of student progress
  • Referred and unsatisfactory students
  • Allegations of cheating and plagiarism
  • Student health and conduct
  • Advice on the regulations for taught programmes of study

View further information about the work of the Student Cases team

The team includes Geoff Barker-Read (Head of Student Complaints and Appeals), Cheryl Cox and Alison Usher.


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