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The Scott Trust board

The Scott Trust board

Click on the images on the right for biographical details of Scott Trust board directors.

The formal responsibilities of the Scott Trust board are:

  • to secure and preserve the financial position and editorial independence of the Guardian in perpetuity
  • to monitor the organisation, financial management and overall strategy of the Group, holding the board accountable for its performance
  • to appoint and ‘in extreme circumstances’ to dismiss the editors of the Guardian and the Observer
  • to act as a ‘court of appeal’ in the event of any dispute between the editorial and managerial sides of the operation

Download the Scott Trust Corporate Governance Report

The Trust and the Editor

One of the Scott Trust’s most crucial functions is to appoint the editor of the Guardian, as well as that of the Observer.

When a new Guardian editor is appointed, the chair of the Trust gives them the following instruction: to conduct the paper ‘on the same lines and in the same spirit as heretofore’. This phrase first appeared in the will of John Edward Taylor, the younger son of the Manchester Guardian’s founder and the man from whom CP Scott bought the newspaper.

‘As heretofore’ might seem rather vague, but it is well understood by anyone who has a long association with and full understanding of the Guardian. It means that the editor has both a responsibility to preserve the paper’s heritage of independent liberal journalism, whatever form that takes, and the freedom to move with the times to achieve that goal.