How We Are Run


2023 council members grouped outside the front of the Burlington House building.

The Society’s Trustees are collectively known as its Council and are elected from the Fellowship. Council usually meets four times a year to decide matters of policy and to review and agree recommendations of the Advisory Committees and Officers.

Elections to Council take place at the Anniversary Meeting, the high point in the Society’s calendar held on St George’s Day or the most convenient weekday adjacent to 23 April.

At least one third of the members of Council must retire and replacements be elected at each Anniversary Meeting.

Current (2024-25) members of Council:

  • Martin Millett, DPhil, FBA (President) Chair
  • Carol Bell, MA, PhD (Treasurer)
  • John Cooper, DPhil, FRHistS (Director)
  • Shahina Farid, BA (Hon Secretary)
  • Elizabeth Hallam Smith, CB, PhD, FSA, FRHistS (Vice President)
  • Robert Bewley, BA, MPhil, PhD
  • Timothy Schroder, MA, DLitt
  • Simon Kaner, MA, PhD
  • Ann MacSween, MA, MA, MSc, PhD, MCIfA, FSA Scot
  • Thomas Williams, PhD
  • Jennifer Alexander, BA, PhD
  • Anthony Musson MA, MusB, LLM, PhD, FRHistS
  • Andrew Seaman BA, MA, PhD

You can contact our Officers on their dedicated Society email addresses:

President: [email protected]
Director: [email protected]
Treasurer: [email protected]
Hon. Secretary: [email protected]

Governing Documents

Our governing documents are our Royal Charter which we were granted in 1751, our Statutes  and our Standing Orders. Our governance documents were modernised in 2015 and revised in 2020.

A list of our updated Governance Documents including all Orders can be found below.

Patron and Royal Fellows

HRH The Duke of Gloucester has been the Society’s Patron since 2001.

The Society’s Royal Fellows are His Majesty King Charles III, Her Majesty the Queen of Denmark and His Royal Highness the Duke of Gloucester.

Council may propose as Royal Fellows any member of the royal families of any country without ballot. Royal Fellows pay no subscription and ‘have no voice in the management of the Society’.


Our Committees assist Council with the management of specific areas of the Society’s business:

  • Publications
  • Finance
  • Research
  • Policy
  • Library and Collections
  • Morris
  • Kelmscott
  • Fellowship
  • Ethical Conduct Body
  • Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Steering Group

You can download our current Committee Terms of Reference, view our list of Committee members on the Committees page, and see the schedule of Committee Meetings.

Annual Reviews

Our annual review is a summary of how we work to achieve our charitable objectives. Find out more about the highlights of last year in our Annual Review 2022-23 [PDF]

You can find last year’s review here. Annual Review 2021-22  [PDF]

Statutory Accounts

Read our 2021/22 Statutory Accounts.


Strategic Vision 

Strategic Plan for the Library, Archives, and Museums 2023-25


Equality Diversity & Inclusion Policy

Grants & Donations Policy

Safeguarding Policy Statement

Access Policy for Museum Collections at Burlington House

Access Policy for Museum Collections at Kelmscott Manor

Care & Conservation Policy for Museum Collections at Burlington House

Care & Conservation Policy for Museum Collections at Kelmscott Manor

Development Policy for Museum Collections at Burlington House and Kelmscott Manor

Documentation Policy for Museum Collections at Burlington House and Kelmscott Manor

Minutes from Council

Minutes from Council – March 2023

Minutes from Council – December 2022

Minutes from Council – October 2022

Minutes from Council – June 2022

Minutes from Council – March 2022

Minutes from Council – December 2021

Minutes from Council – October 2021

Recent Governance Documents