Council of Governors


Council of Governor elections 2020

East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust (ESNEFT) is inviting people with an interest in healthcare to consider standing for election to its Council of Governors.

The trust, which runs Colchester and Ipswich hospitals together with a range of community health services, is inviting anyone who would like to get involved or has an interest in shaping services for the future to apply.

ESNEFT has eleven public governor vacancies to fill and three staff positions. They are:


  • Public: Colchester – two vacancies
  • Public: Ipswich – four vacancies
  • Public: Rest of Essex – two vacancies
  • Public: Rest of Suffolk and South Norfolk – three vacancies
  • Staff: Colchester and Essex – two vacancies
  • Staff: Ipswich and Suffolk – one vacancy

Anyone who is interested in standing can find more information and a nomination form at Further help is available from the returning officer, who is available by calling 020 8889 9203 or emailing

Nominations are open from today (1 September) until 29 September.

What is a governor?

Foundation Trust Governors are direct representatives of local communities, made up of staff, patients/public and partner organisations governors.

The Trust’s Council of Governors represents the interests of its public members and the public. Governors are expected to engage with them about the Trust’s performance and forward plan.

The Council of Governors is made up of:

  • Eighteen elected public governors
    • Four for Colchester
    • Five for rest of Essex
    • Four for Ipswich
    • Five for rest of Suffolk and south Norfolk
  • Six elected staff governors
    • Three for Colchester and rest of Essex based staff
    • Three for Ipswich and Suffolk based staff
  • Eight or nine appointed Stakeholder Governors

Role and responsibility of the Council of Governors

The Council of Governors has both statutory and non-statutory duties. They meet on a quarterly basis and have an Annual Members Meeting.

In summary, their role and responsibilities are:

  • Governors listen to ideas and views from public and staff
  • Their influence evolves by discussion with the Board of Directors
  • Governors have no operational influence but are instrumental in bringing a local perspective to planning and development of services
  • Governors represent their local communities
  • Governors report back to people about Council of Governor meetings
  • Governors work together to advice and influence how the Trust develops and improves its services
  • The Council of Governors appoint the chair and non-executive directors
  • Approves the appointment of the chief executive
  • Appoints the trust’s auditors
  • Makes recommendations for the revision of the trust’s constitution
  • Receives and comments on trust’s annual plan
  • Obtains and bring views of community to the trust
  • Votes on significant transactions affecting the future of the trust (e.g. mergers, acquisitions, separation or dissolution)
  • Hold the Trust Board to account based on the above

We care, do you?

Becoming a member of our foundation trust gives you the opportunity to get involved in decisions that affect the services that we provide to you and your family. Membership is open to anyone over the age of 16 who lives in our area.

To find out more, or to contact a Governor or Director, email, phone 01206 742347 or visit and click on “get involved”.



CLICK HERE for more details on how you can get involved in the 2020 Council of Governors elections

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