Foundation Builders: Professor Eric Fernie, Neil MacGregor, Lord Rothschild, Dr. Lisbet Rausing, Dr. Barry Munitz, Sir Nicholas Goodison, Nick Ferguson
Foundation Builders: Professor Eric Fernie, Neil MacGregor, Lord Rothschild, Dr. Lisbet Rausing, Dr. Barry Munitz, Sir Nicholas Goodison, Nick Ferguson

On 5 December the Council of the University of London agreed in principle that the Courtauld Institute could become a College of the University, provided that the Council was satisfied it would be financially sound and academically and administratively properly structured. At the Council’s next meeting on 20 March it was agreed that subject to completion of all legal agreements, the Courtauld would be awarded college staus on 1 August 2002. The Council’s decision will go to the meeting of the Higher Education Funding Council for England on 18 April, with a request that from 1 August hefce’s funding should go direct to the Courtauld and not via the University as at present.

The J. Paul Getty Trust, Lisbet Rausing in honour of Hans and Ruben Rausing, and the Weston Foundation have generously agreed endowments amounting to £13m, which will provide sufficient financial depth to support college status. Other endowments are being sought to increase the range of activities of the Courtauld.

Preparations for the submissions to these meetings have been made by the staff of the University and the Institute, under the guidance of the Vice-Chancellor’s Advisory Group, reconstituted as the Vice-Chancellor’s Steering Group (the Vice-Chancellor, the Rt. Hon. Sir Adam Butler, Professor R. Cormack, Mr. N. Ferguson, Professor E. Fernie (Director), Sir Nicholas Goodison, Kirsten McKnight (President of the S.U.), Mr. J. Morgan (Director of Finance), Mr. C. Perrin, Mr. T. Quirke (Secretary and Registrar), Dr. P. Rubin, Ms. C. Villers).

The Shadow Board of Govenors has been formed preparatory to assuming responsibility from 1 August. Its membership is as follows, Nick Ferguson (Chairman), Neil MacGregor, Sir Nicholas Goodison, Sir Adam Butler, Dr. Barry Munitz, Dr. Deborah Gribbon, Dr. Lisbet Rausing, Lord Rothschild, David Landau, Professor Tim O’Shea, Professor Eric Fernie (ex-officio as Director of the Courtauld), Kirsten McKnight (ex-officio as President of the S.U.) and five elected members of the staff of the Institute: Prof. Chris Green, John Murdoch, Sue Price, Dr. Patricia Rubin, Caroline Villers.

As I have indicated that I wish to retire, a Search Committee has been established to consider the appointment of the next Director, from October 2002. The membership of the committee is as follows: Neil MacGregor (Chair), Prof. Elizabeth Cropper (casva), Nick Ferguson, Prof. Thomas Gaehtgens (Freie Universtät, Berlin), Prof. Chris Green, Bill Griswold (The Getty Museum), Prof. Tim O’Shea (Master, Birkbeck College), Dr. David Solkin.

This is a hugely exciting new phase for the Courtauld, made possible by the generosity of our endowment sponsors. Our thanks go out to all those who have worked on bringing it to this stage.

PROFESSOR ERIC FERNIE