The Audit and Risk Committee

The Audit and Risk Committee has a particularly important function in expressing opinions and giving assurances to the Board relating to its review of the effectiveness of the University’s arrangements for risk management, control and governance.


Deidre Evans (Chair)

Ann Barnes

Robin Phillips

Natasha Traynor (Associate member)

Trevor Rees (co-opted member)

Alex Creswell (Advisor to committee on cyber risk and cyber security)

Mark Rollinson (Secretary)

Terms of reference

1. To keep under review the effectiveness of the University’s risk management, control and governance arrangements  

2. Pursuant to Statute XIV, to advise the Board of Governors on the criteria for the appointment, and remuneration of the external auditor and the scope of the work, the provision of any non-audit services and any questions of resignation or dismissal of the external auditors.  

3. To review the external auditor's planning; the scope of the audit, their interim and final reports and management letter report, the outcome of their findings, and to discuss directly with the external auditor issues and recommendations arising from interim and final audits.  

4. To review the scope and effectiveness of the internal audit's work including risk assessment and strategy, planning and operation of the work and results of internal audit's annual report, assess the findings of major internal investigations and management responses; and to advise the Board of Governors as to the appropriateness of the resources made available for internal audit to meet the University’s needs. 

5. To review and monitor the implementation of agreed audit based recommendations, from whatever source, and to provide explicit confirmation to the Board of Governors of the necessary actions taken to remedy any significant failings or weaknesses identified from the Committee’s review of internal control. 

6. To consider and advise the Board of Governors on the appointment and terms of engagement of the internal audit service (or the head of internal audit, if appropriate), the audit fee, the provision of any non-audit services and any questions of resignation or dismissal of the internal auditors. 

7. To ensure that all significant losses have been properly investigated and that the internal and external auditors, and where appropriate the Office for Students (OfS)  and United Kingdom Research and Innovation (UKRI) Accounting Officers, have been informed. 

8. To oversee the institution’s policies on fraud, whistleblowing, and financial irregularity, including being notified promptly of, and satisfied with, any action to be taken under that policy. 

9. To satisfy itself that arrangements are in place that promote economy, efficiency and effectiveness. 

10. To receive any relevant reports from the National Audit Office, the OfS, UKRI and other external organisations. 

11. To receive any relevant reports from other University committees, and to discuss any issues arising with the appropriate representatives of management either from within the University of from any subsidiary undertaking in which the University is involved as a participant partner or shareholder, as appropriate. 

12. To monitor annually the performance, effectiveness and value for money offered by the services of the external and internal auditors, including commenting upon any matters affecting their objectivity, and to make recommendations to the Board of Governors concerning their reappointment where appropriate. 

13. To consider elements of the annual financial statements in the presence of the external auditors, including the auditors’ formal opinion, the statement of members’ responsibilities and the statement of internal control, in accordance with the OfS accounts directions. 

14. To present to the Board of Governors and to the Accounting Officer, and subsequently to the OfS, an annual report covering the University’s financial year and any significant events up to the date of preparation. The report should express opinions in relation to the Committee’s review of the effectiveness of institutional arrangements for the following:

  • Risk management, control and governance
  • Economy and efficiency
  • Data Quality

As part of this process, the Audit and Risk Committee will consider and review the risk registers and maps of the University, reporting on any further assessment of risk undertaken by the Committee to the Board of Governors. 

15. To review, on an annual basis and in consultation with the Board of Governors (in the context of overall governing body effectiveness), the Committee’s own performance against accepted good practice. 

16. To hold, on an annual basis, private meetings between the members of the Committee and the external and internal audit teams, and between the members of the Committee and the officers of the University.

Meeting dates for the year

  • Tuesday 19 September 2023
  • Wednesday 8 November 2023
  • Wednesday 31 January 2024
  • Wednesday 17 April 2024
  • Wednesday 12 June 2024


 All downloadable documents are PDFs.