Members of the trust: appointment, removal and resignation

Here's a run-down of the rules on appointing and removing members of academy trusts. Find out how to manage the process if you're responsible for governance in your trust.

Last reviewed on 8 April 2022
School types: All · School phases: All
Ref: 40746
  1. Check your articles of association
  2. Number and eligibility
  3. Appointing members
  4. Paperwork for new members
  5. Removing members
  6. Members' resignation

Check your articles of association

This article explains what the model articles of association say about members. Check your trust's own articles for your trust's rules, as they may differ from the model. If there isn't a rule in your articles regarding the members, it's most likely up to your trust leaders to decide. 

Number and eligibility

What are the members?

Members are similar to a company's shareholders - they sit above the board of trustees in an academy trust. They have a largely hands-off role other than some key responsibilities around signing and amending the articles of association (see the Governance Handbook, pages 58 to 61 for more detail). 

How many are there?

The minimum requirement is 3 members. Ideally, trusts will have 5 members as this helps make sure they can take decisions at meetings.


The people who signed the trust's Memorandum of Association when the trust was created - this will usually be at least