What the role is

Governors provide a vital connection between the Trust and its patients, the community it serves, and its partners. The Council of Governors (CoG) has a real say in the Trust's future priorities and who fills key posts on the Board. It holds the Board and Non-Executive Directors to account, individually and collectively, for the performance of the Board of Directors.

Governors represent the broad interests and views of local people to the Trust’s Board, and feed back information about the Trust's performance to the communities we serve. This means discussing things like major new service developments, the annual report and accounts, and how members are being recruited and kept informed.

The Council meets four times a year and, in addition, many Governors also participate in informal working groups like the Coordinating Committee, the Effectiveness Working Group, the Member and Public Engagement Working Group, and the Patient Safety & Quality Working Group.

What the role is not

The Trust is committed to listening to your views and experiences about the Trust and your feedback helps us to continually improve our services. Governors play a key role in representing these views as a collective. They do not, however, represent individual cases.

If you have any questions or concerns about any aspect of your treatment or care, please contact the Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) on 01392 402093 or


Under the Royal Devon University Healthtcare NHS Foundation Trust's Constitution, which has been in place since April 2022, the Council of Governors has been increased from 26 to 31 Governors. This is to be made up of 22 Public Governors, 7 Staff Governors and 2 Appointed Governors. New posts have been created for both Public and Staff Governors in order to better reflect the enlarged footprint being served by the Foundation Trust. These new posts will be included in the 2022 Governor elections.

For more information about our current Governors, please click here.


The majority of governors are elected by members to represent patients, staff and the general public. We hold elections each year, and members vote for governors within the constituency they live. Elections are run by an external polling company and members receive ballot papers and information by post when an election takes place.

If you are interested in becoming a Governor, please click here to find out more about our 2022 Governor elections. Details and results of our 2020 and 2021 elections are also available there.