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‘We rely on the generous support of our members, donors and volunteers to ensure we can reach those children who need our help most’

Home > Governance

How we’re organised to ensure every young person has the speaking and listening skills and cultural understanding they need to thrive


Royal Charter

The English-Speaking Union of the Commonwealth is a charity (number 273136), registered with the Fundraising Regulator. It is governed by a Royal Charter, granted by Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in 1957. Her Late Majesty Queen is Patron of the ESU and Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal serves as President, having succeeded her father, His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh, who retired in 2011.

We are very grateful to the Princess Royal for her support of our charitable work. She is a regular attendee at our events and in 2018, she met the participants of our International Public Speaking Competition at a reception at St James’s Palace.

Our trustees

As a charity, the English-Speaking Union has a board of trustees, who are elected or co-opted from the membership by the members to guide the organisation. The board of trustees ensures the success and financial strength of the charity and sets the objectives in line with the organisation’s vision, mission and strategic goals.

The Chair of the board is supported by three officers – two deputy chairs and the treasurer – and up to 10 further elected trustees. Each lends their experience and expertise to the organisation, and plays a vital role in the ESU’s ongoing development. Find out more about our board of trustees here.

The board of trustees oversees the executive team, who conduct the day to day management of the organisation and implement the strategy on behalf of the board.

Find out more

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