Information on Legislation

University legislation consists of both statutes and regulations. Statutes set out key arrangements for the operation of the University, e.g. describing the roles of senior officers. Regulations provide another layer of detail and some relate to particular statutes. The most current versions of legislation are those that are published here.

Colleges have their own legislation independent of the published University legislation.  Any proposed changes to Statutes are considered by the Committee on Statutes Before the Privy Council.

Proposals for legislation and amendments to existing legislation are treated in the same way.  Following approval by local committees or groups (e.g. in a division), all proposals must be considered by General Purposes Committee (GPC). Most proposals are then recommended by GPC to Council (apart from regulations on Academic and Other Posts (Council regulations 24 of 2002) and Trusts (Council regulations 25 of 2002)).

Some statutes (or sections of statutes) are described as ‘King-in-Council’, in which case the published statute will say ‘This statute/sections x-y is/are a ‘King-in-Council’ statutes’. King-in-Council statutes also need approval by the Privy Council; the other statutes require approval of Congregation.

All legislative proposals are published in the Gazette.  This ‘Gazetting’ allows an opportunity under the Congregation Regulations 2 of 2002 for any two members of Congregation to give notice to the Registrar that they intend to vote against the proposal or to submit a proposed amendment being put to Congregation. Publication in the Gazette is always a minimum of 19 days in advance of the date of the corresponding ‘meeting’ of Congregation, to allow time for this to happen.  For legislative amendments that do not need the approval of Congregation, approval takes effect 15 days after the date of publication, unless twenty members of Congregation submit a resolution to Council to annul or amend the regulation.

In all cases, please contact the secretariat for the General Purposes Committee.  They will be able to support you to create a report for GPC and advise on further steps and timescale.  If the changes you wish to make relate to trust fund, or for a post funded by a trust fund, please also contact the Trusts Management team ( who will advise on the feasibility of the changes and work with you on the drafting.

The GPC secretariat will ensure that reports are taken to Council as needed and published in the Gazette; they also manage consideration by the Privy Council.

General Purposes Committee (GPC) meets in weeks 2, 6 and 10 of term.  Dates of meetings and paper deadlines are published on the GPC web pages. Council also meets very frequently, so the majority of changes can usually be made within three months, as long as they are received by a meeting of GPC in Michaelmas or Hilary term. An exception to this is for King-in-Council regulations, as Privy Council approval is likely to take an additional four to eight months.

If a legislative change needs to take effect at the beginning of the next academic year, please bear in mind that no changes can be progressed in the long vacation, as the last issue of the Gazette and scheduled meeting of Congregation are towards the end of June.  Typically, to be approved by the next academic year, the latest meeting of GPC that any legislative change (apart from changes to a King in Council statute) would need to be received by would be the March meeting. Please do check with GPC secretariat, as dates vary annually and some legislative changes would be better to be considered at an in-person meeting (some meetings of GPC are by correspondence).

Each piece of legislation has a sub-heading which states when it was created and at which points it has been amended. The exact Gazette reference is also included, and in each case the information published in the Gazette includes an ‘explanatory note’ which summarises the changes and provides rationale.

Search the Statutes and Regulations



Contact us

GPC Secretary

Louise Hasler


Trusts Management team

Ellen Hudspith

Gemma Proctor