Governance and Policies

Governance and committees

The Charity is registered with the Charity Commission and Companies House as a company limited by guarantee and we are governed according to our Articles of Association. You can find a copy of these articles at the bottom of the page.

The Board of Trustees

The overall responsibility for the work of the charity lies with the Board of Trustees. The Board sets the strategy, agrees objectives and approves plans to deliver the charity's aims. They monitor and evaluate the progress of the charity to ensure we achieve what we have set out to do. The Board is held to account by the membership at the Annual General Meeting at which it presents the Trustees' report and the financial accounts for the previous year.

The Board may comprise of up to nine elected members, two co-opted and one nominated from the Health Advisory Council. The elected members are elected by the Membership at the Annual General Meeting for a three year term of office. They may serve no more than two consecutive three year terms.

The expertise within the Board is substantial and wide ranging. Trustees include experienced senior healthcare professionals, legal professionals, a financial analyst, a management consultant and a communications specialist. All Trustees are volunteers committing many days, evenings and weekends of the year to working for the charity.

Board committees

The Board of Trustees delegate some of its responsibilities to Board committees to provide a particular focus on some issues:

  • Audit Committee  - ensures the financial compliance and the robustness of the Board's overall monitoring and governance (Trustees involved: Maureen Burnside, Anne Davis, Kate Denham, Chris Dilloway, Clive Hart and Miranda Sheffield)
  • People Committee - reviewing overall HR policies and ensuring legal and best practice compliance (Trustees involved: Lawrence Broadie, Maureen Burnside, Aishah Farooq, Anita Patel,  Miranda Sheffield and Nicky Valmas)
  • Commercial Committee - providing the charity with expert insight and fulfilling the governance requirements for the detailed scrutiny and oversight of the commercial strategy and delivery (Trustees involved: Maureen Burnside, Anne Davis, Chris Dilloway and Nicky Valmas)
  • Executive Action Committee - to be activated when there is a crisis and the Board cannot be convened

The Board also has two established advisory groups: the Health Advisory Council (Trustee involved: Gerry Robins) and the Food Standards Committee (Trustee involved: Maureen Burnside). Each provides advice and intelligence on matters relating to the health and food sectors respectively. We also have a wider advisory group drawing on healthcare professionals from across the UK. This is called our Health Advisory Network.

To oversee the management of the charity’s Research Fund the Board has established three new bodies:

  • Research Strategy Board (Trustees involved: Alan Perkins and Anita Patel) providing overall strategic direction for the spending of the Fund.
  • Research Awards Panel (Trustee involved: Alan Perkins) managing the awarding of grant funds to applicants with any final recommendations for the Board's approval.
  • Fundraising Committee providing detailed scrutiny and oversight of fundraising associated with the Fund (Trustees involved: Lawrence Broadie, Maureen Burnside, Kate Denham and Aishah Farooq)

The Coeliac UK Trading Company Ltd

The Trading Company’s principle aim is to raise funds from commercial activities for the charity. As a not for profit organisation, Coeliac UK is limited in the amount of commercial income it may raise. Instead, these activities need to be carried out by Coeliac UK’s Trading Company. Directors of the Trading Company are:

  • Maureen Burnside, Trading Company Director and Trustee at Coeliac UK
  • Hilary Croft, Trading Company Director, Chief Executive of Coeliac UK
  • Mike Elliot, Trading Company Director, Independent Chair
  • Clive Hart, Trading Company Director and Trustee at Coeliac UK
  • Helen North, Trading Company Director, Director of Fundraising of Coeliac UK

Are you interested in becoming a member of the charity's Commercial Services Committee

Looking for Retail & Foodservice FMCG experts!

Coeliac UK is the charity for people who need to live without gluten. We provide independent, trustworthy advice and support, strive for better gluten free food in more places and fund crucial research to manage the impacts of gluten and find answers to coeliac disease.

The charity’s Commercial Services contributes to this mission through:

  1. Providing better access to gluten free food in and out the home.
  2. Generating non-trading income streams to help fund the charity’s activities.
  3. Connecting our commercial partners into opportunities arising elsewhere within the charity.

Our core products target gluten free food safety. We currently operate two schemes, one for Retail – Cross Grained Trademark (CGT) and one for Catering/Food service - Gluten Free Accreditation (GFA), sold into restaurants, schools, hospitals and Business and Industry. We have an online training platform, and we have also built a portfolio of business support services including advertising, sponsorship, consumer research and consultancy.

Terms of Reference

The Commercial Services Committee does the following:

  • Review and scrutinise the Commercial Services Strategy proposed by the charity.
  • Review quantitative and qualitative performance management data.
  • Review the marketing strategy including target markets, promotional methods; and collaborative working, providing expert advice and support to guide market growth.
  • Review the product mix including new product development, providing expert advice and support to guide market growth.
  • Review and monitor Commercial Services Corporate Engagement Strategy
  • Protect, develop, and expand the reach of the charity’s intellectual property.
  • Review the charity’s pricing policy.
  • Act as a discussion forum for difficult or complex issues involved in engaging high profile food sector businesses.

The Commercial Services Committee consists of no less than four and no more than eight/ten members, including:

  • A Chair
  • At least one representative of the charity’s Board of Trustees
  • The charity’s Director of Commercial Services
  • Individuals with experience with gluten free food safety standards and audit processes
  • Representation from a food sector trade body
  • Individuals with sales experience in the FMCG market and ideally the gluten free market
  • Individuals with experience in advertising and negotiating commercial sponsorships and/or charity partnerships with private sector businesses.


Subcommittee meetings are held quarterly, although additional meetings may be called as needed as specific matters arise.

Meetings take place via teleconference at a time of day that is most suitable for the members of the Committee. Committee meeting agendas and supporting papers will be circulated at least five days prior to meetings.

Appointments are for a term of two years with the option to renew by mutual agreement.

Application process

In the first instance, please submit your CV and a covering letter explaining why you want to join the committee to

Final appointments are made by the Board of Trustees.

Please submit your applications by 29 February 2024.