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Regent House members and their rights


Membership of the Regent House is largely comprised of academic and senior administrative staff of the University and Colleges. Membership includes:

  • The Chancellor, the High Steward, the Deputy High Steward, the Commissary, and members of the Council in class (e) (i.e. external members of the Council)

  • Heads of Colleges

  • Fellows of Colleges (provided that they conform to conditions of residence – that is to say, they reside within 20 miles of the University Church)

  • University Officers, and persons treated as such under Statute J 7 (i.e. qualifying staff at Cambridge University Press)

  • Other University and College staff who qualify under Statute A III 11 (e) (that is to say, people who hold appointments 'in such categories and subject to such qualifying periods of service as shall be determined from time to time by Ordinance')

Currently, with the exception of certain senior positions, most members cease to be eligible for Regent House membership after they reach the age of 70. However, following the approval of a change in Statute, from 6 November 2020 that age limit will be removed. Retired or retiring University staff members who have previously been eligible for Regent House membership will also be able to remain on the Roll from 6 November 2020 if their head of institution certifies each year by 15 August that they are active participants in the University’s affairs (a form​ is available).

Members’ rights

Members of the Regent House can have an input into University matters in a variety of ways. They are entitled to do the following:

  • Vote in ballots and elections for members of the Council and Board of Scrutiny

  • Vote in elections of the Senate

  • Attend Discussions and Congregations

  • Use the University Combination Room (where the Regent House met until the Senate House was built around 1730)
  • Ten members can request that a topic of concern be brought forward for discussion (see Regulation 1(b) of the Ordinance on Discussions).
  • Fifty members may initiate a Grace for submission to the Regent House

  • Twenty-five members may initiate a proposal for the amendment of a Grace already submitted but not yet approved
  • Twenty-five members may submit a written request to the Vice-Chancellor for a vote to be taken on a Grace by ballot
  • Ten members can make known their views on questions which are to be the subject of a ballot by issuing a statement as a fly-sheet for circulation

For more information on members exercising these rights, see the FAQs about Notices, Reports and Graces