In 1833 Soane negotiated an Act of Parliament (3° Gul.IV, Cap.iv) to settle and preserve the house and collection for the benefit of ‘amateurs and students’ in architecture, painting and sculpture. On his death in 1837 the Act came into force, vesting the Museum in a board of Trustees who were to continue to uphold Soane’s own aims and objectives. 

The 1833 Act was superseded in 1969 by The Charities (Sir John Soane’s Museum) Order (1969 No.468), revised in 1996, 2003, 2011 and 2012.

As stipulated in the 1833 Act and the 1969 Charity Order, our Board of Trustees is made up of four Life Trustees and five Representative Trustees from five organisations: the Royal Society, the Court of Aldermen of the City of London, the Society of Antiquaries of London, the Royal Society of Arts, and the Royal Academy of Arts. In 2011, following consultation with the Charity Commission and the DCMS, the order was amended to allow the Trustees to expand the Board by up to four at any one time. 

Our trustees

Guy Elliott

Guy is Deputy Chairman and Senior Independent Director of SABMiller – he’s also a director of Royal Dutch Shell. Guy’s experience includes working as Chief Financial Officer at Rio Tinto, as a board member at Cadbury, and as a member of the development boards at the Art Fund and the Canterbury Trust.

The Chairman is appointed by the Board.

Molly Lowell Borthwick

Molly has worked for charities for over 20 years, including the Prince’s Trust and the Inter-Action Social Enterprise Trust. She’s also a trustee of the Brunel Museum and the Tunbridge Wells International Music Festival. Molly is also a Director of the Sir John Soane’s Museum Foundation in the USA. 

Bridget Cherry OBE, FSA, Hon. FRIBA
Life Trustee

Bridget has worked with Pevsner Architectural Guides, English Heritage, the Royal Commission, and Historic Royal Palaces. She’s also Vice President of the Heritage of London Trust. In 1994, she was elected a Life Trustee of the Museum, and serves on our Buildings Committee.

Sir David Chipperfield CBE, RA, RDI, RIBA
Representative Trustee (Royal Academy of Arts)

David is a world renowned architect. He taught at Yale and the Staatliche Akademie der Bildenden Künste, and curated an International Architecture Exhibition at the Venice Biennale. He’s been knighted for services to architecture in the UK and Germany, and has been recognised by RIBA for a lifetime’s work.

Katrin Henkel
Representative Trustee (Royal Society of the Arts)

Katrin has spent 30 years dealing in Old Master Drawings as Katrin Bellinger at Colnaghi, and has enriched major museums and private collections worldwide. Katrin has worked with the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Wallace Collection, and the National Gallery, and frequently exhibits in London, Paris, Maastricht, Munich and New York.

Nichola Johnson
Representative Trustee (Society of Antiquaries of London)

Basil Postan
Life Trustee

Basil has worked at Cazenove, Citibank, Morgan Grenfell, Nomura and Credit Lyonnais. He ran his own fund until his retirement in 2009, when he became a Trustee of the London Library. Basil was elected a Life Trustee of the Soane in 2014.

Orna, Lady Turner

A former partner at McKinsey & Company, with experience at Bupa, Northern Foods, and HMV, Lady Turner now chairs the Advisory Board of consulting firm Eden McCallum. She’s also a Director of Royal Mail Group and Saga. As well as being one of our trustees, Lady Turner is Deputy Chair of the National Trust.

Alderman Vincent Keaveny
Representative Trustee (The Court of Aldermen of the City of London)

Vincent is a partner at international law firm Baker& McKenzie LLP. He advises financial institutions and companies throughout the UK and Europe on banking and finance matters.  He was elected as Alderman for the Ward of Farringdon Within in the City of London in 2013 and currently serves on the Finance Committee and City Bridge Trust Committee of the Corporation of London. He is a director/trustee of the contemporary music ensemble Exaudi, and the theatre company Actors Touring Company.  He was Master (2014/15) of the City of London Solicitors’ Company. He served on the Committee of the City of London Law Society from 2006 to 2013 and was President of the Society in 2014/15.