1. Please note:

    UPDATE: Our Corby Crisis Cafe will be closed today from 5pm to 10pm. Our Wellingborough Crisis Cafe is open as usual from 12pm to 10pm. For 24-hour mental health support call 0800 448 0828.


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What is a governor?

Woman smiling at camera

Governors make a difference

What is a Governor?

Governors are generally people who have an interest in healthcare and care about improving their local health services for the good of the whole community.

Governors play an essential role of our Trust, providing a bridge between our membership, our community and our Board. There are statutory duties that our governors perform however, most importantly they listen and represent their communities. They help us to learn, develop and continue to grow as a Trust.

You must be 16 years old, or over, to stand as a Governor.

Frequently asked questions


What does the role involve

Girl elections

Governors are an important part of NHFT

What does the role involve?

To be a successful Governor you would need to

  • Commit to attending six formal meetings a year and several other workshops (usually virtually)
  • Prepare for meetings by reviewing reports and other materials
  • Be able to engage with others to inform your contributions
  • Support the Trust to seek feedback from members and public
  • Pose questions to Non-Executive Directors on the Trust's work
  • Work together, take responsibility, be authentic and embrace change


Read more about the role on the NHS providers website

How does the role make a difference?

Man with children

Represent your community

How does the role make a difference?

Being a Governor is an amazing opportunity to influence healthcare across Northamptonshire.

Our governors are an important and vital link between the Trust and the people we serve. Not only do governors represent the interests of their communities and the public, as a whole, by using their networks and local ties, they can help us engage more effectively on Trust priorities and decisions.

The other main statutory duty of the Council of Governors is to hold to account the Non-Executive Directors (who are appointed by the Trust to oversee decision making and strategy). 

Governors are responsible for the appointment of the Non-Executive Directors (including the Chair). They undertake this duty in a variety of ways and Governors - some examples include observing the Board of Directors meetings, as well as contribute their thoughts to the Trust’s Strategy and Plans.

We are rated as an outstanding organisation by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) and this has meant better care for the people of Northamptonshire and beyond.  For this to continue we need to maintain strong partnerships between Directors, staff, service users and their carers – and governors play a key part in this. Governor roles can be fitted around you, with many of our meetings currently taking place virtually.

Please watch this video from our 2023 Annual Showcase event which shows the work of the Council in 2023:

Annual Showcase event video


Watch the 2023 Annual Public and Members Meeting (APMM) here:

APMM 2023 


How do I become a Governor?

Women at a laptop

Next steps

How do I become a Governor?

We have a variety of Governors including public, service user, carer, staff and partner governors. Governors are elected by the members of the Trust, for a term of up to three years. Governors may stand for re-election for a further one or two terms. When only one candidate per seat puts themselves forward for a seat they are appointed automatically without an election. If a Governor cannot complete a whole term, the role is offered to the second placed person in the election. During February and March 2024 we will be looking for new Governors to fill seats in our Council of Governors.

You must be a member in one of these constituencies to stand. This means you must either live in the geographical area or be a patient, or the carer of a patient using Trust services (within the last 10 years).

Not a member of NHFT? Visit our membership page to sign up - if you meet the criteria, it's quick and easy.  

The available seats are:

  • Public Daventry and South Northants – two vacancies
  • Public Northampton – two vacancies
  • Public Rest of England – one vacancy
  • Patient and Carer – seven vacancies
  • Staff Governor – five vacancies

Members in these constituencies will have received a notice of election (which is on the documents section), this lists the instructions of how to stand.

You must be eligible for one of the above constituencies if you wish to stand in these elections.

Watch our 'Become a Governor' session (below) where you can hear more about the expectations of the Governor role to help you decide whether you wish to stand in the 2024 elections.

The deadline for nominations is Thursday 29 February 2024 at 5pm.

If seats are contested, voting will commence on Friday 22 March 2024. If you live in a constituency with a contested seat, and were a member of NHFT before 8 March 2024, you will be contacted about how to vote, and can find out more about all the candidates nominated in your constituency, and details about how to vote, at www.cesvotes.com/NHFT2024. Voting will close on 18 April 2024.

Submit your online nomination to stand as a Governor at www.cesvotes.com/NHFT2024.

Submit online nomination to stand as a Governor 


For the purposes of running the 2024 elections, the relevant Constitution with eligibility criteria for standing as a Governor is the one dated from 24 April 2024 which can be viewed here:

NHFT Constitution - from 24 April 2024


Is becoming a govenor the right role for you?

We have lots of options to get involved at NHFT. Select from the options to see which is the right one for you.

I'm interested in:

  • Learning about trust services and receiving regular updates
  • Giving my time, regularly working directly with patients
  • Giving my time regularly to be involved in the formal decision-making of the Trust, as well as helping to represent the views of others. This could include in taking part in staff recruitment and bespoke project groups
  • Using my lived experience to help develop services in the Trust. This could involve a regular or more infrequent time commitment, and may include taking part in staff recruitment and being part of bespoke project groups
  • Providing feedback on a service