New Chairman Designate

22 July 2011

Nigel Hugill

New Chairman Designate for the Royal Shakespeare Company

The Board of the RSC is pleased to announce that Nigel Hugill has been selected as the new Chairman of the RSC. He will be formally appointed at the Company's October AGM when current Chairman, Sir Christopher Bland, steps down after seven years.

Following public advertisement and an extensive executive search process, led by the RSC Board's Appointment Committee, Nigel was recruited from a very strong field.

Having become one of the youngest ever chief executives of a FTSE 250 company when Chelsfield plc was floated in 1993, Nigel has been in the top tier of the UK property industry for the past two decades. He went on to chair the European operations of Australian giant, Lend Lease Corporation, was a Special Advisor to Sir Bob Kerslake at the Homes and Communities Agency before founding the brownfield development company, Urban&Civic in 2009, where he is Executive Chairman. He is Chair of urban think tank, Centre for Cities, Council member of the London School of Economics, Chair of the Committee for the Redevelopment of Tate Britain on Millbank and Audit Chairman and Transitional Trustee of the British Waterways Board.

Nigel is perhaps best known as instigator of the Stratford City project and for his early advocacy that the previously derelict rail lands in East London could prove a viable Olympic contender. Those development proposals formed the basis of the successful London 2012 bid and what has become the largest regeneration project in Europe. His thumb print also runs across many other defining major metropolitan schemes, including Paddington Basin, Westfield at White City, Greenwich Peninsula, Elephant and Castle, and Brierley Hill in the West Midlands.

He lives in Putney with Christine, his wife of 20 years, and their four children.

Nigel Hugill said today:

'I am delighted to be joining the RSC at such a singular moment in its history and will strive to help build on the wonderful recent achievements.

'I have enjoyed a personal relationship with the RSC since I went to watch my younger brother performing on the old Royal Shakespeare Theatre stage in 1994. Glenn also played a leading role in the premier of David Edgar's Pentecost that year and the experience of seeing a single ensemble company produce world leading classical theatre in repertory with ground breaking new work was profound. I know too that participation in an RSC season is truly as exceptional for the actors as it is for the audiences. Seventeen years later, I continue to be captivated by that unique dynamic.

'The Company is now in its 50th year and the new Royal Shakespeare Theatre and revitalised Stratford home give it even greater scope for artistic innovation and the biggest possible welcome to audiences both in the UK and from across the world.

'I am much looking forward to making a contribution to this very special Company.'

Sir Christopher Bland said:

'We are delighted that Nigel will be joining the Board of the RSC as Chairman. He takes over the Chair of an RSC strong artistically and financially, well placed to deal with the many challenges of the next decade.

'He has an impressive track record; his business expertise and environmental awareness will be invaluable to the RSC. His focus on communities will help us to broaden our reach and depth of engagement with our audiences

'He is passionate about Shakespeare and contemporary performance. I know my fellow Board members and the RSC's staff and supporters will welcome him as positively as they welcomed me.'

Sir Christopher Bland took up the post of Chairman in 2004 and, along with the current Board and Artistic Director, Michael Boyd, and Executive Director, Vikki Heywood, has led the RSC through some of the biggest projects in its history, from the Complete Works Festival in 2006/7 and the Histories cycle in 2008/9 to the transformation and reopening of the Royal Shakespeare and Swan Theatres in 2010.

The post of Chairman is held at the discretion of the Board of the RSC, which is a registered Charity (No. 212481). Expenses are paid, but the post itself is not remunerated. The RSC's AGM will be held on Friday 14 October 2011 in Stratford-upon-Avon.

For further information, please contact:

Liz Thompson
Director of Communications
01789 412667
07717 297181

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