For the past few months I have been chairing a Membership Sub-Group designed to evaluate the case to admit some new members to RLUK. After many years of gradual growth in membership, from the original days of CURL, the Board took a decision last year – in view of the evidence of continued interest from potential new members – to adopt a process for admitting members on the basis that RLUK would remain at a manageable size, and with a view to keeping our focus as a research library organisation as clear as possible. We set the limit on membership at 40, and – after a rigorous process of application and review, we are delighted to welcome four new university members – Leicester, Sussex, Royal Holloway and Reading.
I am grateful to our Executive Director, David Prosser, and to the member library Directors who served on the Group. This means that we have now grown to 38 member libraries, and so there will be scope to run the exercise again in a few years’ time. In the meantime, we will spend some time considering the size and structure of the Executive, and looking at how it can work with the Board to ensure that RLUK is the powerful association its members expect and deserve.