The University of Bristol is a Chartered Corporation, operating under a Charter granted by Kind Edward VII in 1909, and since amended. It is also subject to three Acts of Parliament.
The Charter states:
"There shall be from henceforth for ever in Our said City of Bristol a University by the name and style of "The University of Bristol" by which name the Chancellor and other Members of the University for the time being are hereby constituted one body politic and corporate with perpetual succession and a Common Seal and with full power by and in such name to sue and be sued and without any further licence to take by gift or otherwise purchase and hold grant demise or otherwise dispose of real or personal estate and with other powers by this Our Charter prescribed."
The University's objects, powers and framework of governance are set out in the Charter and supporting statutes and ordinances, which are published annually in the Statutes, Ordinances, Regulations and Official Record. Please visit A brief history for more information on the history of the University and for access to a historical timeline.
The University is regulated by the Charter, statutes, ordinances and regulations. The Charter and statutes may be amended following a proposal by the Board of Trusteees (formerly Council), but only with the consent of the Privy Council. Ordinances and regulations may be made or amended by the Board.
Please note that the University Constitution may change. Changes in year will be published and listed for clarity.
For versions of the University Charter, Statutes, Ordinances & Regulations ("the Official Record") prior to academic year 2012/13, please contact the Governance team.