Covent Garden Market Authority -Non-Executive Directors

Body: Covent Garden Market Authority (CGMA)
Appointing Department: Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs
Sectors: Business, Finance & Skills, Environment, Food & Rural Affairs, Transport
Location: Meetings are held at Covent Garden Market Authority’s offices in London, based at the Nine Elms site in Vauxhall.
Skills required: Business / Commercial, Change Management, Major Projects, Transformation
Number of Vacancies: Up to 4
Remuneration: The daily rate for each Non-Executive Director will be £520. Reasonable travel expenses are also paid. The roles are non-pensionable
Time Requirements: The time commitment is expected to be 2-3 days per month. Exact time commitment to be agreed on appointment. There is a minimum of 6 board meetings a year, though this is likely to rise to one per month during 2020.


An announcement has been made on the outcome of this appointment.

Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has appointed Fiona Fell, Sarah Calcutt and David Fison to the Board of Covent Garden Market Authority (CGMA).

Following a nine-month interim appointment that started in December 2019, Victoria Wilson has now joined the CGMA Board as a Non-Executive Director on a fixed-term basis of four years.

The recruitment was carried out in accordance with the Ministerial Code of Practice for Appointments to Public Bodies and the appointments will be for between 3 and 4 years. All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process. However, there is a requirement for the political activities of appointees to be made public. Fiona, Sarah, David and Victoria have declared no political activity.

Date: 14/05/2020

View Announcement

Campaign Timeline

  • Competition Launched


  • Closed for Applications

    10/02/2020 at 12:00

  • Panel Sift


  • Final Interview Date


  • Announcement



Assessment Panel

Vacancy Description


The Covent Garden Market Authority (CGMA) is a public statutory corporation, established to provide and run a bulk horticulture wholesale market. In partnership with Vinci St Modwen, CGMA is rebuilding the iconic New Covent Garden Market (NCGM) on its existing site and developing a vibrant new Food Quarter for London. The vision for the future is of a flourishing, modern wholesale market and a new cluster of food-related businesses. NCGM is one of three iconic elements in Nine Elms on the South Bank (the others being Battersea Power Station and the new US Embassy) and an important source of over 2,500 jobs.

The board

The CGMA Board plays an important role in the delivery of CGMA’s statutory objectives. It sets the strategic direction, provides leadership for CGMA’s activities, takes decisions and directs the senior management team in the conduct of business and allocates resources to meet the CGMA’s objectives. It also supports the delivery of Defra’s objectives, for example ensuring that CGMA manages redevelopment project without adversely impacting CGMA’s statutory duties, including its financial obligation to at least break even, taking one year with another.

Additionally, the board has a responsibility for demonstrating high standards of corporate governance at all times, and for providing assurance on risk management, governance and internal control. These are overseen by an Audit, Risk and Finance Committee chaired by non-executive members. Finally, the board is tasked with ensuring that the CGMA has the capacity and capability to deliver the agreed business plan for the market redevelopment.

The CGMA board consists of up to 8 members including the Chair. Normally there are a minimum of 6 board meetings a year, as well as 2 strategy days and preparation time. Given current challenges, the Board is planning to meet around once a month during 2020. Meetings are usually held at CGMA’s offices in London.

The Role

The board requires a broad range of experience from its Non-Executive Directors. We seek up to four individuals with the integrity, skills and judgement necessary to deliver strategic direction at a time of significant change for New Covent Garden Market.

A focus for the board over coming years will be the successful delivery of the redevelopment project. Senior experience and expertise in at least one of the following areas is needed to ensure the board has the full range of skills:

• The fresh produce and horticultural sectors,

• Food/grocery wholesale market trading,

• Commercial property and construction, or

• Road transport and logistics.

The successful delivery of the new market, as well as the effective running of the existing facilities also requires board members to be able to support the Chair and the executive in positive and collaborative engagement with key stakeholders. Primarily these are the market tenants, Defra Ministers and officials and the developer, Vinci St. Modwen.

All board members are expected to adhere to the Nolan principles governing the conduct of public servants (see Annex A of the candidate pack).

Person Specification

The successful candidates will need to demonstrate the following essential criteria:

1. An ability to analyse issues at a strategic level in ways which are objective, creative and focused on finding solutions.

2. Sound knowledge and expertise in good governance at senior levels in a large organisation in either the private or public sector, and an understanding of the needs and priorities of government.

3. Exceptional communication skills, high level of personal impact and the ability to provide constructive and independent leadership, challenge and support to the Board dealing with complex commercial issues.

4. Demonstrable ability to support an organisation through a period of significant operational change and / or restructure a business.

5. Expertise in at least one of the following areas:

• Commercial property or construction.

• Road transport or logistics.

• Fresh produce or horticultural sectors.

• Food/grocery wholesale market trading

Additional Information

We actively encourage applications from individuals from a wide range of backgrounds. Defra is a Disability Confident employer.

How to Apply

All candidates are required to complete the following forms:

• Monitoring form 1 (Conflicts of Interest, Conduct and Political Activity Questionnaire)

• Monitoring form 2 (Diversity Monitoring Questionnaire)

Candidates should submit their CV with education, professional qualifications and employment history and the names and contact details for two referees, together with their statement of suitability.

The statement of suitability should give evidence of the strength and depth of your ability to meet the essential criteria for this role. Please provide specific examples to demonstrate how you meet each of the criteria (max two pages please).

Your CV and statement should be sent to the following address by the closing date: 12.00 (midday) on 10 February 2020. Email to quoting reference APPT12-19.

For further information please email: Ian Leggat at or call on 02080263268.

1_CGMA Board Candidate Pack
2_ Monitoring form 1 (Conflicts of Interest, Conduct and Political Activity)
3_ Monitoring form 2 (Diversity)
4_Public Appointments Guidance notes
5_Public Appointments-Privacy Notice
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