For about 12 months the Boards of the Royal Surrey and Ashford and St Peters have been active in developing the Business Case for the proposed merger. The governors’ Merger Working Group which I chair has also been very active in challenging the case wherever concerns have arisen. Governors have not always been successful in realising the changes they would have liked but can claim some credit.
Last week the Boards approved the final case and it has now been submitted to Monitor (the body that oversees Foundation Trusts). Monitor will crawl over it and in a few months revel its conclusions in the form of its view of the level of risk which the merger presents. A ‘Red’ rating will doubtless stop things in their track and cause a considerable rethink. ‘Amber’ will result in a reassessment in the areas causing concern and ‘Green’ will of course lead the Boards to proceed rapidly towards formal merger.
If the rating is Green then in about May/June both Boards will meet to formally approve a merger and immediately after that each Council of Governors will be asked to approve. A majority of Governors on both Councils have to approve for the Merger to proceed.