Charter and Agreement

Note of 1 January 2017

The BBC’s new Charter commenced on 1 January 2017 and the BBC Trust is expected to end on the 2 April 2017. At this point, the processes for making complaints and appeals will change (details of the new processes will be available on the BBC website on 3 April). Between 1 January and 2 April 2017, the transitional arrangements of the BBC’s new Charter establish some important changes to way complaints and appeals are handled. These changes are outlined in the relevant protocols and procedures below.

The Charter

The Royal Charter is the constitutional basis for the BBC. It sets out the public purposes of the BBC, guarantees its independence, and outlines the duties of the Trust and the Executive Board. 

The Agreement

The Agreement with the Secretary of State sits alongside the Charter. It provides detail on many of the topics outlined in the Charter and also covers the BBC's funding and its regulatory duties. The Agreement is an important constitutional document because together with the Charter, it establishes the BBC's independence from the Government.


Protocols are formal documents which set out how the BBC Trust will carry out its functions as required by the BBC's Royal Charter and Framework Agreement. Protocols set out the Trust's processes and the respective roles and responsibilities of the BBC Trust and Executive Board.

The protocols have been divided into the following categories. They are available from these pages.

A. Public purposes

B. Standards and strategy

C. The BBC’s services

D. Accountability

E. Compliance and oversight

F. Trust operations

Policies, codes and guidance

The Trust has policies, codes and guidance which set out how we work in more detail.

Alternative Finance Code

BBC Welsh Language Scheme

Consultation policy

Fair trading policy

PVT guidance

Syndication policy