The audit committee is chaired by N J Hamway and its other member is M D Wigley, and meets not less than two times annually. The committee provides a forum for reporting by the company’s external auditors. Meetings are also attended, by invitation, by the chief executive and the finance director.
The audit committee is responsible for reviewing a wide range of matters including the half-year and annual financial statements before their submission to the board and monitoring the controls which are in force to ensure the integrity of the information reported to the shareholders. The audit committee advises the board on the appointment of external auditors and on their remuneration both for audit and non-audit work, and discusses the nature, scope and results of the audit with external auditors. The audit committee keeps under review the cost effectiveness and the independence and objectivity of the external auditors.