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16 March 2015
The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea is delighted to announce the appointment of Charles Mackay CBE as Chairman of the proposed new independent and charitable Opera Holland Park Trust (OHP).
The new trust, which aims to become independent of the Royal Borough in October 2015, will take over the responsibility for Opera Holland Park.
Established by the Royal Borough in 1996, Opera Holland Park stages a highly successful and critically acclaimed opera festival every summer. OHP will now begin the process, under Charles's leadership, of recruiting a new board of trustees.
Charles has been Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Historic Royal Palaces (HRP) since May 2006. Under his leadership, HRP has enjoyed enormous success and significant development of all its activities. The Royal Borough is immensely pleased that this experience will enable the nascent OHP charity to create the favourable conditions necessary for it to flourish.
In his business career, Charles has been Chairman of the Eurotunnel Group, TDG, Production Services Network and Defence Systems, and Deputy Chairman of Thistle Hotels. He has also been a non-Executive Director of HSBC, British Airways, Johnson Matthey, Gucci and INSEAD, among others.
He is currently a member of the Business Board of the House of Habib and a member of the Advisory Council of INSEAD. He was Group Chief Executive of Inchcape between 1991 and 1996, having been Executive Chairman of Inchcape Pacific from 1986 to 1991. Prior to that he worked with BP, McKinsey, Pakhoed Holding and Chloride Group.
Councillor Nicholas Paget-Brown, Leader of the Council, said: "We had a fantastically strong field of candidates for the position of chairman for the new board which is very encouraging. Charles will bring leadership experience at the very highest level to the role and OHP could not be in better hands with him at the helm. We have no doubt he will recruit a very capable and influential board to support him."
In a joint statement, Michael Volpe (General Manager) and James Clutton (Producer) of OHP, said: "We are very excited by the prospect of working with someone of Charles' experience and status.
"He demonstrated a very fine and nuanced understanding of the challenges and opportunities we have ahead of us and, crucially, OHP's unique history and methodology. We feel sure Charles, as a fervent supporter and lover of opera, will draw around us the undoubted affection and support that exists in the community for the company."
Charles Mackay commented: “I am truly delighted to have been appointed as the first chairman of the new Opera Holland Park Trust. What Opera Holland Park has achieved under the leadership of Michael Volpe and James Clutton is remarkable, as is the original vision and substantial and consistent support of the Royal Borough. It will be a great privilege and pleasure to work with the new board and the management to establish OHP as a fully independent and financially sustainable opera company, and to build on all its success to date.”
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