News Column

Top people at the Sutton Trust

February 11, 2014

And finally, the Sutton Trust charity recently issued a familiar warning about the domination of the higher echelons of banking by the privately educated.

But should the trust not also be looking closer to home in its scrutiny? Its recently constituted advisory board, comprising 22 individuals who have donated to the trust, is dominated by people from finance, some seemingly fitting the pattern of coming from privileged backgrounds.

For example, Tim Bunting, a former Goldman Sachs partner, is a Wellington College old boy. Another board member, Stephen Brenninkmeijer, is listed on the website of the social investment firm he set up as "a member of the Brenninkmeijer family that founded the C&A clothing retail chain in 1841". And Deborah Wolfson is a baronet's daughter.

Are all board members, then, an advert for the social mobility the trust promotes? We asked the trust for information on the school backgrounds of its board members but it refused, saying: "The generous donations made by the Sutton Trust board ensure that we can provide opportunities for thousands of state-educated school students."

Warwick Mansell

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Source: Guardian (UK)

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