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0 Governance & Accountability

To : Board of Governors

cc: Simon Milner

From : Tina Stowell

Date : 24 July 2003



Please find attached a copy of the official minutes of the Board Meeting of 6 July.

In light of media comments about the way in which Andrew Gilligan's source was
described to the Board of Governors at your meeting on 6 July, I reviewed the
minutes again and my original shorthand notes to determine exactly what was said.

I can confirm that at no point did the Chairman, Director-General, Director News,
Deputy Director News, Director Policy & Legal, or the Controller Editorial Policy
describe the source as a senior intelligence source or an intelligence source of any
kind during the meeting .

As the minutes and my original shorthand notes reflect, the main discussion about
the nature of the source was in the body of the meeting when Governors questioned
management about broadcasts based on a single source . At this point, the
Controller Editorial Policy said he was not aware of the source's identity, but that the
editor of the programme and the Head of Radio News were convinced that the
source was "credible and reliable".'

The Deputy Director of News went on to say the source met the criteria used by
editorial teams when judging an individual's credibility in terms of how well known
they were; whether information previously provided had been proven to be correct;
and the plausibility of the information the source was providing

By the time of the Governors' meeting, the Director of News had been informed of
the source's identity and the Director-General had been told what position the source
held - as the minutes accurately reflect.

The official minutes imply that the Chairman used the words "intelligence source" in
introducing the meeting . As I have already confirmed to the Chairman in a memo of
22 July (see attached), having checked my original shorthand notes, this is incorrect
There is no record of him saying any such thing . I wrote that introduction to provide

' My shorthand notes show that the Board was told that the editor of Today was informed about the
source prior to broadcast . The official minutes can be read to imply that the Head of Radio News was
also informed prior to broadcast, but my shorthand notes show the Board was not told this
context and reference that might be required by historic readers in the future . It was
not based on notes taken at the meeting and I should have made this clear in the

All the above demonstrates the Board was not led by an incorrect description of the
source during the meeting to approve the Chairman's statement that included the
phrase "Stories based on senior intelligence sources are a case in point" .

That said the Chairman does not believe the statement issued after the Board
meeting on 6 July was misleading From what is now known about Dr Kelly's position
and from his evidence to the Foreign Affairs Committee that he was in receipt of
intelligence material relevant to his expertise and work in the area of chemical and
biological weapons, the Chairman's opinion is that it is valid to describe Dr David
Kelly as a senior intelligence source

Head of Business Administration