The Board is committed to proactive and constructive engagement with our shareholders, recognising the important and valuable role they play in safeguarding the Group's governance.

Shareholder engagement
The Board receives regular updates on the views of our shareholders through briefings and reports from our interaction with shareholders during the year and from our brokers.

In October, we appointed Peter Young as Director of Investor Relations with a remit to build on and enhance our shareholder engagement activities.

In the event that shareholders have any concerns, which the normal channels of communication to the Chief Executive Officer, or the Chief Financial Officer have failed to resolve or for which contact is inappropriate, our Senior Independent Director, David Lowden, is available to address them. To that end, both David and Chairman of the Board, Iain Ferguson make themselves available, when requested, for meetings with shareholders on issues relating to the Group's governance and strategy. The Committee Chairmen and Iain Ferguson also receive correspondence from shareholders, institutional investors and proxy voting agencies, typically in the lead up to the AGM. This correspondence is presented to the Board or relevant Committee as appropriate.

Major shareholder reception with our Chairman and Senior Independent Director
On 1 November 2016, David Lowden and Iain Ferguson hosted a reception for major shareholders without the Executive Directors present.

Analyst and investor meetings and presentations
In common with most listed companies, we hold analyst and investor meetings and presentations following the release of our annual, half-year and trading update announcements.

Other shareholder meetings
Throughout the year, 215 separate meetings and conference calls were held with existing and potential shareholders. These meetings were attended by either the Chief Executive Officer or the Chief Financial Officer or sometimes both, and since October some have also been attended by our Director of Investor Relations.

Annual General Meeting
The Annual General Meeting takes place in London. The 2017 meeting will be held on 27 April at The Athenaeum Hotel at 116 Piccadilly, Mayfair, W1J 7BJ and details of the meeting and the resolutions to be proposed are set out in the Notice of AGM which is available to download on our AGM section.

Please see page 76 in our Annual Report 2016 for further information.

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