Minutes of Annual General Meeting
held at Alfold on Saturday 4th June 2011 at 14.00 hrs
Present: Brian Alps, Paul Brassington, Nigel Edmonds, Alf Blake, David Wright, David Forrest, Ian Oldham.
Apologies: Roger Flaherty, Richard Huggett, David Jacques.
Minutes of previous meeting:
Read individually by those present and accepted as a true record.
B. Alps explained how he had dealt with the matter of the number of Honorary members, receiving issues of the magazine, which was getting quite disproportionate in postage costs to that of the ordinary membership as standing since 2009. It started at 15, was reduced to 8 in the Spring of 2010, and is now 6 as from the Autumn of 2010.
Nigel said he was pleased with the way the Association had developed over the year, especially with the advent of a new Website and the Forum under the guidance of Richard Huggett. He was, however, predominantly concerned, on the one hand, about the fall off in the number of AMS events attended/held and, on the other, the need to reshape the structure of the AMS Committee. He wanted to separate the Events Secretary/Club Secretary position to establish a Webmaster/Club Secretary and have a separate Events Secretary/Organiser, free to conduct solely that part of the Association’s activity. He had thanked Roger Flaherty, who was not standing again, for his past efforts in this role and Richard Huggett for taking on the Website.
Nigel also raised the issue of the ‘North/South’ Events divide as being of increasing concern to anyone who took on the job of organising events. The person couldn’t possibly attend all such events because of the geographical distribution countrywide. Events needed to be pushed however, and it would seem likely that this could be handled by individual Association sponsors who had the personality/interest/drive to do it e.g Nigel with the Hop Farm and Brighton Model World venues, and it does work.
Richard Huggett has also accepted the role as Club Secretary and this should work well with that of Webmaster. We need further thought and discussion about the Events Secretary position, but meanwhile let the individual sponsors to run ‘local’ shows. When appointed, an Events Secretary should be a person who exercises overall co-ordination of our calendar events. All members who wish to attend shows do need to be provided with tickets to encourage and boost attendance, and it does appear to help.
Treasurer/Membership Secretary’s report:
David Forrest said that the AMS had made a surplus this year of £94.00. Subscriptions have remained the same, which is good in the current economic climate. The Association’s income is also up because membership has increased (now 53) and there have been good sales of AMS DVDs and other club items. We are also now able to make our first donation of £25.00 to the R.N.L.I. A little worry was expressed about Paypal losses but these were actually very small. However, overall it was a good year financially- our account was now with the Santander Bank since its takeover of the Alliance & Leicester. Thanks were due to Avril for her help with the accounts.
Brian Alps’ report was light-hearted, with the usual main theme being the continual need for regular contributions to the magazine. Getting members to write articles is still a basic problem. A comment was made concerning the cheaper postage costs for the 54 pages Spring 2011 magazine + CD (£0.36) compared to the Autumn 2010 issue (£0.81) at 64 pages which just qualified because of thickness for the Large 2nd class rate! Nigel was thanked for his efforts in reproducing the CD in spite of feeling rather unwell. Some discussion followed about the format of the ‘Freeby’ CD which has given rise to technical difficulties in viewing the contents. Nigel was prepared to convert the format to a DVD for those members lacking a personal computer.
Election of Officers:
Apart from the notification by Roger Flaherty that he was not standing again as Events Secretary/ Club Secretary, and Steve Juden was not present to accept the role as ‘Assistant Editor’, all other positions were filled by the present incumbents. Richard Huggett was to be Webmaster/Club Secretary. The position as Events organiser needed more discussion, thought and development so it was left open.
Any Other Business:
Nigel’s comments about changes to the AMS Committee structure needed to be notified to the membership as a change in the AMS Constitution. Contributions to the magazine could possibly be encouraged by inviting individuals to be interviewed about their interests and experiences etc. Something like this has been tried with Alf Blake and Dave Wright when short articles appeared in the Autumn 2010 magazine about their respective ‘Air-vented water ballast system’ and ‘Seehund working torpedoes’.
Nigel also pointed out that the AMS did make a loss of £93.00 in getting rid of the previous cumbersome website which has long been difficult to manage, and that has proved to have been an acceptable thing to do.
Because of the very long period of separation between the two annual issues of the magazine, it was not possible to announce accurate dates for when Shows/Events were to be held or to alert members to changes or cancellations at virtually short notice. A system of communication needs to be set up to take care of this. Maybe a phone-in connection or Web contact could be put in place. There are going to be Web-enabled mobiles in the near future and this could help. Nigel will look into this.
Such changes in our Events ‘calendar’ are reflected in the Norwich Sub Day (August time) which changed this year to Warships. Paul Cook is no longer on the relevant Committee and the new Secretary hasn’t realised how this has complicated our usual participation in the ‘event’ Paul advised that the AMS must try to get this change amended ASAP to recover the situation this year.
As stated earlier an AMS calendar of events is required.
The Treasurer advised all present that the 2011-12 membership subscription is now due to be paid, the amount is still set at £12.00.
The meeting concluded at 16.00 hrs.