Annual General Meetings
Back in the mid-1980s, attendance at Bob Graham Club annual meetings sunk to such low levels that the then Chairman of the Club Fred Rogerson and the committee took the decision to cease holding the meetings; there seemed little point in continuing with such a regime when so few members attended. The committee of the Club oversaw the management of the Club’s affairs after that time.
Shortly after taking office, I realised that this method of operating was contrary to the Club’s constitution. With Selwyn, I went to see Fred Rogerson to discuss this glitch with him. Fred agreed that with the surge of interest in the Bob Graham Round and in membership that was ongoing, the time was right for the Club to again hold an annual meeting of members; to test if there was a fresh appetite for democracy as it were. The then committee, of which Fred was a member, endorsed this position.
My research revealed that the Club’s constitution dated back to 1978. The committee asked me to put together a revised constitution for the Club, better to reflect the Club’s position in 2011. In addition to the usual business of approval of accounts and election of officers, the annual general meeting held at Hawkshead in July 2011 had a sufficient number of members present to mean that the Club was able to adopt this revised constitution. There is a link to the constitution at the bottom of this page.
In preparing the revised constitution, both I and the committee had regard to earlier history when thinking about the revised rules. We felt it was possible that the Club may again find itself in a position where members showed no appetite for a formal annual meeting. So the revised constitution included rule 15 which allows the committee, in certain defined circumstances, to suspend the requirement for annual meetings. In a Club where surplus funds are given to charity, the committee is mindful of spending as little as possible on administration and the like, and to maximise the gifts to those charities which do benefit. Spending money on meetings which no-one attends doesn’t help that aim. Rules 14 and 15 provide:
- The Club will hold a meeting of members during each year. This annual meeting will be convened on not less than 21 days’ notice and will deal with the approval of accounts for the most recent financial period and the election of officers. The committee may, after the conclusion of formal business, convene a separate meeting of members of the Club at which members may raise any issue of relevance to the Club for debate amongst those present.
- In the event that 3 consecutive annual meetings of the members are convened but are inquorate, the committte shall have the right and power to suspend rule 14, and there shall be no obligation after such suspension to hold annual meetings of the members and to conduct the business provided for in rule 14. If at any time 20 or more of the members wish the Club to hold annual meetings, they shall write to the Chairman of the Club to that effect, and thereafter, rule 14 shall be observed in full.
Annual general meetings were again convened in 2012, 2013 and 2014. Each of these has been inquorate under the Club’s rules; that is to say that fewer than 8 members attended these “meetings”. As a result the committee has suspended rule 14 and no further annual general meetings will be convened and held, unless 20 or more members seek to re-activate them under rule 15.
In the meantime, the committee will continue to conduct the Club’s affairs to the best of their collective ability. The Club’s annual accounts will continue to be posted on this page of the website each year after their approval by the committee.
Morgan Williams - Secretary
There are various documents available for download. Please choose the year from the drop down list then click the appropriate button.