Friday, 6 November 2009


From late November 2009 the two principal Sunday club-ride groups, i.e. the fast group that starts at Botolph’s Bridge Inn car park at 9:00 am, and the intermediate group that starts at the Light Railway Café in Hythe at 9:30 am, will both assemble at the Hythe café at 9:00 am before commencing their respective two-hour runs. The club’s third group, the leisurely-casual group that normally rides for about an hour, will continue to assemble at the Hythe café at 10:00 am. All three groups will subsequently end their runs at the Hythe café at between 11:00 and 11:30 am. Members attending the annual general meeting unanimously accepted the reasons for the venue and start-time changes, namely: that the prevalence of three separate groups meant there was little or no interaction between them; there were no obvious means of graduation from predominantly leisurely to purposefully energetic riding; and there was an incipient mood of faction rather than fusion within the club. A conjoint venue and a universal start time for the principal groups, the meeting believed, would address these issues.

Preceding the matter of a common venue and start time, the meeting was urged to consider the ravages of past and promised inflation on the club’s finances. In doing so, the secretary/treasurer hoped that the meeting would acknowledge the need for a 20% increase in membership subscriptions for 2010. He rapidly discovered that he was pushing at an open door. Members present not only endorsed the proposed increase but went on to change the categories of riders to whom the subscriptions would apply. Up to 2009, there were ‘racing’ and ‘non-racing’ member categories, where the former paid twice the subscription rate of the latter. From 2010, members will be re-categorised as ‘active’ or ‘social’. Active members would include those who rode regularly with the club, on Sunday runs, or time trials, or ‘sportives’, or in road and track races, or other club-designated rides. In contrast, social members would include those who rarely, if ever, rode with the club but maintained their membership for historical or companionability reasons. The new subscription rates would be £12 for active members and £6 for social members, with a 25% discount for families who had two or more club members. Percipient readers will note that the newsletter-only membership category will disappear because of the cessation of publication of the newsletter.

Other business of the meeting encompassed the routine appointment, or re-appointment, of officers, and the endorsement by the meeting of a proposal made by Malcolm Strickland to set up a massed-start club-sponsored race to be held on the Bettshanger cycle track in June 2010.

Anyone wanting to know more about the ruminations of this well-attended AGM should contact Gordon Davis.

Eric Bates