Saturday, 12 November 2011

Thornton Road Club’s AGM 2011

Calculus of Change
A hint of change pervaded the club’s well-attended 2011 annual general meeting. Twenty-seven members showed up that evening, October 29th, at the antique Shepherd & Crook in Burmarsh.

A restive and an upright mood prevailed among the gathering, abetted perhaps by a paucity of chairs. Business was lengthy; the meeting was long at nearly two hours. Nevertheless, incipient change was present therein: in modified constituents of the TRC committee (committee members’ roles and function were critically considered); in the appointment of several new
runs-captains/route leaders, with tenure for a year, of whom all would be provided with identity armbands to be worn when riding; in a discretionary limitation of twenty riders in each Sunday-ride group; and in the application of new safety and comfort practices for group rides (i.e. designated sprint sections and comfort stops on all routes; and helmets to be compulsory). The meeting resolved that the website and blog should be put to better use in keeping members informed (e.g. maps to be posted of set ride routes; a forum to be initiated; the Facebook account to assist in inter-member communication). Hard on the heels of the successful event introduced by Graeme Pilcher in the spring of 2011, recurring spring and autumn equivalents would be introduced from 2012. And the club would affiliate with two road-racing leagues, thus propitiating the growing competitive ethos of a number of members.

A review of membership subscriptions by the chairman and secretary had obliged them to propose a re-categorisation of members and to increase some subscriptions and lower others, depending on member-categories. They believed that the abandonment in the recent past of the former multifarious member-categories had caused current recruitment to slow down or even decline. The proposed subscriptions for 2012 would, if approved, see the subscriptions of some categories rise by £1/year, and others fall by either £2/year or £7/year. There was no support among members present for what seemed to be a complicated subscription structure. Judging from comments from the floor during a noisy debate, there was wide support for a straightforward increase in subscriptions for all member categories as presently defined. The chairman was adamant however that no counterproposal could be accepted at this meeting. With no more ado, the meeting formally rejected the revised categories and subscriptions, and left in place the prevailing 2011 rates.

In a brief session of any other business, speakers from the floor urged: (1) that modern computer technology be used to record subscriptions and when necessary to expedite recovery of unpaid amounts; (2) that the secretary convene at least four committee meetings during the coming year and that committee members’ skills be respected; and (3) alerted by the information given in the modernised official annual accounting statements circulated among attendees this year, that the secretary/treasurer should be paid promptly the accumulated sum owing to him as at 30 September 2011.

Because by this time the session had overrun its allotted duration, the chairman allowed no further discussion of financial or other matters, and brought all proceedings to a close thus ending the meeting at 9:05 pm.

[Anyone interested in obtaining a copy of the official minutes of the meeting should apply to the chairman, Michael Winsor, or Gordon Davis, secretary/treasurer, through the TRC website if necessary.]