Opening and welcome address by the Chairman
13 OR voting club members attended the meeting, including the following committee members:
President – Colin Harvey
Chairman – Mike Tyrrell,
Secretary – John Copeland
Treasurer - Janet Hughes
Membership Secretary – John Matthews
Attendees – Tony Debling, Phil Goldsmith, Peter Crisp, Mike Barratt, Colin Whitaker, Anthony Carpenter, Don Sloan, Mark Dyer.
Apologies for Absence.
Richard Stone, Laurie Bulmer, Allen Senel, Richard Hawkins, Richard Tyrrell, Barrie Holton, Brian Bingham, Anthony Taylor, Jane Winehouse, Shireen Dorosti, Geoff Ward, Mark Lewis.
Minutes of 2017 AGM
Minutes were first published in the July/August 2017 Newsletter, copies were available at the current meeting for any member who had not seen them.
Mr Tony Carpenter requested that we provide the accounts to the membership as we did in the past, in RUYM. He was reminded that RUYM had not been published for about 10 years and accounts were only provided at the AGM during that time, but that now we have the vehicle to do so, we will include the accounts in the next newsletter.
No matters were arising from the minutes.
Proposer for acceptance of the minutes Mike Barratt, seconded Colin Harvey.
Chairman’s Annual Report for 2017/2018
It is three years since I was elected as Chairman and when writing this report I reflected on the Committee’s successes and some of the issues that we have had to deal with.
Although the Club’s Constitution and Rules needs a little more fine-tuning to ensure that it represents a co-educational school, the basic objectives of the ORs remain the same:
To support the continuing interest in Chatham Clarendon House Grammar School and raise funds from annual subscription for specific projects to benefit future students.
To publish from time to time, journals and newsletters concerning the School and OR activities and encourage and provide opportunities for sporting events and social occasions, which enable the OR’s to keep in touch with one another.
Back in 2015, at one of the first committee meetings, John Copeland suggested that we have a Newsletter, since Ruym was not being supported by the School as they place all their information on their website. The Newsletter has been a great success with members now living all over the world sending in articles and congratulating us on the news content.
During the past three years we have been continuously updating the data base and our outgoing Membership Secretary, John Matthews, has done a sterling job in contacting all those members whether active or lapsed when notifying for this AGM and the Reunion Dinner. We have been able to jog the memories of many lapsed members to re-join and others to update their subscriptions. During the course of this exercise, we sadly have been notified by many families of those OR’s and teachers who have passed away. With this in mind, the Committee have discussed numerous ways of attracting younger members to the Club through sports & social events, but have come to the conclusion that the way to move forward is to upgrade the club’s electronic communications; to build a website and upgrade our Facebook profile, etc. This is viewed as an investment for the future of this club. We will be proposing funding this work at the AGM as a donation towards the future of the ORs and our ability to support the School in years to come.
Annually we have made numerous donations for special projects to the School where the Government do not give funds. Last year’s donation for up to £3000 was not utilised by the school, but recent priorities had changed and we were asked if we could assist in funding some equipment, as they intended rolling out the Duke of Edinburgh Bronze Award to the current Year 9's and will hopefully offer Silver to the current Year 9's in the academic year 2018/2019 with the current year 8's being offered Bronze. After some discussions, we released £1000 of last year’s monies for the project and we have received thanks from Mr. Adam Topping, who is organising the Scheme with other teachers and a thank you letter from him and the first team of students, who will be attending the initial events. This will be included in the next OR newsletter.
We have also been asked if we could assist in funding a number of music stands for the Music Department. Both of these donations can be met by the utilisation of the money, not taken last year.
We have recognised that we need to have more contact with the School to discuss how we can assist and to that end we will be inviting Sue Hurrell, Administration Registrar, who sits on the Committee of Friends of the School to our Committee Meetings, but we will also attend their meetings. Both our Club and the Friends of the School have the same financial objective of funding the School’s Special Projects and this should keep us more abreast of the students’ needs.
You will have seen that Sue is supporting the Charity ‘there but not there’, explained in the flyer which you have received, in honour of those who died in the Great War. Sue intends to purchase two of the larger silhouettes to stand in the Chapel at the end of the library each side of the Book of Remembrance, to those Students and Teachers who died in the First World War.
We have held a couple of hockey matches, but sadly not in the last couple of years, although I am always hopeful. Mark Lewis has been doing an outstanding job in organising the cricket match against the school and the cricket week, but has recently been finding it very difficult to attract members to play and put together a team.
Tony Debling continues to organise a successful Golf event for members, for which he must be congratulated. This year’s cricket and golf will be reported in the next newsletter.
Over the course of my time in office, we have had a number of issues on the Committee, with members resigning, which was most disruptive and time consuming, but happily others on the committee have stepped in to fill the positions very successfully. One such issue concerned data protection, which took up a lot of the Secretary’s time before being reconciled. Just recently the Government has passed ‘The General Data Protection Regulation 2018’ on the 25th May, where businesses, clubs, etc. must get permission to send communications using held information. This took a lot of time sorting out, just as we were involved in the busiest time of the Club’s calendar year with the AGM and Reunion Dinner.
In closing I would like to thank those on the Committee who have contributed to the running of the Club and its events and hope that next year we continue to progress as a club.
Two years ago we created the new role of Membership Secretary which was undertaken by John Matthews. This has relieved my work load for the OR’s so I will thank John for his contribution. There was a need for the OR Club to comply with the data protection Act 1998 and more recent GDPR 25th May 2018. The final GDPR [May 25th 2018] document and compliance with the act of parliament applied throughout Europe can be seen in our compliance document which has been distributed in the room. Incidentally, there is a declaration that should be signed by all committee members on completion of each year in office. If you read the document it is self-explanatory but we can answer questions later if more explanation is needed.
Sadly every year we lose members. Currently the numbers are gradually declining so we want to do more to reach potential new members of the OR club. You will all be aware that in the past letters and printed items delivered by the Post Office were sufficient for most communication and met our need. For a time Email communication was paramount, but even this method of communication is being surpassed by more recent media developments. Undoubtedly more changes will take place in the next few years in particular when G5 telephones are commonplace.
In the coming year we will ask a specialist to design, develop and maintain a website dedicated to the OR Club and possibly other media connections, all aimed at an ongoing forum whereby school friends can maintain contact with each other and with the school. I am not an expert on this subject so I will finish at this point as I cannot offer any technical explanations. However, you will all be aware that the younger generations use Facebook and similar apps for day to day conversation. We need to break into this and create a virtual circle where we can all benefit from the media and the digital age.
We, on the committee, do not have the experience to undertake this change and need advice and guidance for the future. Therefore, we propose commissioning an expert to supply our media needs for the coming decade, but there will be a monetary cost, so we will set aside funds for this, to be approved by those of you at this AGM. Some of the cost can be deferred to next year and thereafter, but we need immediate approval for a sum of £1500 and a similar sum next year followed by site maintenance costs into the future. The committee are of the opinion that this is the way forward for the OR Club. The new website or media connection will provide a conduit for communication and promote opportunities for school leavers and also the more mature to join the OR’s. At the moment this is at the seedling stage and all those who use it will decide on how big it grows. Future use of Email and other E-communications can result in a postal cost saving of over £800 each year. Any of you who do not agree please note that extinction of the OR’s is the likely alternative.
Submission of annual accounts
For your reference a copy of last year’s OR Club accounts together with a copy of this year’s signed-off accounts has been offered to all present. The Treasurer also offered a view of the hand written detailed accounts and workings that were used to prepare the accounts presented today. Currently the account stands at approximately £3000.
Membership Secretary’s Report
As the Hon. Membership Secretary, John Matthews, will not be standing for the office next year, it was thought best if I received all the membership paperwork from members, which are still appearing on our doormat!
John took over the new role of Membership Secretary a couple of years ago and has done a great job in tidying up the OR Membership Database. He ensured that the AGM and Reunion Dinner, plus bank mandate and details of members were sent annually to all those names in the database, where we have postal addresses.
Initially John had a few relatives of members who had passed away, complain that they had notified the previous Secretary of the passing of their loved one, but we found that these had not been updated in our system. Over the last year this has been more positive after he had corrected the records and as members have updated their subscriptions and details, they have complimented us on our work for the ORs, especially the newsletter.
Sadly I have to inform you of the passing of eight old members’ of our Club.
Mr. G.M. Longley
Mr. Henry Bacon
Mr. Chris Forde
Mr. A.J. Critten
Mr. Alan Galer
Sir John Tavare
Rev. Michael Darby
Mr. James F. Holden
Two members have resigned, citing old age; Robert Oldroyd and Alan Robinson. I sent them letters, thanking them for supporting the ORs for the many years that they had been members.
We have had several new members join after their fathers had passed away, but the general trend is that our membership is declining. The committee has thought of many ways to attract younger generations of ex-students and the general conclusion is through modern electronic communication methods; Website, Facebook, Twitter, etc. which we need to update.
We currently have the contact details of 384 ex School students.
Email addresses for 237 contacts.
Membership is now 229 in total.
The contact details for lapsed/non-members (approx. 158), is being used as a ‘pool’ of potential members and has resulted in several re-joining.
Constitution and Rules
This is work in progress although substantially complete; we need to ensure that it properly represents a co-educational school and is accountable to GDPR.
Election of Officers
Office of Chairman – Anthony ‘Tony’ Taylor
The Chairman, Mike Tyrrell, has served three years of a three year term and stands down. He was contacted by Tony Taylor who offered to assist on the committee. After due consideration, Tony was asked if he would like to stand for the office of Chairman, which he accepted.
Nominated by: Mike Tyrrell Seconded by: Tony Debling
Of the 13 voting members in attendance, 11 voted for the nomination and 2 were against.
Office of Vice Chairman - Vacancy
Office of Secretary – John Copeland
Nominated by; Mike Tyrrell Seconded by: Phil Goldsmith
Office of Treasurer - Janet Hughes
Nominated by; John Copeland Seconded by: Tony Carpenter
Office of Membership Secretary - Mike Tyrrell
Nominated by; Peter Crisp Seconded by: Colin Whitaker
Ordinary Committee Members
Nominated by: Steve Dyer Seconded by; Colin Whitaker
As the new Chairman Tony Taylor was not present, having sent his apologies, the recent Past Chairman Mike Tyrrell continued to Chair the meeting on his behalf.
Donations to the School
Mike Tyrrell explained that last year’s donation of ‘up to’ £3000 was not paid for the initial projects and as priorities at the School had changed, we were asked for a £1000 donation towards equipment for The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, which they were implementing. We felt this was an excellent idea, especially as The Friends of the School had funded a further £1000 towards this project. We have received thanks from Mr. Adam Topping, who is organising the Scheme with other teachers and a thank you letter from him and the first team of students, (which will be in the next newsletter).
We also donated £1500 to the music department for a number of music stands from last year’s monies.
We have made mention through the AGM that the numbers of members are in decline as we are notified of old members passing away. This will impact the ORs in the future and their ability to support the School apart from the fact that we will lose contact with old contemporaries.
We have tried different ideas to attract younger generations (60’s, 50’s, 40’s, etc.) of old students and have concluded we must update our image by updating our website and media pages to reach them.
This does not impact our current membership, many of whom do not have an email address and probably a computer, but it will reach a ‘younger’ audience, who frequently visit this type of media.
Mike Tyrrell proposed that we donate £1500 towards updating our website and media pages which was thoroughly discussed. AGM attendees were assured that the website was to attract younger generations and ‘users’ with computers, but would not negatively impact our older membership. The proposal was accepted, and will be signed off by our new Chairman at the first committee meeting.
Proposed by: Mike Tyrrell Seconded by: Peter Crisp