2024 AGM Minutes

Date: Thursday 28th March 2024 

Attendees: Phil Rogers (PR), Ross Brewer (RB), Eddie Vermeer (EV), Karen Vermeer (KV), Belinda Sims (BS), Suzie Deighton (SD), Lester Medcalf (LM), Mike Ellis-Martin (MEM), Victoria Todd (VT), Matt Rew (MR), Alf Smart (AS), Malcolm Green (MG) 

Location: Imberhorne School, Imberhorne Lane, East Grinstead 

Apologies: Karen Wells, Graham Taylor, Michelle Edwards, Olly Thompson 

  1. AGM opened by PR at 1940 and attendees welcomed and thanked at the first AGM since 2018 following changes in the club and the pandemic. 
  1. Apologies are noted above. 
  1. As no AGM has been held since 2018, EV proposed that previous minutes are not approved and no matters arising from these be considered as the period since made them irrelevant. This was approved by vote. 
  1. PR noted that the club is struggling to attract athletes across many age groups; senior athletes compete alongside Horsham Blue Stars, U20/U17 athletes compete as part of a composite team with Lewes and Eastbourne. 
    The Academy is thriving, thanks were given to BS for her tireless efforts and the Academy is continually oversubscribed with a waiting list. 
    Thanks were also given to those volunteering their time to help with administration, officiating and coaching as the club wouldn’t exist without them. 
  1. RB joined as Treasurer in late 2023 and the club is in a strong financial position with funds of approximately £29k in the bank at the end of the last fiscal year (31st December 2023). 
    The club made a small profit in 2023. 
    RB is working through historical paperwork to improve the tracking of income and expenses to improve clarity and support budgeting. 
    LM asked if there were any surprises from income – RB explained none in 2023 but is reviewing 2022 when a grant was awarded for the repair of the throws cage and how this was recorded. 
    AS asked if the figures have been audited – RB explained this was not required and did not form part of the constitution. RB explained some of the processes in place to mitigate risks and EV explained a Finance Policy will be completed soon. RB explained that a more cost-effective option to an audit would be to have a second person review the accounts each year. The committee will review this as part of the Finance Policy. 
  1. Looking forward to 2024, PR explained athletes will be able to compete for the Seniors, Team Sussex (U17/U20), U15 and U13. U15s and U13s compete in a Sussex regional league. 
    The club continues to not compete in the YDL league at U13 and U15 due to lack of athletes and travel distances for matches, but this remains under review season by season. 
    The club will continue to work on bringing through athletes from the Academy to the older age groups. 
    The club continues to seek volunteers interested in coaching and officiating and noted no prior experience is required and the club will support those interested in developing skills in these areas. 
    The club has seen a steady stream of interest in early 2024 and hopes this will continue through the season. 
    The club continues to be represented by EV and LM at the East Grinstead Sports Council to seek new and improved sports facilities for the town. 
    Thanks also to Imberhorne for the use of their classroom to host the AGM. 
    LM – noted that team managers are required, and he has stepped down as U13 manager. 
  1. EV informed members that England Athletics now provides a template for club constitutions that have legal approval. The club’s previous constitution was last updated in 2014 and to bring the club into alignment with the governing body, the new constitution needed to be adopted. 
    EV explained that the club is also bringing in new policies and procedures and will be asking all members to adhere to the England Athletics Codes of Conduct as part of the process joining the club. Existing members will be contacted in due course and asked to read and confirm they agree to the Codes of Conduct too. 
    The new constitution was approved by vote. 
  1. RB updated the club that membership fees will now be £60 per year plus England Athletics affiliation fees of £19 (where appropriate) for all competing athletes. The £60 will be reduced quarterly for those joining later in the year, the affiliation fee will remain the same. Details of the fees will be shared on the club website. 
    RB noted that track hire fees are £12.50 per hour with lights, indoor hall fees are £16.50 per hour. 
  1. EV noted the committee are empowered to invite new committee members during the year. However, a vote was taken to elect those wishing to stand for committee for 2024/25 together and all approved. Committee members are listed on the club website. 
    PR proposed MEM to be a committee member, seconded by SD. MEM was approved separately by vote. 
  1. LM – noted that the summer season was approaching and will supply a fixture list to be distributed across the club soon. 
    MEM – asked how coaches could access any details about athletes medical conditions. KV will review options available to share data securely with coaches and team managers, respecting data privacy requirements. 
    BS – asked if first aid kits had been renewed – SD will confirm – point moved to committee 
    BS – asked if we should increase school cross country fees as club is at risk of making a loss – point moved to committee 
    BS – asked if there were plans for a club awards night – SD and PR are looking into this and BS will join the group – point moved to committee. 

The AGM closed at 2035.