Four Shires Guild of Bell Ringers

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The Annual General Meeting of the Four Shires Guild of Bell Ringers was held in The Reading Room adjacent to St Michael's Church, Whichford, Warks, on Saturday 18th October 2014 starting at 5.30pm. The President, John Nicholls, was in the Chair. About 20 members attended.

  1. Apologies:  were received from Peter Quinn (Guild Master), Rev Peter Newing (Vice-President) David Adams, Sue Bacon, Bill Nash, and Trevor Hobday.
  2. Minutes of the Last Meeting:  These were published in the January 2014 Newsletter. As the Newsletter is issued to every member, the Chairman asked whether these Minutes may be taken as read, to which agreement was given. No issues of accuracy were raised. The Minutes were accepted as a true record and were signed as such.
  3. Matters arising:  the non-payment of subscriptions by the ringers from Lower Quinton elected as members at the 2013 Annual General Meeting was raised. According to the Guild Rules they ceased to be members. Richard Lewis-Skeath suggested that as they were not at the 2013 AGM when the election occurred, combined with a subsequent lack of contact with the Guild, could mean they were unaware of the need to pay. He proposed they be re-instated. This was agreed.
  4. Guild Master's Report: This appeared in the October 2014 Newsletter, but as it was possible some members had not received this issue prior to the AGM, it was read out by the Chairman.  No points were raised.
  5. Treasurer's Report:  The Guild accounts to 31st December 2013 appeared in the April 2014 Newsletter and once again were taken as read. Since appearing in the Newsletter they have been examined and nothing of note had been discovered. Michael Dane proposed and Chris Povey seconded that the accounts be adopted. The proposal was carried.  The Examiners are to sign the formal copy.
  6. Election of Officers:

    Guild Master:  Michael Dane proposed and Richard Lewis-Skeath seconded Peter Quinn, who had indicated his willingness to stand again. There being no other candidates, Peter was re-elected.

    Ringing Master: Sophia Lewis-Skeath had indicated that she wished to stand down from this post. Freda Cleaver proposed and John Carroll seconded Richard Lewis-Skeath as Ringing Master. There being no other candidates, Richard was elected.

    Secretary:  Andrew Gunn announced  his resignation as Hon Secretary. No proposals and seconders for candidates to this post were to hand. Chris Povey said if somebody wished to propose and second him, he would undertake the Secretary's duties. Allen Turner proposed and Michael Haynes seconded Chris for this post and he was duly elected.

    Treasurer: Michael Haynes proposed and Chris Povey seconded Michael Dane to continue in this post. It was clear to all that Michael had done an excellent job in keeping the Guild's finances under control. There being no other candidates, Michael was re-elected.

  7. Election of the Committee and Accounts Examiners:  The members of the current Committee were asked whether they were happy to continue in post. There were two vacancies caused by resignations. John Carroll was asked if he would consider filling one of these posts and he agreed to do so. There being no other candidates for the remaining vacancy, it was left for the Committee to fill this by co-option as allowed under the Rules. The meeting was asked to confirm these arrangements. There was no dissent and the following members were therefore elected to the Committee: Stuart Cummings, Michael Haynes, Jackie Hands, Peter Kenealy and John Carroll.
  8. Sophia Lewis-Skeath did not wish to continue as Child Protection Officer. Nominations for this post drew no candidates, so this was left for the Committee to deal with by co-option.

    The Account Examiners (Trevor Hobday and Mike Fairfax) were both returned after being proposed by Michael Dane and seconded by John Nicholls.

    It was reported that the Rev Patrick Wooster wished to relinquish his position as Guild Chaplain. The Committee would endeavour to fill this post.

  9. Life Members:

    There were no Life Members to elect this year.

  10. Confirmation of New Members:
  11. New members elected to the Guild since the last AGM were:

    Mark Newbury, Chidswickham

    Paul & Sylvia Smith, Alderton

    A Dean, Ebrington

    G Fermor, Ebrington

    Bob Topp, Willersey

    Roger Hunt, Bretforton

    George Jelfs, Bretforton

    Ray Waldron, Bretforton

    Alison Merryweather-Clarke, N. Leigh

    Neil Ephgtrave, Freeland

    Michael Probert, Freeland

    June Arran, Sherbourne

    Ian Sturgess, Welford-on-Avon

    Sheila Hughes, Tewkesbury

    Martin Mellor, Burbage

    Len & Pam Morley, Shipston-on-Stour

    Julie Lawrence, Shipston-on-Stour

  12. Any other Business:

    Arising from Nicholas Allsopp's request at the 2013 AGM to consider introducing  Non Resident Life Membership, the Committee had discussed this. It was felt that the number of occasions were currently extremely low and there was no overriding reason to alter the status quo at the present time. It was agreed to monitor this and it was agreed to revisit it if it becomes a bigger factor.

    A request was made for a wider selection of menus for the Annual Dinner; and was noted.

  13. Results of the Striking Competitions:

    There was no Brazier Trophy competition this year.

    The Newing Shield competition was judged by Alan Hartley. The ringing was of a good standard, although it was unfortunate that so few teams competed (there was a scratch team, but this did not count towards the ranking). The results were as follows:-

    1st Moreton 'A' awarded the Newing Shield

    2nd Wellesbourne. awarded the Spencer Jones Cup

    Scratch (no official position)

    3rd Moreton 'B'

    The Merit Award was awarded by Sophia L-S to Moreton 'B'.

    The awards will be presented at the Guild's Annual Dinner in February 2015

The Meeting closed with the Chairman thanking the Church authorities, the Judge, those contributing to the teas and the resigning members for their time in post.

Chris Povey

Hon. Secretary.

These Minutes are subject to final acceptance at the 2015 AGM.