"I am a Norfolk man and Glory in being so." Horatio Nelson


ESMBA AGM info for Norfolk bowlers


For the information of Norfolk members Simon Willies has produced the following report of the ESMBA AGM held on Saturday 24th July 2021 

ESMBA Annual General Meeting (AGM) 2020 and 2021

This year, due to the unprecedented times the ESMBA held two AGMs, the 2020 one postponed from July 2020 and the current AGM on 24th July 2021. The venue was the Woodland Grange Hotel, Leamington Spa. The facilities were excellent ensuring attendees were in a safe yet friendly environment.

29 County Association were eligible to attend plus the 9 ESMBA management committee members giving a possible 67 votes – quorum is 30% i.e. 20 votes. 11 County Association were represented with 14 votes plus 9 committee members making 23 votes in total.

A minutes silence was called for by the Chairman, Barry Hedges, in memory of the ESMBA President George Clarke and all the other bowlers who sadly passed away. The Chairman reflected on the loyal and committed service George Clarke had given to short mat bowls, Norfolk and the ESMBA.

AGM 2020

The minutes of the last AGM (held in 2019) were presented and agreed. There were no matters arising.

The only reports presented were the Chairman’s report along with the Treasurer’s report. Both were approved along with Accounts.

The proposals originally planned to be presented July 2020 were tabled. Many were cosmetic in nature bringing the Constitution more in line with modern day life. These were all passed.

A proposal to alter the requirement for the ESMBA Accounts not to be fully audited but inspected by a recognised accountancy form was presented. This was agreed unanimously.

The only contentious proposal was to remove the requirement for the ESMBA to hold a Rules Revision Meeting every 5 years. There was concern that this would give the ESMBA total control of the rules and be able to change them without challenge. The Chairman said that any changes would be through consultation and there would be a set date when they would come into force. The meeting was reminded that County Associations and registered players would be able to make suggestions through the normal channels. It was requested that a Rule amendments page be created on the website. This was taken on board. The proposal was carried.

There were amendments to the Constitution concerning the disciplinary and appeals procedure. Both were carried without challenge.

It was agreed the new Constitution would come into effect from 1st September 2021 and there would be an updated version available on the website beforehand.

Management Fees for 2019/20 were presented and agreed by the meeting.

No further business was transacted.

The meeting broke up for a short break.

AGM 2021

Due to the events over the last 18 months the AGM for 2020 had only just been concluded. The minutes will be presented at the next AGM for approval.

Reports were presented by the Chairman, Treasurer, Registrations, Umpire Director and the Coaching Director. All were passed along with the ESMBA Accounts. The Chairman commented on the excellent work Lynn Dean, ESMBA lead Safeguarding Officer had done in conjunction with County Association Safeguarding Officers in creating an environment where people felt comfortable and safe to play bowls. He also thanked James Smith who had to resign as Registrations Secretary for personal reasons and Joseph Newsome, Umpires Director who due to employment progression felt he could not sustain his role. The Chairman said he was keen for more focus to be given to the grass roots of our sport.

It was pleasing to note those that registered this year 11% were newcomers to the ESMBA looking to take advantage of our Safe Bowls status scheme and our insurance scheme.

A range of proposals was put forward for discussion. Some proposals were withdrawn as similar changes had been agreed at the previous AGM. A further proposal around membership was also withdrawn as the implications on the whole constitution had not been fully considered. All other proposals were presented and passed. It is worth noting any increase in registrations will come into effect the September after the AGM. Again, it was agreed the new Constitution would come into effect from 1st September 2021 and there would be an updated version available on the website beforehand.

Management Fees were discussed. Nothing had been tabled however the meeting agreed that the management fees be the same as those agreed at the 2020 AGM. This was passed. A suggestion was made that the ESMBA Safeguarding Officer should receive a discretionary payment in recognition of all the hard work and effort that had gone into the role over last year. This would be discussed at the next ESMBA management committee meeting.

Subscription fees for registered players was held at £4.00 and agreed by the meeting.

Election of Officers – Certain positions were voted on block as there was only one candidate. These were duly elected.

President – Brandon Whittaker                      Chairman – Barry Hedges      Treasurer – Simon Willies

ICC Secretary – Steve Bailey             Coaching Director – Brian Baker

Committee Members – Elaine Willies and Nicky Tressaden

Elected from the floor

General Secretary – Linda White       Umpires Director – Richard Beamand

All other positions were left vacant as no volunteers present at the meeting came forward.

Accountants Inspection will be carried out by the same firm, Murray Smith, on the recommendation of the Chairman and Treasurer. All agreed.

The next AGM will be held in July 2022. The date, time and location to be confirmed.

It was agreed to hold a short forum to discuss the National Championships, the ICC and any other business.

The National Championships 2020 will take place at Melton Mowbray IBC between September 16th and 19th September. Due to the unusual circumstances further information will be going out to all County Associations.

It is also planned to finish off the ICC 2020/21 in September further information will be available soon.

It was requested that the start time of the AGM be put back to 11.00am to give more time to those travelling a long way.

Simon Willies

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