Annual General Meeting 2017
MINUTES OF TUDOR SQUARES AGM
Held on 19 October 2017 at Nash Mills Village Hall
1. Welcome and Apologies
The meeting commenced at 8.50pm with Dave Greenwood welcoming everybody. There were 55 members present.
Chair o Dave Greenwood
Treasurer o Colin & Tracy Hawkins
Secretary o Andrew Agathangelou
Advanced and Challenge Representative o Linda Gill
Callers Representative o Simon Kelly for Susie
Mainstream Representative o Brian O’Ready
Plus Representative o Elena Hadaway
Apologies were received from Mick West, Sandra Morley, Linda Tomkinson, Paul Mackness, Jennifer Bates, Dora Bargent, Michael Ross, Susie Kelly and Alan & Jean Jackson
2. Minutes of Previous AGM held on 13 October 2016
These were accepted unanimously as a true record of the meeting.
3. Matters Arising
There were no matters arising.
4. Chair Report (attached)
In summary, the salient points of the Chairman’s address are as follows:
- At the last count Tudor Squares was the biggest square dance club in the country with a membership of 130, including 118 paying members. Since then numbers have fallen, particularly at Mainstream, so this section would appreciate support from other dancers.
- The success of the club overall is dependent upon members attending regularly. Recruitment is also crucial, to provide a continuous stream of new dancers into the club. So, when the current Beginners graduate we will recruit a new group of students.
- The role of the Chairman has been split, so that other members can take responsibility for some of the duties normally undertaken by the Chairman. Members who’ve agreed to take on these roles are:
o Events’ organiser Brian and Pauline O’Ready
o Public Relations Officer Terry Thirlwell
Michael Ginger o Beginners’
d. The club also successfully ran several events for members,in addition to the two club socials and the two public dances, with special thanks given to the following people for organising the events:
Spring Walk Anne Reardon & Grant Thorne
Summer garden Party Summer Outing Simon & Susie Kelly, Andrew Agathangelou Andrew Agathangelou
e. Due to falling numbers, the New Year’s Eve Dance will not take place this year.
- In response to a request from a club member, Dave Greenwood confirmed that the club had spent nearly £800 in free events for club members, which included two social Saturday night dances for club members only, and the Summer garden party.
- A special thank you was given to Linda Gill, who is standing down as the Advanced representative. She has been an active and devoted member of club committee for many years. Nick Bedford was thanked for taking over Linda’s responsibilities for the A section.
- A special thank you was also given to Alan Jackson, who is recovering from health issues, for his longstanding service to the club.
- Thanks were given to all the callers of the club – Phil, Debbie & Becky Peel, Simon & Trudy Fielding, Simon & Susie Kelly, Andrew Agathangelou, and Alan Jackson (recorded dances). Debbie Peel was also further thanked for agreeing to teach the next intake of student dancers.
- Thanks were also given to Michael Ginger and Paul Beddall for their unstinting support at the beginners’ section of the club, and Michael Ginger in particular for stepping in and running the recorded dances at the Challenge section of the club.
5. Treasurers Report (attached)
Colin and Tracy Hawkins distributed copies of the balance sheet as at the end of August 2017. Thesalient points are as follows:
Overall there was a small surplus of £88.75. This is a significant improvement over the last year, when a loss of £1043 was reported at the previous AGM.
The breakdown for the various sections is setout below;
The income has increased by circa £2,800, largely as a result of the increase in the number of paying members from 87 to 118.
Expenditure has increased by circa £1600 ,as a result of the increase in the hall hire expenditure, and an increase in caller fees.
The above figures indicate that there has been a significant fall in the number of members attending the mainstream section of the club, which has reduced the profit by nearly 2/3rds.
The number of dancers attending the Plus section of the club has also fallen, albeit by a smaller amount.
There were no questions arising from the accounts.
6. Section Reports
o Nothing to report from the callers’ representative
7. Other Reports (included in Chairman’s Report)
o New Year’s Eve party o Walk
8. Election of Officers, and
9. Election of Committee
Simon Kelly took over as temporary Chairman.
Single nominations had been received for all posts. It was suggested that all serving and new committee members be elected en bloc. This proposal was agreed unanimously. The following committee members were voted en bloc, with a unanimous show of hands (no objections):
o Chair: Dave Greenwood
o Secretary: Andrew Agathangelou
o Treasurer: Colin and Tracy Hawkins
o Mainstream Rep: Brian O’Ready
o Plus Rep: Elena Hadaway
o A Rep: Nick Bedford
o C Rep: Linda Gill
o Caller Rep: Susie Kelly
o PRO & Webmaster Terry Thirlwell
10. Annual Subscriptions and Weekly Fees
A vote was passed unanimously at the meeting to make the following changes to the fees charged by the club:
- Annual subscription £5 (no change from previous year)
- Weekly fee £4 (an increase of 0.50p from the previous year)
11. Any Other Business
The meeting finished at 9.45pm.
Tudor Squares Annual General Meeting 19 October 2017
Tudor Squares continues to be the biggest square dance clubs in the UK. This is in large part due to the callers who provide their services to the club week by week, which enable the club to offer the range of dance programmes from Basic through to Challenge and the regular of recruitment of new students.
At the last national count in January the club had 130 members, including the callers. However, since then at least a dozen members have stopped dancing, mainly due to ill health. So, continual recruitment of new dancers is vital.
Therefore, hopefully, most of the Beginners will be ready to graduate in December. Then we can recruit a new group of students from January, to be taught by Debbie Peel who has done an excellent job with the current group.
The club is dependent on the membership to enable it, as a whole and each section in particular, to thrive. Members’ enthusiasm and the expertise of callers have meant that the club has been able to run and host two public dances, plus club socials and a variety of non-dance activities.
The club held its annual Plus and Mainstream dances, in October and March respectively. The Mainstream dance with Trevor Day calling attracted enough dancers for six squares, while there were nine squares for Cliff Anderton and Gene Turner calling Plus. Also, in February, Tudor Squares again did the catering for the second Winter extravaganza charity dance in aid of Prostate Cancer UK.
The section representatives were supported by numerous club members in organising these dances. And a great team, primarily from the Plus section, produced 150 ploughman’s lunches, made drinks and set up and packed down the hall for the Winter Extravaganza.
Other events included the:
New Year’s Eve party – Although there were enough people for three squares, most of the evening only two squares were on the floor for Susie & Simon Kelly and Andrew Agathangelou calling Basic through to Advanced. The popularity of this dance has declined, so when the committee reviewed it we decided not to hold one in 2017.
Spring Walk, 6 May – Again Ann Reardon and Grant Thorne volunteered to organise a spring walk, which was centred on Potten End, finishing at Martins Pond, where walkers assembled for lunch. 35 members came and appreciated the fine weather and the scenery during the walk.
Garden party, 11 June – Although numbers were relatively small with two squares, it was a good opportunity for members to relax on a summer afternoon and enjoy some dancing, called by Susie & Simon Kelly and Andrew Agathangelou. Members brought their own food with the club providing cakes. However, it was unfortunate that there was a delay in being allowed in due to the hall making an error in booking.
Summer outing, 16 July – 30 members went to Brighton for the day, going their separate ways on leaving the coach. They reassembled to return to Hemel having variously looked around the Royal Pavilion, shopped in the lanes, walked along the seafront and down the pier, as well as finding somewhere to have lunch and, possibly, an ice cream. The bonus was that it stayed fine all day!
The committee plan the club’s annual programme, ensure that the club is solvent and organise the sections’ dances and club socials, so without them the club wouldn’t function. Therefore, I’d like to thank my fellow committee members for all their hard work throughout the year. However, the committee can’t do everything.
I’d also like to thank members of the club for their readiness to undertake the weekly tasks that enable our sessions to run smoothly, for their willingness to help at events for the benefit of all club members and people’s enthusiastic participation in the club’s activities.
In addition, may I take this opportunity to thank all the callers for their commitment to sustaining square dancing and to this club, and you all personally for your support throughout the past year.
Finally, although at last year’s AGM I said that this would be my final year as chairman, the committee were so concerned that no one else had expressed any interest in taking over, that we had a look at how the role could be reduced in scope. Consequently, the chairman’s role has been pared down to its essentials while other facets have been redistributed. Thus Brian & Pauline O’Ready are taking on events’ co-ordination, Terry Thirlwell is adding publicity to his webmaster brief and Michael Ginger will be the lead support for new Beginners’ groups. Given the reduced span of the role I’m willing to continue as chairman for one more year.
Treasurers Report for AGM October 2017 (Financial Year 1Sep 2015 to 31 Aug 2017) Key Points
- Income less Expenditure shows an overall surplus of £88.75. (last year showed a deficit of £1043). A deficit of £1750 was anticipated for this year, so this surplus is positive news.
- The club continues to maintain a healthy level of funds – just over £8k.
- The net figures per section (excluding Club) are below:
Beginners £919 Mainstream £515 Plus £1436 A Group £52
C Group £184
(last year £357) (last year £1330) (last year £1642) (last year £329) (last year £475)
The deficit for Beginners has increased considerably (due to a full year of sessions this year, compared to about 3.5 months of sessions during last year)
Mainstream and Plus continue to make a surplus, albeit much lower than last year. The deficit for A and C group is considerably reduced (C have voluntarily been paying £4.00 per session for some months).
A reduced net surplus from all the sections (excluding Club) of £796 (last year £1810).
- The net figures for the Club section of the accounts show a reduced deficitof £707 (last year £2853). Much of this reflects reduced expenditure of £1050 on Hall Special, surpluses from socials and the club making fewer charitable donations.
- Receipts from fees (£12,788) are 15% higher than last year. This reflects an increased overall weekly attendance and is a welcome reverse on the decline in attendance experienced last year.
- Regular Hall hire totalled £5961 (a full year of Beginners sessions) and Caller Reg totalled £5365. This is in line with the forecast made last year
- 77% of total club expenditure this year (£11,326) was from Hall Regular and Caller Regular. The main areas where increased Expenditure is expected next year are:
- Increased fees for callers (This was only introduced in May this year) will add approx. £1200 to total fees.
- Anticipated hall hire cost increases.
9. 90% of total club income this year (£13,378) was derived from Fees and Subs. If income from the other less reliable sources (raffles, misc, etc.) are excluded this produced a £1384 deficit for this year.
Tudor Squares AGM 19/10/17 – Section reports Beginners
The students who began to learn square dancing last September have covered all the moves in the Basic and Mainstream programmes and will be offered the opportunity to graduate in December. We are very grateful to Debbie Peel for her teaching, with both patience and perseverance. Nevertheless, it’s been fun learning to dance. Also, we could not have got this far so quickly without ‘angels’ from elsewhere in the club, particularly Michael Ginger and Paul Beddall.
Although we have lost a few dancers who couldn’t come regularly enough or due to ill health, we have been joined by three of the previous cohort of graduates, who wanted to spend more time embedding the moves. Also, while Mainstream dancers were invited to join us during August as we continued to progress, we joined them on the first two Thursdays in September, when Debbie and Phil Peel were on holiday. So, hopefully, the transition to Mainstream will go smoothly but there is an option to continue with the new student group to gain both competence and confidence.
It’s been another satisfactory year. There have been improvements made to the hall which we hope will continue. Phil has balanced his sound system to cope with the echo at the back of the hall, which was a problem for the third and fourth squares earlier in the year.
Sadly, we didn’t have that many squares very often this year. We average around 20 dancers with a low of 13 and a high of 25. This number includes a number of regular Mainstream dancers who also dance Plus. Without their support, Mainstream only dancers would struggle to make two squares on a regular basis.
We held our annual Mainstream dance on Saturday 18th March with Cliff Anderton and Gene Turner calling. There were 84 dancers present from Tudor Squares and at least seven other clubs. This meant that for much of the evening there were nine squares on the floor enjoying the duet’s patter calls and their harmonies for the singers.
Having had the pleasure of their company on several Thursday evenings we look forward to the current Beginners joining us when they graduate. Also, we very much welcome the plan to have two recruitment evenings in January as we have to recognise that the Plus group would like to take more dancers from Mainstream in due course, which would have an impact on numbers. In the short term we would like to invite all dancers from the other sections of the club to join us, once in a while, on a Thursday night to rub the dust off their Mainstream skills.
We are indebted to the Peel family for their calling. Phil as our regular caller, Debbie who has called with Phil on occasions; they sing lovely duets! We give our thanks too to Becky Peel who called twice to the students and Mainstream together while Phil and Debbie were away, once entirely on her own and to Paul Beddall whose calling is improving fast. Thanks are also due to Andrew who gave us a workshop session.
We have an unsung hero in the Mainstream group. His name is Alex Matthews. He arrives early, sets out the chairs and takes the money. He is always cheerful and is an enthusiastic dancer. Thank you Alex.
Having taken over from Norman in unhappy circumstances I thought I had only agreed to lock up each night but I now realise there is much more to being the Mainstream rep. I relish the challenge and I wish personally to thank Elena for her sound advice and to all my fellow dancers for their cheerful friendship towards Pauline and myself.
Firstly, I would like to thank Jo Webb for her service to the group for many years, collecting the weekly fee from dancers, and welcome Grant Thorne to the role.
Plus numbers have declined since last year’s AGM. We now have 2-3 squares rather than 3-4, which is disappointing. A number of dancers have stopped dancing, while others have become erratic in attendance or missed many weeks of dancing due to health issues.
We have tried to use the cards to ensure mixing up the squares, which ensures that dancers of differing abilities dance together. Now that people have got used to it, we will try to do without cards. This will allow people who are not able to dance every tip, to sit out without feeling obliged to dance.
The club held its Plus dance on Saturday 1st October with Trevor Day calling to six squares. It was disappointing that more dancers weren’t present to enjoy his calling. But, unfortunately, these numbers are indicative of the decline in square dancing across the country.
It has been mentioned at Plus, that Mainstream group would welcome more dancers on Thursday night. However, a few dancers regularly attend Mainstream and some already dance twice/three times a week, and are not available to take up the offer.
Our thanks once again go to Susie and Simon Kelly for their calling and dedication to the club, and it’s has been nice to have Andrew Agathangelou calling more often. Dancers vary widely in ability, with some of us needing to learn to dance from different positions to improve the level of dancing. This poses a real challenge for the callers!
Of the 31 dancers in the Group, 8 are also members of the Challenge Section.
Our Friday night dancing at Gadebridge has experienced upheaval since April, due to our Tape Leader, Alan Jackson’s heart operation and subsequent mini-stroke. The Section has been helped by our Callers, Trudy and Simon Fielding and Andrew Agathangelou covering Alan’s evenings. Dancers Nick Bedford, Michael Ginger and Dora Bargent have gripped-up all the administrative side of the Section that is normally carried out by Alan, his wife Jean and myself. We are very grateful to everyone who has stepped-in to keep the Section running.
I am delighted to say that Nick Bedford has agreed to take on the role of Advanced Section representative to the Committee for the coming year.
As in previous years our dancers have enjoyed several square dance holidays and weekends and Club events.
We dance at Kings Langley Community Centre on a Tuesday evening and there are currently 12 dancers and one non-dancing member in the Group. We no longer have the physical presence of a Caller but dance to a variety of Callers via computerised recordings.
When Alan Jackson, our Tape Leader, knew he would be absent due to a heart operation he taught Michael Ginger how to use the Computer system. We are very grateful to Michael for enabling the Section to continue in Alan’s absence.
Once Alan is fit again he and Michael hope to share the presentation of tapes.
In January Michael organised our own day of Challenge dancing with Ian McConnell calling. Our Challenge Dancers have also enjoyed square dance weekends and Club events.