Present: John Isaac, Chairman, and 48 members

Welcome and Greetings

John Isaac welcomed everyone, particularly new members, to the 33rd AGM of the Friends of Torbay, held during the 48th Torbay Musical Weekend. Our President, Peter Gammond, and his wife Anna, had sent their greetings and best wishes. Unfortunately advancing years prevented them from attending. The meeting extended a particular welcome to our Vice-President, John J Davis.

1. Apologies

Greetings and apologies had been received from a number of people who had been unable to join us for the weekend, and also from residents who were unable to make the meeting:

Diana & Trevor Board, Jenny Buckland, Sheila Carr, Katrina Miller, Paul Miller & Mary Naylor, Lynne Plummer, Brian Pugh, Thelma & Roderick Shaw, Linda Stevens.

2. Minutes and Matters Arising

The minutes of the 32nd meeting were taken as read.

With respect to the post-meeting note about the possibility of a raffle, the committee would be happy for a raffle to be run, provided someone came forward to do so.

3. Chairman’s Report

John Isaac reported that planning for this year’s weekend had been going well until the end of June – when the roof fell in! He was informed that the Palace Hotel, where we had met for 43 years, would be closing in just one month’s time at the end of July. Some very rapid action was required to ensure that we had a hotel to meet in. Our thanks were due to the Grand Hotel for being available. In fact, this was the one weekend when the Grand had the necessary number of rooms free to meet our requirements.

Maureen Greenhouse had once again put together an excellent programme, of which the recital by the trio from Primavera was a highlight.

Gillian Babbs continued to keep our finances under very strict control.

Many thanks were due to the Technical Team of Mike Price, John Walker, Paul & Veronica Whittle, and Larry Napthine (website). Without their efforts, particularly in a new environment, we simply could not have our weekend.

The shop made a significant contribution to our finances and many thanks were due to those who volunteered to help there: Kevin Ryland, Barbara Maw, Valerie Evans and Evelyn Isaac.

The level of donations of CDs was an indication of the importance members attached to the weekend. Many thanks were due to those who had made donations, particularly Roderick & Thelma Shaw (sadly, Roderick was now in a care home in Norwich) and Katrina & the late Barry Miller (Barry’s sudden passing had been a great shock to everyone). These two donations amounted to over 1,500 CDs.

Particular thanks were due to Richard Stevens for stepping in to take over the photographer’s duties.

The friendships made at Torbay were very important to everyone, particularly those who had been through difficult times in the past year.

4. Financial Report and Accounts

Gillian Babbs reported that last year we showed a deficit of precisely £1.54 – effectively break-even. Our reserves were sufficient to fund at least one year’s operations. There had again been no need to call on our guarantors. The committee were very keen to keep the subscription at £50 for as long as possible.

Cost control was very important. It was very helpful that many members were able to accept electronic communications (but we were happy to continue with postal communications for those who preferred that).

Maintaining, and then increasing, our numbers was critical. We were very grateful to those who had distributed flyers through local recorded music societies. Despite much local publicity, the number of people from the Torbay area buying day tickets had been disappointing this year. On the other hand, many thanks were due to Rosemary Frischer and the Music Club of London who had encouraged more than a dozen people to come. Gillian asked everyone to consider who among their friends might be interested in coming.

The meeting then unanimously adopted the accounts.

5. Appointment of Accredited Person to Certify the Accounts

Bernadette Slatford was unanimously appointed as the accredited person to certify the accounts.

6. Election of Committee and Officers

Ian Bailey had kindly offered to join the committee and was elected with acclamation.

The existing members of the committee were unanimously re-elected, so the committee now comprised;

Chairman John Isaac

Treasurer & Membership Secretary Gillian Babbs

Programme Secretary Maureen Greenhouse

Member Kevin Ryland

Member Ian Bailey

AGM Secretary Chris Babbs

Other volunteers to join the committee would be extremely welcome, as would ideas for promoting membership, programme items etc.

7. Ideas And Suggestions

Fraser Smith paid tribute to the quality of the audio equipment – coupled with a vote of thanks to Mike Price – and sought an assurance that this could continue. John Isaac echoed the thanks to Mike and said that he could not see any reason for the quality of equipment not to continue at the current level. He had himself brought some additional equipment in case back-up was needed. But we did need a back-up to Mike Price.

Tony Walker spoke for all in expressing thanks to the committee for producing an excellent weekend, particularly given the change of hotel. A smooth transition had been achieved.

John Isaac said that inevitably there had been some teething problems in the new environment. Balancing the need for people to be warm enough, without draughts, in the main room, whilst maintaining enough ventilation, had been a challenge.

Dave Roberts repeated his offer to put material about the weekend in the magazine of the British Phonograph Society.

David Wherrell regretted the demise of the Federation of Recorded Music Societies’ weekend in Daventry. He hoped that the members of local societies present could assist with efforts to revive it.

Di Lewis was very grateful that we continued to provide postal communication to those who needed it.

Maureen Greenhouse was also very grateful for the suggestions for presentations which she had been able to include in this year’s programme. She would be very pleased to receive more suggestions for 2018. More video content seemed to be appreciated.

8. Conclusion

There being no further business, John Isaac closed the meeting with a number of reminders to members:

- That they should buy as many CDs as possible (!);

- That badges and chains should be returned on departure;

- That questionnaires should be completed and returned – the feed-back they contained was invaluable;

- That everyone should note next year’s dates – 16th-19th November 2018 – and bring their friends!

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Record of the 33rd Annual General Meeting

held at the Grand Hotel, Torquay,

at 9.30am on Sunday 19th November 2017