Log Book‎ > ‎

2017 AGM Minutes

Note of 40th Annual General Meeting of the Spring Grove Morris Men and Kingston Morris
Monday 25th September 2017, 8pm to 9.45pm
St John’s Church, Kingston upon Thames

In attendance were: Steve Nash, Robert Muller, John Curwood, Jane Lowe, Helena Cooper, Sue Benson, Glenis Ward, Frances Stearman, David Seager, Ian Kirkpatrick, Colin Messer, Phil Mundy, Lesley Ralph, Laurie South, Kathy Turner, Alan Bull.
The meeting was chaired jointly by Robert Muller and Steve Nash.

1. Apologies for absence were received from Caroline Edgington, Theresa Ellmers, Kate Wood, Janet Rees and Ania Sanders.

2. Items for consideration for AOB – the meeting decided not to pre-consider items.

3. Minutes of the 39th SGMM/KM AGM were amended to add Lesley and Ian to the list of attendees and then agreed.

4. Matters arising from the minutes
The promotional video was filmed outside The Ram on 12th June.  Robert said that it was still being edited.
Robert said that the paperwork for the transfer of bank accounts was still in progress.  The change to the financial year had been done for this year’s accounts. 
We went to Ely Folk Festival.
The pig came out at the Spring Grove Day of Dance and is now living in the church.  The pavement sign was not used.

5. The following Reports and Accounts were read:
SGMM Squire’s Report – Steve
KM Squire’s Report – Robert
SGMM Bagman’s Report – Phil
KM Bag’s Report – Jane
SGMM Foreman’s Report – Colin
KM Practice Coordinator’s Report – Glenis
SGMM/KM Treasurer’s Report and Accounts – David

6. Survey results were distributed in advance of the meeting. 
There was support for a foreign trip, a folk festival, the JMO Day of Dance in May and for holding a Kingston Morris Day of Dance. 
Some members felt that the practice sessions were repetitive.
Some members would have liked to dance out a wider range of dances.
Most respondents felt that more callers were needed.
Dissatisfaction was expressed with the number of invitations we had to turn down because we couldn’t get a side. 
Some members would have preferred to do more Days of Dance and most respondents would like to do more stands with other sides.

7. Matters arising from the reports and survey
Both Bags stressed the desirability of members indicating their availability early for events.
Jane said that the lack of Days of Dance was because the sides who generally invite us had decided to take a year off, decided to invite a different group of sides or their Day of Dance dates had clashed with other events. 
David said that if the current financial position continued we could not count on continuing to be able to give £1000 as the charitable donation.
Robert thanked Helena for her prompt sorting out of the hacked website. 
Glenis said that the repetitive nature of the practice season was partly due to new members joining late in the year and requests at practice to go through certain dances.
Following on from the question about calling and the comments on the restricted repertoire that we danced out, there was a discussion of the factors limiting the dances we could do.  One problem had been the lack of people willing to call certain dances.  Another was that not all the musicians felt confident in playing all the tunes.  The musicians were pleased that they had been given notice of the dances to be practised but commented that they needed practice playing solo or in pairs, and that dancing musicians were often called upon to dance at practice so were not getting sufficient practice at playing.  There had in the past been a half hour music practice before the dancers arrived, but that did not give practice in the skill of playing for dancing.   It was observed that there was not currently a lead musician and that it might be desirable to have one.

8.  Charitable donation for 2016/2017
A motion was passed to give £1000 to All about Alie as the charitable donation for 2016-17.
Action: David and Robert to arrange donation and publicity

9. Election of officers
SG Squire –  David Seager
KM Squire –  Robert Muller
SG Deputy Squire – John Curwood
KM Deputy Squire – Sue Benson
SG Bag – vacant
KM Bag – Sue Benson
KM/SGMM Treasurer – David Seager
Assistant Treasurer – Phil Mundy
The teaching of dances will be done by members who have agreed to take on responsibility for teaching a tradition or two, and the two Squires will plan the practices together.

10. Practice plan for next season
Action: Squires to liaise, taking note of the survey comments and the music and calling issues in item 7.  It was observed that the number of new members was a strong influencing factor on individual practice structure and the overall planning of the practice season and would not be known until the first practice.

11. Events for next season
Swanage Folk Festival was popular in the survey.  Sultanbury was also much enjoyed and it was suggested that we should do more in the Wimbledon and Sutton direction; we might be on the territory of other sides, but we could involve them. 
Shakespeare Morris, the keepers of the Bidford tradition, would like to meet up with us – they are particularly interested in our Princess Royal jig and The Lass of Richmond Hill.  While they would be happy to come over to see us or meet halfway, Helena suggested that we might prefer to go to Evesham for a weekend and enjoy the delights of The Fleece, Bretforton.
Action – Bags to note in planning next year’s programme

12. Charity for next season
A motion was passed for the Princess Alice Hospice to be our charity for next year.

Colin proposed a change to the criteria for the awarding of baldrics and rosettes to reflect being a social side rather than one concentrating on high performance standards.  Currently the baldrics are awarded for dancing or playing three dances out and rosettes for performing a solo jig as a dancer or as a musician.  Colin suggested that the baldrics could be given for attendance at ten practices and rosettes for doing a job for the side, such as an officer role or arranging an event.
A debate ensued.  Some felt that describing ourselves as a social rather than performance side was defeatist.  Others had not felt like part of the group when they were dancing without baldrics; it was also observed that it might appear to the audience as if they had forgotten their kit.  Others liked the rite of passage aspect of the current arrangement.  Frances commented that she had needed to be proactive in finding out how to achieve baldrics – it was generally agreed that the arrangements should be communicated better to new members.  It was felt that the matter deserved wider and deeper consideration, but indicative votes were taken at the end of the discussion.  A majority favoured giving baldrics before the first dance-out and an overwhelming majority favoured keeping the jig as the criterion for the award of rosettes. 
Action - Jane to request that members communicate their views to the Squires on this issue, along with practice structure and events.