Minutes of the Branch Meeting held on 1st August 2016 in the Lower Annexe of Byfield Village Hall.
1A. CHAIRMANS OPENING REMARKS:
Russ welcomed Members attending but there were no specific announcements to be made.
B: MATTERS ARISING:
B1. Women’s Section: A letter had been sent to all Byfield & District Women Members saying they are welcome to come to our meetings and/or join our Branch. The letter explained that the RBL’s National Women’s Section will continue even if the local Byfield Branch does not.
B2. Summer Barbecue: Will be held on Sunday, August 7th at 12.30 pm at Joy's home in Woodford Halse. The Gas Barbecue has already been collected by Russ from Chris L. Those helping on Saturday, August 6th to meet at 10.00 am at North entrance to Church to load 4 large tables plus 2 smaller ones on to Laurie's van. (Russ, Terry, John R, John T & Vernon)
B3. Website Update: Terry reported that the Website had been upgraded and is now much clearer. Once again he called for more contributions and stories from Members. Our Website address is: http://branches.britishlegion.org.uk/branches/byfield or type “British Legion Byfield” or just “Byfield Legion” into your search engine and “up it will pop”.
B4. Eydon Standard: We discussed how and when to lay up the Eydon Standard. It was agreed that the Rev Stevie should be consulted by our Chairman and of course the wishes of Eydon Members must be taken into consideration. It was suggested that this event should be incorporated in a normal Benefice Service early in the New Year but possibly with the addition of refreshments afterwards. Alan would be asked to take photographs at the event.
B5 Lunchtime meetings for RBL Members: It was confirmed that the first Byfield RBL lunch time social Meeting was to be at the Cross Tree tavern in Byfield on Wednesday 31st, commencing at 12.30pm. No need to book. Standard pub menu Light bites would be available, or more substantial food if required.
B6. Festival of Remembrance tickets: The annual draw for RBL Branches’ one family (two-person only) ticket to the evening event had passed without tickets for our Branch. However tickets for the matinee can still be obtained on a “first come” basis by ‘phoning 020 7589 8212, by visiting the Royal Albert Hall Box Office or via the RAH Web site, or even by postal application; they go on-sale at 0900 on 1st September.
Bb: NEW MATTERS:
Bb1: Byfield Community Festival 17thSeptember: The Chairperson of the Byfield PTA is organizing this in collaboration with the Byfield Village Club. The event will be held on The Brightwell recreation ground by Byfield Village Hall.
Any individual or organization who wished to participate could have a stand, with an associated entry in The Byfield Community Festival directory, for a total cost of £15 per stand.
It was agreed Byfield RBL should be present as part of our recruiting drive and general fund raising activity. The RBL Gazebo wikl be available. We will need to fetch and return that to County. The Festival Committee will help erect it if required. Two Members are needed to man the stand; Vernon immediately volunteered, so one more person was therefore needed; unfortunately several members who would have normally supported this would be away at the time of the event.
Photos of the festivities, particularly those including our stand - with an event background (e.g. behind those cavorting in bubbles playing football) would be sought by Terry Hoyle to include on our Web site.
Bb1.1: Laurie suggested that the Defibrillator Group could join RBL in the RBL Gazebo. Byfield has recently purchased two Defibrillators to be strategically placed in the village; their presence and personnel trained to use them needed publicising. These high-tech devices should be an attraction and would bring visitors onto our stand, so this suggestion could be of great benefit to both groups; Laurie, who is part of the volunteer DeFrib team, will investigate.
C1. DACT Membership AGM – 9thAugust: Russ will try to go. There was a discussion on whether we should keep up our Membership; it was decided that it was just the kind of organization we should be supporting; the cost is £25 per year. (DACT = Daventry Area Community Transort).
C2. Nomination Forms for County Chair & Vice: There were no requests for these from Byfield & District. Both existing officers are standing down but current Vice may offer to be Chair.
C3. Corporate Strategy Briefings: An invitation had been received to attend a Conference on this subject at Milton Keynes on Aug 6th under banner of RBL South East Midlands area. Unfortunately, no one from our Branch was available to go on that date.
C4. Membership Update: The Membership page on the RBL National Website is now frozen while next year’s cards are rolled out. We have no membership details to be altered.
C5. Flyer from Burma (Myanmar) Travel Company, Australia: No interest was expressed at this meeting but prices sounded attractive. Details available from our Secretary.
D1. There were no transactions in July. The £500 agreed at the June meeting for transfer to the BFI will be made after the Accounts have been audited. The audit is expected to be conducted without comment – we are healthy and in the black.
E. POPPY APPEAL
E1. Despite their promises, John has still not been contacted by Headquarters about his authorization as Poppy Appeal Organiser for our Branch; John has been our very efficient PAO for years.
E2. The financial situation is as reported at the July meeting.
G. WELFARE – BRANCH COMMUNITY SUPPORT:
G1. The Chairman asked Members to let him know of any visits made to any service or ex-service personnel and their families during the last month, as he is now required to keep a record. This will be on the agenda every month. There were no cases for Graham to report at this meeting.
H. ANY OTHER BUSINESS:
H1. Possible Future Speaker: Peter Stratton from Towcester on Northampton Railways.
H2. Proposed visit to National Memorial Arboretum: to attend the daily Service commemorating the Battle of the Somme and visit displays etc relating to this - suggested by Vernon at our last meeting.
Russ will email members with choice of dates and give Vernon’s details for them to reply to if they want to go. Dates are: Wed 7thth or Thurs 8th Sept leaving 8.30 am.
H3. Flowers around War Memorial: John T reported that lobelia plants were not looking good. Vernon suggested fertilizing might help. If not winter pansies could be planted in their place.
For providing water from their outside tap the family nearby are to be thanked with chocolates, a bottle from VH & JT - and a card sent from the RBL by Russ.
H4. RBL Quiz this Autumn: Date and details to be confirmed at next meeting and consideration given to widening invitations to other villages. Suggested Battle Back Centre could enter a team and inform people at the evening what the Centre does for injured and disabled Service men and women. All in aid of publicising what RBL does.
J. FLAG FLYING DAYS: None scheduled until November.
The next meeting will be held on Monday 5th September in Byfield Village Hall’s lower annex. Andy Tennent will speak.