November '16 - including AGM

November '16 - including AGM

Minutes of the 2016 Byfield RBL Annual General Meeting, combined with our Monthly Branch Meeting, both held on 7th November 2016 in the Lower Annexe of Byfield Village Hall 


Russ advised that this evening’s meeting would first cover any points from our last Branch Meeting that needed airing - but the main business of the evening would be this year’s AGM. However all that would follow our Speaker’s talk, and Russ welcomed Margie Baldwin and asked her to open the session with her presentation.

That pretty much guaranteed the gathering was woken-up! Marg showed slides of a Bounty Bar desert island off NE Madagascar and spoke about everyone’s desire to conserve the wildlife and particularly the reefs in the area, and how she was helping the locals do that. She punctuated her talk by pulling things out of her rucksack and waving them about, including her tropical underwear! The 40-minute session was rounded off by one of our oldest Members, who had been stationed in east Africa, making a comment in Swahili to which Marg responded in that language; the two then had an animated conversation, which only they could understand! Following our thanks and requests to return, Marg then packed her kit and left the assembly to our formal business.


B1. Eydon Standard: Russ explained that the Eydon Standard would be handed over to Eydon church for safe keeping at the Communion Service to be held at 10 am on Sunday 27th November, and said it would be appreciated if Byfield members could attend. It would be formally laid up there later on 7th May 2017.

B2. School Poetry Competition: Russ explained that his original plan of asking Byfield school pupils to take part in another Remembrance poetry competition had to be cancelled because the original period allocated to this had clashed with a four day preparation for an OFSTED visit to the school.

B.2.1 The opportunity would now be taken to invite all schools in the District to take part during 2017, as suggested at our October meeting. More details and plans for this would be discussed and agreed in the New Year.

B3. Meeting Attendance: Prior to the meeting Terry had met one of our Members in Byfield who had explained that although he was a Member, he was unable to attend our meetings because he was otherwise occupied on Mondays. It also transpired he was an ex-serviceman and might be persuaded to become an officer of the Branch if he could attend. Russ then asked the meeting about Members’ availability for Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays but a number said they were already committed to one or two of those days.

B4. Memorial Green: John T said he felt it was a lot of work looking after the flower beds around the memorial itself and thought it would be good idea if these beds were grassed over. The question was asked about how the school children would be able to plant their crosses every year; Tony W said a small slit dug in the turf just before 11th November would resolve that. It was then suggested that the roundels be turfed as well, as maintenance of those was haphazard. Russ and Alan agreed to contact those who were thought to be responsible for maintenance to advise them of the suggestion before contacting the Parish Council about this.

B5 Diary Dates:

Friday 11th Nov. 10.35 School children to plant crosses at Byfield War memorial.

Sunday 13th Nov. Remembrance Sunday 10.00 Byfield; 10.15 at all other churches.

Saturday 26th Nov. Quiz Night - 7 for 7.30 start.

Wednesday 30th Nov. 12.30  Last Wednesday lunch at Royal Oak, Eydon.

Monday 5th Dec. Monthly meeting: talk by Garth Barnard on Local WW2 Airfields.

Saturday 10th Dec. Group 4 band Concert 7.30 pm Daventry Tickets £8 from Alan.

Flag Flying Days: Nov 11th; Nov 13th;  Nov 14th;  Nov 20th




1.   Minutes of the last Annual General Meeting 2nd November 2015 - With a correction of the date of the 2016 AGM, Tony W proposed that the minutes be accepted as a true record, and, seconded by Chris, they were signed by the Chairman.

2.   Matters arising - None

3.   National Conference - It was agreed that we would not be sending any Delegate.

4.   County Conference  14th January 2017 -

1:  Motions - The Chairman explained that we would not be submitting a motion this year, and explained that following last year’s County Conference, Standard Bearers could wear an undated metal poppy badge unless they were on official duty.

2:  Delegate - The Chairman explained that he and the Secretary would be attending.

3:  Donation – Tony W proposed that a donation of £50 be made to the County again this year, seconded by Chris, this was agreed by all members present.

4:  The winners of the War Memorial Competition were announced at this Conference as:

External Joint winners: Brackley & Thrapston. Runner up: Rushden

Internal Winner: Burton Latimer. Runner up: Thrapston

Parish Competition:

External Winner: Creaton

Internal Winner: Hardingstone

5.   President’s and Chairman’s Combined Address:     

Quote: The closing of the Eydon branch has been completed and we welcome them to our branch.  The Standard will be handed to Eydon church for safe keeping on the 27th November. The official laying up will be in May 2017.

We have a membership of 64 which compared to other branches in our District is quite high. With such membership numbers, we really should be able to fill the four posts of chairman, vice-chairman, secretary and treasurer without duplication. That is now of fundamental importance as we have been advised that duplication of posts in a branch is not allowed.

Thanks to Terry our web site is first class.

We have had two fund raising events this year, the Quiz last November and a most enjoyable BBQ in Joy's garden in July. Neither were as well supported as I would have liked but even so raised much needed funds. This meant that we could once again donate £1,000 to the Battle Back Centre. I am looking for your support again at the quiz on the 26th.

The Christmas Dinner at the Windmill in Badby last year was most enjoyable and I am looking forward to this year's at the Fox and Hounds.

We thank the Byfield Parish Council and their contractors for keeping the grass in a very tidy manner at the War Memorial, the green keepers, Tony W, John and Ann T and Vernon for the upkeep of the surrounds, and to those who maintain the beds. And to all those who maintain the Memorials in all the other villages of our District.

John Russell BEM led yet another record breaking Poppy Appeal year (2015-16). It would have been record breaking even without the additional boost of the Eydon group. Thank you John!

With Welfare now centralised we have had few demands, just social visiting.

There have been 7 talks this year plus 1 outing. 

      Talks on:

      Borough Hill, Daventry's high power radio station

      William Rose-Moorhouse V.C.

      Col. Fred Burnaby

      The Breakup of Yugoslavia

      Flying the Tornado

      My father’s journey through WW2

      Reef & Wildlife Conservation in Madagascar

We had a presence at the Byfield Community Day using the County gazebo and we entered a team in the Village Hall quiz. End of quote.

6.   Secretary’s Report

Quote:  The past 12 months have followed the pattern of previous years, with a couple of additional tasks.

Logging correspondence and taking minutes of Branch meetings have been regular monthly jobs.

I have arranged a number of speakers, and kept Terry up to date with photos for the Branch Web site.

I organised our pitch for the Byfield Community Festival and want to say thank you to Vernon for collecting the RBL Gazebo and returning it to the County Office.

I ordered the plaque for Nina’s rose – what should have been a straightforward task became very frustrating when the Daventry cobbler’s supplier misspelt Ken's surname and then somehow the corrected version got lost in the post!

I attended the quarterly Group 4 meetings, usually with Russ, where each Branch makes a report on their last three month's activities. It is useful to listen to and discuss other Branch difficulties, share ideas and learn of interesting speakers who we have quite often invited to our meetings.

Then in November there was the Quiz bar to arrange – quite a task in finding acceptable red and white wines at the lowest possible price so we could maximise the profit – it’s much simpler with the beer. For the last two years, Aldi came to the rescue!

Also for November, there was the Banbury Lane road closure to arrange, though planning for this started early in September because of County Council bureaucracy. End of Quote.

7. Treasurers Report

(a)  Adoption of Accounts. The Branch Treasurer had presented the Annual Accounts to the September Branch meeting and they had been unanimously accepted. On the proposal of John and seconded by Chris, the accounts were unanimously adopted. These are attached. NB: Figures are not disclosed on our Web site; contact The Treasurer for details if required.

The Chairman proposed a warm vote of thanks to the Treasurer.

(b)  Branch Administration Fee. It was proposed from the Chair to follow previous practice and not impose any Branch Administration Fee and, seconded by Tony Webster, this was accepted.

8. Welfare Report

Graham explained there had been very little activity on this front. Chris announced he had been advised by George W that because of his health, this would be the last year of his reading the names of the fallen at the Woodford Memorial.

9. Poppy Appeal Report

John thanked all those who had supported the Appeal last year (2015), and announced he had banked a total of £9,366.24 excluding Gift Aid for that year's Appeal.

10 Election of officers

Russ explained he had been planning to appoint his successor to the position of Vice Chairman so that he could then spend the next twelve months working with that person who would then be ready to take over as Chairman in November 2017. Regrettably however no suitable person had come forward, so Russ agreed to continue for another year.

The Chairman explained that while duplication of Officers was not now permitted, he suggested the following members be initially adopted as Officers, Committee and other appointments en bloc until other nominees could be found:

Office                    Elected

President            Russ Mallace

Chairman           Russ Mallace

Vice Chairman     Tony Webster

Secretary            Alan Baiey

Treasurer            Alan Bailey

Branch Committee

Membership Secretary:   Terry Hoyle

Recruiting Officer:          Terry Hoyle

Welfare Team Leader:    Graham Walker

Poppy Appeal Organiser: John Russell B.E.M.

Parade Marshall:             John Russell B.E.M.

Standard Bearer:            Chris Kiely

Deputy Standard Bearer: Not appointed

Memorial Keepers: Tony Webster, John and Ann Tompkins and Vernon Hurst

Other Appointments:

Chaplain:                      Rev Stevie Cross

Publicity and Web Site:    Terry Hoyle

Vllage Hall Representative:  Graham Walker

Flag Keepers:                 John Russell and Terry Hoyle

Tony Webster proposed that these nominations be accepted, and seconded by David Bradshaw, all were in agreement.

11.  Any Other Business - None

12.   Date and Time of next Annual General Meeting 

Monday 6th November 2017, 8pm, Byfield Village Hall, Lower Annex

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