Minutes of the Branch Committee Meeting held on 30th January 2019 at Hinton House Farm Cottages, Byfield & those of the Branch Meeting in Aston-le-Walls’ Village Hall on 5th February2019
A. CHAIRMANS OPENING REMARKS: At the Tuesday 5th February Meeting, Russ welcomed our Speaker, Richard Woodcock, who told us about the Cuban Revolution. Richard is a retired Inspector of Police in Warwickshire and now spends his time fundraising for Mencap (see Item D.2 later herein) by cycling the world. He has visited 77 countries doing that and Cuba was on his list for 2015, about which he told us - see our "who has spoken" page.
A.1 Previously, at the Committee Meeting, Russ commented on the Minutes of Branch Meeting held on 7th January 2018 that with the proviso that the figures under Item 8 (Finance) recorded in the minutes of the Branch Meeting held on 4th December 2018 were to be checked against those of item 9 (Finance) at the Branch Meeting held on 7th January 2019 because of a £90 discrepancy, those latter Minutes were otherwise approved and signed.
Secretary's Note: The anomalous £93.50 has since been satisfactorily resolved.
B. MATTERS ARISING from previous Meeting’s Minutes:
B.1 RSA Templeton - Our NZ twin: All is quiet down under. Joy reports that at a forthcoming meeting, a presentation is to be made to her father, their only remaining WW2 Veteran, which we hope to hear about.
B.2 Alan Kirton’s Funeral: Russ reported that the family were pleased to see three Byfield members attend Ashby St. Leger’s church to represent our Branch, where Alan’s brother had served for many years. Alan had been an active member of Braunston Branch.
B.3 The Buck Brass Ensemble: local lad and graduate of the Royal Academy of Music Richard Buck together with three friends gave a short concert in Byfield’s Holy Cross Church on 6th January. Their retiring collection was donated to the Branch, which swelled our coffers by £255.
B.4 Fête dates: As yet only two dates had been set, Aston-Le-Walls 22/06/19 (1.30-4pm), and Woodford Regatta, 28/06/19. Eydon’s was expected to be 01/09/19 but had yet to be confirmed. There had been no response from other sources except that Boddington expected to hold another vintage weekend this year.
C.1 RBL e-magazine: Russ asked if all were receiving the RBL e-magazine by e-mail and all responded in the affirmative. Russ then skipped through the various items in the latest issue but none raised significant comment.
D.1 Current Position: In the absence of David, this is understood to remain healthy. See hard copy of circulated Minutes for the figures.
D.2 Charitable donations: In view of the above figures and on the assumption that they are within a few percent of the actual situation, Russ Proposed that £500 be donated to The Battle Back Centre and another £500 to Galanos House. This was Seconded by Alison and agreed by all. That motion was put to the Branch Meeting of 5th February and acceptance was proposed by John and seconded by Alison and was agreed by all present. In addition it was proposed that a donation from our "Speaker Fund" (a private amount not part of Legion funds) should be made to Mencap to thank Richard for his enlightening talk about Cuba, especially as Richard only requires personal reimbursement for travelling for his efforts.
D.3 Recruitment funding? It was agreed that some of our funds could be so allocated. See item 9.3 later herein.
E. WELFARE: Alison made one visit this month and Vernon had tried unsuccessfully to contact Dougie, No other visits had been reported.
Secretary's Note: Sadly Dougie passed away last week. As a tribute, see his Gorilla Gorilla story herein.
F. POPPY APPEAL: At the Branch Meeting on 5th February John reported that he had now banked £12,673.09. He had written a letter of thanks to his cohorts around the District, without whom he could not operate. He also confirmed we were supporting Byfield and Woodford Post Offices by depositing cash, which made-up two thirds of the amount banked, through them. He had visited Byfield PO on 21 occasions and Woodford 12 to make those deposits.
G.1 Current Branch Members: HQ had at last adjusted our list to remove our phantom Member. However they still failed to realise that he wasn’t a new Member but had been in the RBL for thirty years. Although we have had some correspondence with our MSO about this, now the numbers are right (70), it’s probably best to let sleeping dogs lie.
G.2 Currently we are still courting two people in the hope they will take-up Membership.
G.3 Terry reiterated that this year’s recruitment campaign would concentrate on face-to-face methods, hence our desire to attend village fêtes and other events (see item 1.4 previously herein). To assist with this and to negate the necessity of booking, collecting and returning the County gazebo, Terry proposed we purchase our own. The budget for this should be around £200; a firm proposal will be made to the next Committee Meeting. Apparently there is a company in Banbury that provides gazebos that has a Byfield connection. Alison will obtain details.
H. ANY OTHER BUSINESS
H.1 The RBL had requested stories from veterans who had wartime experiences coinciding with D-Day, 06/06/1944. Terry had circulated that request to all e-mail connected Members. Anyone wishing to participate should send their stories to: PRTeam@britishlegion.org.uk Joy commented that her niece had written about her father (see Item 4.1 previously herein) and that might provide something suitable for submission.
H.2 Earlier this month Russ had to report the sad death of Ms. Snook, active Member of the now disbanded Byfield RBL Women’s Section and wife of one of our Members who had been very active in the past. There will not be a funeral to attend but there will be a memorial service sometime late February.
H.3 BBQ Date: Joy agreed that she was willing to host this year’s BBQ, the date for which was agreed to be Sunday 21/07/19.
H.4 Russ asked Terry to ensure that Ian Byrnes at County was aware of our Branch Meeting’s dates.
H.5 Alan had provided Russ with details of another Speaker, Roger Cragg, who had a wealth of tales to tell. Roger only charges for travelling expenses for his talks. From the list provided we selected “The history of transport in the West Midlands”, which includes canals, railways and roads over this past two hundred years. Russ will ask Alan to “book him”.
H.6 We spoke of future venues for our lunches. Terry said he thought that The Plough at Boddington might be open for lunches soon and Vernon said that The Red Lion in Hellidon’s car park was being refurbished, so that might re-open soon too. All will keep an eye out and report back.
H.7 Graham commented that on a recent visit to Market Bosworth in west Leceistershire he had noted how the base of their War Memorial was covered with wreaths. They were from all sections of the village including the village shop, pub and clubs. Graham suggested we make it more widely known that people and organisations in our District other than those directly connected with the Legion could lay wreaths if they wished. It was agreed we should do that and will discuss how to promote that at our next Committee meeting.
J. DATES OF NEXT MEETINGS:
J.1 Branch: Tuesday 5th February Aston le Walls Village Hall 8pm Speaker Richard Woodcock on ‘The Cuban Revolution’ Refreshments will be BYO. THEN Monday 4th March 8pm in Byfield Village Hall's Meeting Room. Our Speaker will be David Morse, talking about the Warwickshire Home Guard; we'll gather before that in the Cross Tree.
J.2 Committee: Wednesday 27th February, 1030, Russ’s place.
J.3 Lunch: Wednesday 27th February 12.30, The Griffin Inn, Chipping Warden.
Flag Flying Days February/March 6 Feb. Her Majesty’s Accession
19 Feb. Birthday Duke of York
10 March Birthday Earl of Wessex
11 March Commonwealth Day