Constitution

1) Name, aims and objectives

The name of the group shall be “Chorley in The Great War”.
Its aim shall be to research, study, record, publish, exhibit, promote and / or preserve (when and where possible) the history and involvement of the town and borough of Chorley in The Great War (1914 – 1919). It may purchase, acquire or loan related artefacts, as well as commission, fund, erect and / or support any suitable memorial, commemoration or exhibition with a Chorley connection, in or outside the U.K.

2) Membership

Membership is open to all those, aged 16 and over, who support the aims and objectives of the group. Full participation and voting rights at meetings, extra-ordinary meeting and the annual general meeting being granted to members who have paid their annual subscription.
A member can be refused or removed from membership if, in the opinion of the Executive Committee, he or she brings the group or its activities in to disrepute; or he or she promotes the interests / aims / agenda of another organisation above, or to the detriment of, the group.
The Secretary / Treasurer shall keep an up to date register of members.

3) Life Membership

Life membership shall be granted to Stephen Eric Williams (hereafter known as “The Founder”) for a one off payment of £40. He will be entitled to serve on the Executive Committee for ten years from the date of the formation of the group. However, he may be removed from office during the term by a majority vote of members at the Annual General or an Extraordinary General Meeting, if he:
(i) becomes incapable by reason of mental disorder, illness or injury of managing his own affairs; (ii) be convicted of a criminal offence involving dishonesty or deception; (iii) is absent without permission of the Executive Committee from all their meetings held within a period of six months and the Committee resolve that his or her office be vacated; or (iv) notifies to the Executive Committee in writing a wish to resign (but only if enough Executive Committee members will remain in office when the notice of resignation takes effect to form a quorum at meetings).
The Founder, whilst he is a member, shall have the right to veto or sanction any award of Life Membership, or the introduction or appointment of a President of the group (such post shall always be non-Executive).

4) Subscriptions

Annual subscription shall be £10.00 per person and be set at the annual general meeting by all members
voting by a simple majority for proposals made at the meeting.

5) Initial governance & Executive Committee

The group shall be governed, initially, by an Executive Committee of five people, appointed by the Founder. It shall comprise of the Founder (who shall be its first Chairman) and four others, provided they have paid the annual subscription or Life Membership fee. The first Executive Committee shall serve until the third Annual General Meeting of the group; they shall, annually, appoint a Chairman and a Secretary / Treasurer from its ranks.
Members of the first Executive Committee may remove one or more of its number if: (i) he / she becomes incapable by reason of mental disorder, illness or injury of managing his own affairs; (ii) be convicted of a criminal offence involving dishonesty or deception; (iii) is absent without permission of the Executive Committee from all their meetings held within a period of six months and the Committee resolve that his or her office be vacated; or (iv) notifies to the Executive Committee a wish to resign.
The Executive Committee shall ensure the on-going direction and leadership of the Group, setting out any aims, agenda or programme on an annual or longer-term basis. They shall meet at their discretion and three Committee members must be present at such a meeting to form a quorum. In the event of an equal vote on any issue, the Chairman of the meeting shall have a second or casting vote.
The Executive Committee shall be mindful of the thoughts and opinions of members; decisions made by the Executive Committee shall be binding on all members of the group.
At their discretion, the Executive Committee shall make appropriate representations on issues affecting the group and its stated objectives (per clause 1), to any person, group, organisation or other body.
The Secretary / Treasurer shall keep the minutes of each and every meeting, and shall keep up to date (and separate) records of all monies received and spent by and on behalf of the group. The Committee shall keep and make available to members up to date records of historical data, together with details on how access can be obtained to same.

6) Governance

Governance of the group from the third Annual General Meeting shall be by an Executive Committee of five people, duly elected by the membership. Members shall be eligible to serve on the Executive Committee provided they have paid the annual subscription or have Life Membership. The Committee shall comprise of two Officers (the Chairman and a Secretary / Treasurer), the Founder and two others; should the Founder be elected to the position of Chairman or Secretary / Treasurer, the committee shall comprise of him, an Officer and three others.
Members shall propose and second candidates at the meeting and such candidates must indicate (verbally or in writing) their willingness to serve. Save for the Founder (and conditions there applied [as defined in clause 3]), each Committee member shall serve for one year and may seek re-election at the next annual general meeting.
The Executive Committee may remove one or more of its number if: (i) he / she becomes incapable by reason of mental disorder, illness or injury of managing his own affairs; (ii) be convicted of a criminal offence involving dishonesty or deception; (iii) is absent without permission of the Executive Committee from all their meetings held within a period of six months and the Committee resolve that his or her office be vacated; or (iv) notifies to the Executive Committee a wish to resign.
Should a member of the Executive Committee resign during their term of office, the Committee shall co-opt a group member accordingly and he or she shall serve until the next annual general meeting.
The Executive Committee shall meet at their discretion and three Committee members must be present at such a meeting to form a quorum. In the event of an equal vote on any issue, the Chairman of the meeting shall have a second or casting vote.
The Executive Committee shall serve the group and ensure the on-going direction and leadership of same, setting out any aims, agenda or programme on an annual or longer-term basis. It shall be mindful of the thoughts and opinions of members; decisions made by the Executive Committee shall be binding on all members of the group.
At their discretion or as directed by the membership, the Executive Committee shall make appropriate representations on issues affecting the group and its stated objectives (per clause 1), to any person, group, organisation or other body.
The Secretary / Treasurer shall keep the minutes of each and every meeting, and shall keep up to date (and separate) records of all monies received and spent by and on behalf of the group. The Committee shall keep and make available to members up to date records of historical data, together with details on how access can be obtained to same.

7) Meetings, Extra-ordinary General Meeting and rule changes

The Executive Committee shall arrange meetings of the group when and where appropriate to research, study, visit, present and / or exhibit topics; receive presentations by invited guests / speakers and to disseminate information accordingly. Members who have paid their annual subscription shall be entitled to free or discounted entry to such meetings, visits or activities.
The Secretary / Treasurer shall convene an extra-ordinary general meeting within 28 days of receiving written notification and reason for same, duly signed by a minimum of twelve members.
Rule changes shall be considered from the third Annual General Meeting and subsequent annual general meetings thereafter, and must receive two thirds of the votes of membership present to affect such change. However, clauses (3) ‘Life Membership’, (6) ‘Governance’ and (7) ‘Meetings’ may not be considered for change until the ninth Annual General Meeting.
The Secretary / Treasurer shall advise members of the date of the annual general meeting no later than 45 days prior to same and any proposed rule changes must be received by the Secretary in writing at least 28 days before the annual general meeting and be duly signed by the proposer and seconder.

8) Annual General Meeting

The group shall hold its first Annual General Meeting in 2015 and annually thereafter, no later than the end of February each year.
The business of such a meeting shall be as follows:
a) The Secretary / Treasurer shall read the minutes of the previous annual general meeting and they shall be approved as a true and correct record.
b) The Chairman shall give a report on the activities of the group during the previous 12 months and set out a programme for the following year.
c) The Secretary / Treasurer shall submit a written financial statement and annual audited accounts for formal adoption by members present. The Secretary / Treasurer (and Auditor, if present) shall be obliged to answer relevant questions relating to group’s financial situation and accounts.
d) Members shall set the annual subscription (as per clause 4).
e) Members shall consider and vote on any rule amendments (per clause 7).
f) Members shall appoint an Auditor (such person shall not be a member of the Group).
g) Members shall vote for an Executive Committee (as per clause 6).
h) All members shall have the opportunity to raise any relevant issue(s) at the end of the annual general
meeting but the Chairman has the right to rule on the relevance and / or validity of any item being discussed; his / her decision being final.

9) Miscellaneous

The group’s financial year shall run from 1st January to 31st December each year.
The group shall open a Bank Account in its name in the United Kingdom for the sole purpose of holding funds for the group. Each cheque raised by the group shall be signed by a minimum of two members of the Executive Committee and the said signatories shall initial the corresponding entry in the cheque book.
The group shall always hold suitable insurance to cover any liabilities or eventualities. Any matters not covered in these rules shall be dealt with by the Executive Committee.

20th October 2013