Chairman’s Report 2018
Scout Hall. Plans for the replacement hall are progressing under the expert oversight of Brian (more details after this meeting).
A plan has been agreed Planning permission obtained A “guestimate” obtained A funding application grant application has been submitted
In the meantime, we continue to enjoy a reasonable high level of usage of the Hall by outside organisations, though the opening of the Lighthouse will have had an effect on hirings as the new Lighthouse building does offer excellent facilities which are very attractive (even though their hire rates are considerably higher than ours).
Budworth. The usual summer adjournment of scout activities to the Mere at Budworth was as popular as ever, if not more so, with significant support offered most nights by volunteer parents. Cubs have also been able to enjoy the facilities having held one of their meetings there amply supported by the scouting sailors and Explorers.
All this in the backdrop of a big re-organisation of affiliated organisations within the sailing umbrella under which the group participates in sailing at Budworth. Yvonne and Geoff have had significant input into these re-organisations and have represented the Group during that process. Our thanks to them again for yet another extra-curricular activity.
Camp. A jamboree camp at Tatton was well attended in what was a highly disciplined week of intense activity for all involved. It also proved to be the best spell of weather ever during my 30 year association with the group. Of course, this year I attended only for part of one day to assist with catering – so perhaps a hint for organisers at next year’s camp.
Remembrance Sunday. Again last year the group held an event at Forest Camp at which there was a very good turnout of children. Fewer parents attended but a very poignant and meaningful event, led by Yvonne, was held to mark the anniversary.
Fundraising. We held our usual 4 major fundraising events during the year (Burns’ Night, 2X quizzes and plant sales). Our quizzes are well supported and always prove to be very popular events, nevertheless, take a lot of effort and organisation.
Burn’s Night continues to be our biggest cash earner. At the event in the Community Centre we were again supported by some Explorer Scouts who helped with clearing up and serving. As so often, we were supported by our DC and his wife.
As always, a number of congratulatory messages has been received from attendees and bon viveurs who enjoyed the food, dancing, entertainment and all round joviality of the occasion. Several enquiries have already been received in regard to next event in Jan 2019. More about that later in the meeting.
Leaders. Again, we must not fail to acknowledge the huge amount of work by our leaders not only in attendance at scheduled meeting nights on week after week but also in the time they must commit to planning, maintaining their training and certification and generally running round to see that everything “happens”.
There is now this year a further administrative burden placed upon the organisation by the requirements of GDPR for which Brian appears to have prepared and implemented a very adequate process.
We are very sorry to lose Andrew as a leader in the Cubs’ section. He has volunteered now well over 10 years – long after his own family interests have passed through the section. Travelling from relatively far away to attend and support has not been easy and all his efforts have been very much recognised by members of the Committee and also, hopefully, by all those children and their parents whom he has helped during their early steps in this wonderful organisation.
Beavers: Cyndy, Sue (assistant leader), Hayley (ass leader), Julia (ass leader) Cubs: Cyndy and Yvonne with assistance from Kathryn are helping to run things while new leaders are identified with assistance from the GSL and Lynne. Lyndsey has temporarily stepped down from assisting as she is coping with a very young family and finding it hard to look at anything else. We now also have offer of support from Kim Rowlands and her role will be agreed in the near future. Scouts: Geoff, Katherine, Robert with assistance from Yvonne & James during the summer boating season. Explorers: Cyndy and Richard provide the mainstay of support for Explorers. Richard remains temporarily unavailable to assist while his work takes him so far from home, but hopefully in the future he will be able to return to support in the way he has done in the past. We are fortunate to have such a band of willing, skilful and dedicated volunteers. As every year, on behalf of the Group and the young people of the village and surrounding areas, I thank each of them for their continuing hard work commitment and support and welcome any new or younger members to become involved in this worthwhile and rewarding form of volunteering.
As everyone knows, it is firmly my belief that, while it is imperative that vital training for leaders is undertaken and good records kept, there is still an over-expectation falling upon leaders to maintain certain training accreditations. The organisation MUST make itself aware of the extent to which this is limiting members of the public volunteering to help run the organisation and it MUST re-evaluate the extent to which some of these re-accreditations are justified, required or beneficial.
Last AGM, when Sarah had taken on the role of Secretary, we said that she had had a hard act to follow. Well follow it well she did! But, in addition I extend a special thanks to Sarah, who has very ably supported us while her own personal circumstances have been so very difficult. We are all delighted to have you back helping us in such a vital role.
We must add another thanks to Irene for continuing to assist us so much and, even though she lives so far away in the wilds of Manchester, she continues to be one of our most reliable supporters.
We are also additionally grateful to Brian for his special contributions to the committee and to the work of the Group. We have always worked on the basis that if we get the finances correct, then we can get everything else working well too, but, if the finances are wrong, it is impossible to make anything else work. Brian does a great job for the group,
Cyndy and Rob are working on plans to involve parents and other volunteers to assist at various sessions with the group and we welcome all enquiries to take a fuller role in the running of the various sections.
The past year has been not just a good one, but rather yet another really great one for the group. I hope to continue my association with the group for a long time to come and support leaders and committee members in all their work, but we really do need a new chairman. Volunteers or proposals all welcomed immediately.
KJ Baird Chairman 9 Oct 2018