Esperanto-Asocio de Britio 2011 Annual General Meeting

[This is a "stop-press"/placeholder report - a more comprehensive report will be published in or distributed with a future issue of EAB Update]

EAB's 34th Annual General Meeting was held on 10th April 2011 at the Eastbourne College, Eastbourne.

The minutes of the previous AGM, the Trustees' Report [for year ending October 2010] and Financial Report were presented.

The results of the ManCom* election were as follows (respectively votes for, against, abstentions):
[* ManCom= Management Committee, and Trustees of the Association]

Name  For  AgainstAbstain
Ian Fantom 55422
Edmund Grimley Evans67 5 9
Clare Hunter 78 1 2
Tim Owen 79 2 0
Ed Robertson 74 1 6
Michael Seaton 73 1 7
John Wells 77 3 1

Edmund Grimley Evans, Clare Hunter, Tim Owen, Ed Robertson, Michael Seaton and John Wells were duly elected.

As EAB President candidates, Ian Fantom received 7 votes and John Wells received 73 votes. John Wells is thus elected as President.

The winners of the 2010 writing and photo competition were announced:

Minutes of the 34th Annual General Meeting of Esperanto-Asocio de Britio
Sunday 10 April 2011, Eastbourne College, Eastbourne

1. John Wells, President, opened the meeting by paying tribute to the work performed by David Kelso, Hon. Secretary of EAB until his sad disappearance in Italy in November 2010. John Wells led the meeting in a round of applause for David. Those present then observed a brief silence for members deceased since the last AGM.

2. Apologies for absence were received from Marjorie Boulton and Michael Seaton. Forty-two members were present.

3. The minutes of the previous AGM were approved by the meeting with one abstention.

4. The Trustees' Annual Report was presented to the meeting by John Wells.

4.1. Arthur Prent questioned whether Paul Gubbins's suggestion at the previous AGM that members should be asked to give an undertaking about acting in 'the best interests of the association' had been followed up by the Trustees. As it had not been, it was agreed that the Management Committee should discuss this at a later date.

4.2. Arthur Prent queried how far into the future EAB organises events. It was clarified that these are normally arranged at least six months in advance.

4.3. John Wells explained to the meeting that Tim Owen had been co-opted to the Management Committee in November 2010.

4.4. Peter Redfarn enquired whether EAB was planning to do anything for the Olympic Games. Brian Barker explained that he was liaising with the London Esperanto Club in this respect.

The Trustees' Annual Report was accepted by the meeting with three abstentions.

5. Joyce Bunting, Hon. Treasurer, presented the Financial Report. The change from accruals accounting to cash accounting was explained. Continued low investment income had resulted in the association making a small deficit for the year. Several observations were made on the Financial Report.

5.1. Arthur Prent commented that in previous years we had written off a proportion of the lease value in the accounts but that this did not appear to have been done in the current year. Joyce Bunting explained that there is no depreciation in cash accounting. Sally Phillips suggested that we could add an explanatory sentence to the accounts to clarify how many years are left to run on the lease.

5.2. Stephen Thompson drew attention to the fact that publicity expenditure had fallen significantly since 2009 and expressed the opinion that the association should spend a greater proportion of its income on publicity. Brian Barker commented that we were spending less but getting better results.

The Financial Report was accepted by the meeting with one vote against.

6. It was agreed to re-appoint Kingston Smith as the association's Independent Examiner. There was one vote against.

7. It was proposed by the Management Committee to leave the subscription rates for the next financial year unchanged. There was some discussion of this proposal and Joyce Bunting, Hon. Treasurer, reminded the membership that it was possible to make additional donations throughout the year. Arthur Prent commented that the percentage income that charities can reclaim on Gift Aid donations is set to decrease and suggested that members be encouraged to make additional donations to make up for this. It was decided by a vote to leave the subscription rates unchanged. There were six abstentions and two votes against.

8. Arthur Prent and Ivor Hueting were elected as vote-counters. John Wells thanked Geoffrey Greatrex and Joyce Bunting, outgoing trustees not standing for re-election, for the work they had done for the association. Joyce Bunting, in particular, was commended for her 14 years of service to EAB.

9. Ian Fantom read aloud his 200-word candidacy statement that had not been received for publication by the editor of EAB Update. Ian Fantom requested permission to read out a further statement. Permission was refused by John Wells on the grounds that other candidates had not had this opportunity. Voting then took place for the election of the Management Committee for the coming year.

10. During the counting of the votes, comments and suggestions from the membership were invited and discussed.

10.1. A presentation was made to Joyce Bunting to mark her retirement as Hon. Treasurer.

10.2. The winners of the EAB Writing and Photo Competition for 2010 were announced by Ed Robertson.

10.3. Brian Barker explained the options for publicising Esperanto during the 2012 Olympic Games in London. Elizabeth Stanley appealed for volunteers to help incorporate Esperanto into a knitting project for the Paralympics.

10.4. Miland Joshi reminded everyone of the importance of singing La Espero during congresses. Opinions were expressed via a (non-binding) vote, in which more were For singing than Against. It was suggested that if the hymn is to be sung there should be proper preparation for it, including backing music.

10.5. . Mike Wade suggested the possibility of interesting parents' groups in Esperanto.

10.6. Jack Warren reminded people that a successful music workshop had taken place at Barlaston during the Ni Festivalu weekend and would hopefully be repeated in 2012.

11. The meeting reconvened after a short break to receive the election results. The six candidates with more votes for than against were declared elected:

Name  For  AgainstAbstain
Ian Fantom 55422
Edmund Grimley Evans 67 5 9
Clare Hunter 78 1 2
Tim Owen 79 2 0
Ed Robertson 74 1 6
Michael Seaton 73 1 7
John Wells 77 3 1

The results for president were as follows:

Name  For  
Ian Fantom 7
John Wells 73

There was one abstention. John Wells was declared elected.

12. There being no other business, the meeting closed.

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