ESPERANTO-ASOCIO DE BRITIO Registered Charity no: 272676
(also known as Esperanto Association of Britain, EAB, Springboard, Esperanto-GB.)

Trustees' Report
for the year ended 31st October 2011

The trustees present their report with the financial statements of the charity for the year ended 31st October 2011. A full copy of the report and financial statements may be obtained from Esperanto House.
[This report was published in EAB Update No. 57 (April-June 2012)]

Trustees

The Management Committee of the Association are the trustees of the charity. Those who served from 1 November 2010 to 31 October 2011 were: John Wells (President), Edmund Grimley Evans (Vice- President), Clare Hunter (Hon. Treasurer from 10 April 2011). Joyce Bunting, Geoffrey Greatrex and David Kelso served until 10 April 2011. Tim Owen served from 25 November 2010, and was appointed Honorary Secretary from 10 April 2011. Ed Robertson and Michael Seaton also served from 10 April 2011.

The Association was deeply saddened in November 2010 by the disappearance of David Kelso from his home in Calabria, Italy. During the AGM at the British Congress in Eastbourne, President John Wells led the meeting in a round of applause to pay tribute to David and the work he performed for the Association. Tim Owen was co-opted to the Committee on 25 November 2010 to assist with the volume of work in David's absence.

Staff and Appointees

Research & Development Coordinator: Angela Tellier. Office Manager: Viv O'Dunne. Admin. Assistant: Emma Hudson. Publicity Co-ordinator: Brian Barker. Honorary Librarian: Geoffrey King. Editor of La Brita Esperantisto: Paul Gubbins. Compiler of La Brita Esperantisto: Simon Davies. Editor of EAB Update: Geoffrey Sutton. Webmaster: Bill Walker. Accountant and Independent Examiner: N. Brooks, Kingston Smith, Devonshire House, 60 Goswell Road, London, EC1M 7AD.

Objects of the Esperanto Association of Britain (EAB)

To advance the education of the public in the international language Esperanto in the furtherance of international communication without discrimination, and of the natural right of all people and peoples, their languages and cultures, to be treated equally.

Public Benefit

In setting objectives and planning activities, the trustees have given consideration to the Charity Commission's general guidelines on public benefit, and in particular to guidance on advancing education. EAB does not exclude anyone for any reason.

Summary of Main Achievements During the Year 2010-2011

Education

All Springboard pilot schools continued to run well, with one new school on board from January 2011. The independent evaluation of the Springboard project being undertaken by Manchester University is still ongoing. The fifth year report is expected at the end of 2011. Courses and examinations continued to have a steady, if small, uptake.

Residential courses

A successful 'Ni Festivalu' and 'Drondo' weekend was held in January 2011. The addition of 'Ni Muzikumu', a song-translation workshop run by Jack Warren was particularly popular. 'Somera Festivalo' took place in August as usual, and positive feedback was received from all who attended. A further 'Drondo' and a particularly successful 'Course-You-Can' were held in October 2011. It was encouraging to see so many beginners coming to Barlaston for the first time.

Publishing

A few items from the Butler Library, including some old issues of The British Esperantist, were scanned as an experiment in digitisation.

Publicity

The Language Show took place over three days in October 2011. The Association is indebted to the volunteers who organised and manned the stand. Visitors were offered a free CD, A Taste of Esperanto, as well as a range of leaflets. The team also secured a slot for a 'Taster Course', which was very well attended.

EAB had a prominent presence at the International Language Festival which took place at the University of Sheffield in February 2011. Members of EAB were actively involved with the organisation of the Festival, and six taster classes in Esperanto took place over the course of the weekend.

A great number of radio interviews have taken place during the year, for which we are indebted to the hard work of Brian Barker. Notable successes included an interview with Magnus Hennoch on the BBC television Breakfast programme and a segment on Radio 4's Today programme featuring Bill Chapman. Favourable articles also appeared in The Daily Telegraph and The Economist.

A new EAB letterhead was designed by Tim Owen. The EAB website has been updated to reflect the new logo and colour scheme and integrate the Twitter feed into the homepage. The Esperanto UK page now has 583 fans on Facebook, while the Twitter feed has 436 followers.

British Esperanto Congress

A successful congress took place in Eastbourne in April 2011, attended by around 80 Esperantists. During an opening ceremony in Eastbourne Town Hall, participants were welcomed by the Deputy Mayor and the local MP. The programme included a wide range of talks and lectures on the congress theme 'Lighthouses, Lights and [a topic which only loosely translates as] Luminaries'.

Butler Library

The detailed library catalogue now contains approximately 7,100 items. The classification system has been updated to comply with industry standards. Wi-Fi reception in the library has been improved and a laptop is now available to enable visitors to browse the online catalogue.

Plans for 2012 and beyond

Future of Wedgwood Memorial College

Stoke-on-Trent City Council continued to discuss the future of the college during the year. EAB was represented on their Steering Group, which ultimately recommended that the running of the college be transferred to a charitable trust via a Community Asset Transfer. Post year end, the council rejected the recommendation of the Steering Group and included the closure of the college in their proposed budget for 2012-13. The Trustees have sought legal guidance about how the proposed closure might affect EAB.

Membership

Life members 22, full members 321, family members 12, supporters 43. Total: 397.

A few members of venerable age died during the year. New recruits and people re-joining after some years' absence were welcomed.

Members and supporters receive EAB Update bulletin (English and Esperanto) quarterly. Full members also receive La Brita Esperantisto - an all- Esperanto jounral - twice a year, and are automatically affiliated to Universala Esperanto-Asocio. Full members are entitled to vote at the AGM. The modest subscriptions have not increased for several years. Membership services include assistance with payments to international Esperanto events via the UEA credit system.

Financial Review of the Year

Income

Income is derived from investments, membership subscriptions, sales, bequests and donations, and spent on the Association's charitable objects. The unfavourable economic climate has continued to result in low investment income. £100k has been transferred from the CCLA deposit account to the CCLA Ethical Investment Fund, which it is hoped will bring better results in the long-term. The John Brownlee Endowment fund of £56k has also been moved from CAF to the CCLA Ethical Fund, where it continues to be separately marked as an endowment. Investments fell overall by £38,865 since the previous October.

Reserves

The current level of reserves is designed to provide income for the long-term future of the charity.

Accounting methods

This is the second year that the Association has prepared accounts using the simpler 'Receipts and Payments' system.

Investment policy

The constitution states that the trustees have the power to make investments as they see fit. Their duty is to seek more adequate income and capital growth. Capital is invested in deposit accounts and unit trusts specifically designed for the charity sector, which are for the greater part socially responsible. The split between asset classes is approximately:

The total value of cash and investments at 31 October 2011 was £1,398,978 (2010: £1,422,115).

[Copies of the detailed accounts may be obtained from Esperanto House, Barlaston.]


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