President’s Report to the AGM (slightly abridged)

The last two years have been very busy for the Ramblers Club.  We have had  full, exciting programs every quarter with plenty of walks, bike rides and paddles.  As well as the usual weekly activities, there have been 11 trips away, including kayaking, cycling and walking trips, and some which are a combination of all three activities.

In the 12 months from the Spring program in 2015 there have been: 169 walks, 131 cycles and 81 paddles.  11 trips away are included in these numbers. This makes a total of 388 scheduled activities. There were 37 cancellations so 351 activities went ahead.  There was a total of 4045 participants, an average of over 1000 participants per quarter.

In November 2015, online membership payments were introduced. It is pleasing to note that around 90% of members are now opting to receive the newsletter online.  Another step in the streamlining process is to introduce twelve monthly subscriptions.  Membership fees will be due on the anniversary of the date of initial payment after 1 November 2015.  This means everyone will be paying for a 12 month period and you will be sent a reminder each year when your membership is due.

My term as president has been a very enjoyable one, thanks to the wonderful committee I have had the pleasure of working with.

Penny, the Newsletter Editor, has done an amazing job with the website and keeping the committee informed on improvements that need to be made.  Due to her background in IT she is able to communicate with the website organizer in his language.  Thank you and very well done, Penny!

John, the Treasurer, has also done a great job by keeping track of the club’s finances, especially as major changes took place following our incorporation and separation from the WEA.  Because of his efforts the club is in a secure position financially, and he has prepared a comprehensive report for the Department of Fair Trading. Thank you and great job, John!

Ros, as Membership Secretary, has been fantastic in the way she keeps electronic and hard copy track of every member’s details, and her job has also changed immensely since incorporation.  Ros has also stepped in and taken the minutes of the meetings in the absence of Trish.  Thanks Ros and Top marks!

Trish, the club Secretary, has done a wonderful job of taking minutes of meetings, communicating with Bushwalking NSW, writing letters, organizing rooms for committee meetings and many other secretarial duties.  Everything has been done in an efficient and courteous manner.  Thank you, Trish.  You are amazing.

Michelle, the Vice President and Activities Recorder, is unable to be with us today, but I would like to thank her for keeping track of the statistics of all our activities, and supplying me with all the facts and figures mentioned before.  Thank you, Michelle.  I hope your ears are burning in a pleasant way.

Alan, the Training Officer, has organized a first aid course for members and has been keeping track of other training supplied by leaders.  He has done a magnificent job of organizing our meeting today and we are sorry to see him leave the committee at this time.  Thank you, Alan.  It has been a pleasure working with you.

Neil, our Publicity Officer, has done a marvellous job of saturating the bicycle shops, outdoor shops, gyms and other businesses with our posters.  He has also put ads in local papers on behalf of the club.  Thank you, Neil for being so enthusiastic about publicity for the club.

Alan and Neil are currently storing the Club’s two PLBs which can be lent to members to take on club activities, especially those in remote areas.  Well done!

Last but not least is Fred, the Public Officer of the Club.  He is responsible for storing the documents relating to incorporation and liaising with the Department of Fair Trading when necessary.  Thank you Fred for giving us so much legal guidance when the club was incorporating and assisting with composing the new Constitution.  Fred keeps up to date with the club’s business by attending the meetings.  Thank you very much for all you have done for the club, Fred.

Before I step down as President, there is one more duty that I am delighted to perform.  We have with us today a very gracious lady who has been with the club from the beginning. This lady has shown huge commitment to the Ramblers by leading a great variety and number of walks and by serving on the committee for several years.   She has participated in many day activities and trips away.  She has also completed many extended walks overseas such as the Coast to Coast in England and the Inca Trail in Peru.  That lady is Trish Mackey and on behalf of the committee, it gives me great pleasure to confer Life Membership on her. Trish, please accept this certificate of Life Membership and thank you for your immense contribution to the club over the years.  It has been an honour working with you.

I will now stand down as President and the Committee will vacate their positions and I call on Mr Fred Morrison, the Public Officer of the Club to act as Returning Officer for the election of the new committee.

Chris English