AGM February 2023

Minutes of the 2023 AGM Wednesday 9th February 2023

The meeting began at 10.00am

The Chair (Alison Currah) opened the meeting by welcoming the 96 members and one guest.

1.           Apologies for Absence

Jo & Phil Bacon, Margaret Gray, Serena Blake, Jean Goodridge, Angus Hamilton, Glenys Hant, Cheryl & John Hillier, Pam Hogan, Mary Keast, Alison & Nick Maiklem, Kath Mason, Valerie Mayers-Smith, Rob Nevshehir, Carol Pollard, Gilda Pote, Janet Pugh, Jacqui & Mike Rolls, Gillian Sammels, Catherine Smith, David & Viccy Smith, Steve Smith, Dawn Spry, Lynne Taylor (Polperro), Lynne Taylor (Looe), Pauline Trehane, Paul Toms, Jim Ward, Helen & John White, Brian & Denise Young.

All committee members, including the outgoing ones were present, with the exception of the Treasurer who was unable to attend due to illness.

2.          2022 AGM minutes.

These were presented for accuracy and approval. There were no outstanding actions or matters arising. Acceptance of the minutes was proposed by Carole Day and seconded by Clive Cadman. They were duly signed by the chairman and held on file.

3.           Chairman’s Report

It seems incredible to me that it was a year ago that I was sitting in my dining room, laptop logged on to Zoom, watching a patchwork of faces and quaking in my boots because I was about to take over the Chairmanship of our u3a from Chris Barwell.

How quickly the year has flown but how wonderful and rewarding to have returned to face-to-face meetings, events and interest groups once again, coming out of the privations of lockdown to the endless possibilities of getting out and about with friends.

It’s been a busy year with existing members returning to the u3a routine and new members enjoying the Learn, Laugh and Live ethos for the first time. Whichever it was for you, I hope it’s been enjoyable.

Although a few Interest Groups were able to function throughout the pandemic by using Zoom, 2022 meant that many groups could meet again in person.  This year, joining many favourite and longstanding groups, we had a Canasta group and Art group added and many suggestions for new groups continue to be put forward. I hope that in 2023 more of you will bite the bullet and get another group off the ground.

The delayed 30th Anniversary lunch eventually took place in May; a lovely event with many past committee members and Chairmen and women attending.

And not too long after that, Her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee was another opportunity to get together, for an afternoon tea this time, enjoyed in glorious June weather.  There seems nothing our u3a likes better than eating together and our enjoyable Summer and Christmas Lunches were as popular as ever.

Trips and social events were many and varied this year. Trips to theatres, the Aquarium, a variety of Houses and gardens, a vineyard, Tavistock and even the Plymouth Incinerator.  The Quiz night with fish & chip supper and Jazz night were extremely well attended and enjoyable occasions. And I’m pleased to report that this coming year will see a similar range of exciting things on offer for you to enjoy.

As always, a full and varied Speaker Programme has kept us all enthralled and learning amazing facts; from Buckingham Palace to Polperro Arts, Trading Standards, Muscles in Space, the Suffragettes in the Southwest, the history of Bodmin Moor, recycling and the memorable story of the loss of a WWII aircraft and its crew on Dartmoor had many of us in tears.

Helping to make this all of these things happen, the Committee have been working hard on your behalf throughout the year. Apart from arranging all that I have just recalled, policies such as Equality, Diversity and Inclusion and Safeguarding intended to protect you, the membership, were adopted and a Financial Policy is currently being prepared. 

In September, the Committee revisited a much discussed and thorny topic of discussion: the waiting list! Because of the limitation on numbers in this hall, the waiting list had always been a necessary evil but something which goes against the ethos of the u3a being accessible to all in their ‘third age’.  However, thanks to modern technology allowing easy booking for meetings, it was decided unanimously to remove the waiting list and put the onus on members to book a place for the monthly meetings. It took only a short while for members to get used to the booking system, and now, after a few turned up initially without having booked and getting their knuckles wrapped, all seems to have settled down and those who wish to join our u3a are able to do so freely once they have submitted their contact details and paid their subscription. Welcoming new members who bring their own skills, talents and interests can, I feel, only be of benefit to the rest of us.

I would like to thank each and every one of the Committee for their hard work at keeping our u3a running smoothly and efficiently.  In particular, as they are stepping down this year, Laurie Watson for his diligent minute taking as Secretary, Yvonne Toms for her work as Speaker Secretary which has meant her being on the end of a telephone for hours and Rosemary Robinson who has served on the Committee in a variety (if not most) of the roles for many years, not least Chair.  On behalf of everyone here, thank you for giving your time, your ideas and your commitment to help make Looe & District u3a so successful and an organisation that continues to go from strength to strength.

Inevitably, we have had members who have been unwell this year, those who are still undergoing treatment and those who have passed away including, recently, Life Member Maureen Goldsworthy. We remember them but also, in respect to them, look to the future with positivity and try to make the most of our ‘third age’.

Finally, I would like to thank you, the members, for your support throughout the year. We are now over 200 strong (206 at the last count) and between us, in whatever capacity within our u3a, help provide company, stimulation, education, friendship and fun.

Let’s all look forward to another year to Learn, Laugh and Live together. Thank you.

4.           Treasurer’s report (accounts sent to all members prior to the meeting)

The Treasurer (Rob Nevshehir) had his report presented in his absence by the Chair. These have already been sent out by email and hard copies were available at the meeting.

The proposal to approve the accounts was made by Rosemary Robinson and seconded by Marilyn King, Voted for and agreed unanimously.

5.           Appointment of auditor for accounts

Mrs Nichola Roberts was appointed auditor for the 2023 accounts.

6.           Annual subscriptions

These would be £15 per annum for the current year however there was a proposal by Christine Barwell, seconded by Carole Day to raise the subscriptions from the current £15.00 to £17.00 in 2024. The Chair explained the rationale being the proposed increase being due to anticipated increase in St Martins hall hire, increased capitation fees and general increase in running costs. This was voted for and agreed unanimously at the meeting.

7              Election of new committee for 2022

Proposed by Rod Pritchard and seconded by Iris Ward. Voted for unanimously.

 It was agreed to elect the committee en bloc.

The Following committee members were elected.

Chair                                                 Alison Currah

Treasurer                                         Rob Nevshehir

Secretary                                          Carole Day

Membership secretary                  Angela Cadman

Speaker secretary                           

Events Co-ord. & Vice Chair   Christine Barwell

Events Team                                   Jackie Pritchard

Events Team                                   Jenny Barker

Welfare Officer                              Marilyn King

Committee                                     Diane Trerise

Committee                                     Linda Harwood

Committee                                      Kath Banks

The formal element of the AGM closed at 10.37


Chris Barwell highlighted forthcoming events and tickets now on sale.

Groups’ news

The 2023 programme which includes, events, groups information and committee contacts will be available at the March meeting.

Community news

There were announcements on Looe Shedders, with the launch of their repair café, The Old Cornwall Society next meeting, Cinema by the Sea and The King of Prussia play to be held in March.

Alison ended the meeting with a break for refreshments. After which she will be introducing the two speakers Tina Hicks, Looe Harbour Master and Tony Smith, Deputy Mayor of Looe Town Council. They will be asked to introduce themselves and to then respond to pre-prepared questions.

The meeting closed at 10.45.