Firstly, apologies for the lack of emails from the chair recently. Life has got in the way somewhat, but fortunately my fellow committee members have been very good at stepping in and helping out when I have been unavailable – for which I am extremely grateful. Thanks especially to David for organizing the market stall yesterday, and to Ele for chairing the EGM last week.
Speaking of the EGM, thank you to all the members that attended and/or sent in their votes. It is good to know that we have such support in the committee’s efforts to ensure that the books can be balanced to make sure that the club has a future despite the challenging economic times. The rise in subscriptions that was agreed at the meeting is the first since 2018, and is still less than the current inflation rate, so I hope you will all agree that the subscription represents good value for money. Having said that, costs are increasing alarmingly in many areas, not just the hall fees but also the prices being charged by speakers (especially travel costs), insurance costs, and even the costs of tea, coffee, and biscuits. We don’t want to reduce the quality of the programme we offer, but it’s likely other measures will be needed to reduce costs, increase income, or both. Fortunately there is enough money in the reserves to give us time to make careful, properly considered changes, and to consult with members about preferred options.
It was good to see so many members yesterday coming out to help at the market stall – thanks again. This is always one of the best ways we have to reach out to new members, and we had quite a number of people showing interest. Another good source of new members is personal recommendations, so if anyone has friends that might be interested in joining, remember that our open evening has been moved from its original date of August 30th and will now be combined with the “New members night” on September 6th.
This week’s summer programme meeting is the always-popular Indian meal, at Dine India, 129 Golden Cross Lane Catshill B61 0LA, starting at 7:30pm. I believe Mike Norton will be sending out more details shortly. The following week will be the last of the summer programme meetups, at Droitwich Town Centre, and then the new season starts! Details of the programme up until January are on the website – looks like some great sessions to look forward to.
We have an exciting addition to the programme in October, when one of our speakers, Leigh Preston, will be holding a photographic workshop the day after his presentation. This event will be open to members and non-members, for a fee of £20 per person. See the email from Jan for more information, and please let her know if you want to attend. Numbers will be limited, so be sure to reserve your place early if you want to attend.
In my excitement to actually send out a chairman’s email earlier, I forgot one of the things I was planning to say…
THE CALENDARS HAVE ARRIVED!
Thanks to some heroic efforts* from the production manager at Ask Calendars, who personally drove all the way from Diss in Norfolk to deliver them, we had calendars available for the High Street stall yesterday. Priced at £10 each, or £8 each if purchasing 2 or more, these should make perfect Christmas gifts for anyone that appreciates fine photography!
(*Of course, if Ask Calendars had delivered when they originally promised, such heroics would not have been needed. But I was still impressed that he offered to do so, and even more so that he actually did)