South Devon Mountaineering Club Constitution
The name of the Club shall be the South Devon Mountaineering Club Hereinafter referred to as "the Club".
2. Objectives of the Club
2.1 To promote the interests of climbing and mountaineering and other outdoor activities amongst members of the Club.
2.2 To provide an opportunity for members of the Club to meet and participate in climbing and mountaineering activities together.
2.3 To act on behalf of and in the interests of Club members.
2.4 To promote awareness of the need to maintain access, conservation and protection of the cliff, mountain and moorland environment.
2.5 To take part in the work and activities of the British Mountaineering Council (BMC).
2.6 To encourage and promote safety and good practice in all aspects of mountaineering.
3. Membership of the Club
3.1 Membership of the Club shall only be open to approved applicants hereinafter referred to as "the Membership".
3.2 Club Membership is not open young people under the age of 18.
3.3 There will be a category of membership for students.
3.4 Joint membership will be open to 2 people living in the same household.
3.5 Applicants may only be approved once they have returned a completed SDMC Membership application form and paid their membership fee as determined at the Annual General Meeting. The committee will have the power to refuse membership to any person on grounds they consider justifiable. Whenever the committee refuses membership, that person may appeal to a Special General Meeting of the Club.
3.6 In addition to 3.5 above membership of the Club shall only be open to individuals who recognise that climbing and mountaineering are activities with a danger of personal injury or death. Members shall be aware of and accept these risks and agree to be responsible for their own actions and involvement.
3.7 The Club is affiliated to the BMC. Members must acknowledge and agree that they will become Club Members of the BMC and that the Club shall pay the appropriate subscription on behalf of each Member included in the return filed by the Club with the BMC, and, in the event of the BMC being wound up, shall pay the sum of not more than £1 on behalf of each Member included in a return filed by the Club with the BMC at any time within the preceding period of one year. The Members further acknowledge that they will each be bound by the Memorandum & Articles of Association of the BMC.
3.8. All members will be subject to the regulations of the constitution and by joining the Club will be deemed to accept these regulations and codes of practice that the Club has adopted.
3.9 The Club respects the rights, dignity and worth of every person and will treat all members equally within the context of Club activities and mountaineering activities, regardless of age, ability, gender, race, ethnicity, religious belief, sexuality or socio-economic status.
3.10 The Club is committed to all members having the right to enjoy mountaineering in an environment free from threat of intimidation, harassment and abuse.
3.11 All members have a responsibility to oppose discriminatory behaviour and promote equality of opportunity.
4. The Club Committee and Management of the Club
4.1 The Management of the Club shall be entrusted to the Club Committee, hereinafter referred to as "the Committee".
4.2 The Committee shall all be Club Members. The Committee shall be composed of Officers of the Club and only those members shall have the right to vote.
5. Officers of the Club
5.1 The elected Officers of the Club shall be the Chair, the Secretary, the Treasurer, Walking Meets Co-ordinator, Climbing Meets Co-ordinator, the BMC Representative, the Webmaster, the Social Secretary, the Equipment Officer and additional General Committee members as agreed by the committee; hereinafter referred to as "the Officers".
5.2 Voting for the election of Officers shall take place at the AGM. The committee will have the power to fill any vacancies that may occur on the committee during the year. Any co-opted member will serve until the next AGM when an election for the vacant position must take place.
5.3 At the third consecutive AGM following a member’s election to the committee, that member will not be eligible for re-election to the same position but in exceptional circumstances they can continue to serve for another 12 months.
5.4 Where agreed by the Committee and in the absence of any volunteers for the role of the Chair, this role may be shared by the other members of the committee, it is recognised that members of the committee can substitute for other members as required, and as agreed by the committee.
6. Committee of the Club
6.1 The President of the Club will normally preside at and chair all meetings of the Committee (or Club) and shall be responsible for reporting to the Membership at the Club's AGM.
6.2 The Committee shall be composed of the Officers of the Club (plus a number of elected members from the Club Membership if desired).
6.3 The Committee shall nominate a representative (or representatives) of the Club to attend BMC Area meetings and represent the views of the Membership and shall nominate the President (or a representative) to attend the BMC AGM.
6.4 A Quorum for Committee meetings shall be half the officers. In addition to the AGM, the Committee must hold at least 4 meetings per year.
6.4 The Club Secretary shall be responsible for all correspondence relating to Club affairs and for announcing Committee meetings, and the production and distribution of minutes from those meetings. The Club shall keep records about the Membership of the Club and shall report to the BMC the size of the Membership.
6.5 The Treasurer and Secretary shall be responsible for the collection of subscriptions and the Treasurer will account for any other income and expenditure made on behalf of the Club. The Treasurer and the Secretary shall be responsible for the payment of the membership subscription to the BMC and the Insurance premium if this option is taken up.
6.6 The Committee shall have the power to co-opt additional non-voting members.
6.7 No club member will enter into correspondence or any undertaking on behalf of the Club without the approval of the committee
6.8 The Committee will be responsible for disciplinary hearings of members who infringe club rules, regulations and or constitution. The Committee will be responsible for taking any action of suspension or discipline following such hearings.
6.9 The decision of the Committee on the interpretation of this constitution and of club rules shall be final and the committee is empowered to deal with any matters not covered.
7.1 The Committee shall have the power to set membership subscription levels for the Club on an annual basis. Club subscriptions will be fixed for the following year at each AGM
7.2 Subscriptions will be due by 1st November each year
7.3 The club treasurer must provide accounts for the previous year at each AGM, which will be presented to the committee at its meeting prior to the AGM.
7.4 The financial year of the Club runs from the 1st October to the 30th September.
7.5 All club monies will be banked in an account held in the name of the Club
7.6 An statement of annual accounts will be presented by the treasuerer at the AGM.
7.7 Any Cheques drawn against club funds should hold the signatures of the treasurere and up to two other officers.
7.8 All members of the Club shall be jointly and severally responsible for the financial liabilities of the Club.
8. Child-Protection Policy
8.1 The Club does not allow members under the age of 18 and as such is not required to adopt a Child Protection Policy or appoint a Youth Officer. Reference can be made to the BMC Child Protection Policy. This can be viewed at www.thebmc.co.uk/thebmc/pols.child_protection.htm
9 Expulsion of members, Discipline and Appeals
9.1 If at any time the Committee considers that the interests of the Club require it they must invite a member to resign from the Club, by a letter specifying the reasons for their request and offering the member an opportunity to provide an explanation either in writing or in person and the date before which the reply should be received.
9.2 If the member concerned requests a meeting to provide an explanation, the committee must arrange a meeting at a suitable time and place and within a reasonable period of time and must provide the member with not less than seven days written notice of it.
9.3 The Committee must consider the explanation provided by the member in good faith and have due regard to all available evidence and may confirm or vary their original decision.
9.4 If the Committee confirms their original decision and the member concerned does not resign the Committee must submit the question of his expulsion to a Special General Meeting to be convened for the purpose, whether or not the member requests such a meeting.
9.5 Not less than four weeks' notice of the meeting must be given to all the members.
9.6 The Honorary Secretary must inform the member in question of the time and place of the meeting and the nature of the complaints against him/her in sufficient time to afford him a proper opportunity of offering his explanation.
9.7 At the meeting the member must be allowed to offer an explanation of his/her conduct verbally or in writing and if after that two-thirds of the members present vote for his/her expulsion he/she will immediately cease to be a member of the Club.
9.8 The voting at any such Special General Meeting must be by ballot if not less than five members present at that meeting so demand.
9.9 The Committee may exclude from the Club until the Special General Meeting is held any member whose resignation has been requested.
10 Effect of ceasing to be a member
10.1 On ceasing to be a member a person forfeits all right to and claim upon the Club and its property and funds.
10.2 A person who has been expelled from the Club shall not be entitled to participate in any subsequent activity of the Club.
11. Rules of the Club
11.1 The Committee shall have the power to set Club rules. Such rules shall be in accordance with the articles of the Club's Constitution and the policies of the BMC.
12. General Meetings
12.1 No AGM or SGM shall take place unless the meeting is quorate. To be quorate, a minimum of 20% of members shall be present.
12.2 The AGM is to be held each Spring, on a date specified at least one month in advance by post or by e-mail.
12.3 The AGM will:
Approve the minutes of the previous years AGM
Receive reports from all club officers including Treasurer
Approve the Annual Accounts
Elect the Officers of the Committee
Agree the membership fees for the following year
Consider any proposed changes to the constitution
Deal with any other relevant business
12.4 The meeting can only deal with proposals and nominations submitted in advance. These must be received at least two weeks before the meeting.
12.5 All club members shall be eligible to attend, vote, propose and second motions and nominate candidates at all AGMs and SGMs. All members in attendance shall be entitled to vote. In the event of a tie, the President will have a casting vote.
12.6 The Club secretary shall convene an SGM or EGM giving at least one month’s notice, by order of the committee or on receipt of a requisition signed by at least 10% of the Clubs’ members specifying the purpose of any such meeting. All SGMs or EGMs will follow the procedures for an AGM as outlined above. The Committee also has the powers to call an SGM or EGM by decision of a simple majority of Committee members.
13 Amendments to the Constitution of the Club
13.1 This constitution shall not be added to, altered, rescinded, or suspended without the consent of at least two thirds of the members present at the AGM or SGM. Notice of any proposed alteration to the constitution, together with the names of the proposer and seconder of every such amendment shall be given to the club secretary at least one month before the AGM or any proposed SGM at which the amendment is to be considered.
14. Dissolution of the Club
14.1 The Club can be dissolved by two-thirds majority vote carried out in
accordance with Article 9 whereupon the Committee will arrange to discharge any assets through a donation to a related Charity. Any liabilities at the time of dissolution shall be the joint responsibility of all Members.
This Constitution was approved and adopted by the Club on 15/3/23.