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AGM Minutes, Tuesday 8th February 2011

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Minutes for CUHWC AGM, 08/02/2011

Chair: Miss Jo Smith

Secretary: Miss Kirsty Brown

Apologies for Absence

  • Ian Patrick
  • David Pettit
  • Rob Halbert
  • David Ponting
  • Mohammad Dmour
  • Jon Matthews

President’s Report

(longer than Dave’s...)

For more information about this year’s trips, look at [l|/trip-book|reports on the CUHWC website].

Statistics (as they seem to be popular):

  • Of 41 new members attending Edale, 12 (29%) came back to a second trip (last year, 21%, previous year, 32%, so roughly comparable), and 1 came back on all 6 trips since.
  • 77 new members this year, again more than last year (67), though less (fewer – Michael F) than the previous year (116).
  • 7 people came on more than 9 trips out of a total of 14 trips (if you count day trips, which Dave F does not).
  • Jo came on the most trips (13/14) and 2 people came on 11 (both committee members).
  • There was nobody who only came on a day trip but no other trips, so day trips do not appear to appeal to entirely different audiences.
  • In conclusion, most numbers and percentages are higher than last year, so the club is doing well.


  • There have been a lot of club socials this year, and a great number of people came to these socials.
  • Thanks to Jane and Bethan, and also to those who have booked formal halls at their colleges.
  • Lunches every week.
  • Pub meets every week – attempted earlier start time but hasn’t kicked off – inclined not to advertise it, and if people want to come earlier occasionally they should email the discuss list.
  • Formals (Girton, Fitz, Jesus, Emma, Lucy).
  • Excellent garden party + punting trip.
  • Christmas curry.
  • Annual dinner on Saturday.
  • Unofficial (discuss list).
  • A new club swimming social was introduced- will possibly be repeated (affirmed by Joe H).


  • There are 149 current members, roughly the same as last year and few fewer than in previous years (190 in 2009; 231 in 2008).
  • The number of current members is expected to decrease over the next few years because of the change to the membership options. As there is now only annual membership from the date of payment available, there will be no current members who are inactive for more than 12 months.
  • The Societies’ Syndicate seems happy with the changes to club membership options.
  • The Syndicate grant is now for transport rather than BMC affiliation.
  • Cost of membership now covers only BMC affiliation plus a little extra for kit.


  • There are currently quite a few minibus drivers, but we always welcome more.
  • Tom A has driven the minibus on most trips.
  • Mohammad’s contribution to driving the minibus as a new member this year has been very helpful.
  • Further interest expressed by Michael, Jo, Rowena - Possibility of a ‘try-it-out’ day.
  • In general there has been no problem finding car drivers for trips this year.
  • Good to rotate so people do not have to drive on every trip.

Other News

  • The first edition of a new club journal, ‘High Society’, was released this year, edited by Dave F. This is intended to be an annual publication, and will hopefully be continued in future years, edited by the most recent ex-president. Jo is happy to produce one this summer.

  • Thanks to Matthew for the new website, which looks great, is easy to navigate and is kept more up-to-date than the previous one. There are inevitably still a few things to sort out, such as enabling people to upload their own photos from trips. An online membership form and a way of integrating payment with this have been suggested. However, most online payment systems require a monthly fee, or an added payment for the person making a transaction. The increased ease of online payment is possibly not worth the extra cost, although cheques may become less common.

  • There have been some very keen new members this year. It would be good to think of more ways of getting new members and freshers more involved in the club, by encouraging them to go to club formals, etc.

  • Large exodus not expected this year.

  • Trip numbers have been about right for the size of bunkhouses, etc.


  • There were a few minor errors in the originals sent out to the mailing list, which together add up to approximately £30 decrease in the net loss made by the club this year.
  • Overall, trips this year made a loss as expected.
  • The new membership system is not yet fully implemented due to current members continuing membership on the old system, making figures more complex this year. Money from membership fees should match BMC affiliation costs more directly in future years. The Cheviots trip made the greatest loss this year, due to both the distance and the number of people on the trip. However, the club does not visit this area very often, somewhat justifying the financial loss.
  • Conversely the Seathwaite trip made a significant profit this year because it was so popular. This profit was invested in two pairs of club crampons after long deliberations.
  • The figures for Socials are slightly misleading because the club has yet to receive an invoice for the Emmanuel formal. Overall, a loss was made, but the lunch float continues to next year so there is not a major problem.
  • Caroline was owed £1.14 by the club, so this has been added to the £30 owed to this year’s social secretaries.
  • BMC grant for an instructor on the last Michaelmas trip, for the second year running.
  • The new membership structure simplifies the treasurer’s job because membership should directly correspond to the cost of BMC affiliation. This makes club accounts easier to predict.
  • The new membership structure is also an improvement, because the club will no longer pay for inactive members to be affiliated to the BMC. This means that the Societies’ Syndicate Grant can be used for subsidising trips etc more directly in the future.
  • There was not much extra equipment purchased this year: just the aforementioned crampons and a few extra maps.
  • Vote to approve accounts: 26 in favour, 0 against

Andy Gibson Training Fund

  • Application process has been clarified in the online description and application form (expectations of applicants, etc) - downloadable from club website – may get set up as a webform at some stage.
  • Fund is well advertised on the website and in bulletin emails, but there have not been many applications.
  • One award (£75) was given for ML training but the recipient was unable to complete the course, so returned the cheque.
  • Joe H applied successfully on behalf of participants in the two-day wilderness first aid course at the end of Easter term (£180 towards a total cost of £600). Such group applications are popular with the applications committee, because a lot of people benefit at the same time. Future first aid courses will likely get similar grants. It was questioned whether anything has been done to speed up the process of actually receiving award money. This has previously been delayed by up to 6 months, so applicants would need to already have funds in place. The rules state that grant money should be received at the beginning of the term following the course. Having a deadline encourages people to apply with reminders etc, whereas fewer people may apply if awards were given on a rolling basis.
  • The BMC instructor day was not funded by the AGF.
  • A short annual report from the Fund would be welcomed, to improve communication between the club and the Fund.
  • Dave F: Communication with the club is being formalised.
  • Jo: The fund committee wants the president to take a more active role in decisions, etc, so it is definitely moving in the direction of improved communication.
  • The Andy Gibson Training Fund is club money, although it is separate to the main club accounts.
  • It is possible to apply to the Fund for the deadline in the term after a course, as long as the actual application is made before the course takes place

Statistics requested by Michael F

  • 17 presigns were given for trips over the last year, excluding those for the president, safety officer and drivers. Of these, 6 were for non-residents of Cambridge (3 different people), 1 was a resident but a non-student and 10 were for current students unable to make sign-up.
  • ~9 people came to a club formal but no weekend trips.
  • 46 unique people came on holiday trips. Of these, 13 (28%) did not come on a weekend trip. 6 (13%) have never been on a weekend trip, of whom 3 were guests of active members. 6 did not come on a weekend trip this year, but have done in the past (mostly duffers).
  • No current members are students at Anglia Ruskin, but Cambridge Regional College is represented.
  • Overall mean % of undergraduates on a weekend trip (excluding Edale where student status is unknown), was 40% undergraduates (Weekend trips = 41%, day trips = 34%, holiday trips = 42%).
  • 34% of people on trips are current-/ex-committee members, 41% of people attending...
  • If a ‘person fail’ is defined as a person failing to gain a place at sign-up, there were 2 ‘person fails’ this year, excluding Seathwaite.

Other Points/Questions to Committee

  • Seathwaite was very oversubscribed this year, and five people had to be turned down. Jo would not recommend oversubscribing to the future president, even though people dropped out before the trip and the beds were only completely full on one night (unfortunately the same night that two members turned up to stay). The most active members should not forget to tell the president that they want to come and assume the president knows without them telling him/her.
  • Dave F: Are day-trips worth it?
    Committee (and others): Yes:
    Day trips and weekend trips are not appealing to different audiences (a concern in previous years), demonstrated by the fact that nobody only came on day trips. A lot of people told Jo that they enjoyed the day trips – positive feedback. The way day-trips are advertised is very important to their popularity.

Election of Officers

  • President: Matthew Graham-26, RON-0
  • Meets: Dave Mackenzie-20, Chris Wade-6, RON-0
  • Social Secretaries: Kate Humphris and Joe Hobbs-25, RON-0, 1 spoiled ballot
  • Safety Officer: Andrew Williamson-26, RON-0
  • Junior Treasurer: Doug Hull-26, RON-0
  • Membership Secretary: Mark Jackson-18, Chris Wade-7, Dave Mackenzie-1, RON-0

Other Business

Tom A: Minibuses

  • Unhappiness with the Milton minibus being very cold. However, it is cheaper than the CCVR bus by ~£5 per person per trip.
  • Extra CCVR discount: £259 for a weekend (vs advertised price of £313)
  • So weekend trip (hire + fuel) = ~£380 (assuming 500 mile trip, current prices, 25mpg - £120)
  • Milton = £315 for 500 mile trip inc fuel ie £64 cheaper.  
  • Should we pay more to have a nicer minibus?
  • Also important to know which bus drivers find most comfortable to drive, but this is thought to vary according to personal preference.
  • Fuel costs are roughly comparable between the two buses.
  • Agreed that the Milton bus should be used in the summer, but it may be worth paying more for the warmer CCVR bus in the winter.

Bethan: Proposed change in order of positions in future committee elections.

  • Michael F: Current order was originally put in place because the President is the most senior position, Meets holds the next greatest amount of responsibility because club trips could not run without transport. Other positions are in a somewhat arbitrary order, but there may always be somebody running for more than one position who would prefer a position which is elected after another – it is rarely possible to accommodate the preferences of everybody.
  • Agreed that it is not worth changing the constitutional order of elections.

  • Simon T: Vote of thanks to the outgoing committee, particularly for the new website and the improved membership structure.

Cheese and Wine

  • Jane and Bethan can eat two cream crackers each faster than Joe and Kate can – a future rematch was proposed.
  • Following last year’s suggestion, two boxes of wine were purchased (and drunk).