The Constitution for “Friends of Bradgers Hill”
The full title of the group will be: the “Friends of Bradgers Hill” and referred to in this document as the ‘Friends.’
2. Aims and Objectives
2.1 The aims of the Friends is to:
1) bring the community together to celebrate all that Bradgers Hill brings to our neighbourhood
2) inform, educate and raise awareness of the rich source of wildlife on the Hill and surrounding area
3) generate a pool of Bushmead volunteers who can sustain this work of education, celebration and conservation.
4) preserve and secure these natural resources for future generations
2.2 The objectives of the Friends are to :
1) set out a programme of monthly meetings and occasional special events open to the public on relevant topics of interest
2) conduct surveys on the Hill to research the number of species and their prevalence
3) involve local schools through the provision of specialist advice and activities
4) publicise our findings through our website and social media.
5) link up with local and other county-wide organisations with similar aims.
3.1 The Friends of Bradgers Hill are keen to promote the widest possible participation. Events will be funded by a combination of small entry fees and voluntary donations.
3.2 We will ensure that clear advance notice is provided of these modest charges.
3.3 Donations and fees are payable to the treasurer. The Friends bank account shall be held with the treasurer and a brief monthly update in finances will be provided along with an annual formal statement of accounts.
4.1 The Fundraising Secretary shall be responsible for all fundraising activities.
4.2 The purpose of the fundraising event/activity and how funds that are generated will be used will be advertised and made clear to all contributors and participants.
4.3 The committee will decide how all funds, howsoever raised, shall be used. All suggestions from the Friends shall be considered.
4.4 Where funds have been granted to and accepted by the group for a particular purpose, the committee will be responsible for ensuring that that purpose is met and appropriate records kept. In the event that the stated purpose cannot be met or completed (for whatever reason) the committee will consider alternative use of any remaining money with due regards to the views of the donor which could include return of the donor's remaining grant funds.
5.1 The committee shall consist of:
• Organiser – to convene meetings and co-ordinate committee activities
• Secretary – to carry out administrative tasks that sustain activities of the Friends
• Treasurer – to maintain accounts, banking arrangements and membership details
• Fundraising Officer – to seek opportunities for funding, prepare bids and evaluation returns
• Survey Officer – to organise volunteers for surveys, collate data and liaise with relevant outside bodies
• Access Officer – to begin the task of mapping the major and minor routes on the Hill; organising volunteers to keep these in good repair and seek opportunities to improve signposting
• Education Officer – to liaise with local nurseries, primary schools, secondary schools and the Sixth Form College with view to the provision of educational activities
• Liaison Officer – establishing and maintaining relationships with Luton and county-wide groups with similar aims
• Events Officers (meetings) and (walks) – to organise and publicise speakers for monthly meetings and the quarterly walk programme
• Website Officer – to maintain and develop our online presence – website, Facebook and Twitter
• Environment Officer – to organise quarterly litter picks
5.2 The committee as a whole are responsible for:
a) Promotion of the Friends throughout the year to attract membership.
b) Ensuring that activities and the use of funds reflect the aims and objectives of the Friends and are for the benefit of all members.
c) Preparing agendas and recording minutes for all Friends meetings including the annual AGM.
d) Preparing an annual report at the end of the year.
6. AGM’s and Meetings
6.1 The committee shall meet on a monthly basis on the second Wednesday at Bushmead Community Centre between the hours of 7.00 and 8.30pm.) The purpose of these meetings is to:
• Hear from a speaker of relevant interest to the aims of the Friends
• Co-ordinate the forthcoming activities of the Friends
• Receive updates from officers.
• Ensure the general smooth running of the Friends.
6.2 Annual General Meeting
This meeting will take place on the second Wednesday of every September. The purpose of the meeting is to:
• Elect the new committee for the following year
• To receive the annual report from the Chair which has been compiled by the out going committee
• Present a financial report
• Prepare plans for the following year
6.3 The committee will be responsible for decisions on behalf of the group by way of a majority vote of its committee members at an official friends meeting.
6.3.1 The committee may, at its discretion, decide upon an issue by way of a majority vote of its fully paid up Full Friend membership at an official Friends meeting.
6.4 Only Full Friend members may vote at an official Friends meetings.
6.5 Only Full Friend members may stand for election to, or sit on the committee.
6.6 No Full Friend member is entitled to vote or stand for election to the committee until a full clear day has passed since first becoming a Full Friend Member. (For example, an individual becomes a Full Friend Member on Tuesday, he/she cannot vote or stand for election to the committee until Thursday). This time period does not apply to those renewing their membership.
The Friends may be dissolved if deemed necessary by the members in a majority vote at an official Friends meeting . Any assets or remaining funds after debts have been paid shall be retained by the Friends and held in a separate account for two years. If the Friends (or one similar) does not start up again within this period the funds will be reallocated to other Luton or County-wide groups with similar aims as agreed by the committee.
8.1 There will be two types of membership to the Friends of Bradgers Hill, Basic Friend Membership and Full Friend Membership.
8.2 Basic Friend Membership is available to any person upon completion of a membership form. Basic Membership is free of charge and entitles the member to attend and get involved in "member only" events. Basic Friend members will (where advertised) be entitled to free or discounted entry to group public events. Membership will renew automatically year on year until such time that either of the following occurs:
a) The member notifies the Treasurer that he / she no longer wishes to be a member.
b) The Treasurer determines that in their opinion the individual no longer wishes to remain a member due to a loss of contact.
c) The individual wishes to remain a member but the committee decide that the individuals continued membership is at odds with the aims and values of the group and that the member should be expelled.
8.3 Full Friend Membership is available to any person upon completion of a membership form and payment of the annual membership fee. Full Friend Membership entitles the member to attend and get involved in "Member Only" events. Where those events involve a charge, a Full Friend Member will (where advertised) be entitled to free or discounted entry. The same applies to Public events. Full Friend members are entitled to stand for election to the group’s committee, vote at AGMs and votes called by the committee. Membership will renew each year on payment of the annual membership fee as set by the committee until such time that :
a) The member notifies the Treasurer that he / she no longer wishes to be a member. The member may elect to revert to Basic Friend Membership.
b) The Treasurer determines that payment of the annual membership fee has not been paid and that two months have elapsed since the date upon which the membership fee was due. The member will revert to Basic Friend Membership.
c) The individual is and wishes to remain a fully paid up Full Friend member but the committee decide that the individuals continued membership is at odds with the aims and values of the Friends and that the member should be expelled.
8.4.1 The Friends of Bradgers Hill expect that every person should be treated with respect and dignity regardless of a person’s actual or perceived race, religion, gender, age, disability or sexual orientation.
8.4.2 The Committee may find a member’s continued membership of the Friends is at odds with the aims and values of the Friends if they engage in conduct that is detrimental to the values at 8.4.1. Each case will be determined on its facts. The use of violence or aggression by members can never be tolerated.
8.4.3 The Committee may find a member’s continued membership of the Friends should cease if a member knowingly engages in conduct that is against the stated aims and objectives under S.2 of this constitution. Each case will be determined on its facts.
8.4.4 Any member facing expulsion from the Friends has the right to address the committee prior to any decision being made.
8.4.5 In the event of a member being expelled from the group, no refund of any membership fee, donations made by the expelled member etc will be made.
8.4.6 No person who has been expelled from the group may may reapply for membership before 12 months have elapsed since the date of expulsion. Any such membership application received must be ratified by the committee before taking effect and may be declined without the need for any further explanation.
This constitution was adopted at a meeting held at Bushmead Community Centre on Wednesday 13th September 2016 by: