Held in the Warwick Room at IBM WARWICK



Ray Castle opened the meeting at 11.00am and thanked everyone for attending [51]

Review and approve last years minutes, including Chairman and Treasurers reports. Proposed by Tony Mancell and seconded by Alan Palmer.

Chairman's report forms part of these minutes and will be forwarded under separate cover. There was a resounding NO from the floor when the question of a Vienna trip in December 2007 was raised, due to the increased cost.

Ken Hope asked us all to recognise the contribution made by Ray Castle as Chairman for the past year and this was shown in the traditional manner.

Barry W presented the Treasurer's report as distributed in hard copy at the meeting. Queries raised were as follows:

Joan Suckling asked why so few of the membership participate in our events and Barry countered by saying that our numbers were up for the year.

Brian Chilver asked if we should not revisit some of the more popular events that we have run in the past - this was noted for our Planning meeting. One suggestion mentioned by Brian was events at the NEC and this led Barry to remind everyone that the main IBM Social Club runs a very active Theatre Section and Colin Johnson, as the organiser of Theatre Plus, suggested that details should be published in the next Newsletter.

Alan Palmer commented that a vast number of members enjoy the programme of events with no cancellations due to poor response - so the Committee should take heart.

In addition to the main IBM Club at Warwick a reminder that Mike Cashmore still runs a very active Birmingham Social Section and any of our members are entitled to contact Mike for details of their programme.

Acceptance of Treasurers Report proposed by Terry King and seconded by Simon Barratt.

To close his presentation Barry asked us again to show our appreciation for Ray's valuable contribution for the past three years as Chairman.

Election of Officers

Resigning at this AGM:

Standing again were:

Voted onto the Committee were:

New Committee for March 2007


Ken Hope asked the meeting again for volunteers and off-line we have received offers of part time assistance from two past committee members and one other.

Ray closed the meeting at 11.45

IBM Retires Club (Midlands)

Chairman's report to the Annual General Meeting - 15th March 2007.

This report follows the same format as last year.

Firstly welcome to the 2007 Annual General meeting of the Midlands IBM Retirees Club. Once again may I say that it really is very rewarding to see so many of you here today and that hopefully this reflects well on the general good health of the club.

Our membership currently stands at 430, a net loss of three during this period. As usual we have had members transferring between clubs due to changes in location and each year we of course loose members who pass away. Once again our thanks to Gordon for all of his efforts in ensuring that we maintain a clean and accurate membership list and dealing so professionally and patiently with IBM. Gordon is leaving the committee this year after nine years and we are grateful for his contribution. During this period membership has grown from 255. I am delighted to be able to report that Tony Mancell will be taking over from Gordon so we can be assured that this key element of our operation will be in good hands.

This year we welcomed Phil Dalton as a co-opted member to the committee and when formally elected we look forward to his contribution in the coming year. Having spent time and effort over the previous years on matters of organisation and management I am pleased to report that this year we have concentrated more on our programme of events. You were recently reminded that the club constitution was posted on the web site and was available for your review. I know that some of you did and we were pleased to hear from you.

As the majority of members now receive all communications electronically, and we of course benefit from significantly reduced postage costs, we, or rather you are now dependant on keeping us to date with any changes in e-mail addresses.

Brian has continued to improve the usability of the newsletter and has posted links to all of our key records. In addition he continues to clarify the procedures of the club and has this year focussed on those surrounding the booking of events and the terms and conditions relating to cancellation. Thanks again to Brian for negotiating service contracts with our suppliers. I mentioned last year our concerns with external provider's technology platforms, these still exist although our internal systems continue to be improved. During the next year the focus will be on those surrounding membership records and distribution lists and methods.

I delighted to report that this year has seen a significant increase in attendance at our events with the major touring trips operating at, or near to full capacity. The spring and summer lunches were well attended and the Christmas lunch attracted a near record 115 members and guests.

I reported last year that we would use our planning workshop in August to see if air travel does now present a realistic, affordable alternative mans of group travel, because if yes, then many more exiting destinations and events become opportunities for inclusion in our programme. Whilst there is no clear cut answer, the booking process and logistics of air travel make it a difficult proposition for clubs like ourselves, we are not travel industry professionals and the organisational overheads using mixed suppliers become increasingly a burden to volunteers.

We have also noticed significant increases in costs in the new brochures of the main holiday travel providers, particularly in short breaks. They tell us that this is due to the increase in taxes and environmental charges for the air travel element of the overall cost. Also the eastern European destinations are increasingly becoming more expensive, the equivalent cost for the Prague trip that we did two years ago for less than £300 is now over £400. We have a slot in this years programme for a Christmas market trip to Vienna which for a four day trip with subsidy would probably come in at around £325 - £350, what do you think? Is this level of price acceptable? Would you come?

As usual my thanks to all of the committee for their support and good work, in particular Carole our Secretary for organising us so well and keeping us informed, to Barry for doing such an outstanding job as Treasurer. Our finances remain in good shape due to Barry's diligence and hard work on behalf of all of us and this contribution should again be recognised. We did review our financial processes and administrative systems for event finances reporting and reconciliation and as result of this we were able to quickly answer questions raised during the formal audit of our accounts. Once again I am delighted to report that neither any issues nor any recommendations were raised by the auditor, testament indeed to Barry's efforts on our behalf.

This year six members of the committee are standing down, Gordon I have already mentioned, plus Anne, Rick, Terry, John Stanley who resigned during the year and of course me. Hopefully enough of you are going to volunteer your services for the years ahead. Unless more come forward the club will simply cease to exist.

In closing may I repeat that we welcome your feedback and suggestions and finally our thanks to you the members, you are the club and your support ensures a successful future.

Thank you.

Ray Castle, Chairman, 12 March 2007.