Following on from last week’s Coronavirus update where all remaining restrictions have been lifted, we are pleased to announce the model club will be following the same advice.
The temporary club rules, specified flying time slots, the covid policy and the requirement to book in to fly has all come to an end. We are also no longer operating a test and trace system, or limiting anyone, in our club.
We will be keeping the booking system active on the website, as a voluntary system, due to member feedback. A lot of you liked it for a social aspect, seeing who was going down the field and deciding to book to join in. The booking system, whilst not a requirement any longer, is recommend making use of if you enjoy socially meeting up with members.
However: Please do keep an eye on emails and the website (as well as government advice), as this may change should either a new variant appear, the government plan doesn’t go as expected or the winter months later this year an reintroduction of restrictions occurs. We will keep you updated on if we need to roll back to certain restrictions and requirements.
Thank you so much to you all for bearing with the restrictions of the past two years, and for following them so brilliantly. It is hugely appreciated by your club mates, and from us on the Committee. Hopefully, these restrictions are now over for this pandemic!
Hope you’re all well and are looking forward to the Spring just around the corner. Thank you all for renewing, we’ve had a good strong renewal figure which means the club is doing really well as always! Great to see so many of you make use of the online payments system this year too, well over 75% of you paid with bank card and Apple Pay/Google Pay this year!
As no one at all paid by cheque or cash this year, the committee have decided to go cashless from now on. We will still be taking renewal payments online or in person at an AGM, but it’ll be by bank card or bank transfer only for now on. We have access to a chip and pin card reader to facilitate this move.
Membership cards from now on will also be digital. The committee decided each year it was an unnecessary expense and use of time printing these out for members and they were never checked or required to access the sites. Members who have left part way through the year, or been asked to leave part way though the year, didn’t return these cards which rendered the cards not very useful if ex-members continue to hold them for the remainder of that year. Having a digital version means an ex-member won’t be able to use this loophole should they so wish. You simply being able to log into the website is enough proof that you’re a member. Over the next couple of weeks, an option will appear online for you to view and download your membership card, and if you wish you may print it out. Coming in the spring, you will be able to add these cards to your Apple Wallet or Google Wallet, to have the available in your digital wallet. The committee will also be able to quickly verify any member by using a new tool that’ll be made of use to them in the next couple of weeks, so please don’t worry that you have no membership card. I will update you all when the digital card comes live, and when the digital wallet options become live. For now on, we know who our members are and who has renewed so don’t worry about needing a card.
Apologies of this news taking a little longer to come to you than I had hoped, my family and I have all had covid-19 for the past week or so and has led to delays in this system coming live.
We are all looking forward to seeing you all down the field this year! We had a great first committee meeting with our two new committee members (Mike Strain and Tom Leonard) a couple of weeks ago, we’re looking into the possibility merchandise for our members based on your feedback in 2020. Additionally, with restrictions finally easing even more so soon, and the BMFA being 100 years old, we hope to have a lot to celebrate and some good events coming up. The UKCAA are planning a return to the field this year, and more BBQs/events are being planned for both our usual socials through the year and for the BMFA Centenary!
Renewals so far have been really good, and great to see the vast majority of you making use of the new card system that was asked for in 2020! Even had a good amount of members using Apple Pay and Google Pay, which is nice to see after spending ages getting it going this year. Just a reminder, if anyone does wish to pay via another method to please still use the website to make the initial order – the website tracks purchases on your profiles, so anyone who hasn’t done it via the website may find in February they can’t log in! I can do a manual override, it’s just a fair bit of effort to do, so please do remember to order via the website to make sure I don’t miss your payment and so forget the manual override!
The field at Hanbury is also unavailable to use due to farmer shooting events on the following dates:
Also Clive has asked me to extend an offer from an ex-member of our club, Mel Lewis, of a few items he has for sale. He has been forced to cease model flying due to ill health. He’s not given specifics of what is for sale, but he used to fly fixed wing before moving onto helicopters and drones so he probably has a good selection of items. Please email Clive or Sam if you’re interested in seeing what he’s got, otherwise check your emails for this update to view Mel’s email address.
Thankfully we still have no restrictions in respect of the Omicron variant, just please keep booking in as you all are anyway and scanning the NHS codes if you’re using the app still.
Renewals have a couple of changes this year to make paying safer, easier for you and easier for us to keep track of who’s paid. Please do read the below before going to renew. The renewals have been re-opened now I’ve completed the handover from Simon for the secretary/treasurer role.
Paying by card is now free – there is no longer a card fee attached if you choose to pay by card, no matter if it’s Visa, MasterCard, AMEX or if it’s credit or debit. We use ‘Square’ to process payments, and they’re used in retail stores all over the world so it is a totally safe way to pay. Click proceed to checkout to pay after adding to your basket.
Apple Pay and Google Pay are also now available for the additional bit of security and convenience to those who wish to use it. Buttons will appear in your basket prior to you proceeding to check out. Click either Apple or Google, depending on what phone you have, to pay. This service is also free of charge.
Bank transfer is also available, free of charge. Details will ve shown to you after you complete the purchase online, and selecting ‘Bank Transfer’ as payment method. Click proceed to checkout to pay after adding to your basket.
Cheques and cash are accepted still, but if you can possibly use bank transfer or card / mobile payment instead that would be a huge help and really appreciated. Click proceed to checkout to pay after adding to your basket.
Select your payment method on the website to pay, all options including cash are displayed on there for you when you proceed to check out.
All payment methods, even card or cheque or bank transfer, must be completed online using the store in order for your account to update. Failing to do that may result in your account mistakenly being locked.
Renewals are open until January 31st, and after this date if payment hasn’t been made you will get charged the re-joining fee of £20 – making a total of £92 to rejoin.
If you are in financial hardship because of Christmas and can’t afford this payment in this time frame, maybe you just need to wait for the next pay day, please email me in confidence at email@example.com and we will endeavour to do our best to help you!
Please also do remember to continue to book in for your flying with this new variant emerging, and do scan the NHS posters on site if you use the NHS Covid-19 app. Currently, there are no restrictions on numbers at the moment!
The results are in! I’ll disclose the names of those who have been nominated by other members at the end of this email, and announce the date renewals open. This time during the vote, obviously there was no other people to vote for in order to make a committee. We did, however, require 20% of the membership to vote and we’ve had 22 votes this year. That’s a great result, not as many as last year (but then last year it mattered more!), but we’ve had more than most years at an AGM still!
Your 2022 Committee:
Chairman: Dave Evans
Membership Secretary / Treasurer: Sam Booton
Club Secretary: Clive Maulden
Club Officers: Jeremy Flatt, Tom Leonard, Mike Strain, Brian Howes
Nominations for stand out member of the year:
Winner: Martin Round (really well deserved!!!!)
“Great dedication in helping new members achieve ‘A’ level status, a critical role and much appreciated””For his dedication to training new members””For dedication to training new members””Unselfishly has given his time to assist and train as necessary new members constantly during 2021″”Brilliant instructor””Martin is always ready and willing to help””Hardworking and dedicated to training new members”
Dave Evans“There has been a host of challenges to the existence of the Club and its flying fields this year. To Dave’s great credit he has dedicated time and effort to managing the excellent relationships with our flying site landowners and ensured their cooperation and support as the sites are maintained and improved for us to enjoy. A heartfelt thank you from me””His calm, reasonable and methodical approach to what has been challenging year for the committee”
Sam Booton“The website””I would to nominate Sam for his continued hard work under difficult times in maintaining the club website and keeping the club fully informed of all developments within the club”
Tom Leonard“Tom Leonard is a very committed member of the club. He dedicates hours of his time to the rushwick field and would love to work with and help the club more as club officer”
Clive Maulden“Clive this year has once again gone above and beyond for Rushwick. He’s attended the site several times with others to see what can be done about the field, liaised with the farmer several times with regards to rent to save the field going to ex members and to discuss options to restore the runway. Having to deal with demands from members whilst doing all he can, and for the cooking at the BBQs he’s been done a lot for us this year”
To the whole club from a new member:“As I have only joined this year I would like to thank everyone that I have meet for being so friendly and helpful. Initially I came along to seek some advice and spoke to Dave and Bryan then 3hrs later I felt very welcome and decided to join”
Renewals will open Monday evening, following an email and a WhatsApp message from me. Card renewals this year won’t have a card handling fee, so if you wish to pay be card it’ll only be £72.00.
Many thanks to all those that have voted and supported us, and thanks again!
I hope you’re all well, and that you’re looking forward to the festivities coming up! This is just an email to let you know about voting, and to bring some clarity the situation some have understandably become confused over regarding why we need £4,000 in our bank account.
Voting will open tonight to allow you all to vote. You will notice there are only 7 nominations, and 7 positions on the committee. Whilst this may seem like a pointless vote, the committee actually have to stand down each year and be voted back on. This is in our constitution, and even though there are technically no choices in the positions being voted for, it still must be done. Therefore, your vote will enable a committee to operate constitutionally, and will also show your support should you wish to show it.
Club funds and site improvement
We have had queries about club funds, and having an expectation to reply. Until yesterday evening, we didn’t know the status of how many people would be nominating themselves. We therefore can’t speak for a 2022 committee on plans for the fields during 2022. This was made clear in my initial email that all comments regarding 2022 on the forum will be addressed by the 2022 committee – that is why some queries that relate to next year haven’t gained a response just yet. The 2022 committee are not here yet.
The amount of money in the bank is required as a back up. We always need to think of questions cut as ‘what if a mower needed replacing, or both of them needed replacing?’ Or ‘what if they needed extensive work?’ or ‘what if only half the members decided to rejoin at an AGM? What if we needed a new field if we were asked to leave one of our current sites, where to we find the deposit?’ Finances haven’t stunted any advancement in the sites, but it must always be considered to ensure the club can still be in the black should a large, unexpected bill arise. The last thing we want is the club going into the red on its bank balance, and having no money and/or no mowers or fields as a result of that. We are lucky we have an emergency contingency fund, and it has been this way for several years.
We also haven’t actually had any suggestions on what we can do to improve these sites within the AGM forum itself. We have ideas ourselves, and we’ve had one or two verbal ideas from you over the last year but it would also be great to hear yours too on the forum. Suggestions and help is always welcome, and we will always do what is practical and affordable and what is desired by many. We have been looking into benches etc, but again, please do voice what YOU would like, as this club is owned by us all and we all use it.
Please feel free to leave suggestions on what the 2022 committee can do, and please also remember to check the Rushwick report sent last month for the plans to that field.
Booking in to fly
A reminder, it is still a club rule to book. I’ve had a couple of people not aware of this, please do still book to fly!
Goodbye to some committee members…
We are saying goodbye to James and Simon Ford, who have both been on the committee for several years, to focus on other projects. Simon, who started as a club officer and then the treasurer/club secretary, and also James who has been club officer and club secretary. They have done great work in assisting to keeping the club running over the years and arranging many events many of you have attended. I’m sure you’d all join the current committee in thanking them for their years of service and efforts.
The voting will end in 7 days time, which will fall on the 10th December (at around 6pm or so), so make sure you’re voted before that date to ensure you’re not cut off!
I am writing to you to update you on what is happening regarding the AGM for 2021.
Originally, it was due to be held on the 15th December at the Perdiswell Leisure Centre at 7pm. We had booked a room to hold the meeting within, but with rising cases and concerns of poor turn out due to risks of isolations at Christmas, we have decided not to go ahead with that this year. Your safety is the priority, and risking that along with your Christmas by risking having to isolate just isn’t worth it.
Once again, we’re having an exclusively online AGM.
This will all be run on the website, and during this email I’ll explain how it’ll work, the timeline for what is happening and how you can access what is being called the ‘AGM Hub’ on the website.
We explored several options, such as Zoom and holding an AGM later in 2022, but it was decided this was not the best way to go forward. Zoom relies on all members having access to the correct technology and knowing how it works, and the free version also has a 40 minute limit on the service for a call.
Therefore, for 2021, the AGM will once again take place online. You will be able to nominate yourself to be on the election for Committee 2022, vote for your 2022 Committee and vote for other club matters. You will also be able to read the AGM 2020 minutes, the Treasurer’s report, the Chairman’s report and the results of the votes will also be made available online in the hub.
The AGM 2021 Hub
Here you’ll find everything you need. Nomination forms, reports from the chairman and treasurer, the link to place your vote, results – everything you need for the AGM.
It won’t all be visible straight away, and in the next section below you’ll read more into this.
November 17th – The AGM hub will already be open online, making available the 2020 minutes and the nominations to put yourselves forward to be on the election for 2022 committee.It’ll appear as a menu all of it’s own once you are logged in at the top of the website (or, on a mobile device if you press the blue menu button, at the bottom of the list). ‘AGM Discussion 2021’ forum on the club website goes live (click here to visit) for members to voice items they wish to be discussed or addressed. Anything on there will go to the 2022 committee to address.
November 17th -24th – Nominations open to put yourself onto the Committee 2022 vote. This must be done by November 24th, otherwise you will not be able to add yourself onto the election. The nominations will close at 6pm on the 24th. Chairman and Treasurer reports will go live on the 24th.
December 3rd – 10th – VOTING OPENS – You may vote for your 2021 Committee, and any other business held in the voting form. Voting will open at 9am on December 2nd, and close at 6pm on the 10th.
December 10th at around 9pm – Results will be sent out to members via email, WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram and the website on both the news page and the hub.
December 12th – After the fees are confirmed from the online AGM and the website is updated, renewals will open for your 2022 membership.
Any members who do not have an email address logged with us will have all of the forms and reports posted out. These must be posted back within the same timeframes as above to ensure any nominations or votes are counted. Arrangements for them to renew memberships not via the website will also be arranged.
How will the voting work?
It’ll work exactly the same as last year. You’ll click a link, select your answers, and submit. You must complete all sections with a red asterisk (*) next to them or you will not able to proceed to the next page.
Note: you will not be able to change your vote once you submit, or place a second vote so please carefully select your answers prior to submission!
As the entire membership will be voting for any nominations for the 2022 committee, for this year we do not need to worry about being proposed or seconded. The entire membership voting will cover this part of the vote by default.
What about a discussion that we usually have at an AGM, will we be able to air our point of discussion?
Discussions obviously won’t work with the meeting being online only. We have thought about this, and if anyone has ANY questions to please ask them in the AGM 2021 Discussion forum thread found in the Club Forum’s section of our website (found in the Member’s Menu when you’ve logged in). We will respond as soon as we can, and the thread will be monitored to ensure all questions are responded to. The committee for 2022 will then address anything raised.
The forum is the place to have a recorded discussion regarding the AGM 2021. Any comments in WhatsApp will need to put in the forum instead. It must be posted in the forum only if you wish for them to be addressed for the AGM. We can not easily minute what is going on in WhatsApp is the reason for this.
Please consider clicking ‘subscribe’ on the top right of the forum to be notified by email to new replies and discussion.
What do we vote for?
The items in the voting form are as follows:
2022 Committee Election Asking if you have read the reports, if you agree with them and for any comments you may have
Club matters (such as fees, AOB etc)
For this section we have implemented a new vote. We are asking you to type in the name of a club member, committee or non-committee, who you feel has gone above and beyond for their club for 2021. You will then need to type your reason for this selection. This will then be acknowledged, amongst everyone else who was also suggested, in an email to the club with the winner being especially noted.
Renewals are online
Renewing is also staying online, and will be available online indefinitely, both for your convenience and also for the future going forward to make the secretary and webmaster role a little easier.
You will now have to renew online, irrespective of whether you choose to pay via bank transfer, card, cash or cheque. It all must be done online.
This will be via the member’s online shop, found in the Member’s Menu, or from the link below:
Please note, the shop is CLOSED until December 12th.
You can pay by all methods, even though it is online only. If you are paying by:
Credit/Debit Card – there is an additional fee of 1.4% for card payments only to cover costs inflicted upon us by the service we use. Once you have paid, you do not need to do anything else.
Bank Transfer – no additional fees. Process the order online, selecting bank transfer as your payment method and confirm. Once you have confirmed, you will need to email the Membership Secretary (firstname.lastname@example.org) that you have processed your order online. Please confirm in your email your reference number from your email invoice from us. When you transfer the money, in the reference box in your online banking transfer page, enter your invoice number and your name.
Cash – no additional fees. Process the order online, selecting cash as your payment method and confirm. Once you have confirmed, you will need to email the Membership Secretary (email@example.com) that you have processed your order online. Please confirm in your email your reference number from your email invoice from us.
Cheque – no additional fees. Process the order online, selecting cheque as your payment method and confirm. Once you have confirmed, you will need to email the Membership Secretary (firstname.lastname@example.org) that you have processed your order online. Please confirm in your email your reference number from your email invoice from us, and please also write this on the BACK of your cheque.
The online store will tell you this information again, and will provide bank details if you choose bank transfer option. The online store is very secure if you wish to pay by card.
The reason we are doing this is to make use of the new website functions – after you process your order online, and payment is authorised, your online account will auto-renew and update your payment date. This saves either myself and the membership secretary going through manually doing it for all our members and deactivating members who have left. You also get to pay online with credit/debit card, and have a receipt from all of your payment methods.
If anyone struggles, please contact myself on email@example.com and I will process it for you online (not card payments though due to GDPR).
The stock of the online store will replenish on the 12th December, allowing you to add your renewal to your cart and purchase online.
If anyone does not have internet access, we can arrange an alternative way to renew.
That’s just about everything! If anyone has any issues with any of this, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
I can help with both the website or IT issue you may face, but also as a committee member I can help with other questions you may have regarding this. If it is more appropriate, feel free to also email or speak to the other 2021 committee members. They are:
Just been asked to send out a friendly reminder to everyone that booking in is still very much a requirement for going to either of the fields, no matter for how long. With the rising cases, this is getting more important as the winter sets in. Not only that, the BMFA have recommended we continue, and so it still very much is a club rule.
Additionally, cancelling unwanted bookings is also required still until we update you further.
I have been given a report from Clive on the current situation regarding Rushwick. Please take a look below:
I visited Rushwick on 13th October, to view the state of the strip. It is a bit better than my last visit with some grass growth after recent rainfall but still an uneven surface with bare patches. I had suggested buying several tonnes of topsoil with some grass seed to improve things, this met with mixed responses and the latest feeling was to leave this action until next spring. I now concur with this suggestion after a discussion I had with Matt, our landlord, at the field, his opinion is that there is a fairly high probability that the field will flood during the winter. Even after the flood prevention work several years ago he said there has been occasions when the water was hedge high, in this event I suspect that any recently applied topsoil would be washed away. The earlier dry weather had prevented applying topsoil and seed which may have grown sufficiently to anchor the soil.
I applied a mix of topsoil, growmore and grass seed to a few small bare patches just to see if it germinated and survived the winter. Application of grass seed at the end of March and to patches in July resulted in zero growth.
The season has resulted in periods of too cold, too wet and too dry, all conditions being unfavourable for a good growth of the grass.
I noticed that the Prestbury Park Club, near Tewksbury, have been preparing a new field in a similar timeframe as Rushwick was being improved using a similar planting method. I asked them, via E-mail, if they had any suggestions on how to improve the grass, the reply was as follows
Tue, 14 Sept at 17:23 “The earlier wet period stopped us being able to get our roller on the grass, so we have a similar problem to yourselves. With the now dry spell we still cannot roll. Hoping the rain will be sufficient and not overly wet to start the rolling again. We have our own 10 foot unit. It does take a full season to get a reasonable grass cover and hopefully next year it will be better.”
Photos on their website show the progression of their new field.
Apologies to all those that have been inconvenienced as our landlord has tried to improve the field for us and thanks to those that have used their initiative to allow ROG take offs.
One of the reasons for the revamping of the field was to avoid , where possible, flying over the neighbours land. The people who now own this farm are not living there as the place is being refurbished, they will move in as soon as they work is completed. They own restaurant(s) so they will be at home during the day so we need to be aware of this.
Action Plan for the 2022 Committee: The club will need about six people in the spring to apply about 4 tonnes of topsoil and some seed and hope for better weather.
Hopefully that report can show that Rushwick is very much a work in progress, and to just please bear with us just a little longer. We’re really excited to get Rushwick sorted and host some events there hopefully next year.
We also had a committee meeting last night, focussing on details for the AGM this year. Keep an eye out for an email over the next couple of days or so from me on that, as once again there are some changes with how things are going ahead whilst returning to some normality. We’ve also revised the rules for 35MHz requiring a non-existent pegboard, and discussed Rushwick at length.