The Royal British Legion Standard

Wiltshire

*NEW* Minutes of County Conference 10th January 2015

12 January 2013

WILTSHIRE COUNTY ROYAL BRITISH LEGION

MINUTES OF THE 93rd ANNUAL COUNTY CONFERENCE

HELD AT THE CIVIC CENTRE, TROWBRIDGE ON

SATURDAY 10TH JANUARY 2015 COMMENCING AT 1100HRS 

 

PRESENT AT CONFERENCE

County President                                            General Sir Jack Deverell KCB OBE

County Chairman                                            Mr M Swabey

County Vice Chairman                                   Mr S Ashman

County Treasurer                                            Mrs D Walling

County Training Officer                                 Mr M Challinor

County Secretary                                            Mr C Prestwich

Community Fundraiser                                   Mrs F Dobson

 

 

GUESTS IN ATTENDANCE

The Mayor of Trowbridge                              Councillor G Bridges

The Chairman of Wiltshire Council                Councillor R While

President of Wiltshire Women’s Section        Mrs M Havergal

Chairman of Wiltshire Women’s Section       Mrs M Nunn

The Director of Marketing and Comms          Mr G Ryan

Colonel Army Welfare Service                       Colonel N Makin OBE

Rector of St James’ Church Trowbridge        The Reverend Dr Rob Thomas

South West Membership Council Rep            Mr R Garratt and Mrs M Garratt

The Chairman of Dorset County                    Lieutenant Colonel P Harris QGM

The Chairman (Des) of Hampshire County    Mr J Smith and Mrs Smith

The Chairman of Somerset County                Mr R Duddridge and Mrs R Duddridge

Wiltshire Farm Foods                                     Mr M Fitt

Wiltshire Farm Foods                                     Ms Amelia Duffin

Area Manager                                                 Mr A Maxwell

 

 

WILTSHIRE BRANCHES PRESENT

30 Delegates from the following Branches: Alderbury, Bratton, Bromham, Chippenham, Corsham (2)*, Cricklade, Devizes, East Knoyle, Semley and Sedgehill, Edington, Highworth, Malmesbury & Sherston, Marlborough*, Melksham*, Minety, Morgans Vale, Redlynch and Woodfalls*, Potterne, Royal Wootton Bassett*, Salisbury, Seend, Shrewton*, Stratton St Margaret, Swindon, Trowbridge*, Warminster*, Westbury*, West Lavington, Wilton, Wroughton* (an asterisk signifies that a Standard was also present from that Branch). 

The County Standard Bearer, the Women’s Section County Standard Bearer and the Deputy County Standard Bearer led the Parade of Standards. 

In addition there were 51 Visitors and the Cadet Detachment from Stratton St Margaret attended after lunch. The total attendance was 107.

 

 

 

OPENING OF CONFERENCE 

Conference opened with the entry of Standards.  The County President said the Exhortation after which the Last Post was played.  After observing the Silent Tribute, the Reveille was played and the Chairman said the Kohima Epitaph. The Rev’d Rob Thomas led the Prayers.  Branch Standards then withdrew.

 

 

INTRODUCTION 

In his introduction the Chairman welcomed all in attendance and especially the guests.  He ran through the Health and Safety Brief and then introduced the personalities on the top table and all the guests to Conference.  He explained there would be no Open Forum this Year but that there would be two opportunities within the Agenda to ask questions of the Speakers. He then introduced the Mayor of Trowbridge.

 

 

WELCOME BY THE MAYOR OF TROWBRIDGE 

The Mayor thanked the Chairman for inviting him to attend this 93rd Conference of the Royal British Legion Wiltshire County and welcomed to Trowbridge all those in attendance.  He described the historical links of the Town with the Military and how that continues to this day.  The Trowbridge Armed Forces Weekend has become a major event in the Town’s calendar and this year it was particularly busy with the Freedom of the Town being given to the Royal Regiment of Artillery.  He recognized that the local Branch is very active and mentioned the role they play in the Remembrance Day events, which this year had been the best supported to date.  The Mayor said he was particularly please to see the success of the Poppy Appeal within the Town which seems to go from strength to strength each year.

 

 

COUNTY PRESIDENT’S ADDRESS 

The County President began his address by reading out the Loyal Greeting and Her Majesty’s response. 

He then remarked on the good turnout and thanked all the members who had come along today, which he felt reflects the support from our Branches for the Legion and he also thanked the membership for all the work which they carry out during the course of the year in support of the Charity and especially those who involve themselves with the Poppy Appeal. 

In his view there are two main themes for the forthcoming year.  Whichever Party wins the election they will be a restriction on the supply of money and provision of services.  So there will be increased emphasis on Charites like the RBL, and the relevance of the Legion will continue to be enhanced. 

The first theme is the need for efficiency between charities to ensure the available money is best spent.  And he gave an example of Age Concern and the RBL both providing handy van services and he wondered if there was scope to share the costs of this service. 

The second theme is the possibility that 2015 may be the first year, for many years, in which there are no military operational casualties.  Certainly there has been a reduction in military interventions and it is possible that the recent public infatuation with the Services could turn.  If this were to happen the RBL will be at the forefront of persuading the public back onside.

 

The President ended his address by welcoming all the guests.

 

The County Chairman then took over Conference

 

 

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE 

The following apologies had been received:

The Chairman of Devon.

Mr C Gordon, the Assistant Director of Operations (South).

Mr Charles Fuller, President of the Corsham Branch.

Mr Ted Wilson, Member of the County Executive Committee.

The Reverend Adrian Pollard, County Chaplain.

Mr and Mrs John Underhill.

Mr Joe Falzon, Member of the Board of Trustees.

The Colerne Branch. 

 

APPOINTMENT OF SCRUTINEERS 

The following members were appointed as Scrutineers:

Mr W Sherman                        Trowbridge

Mr P Garland                          Westbury

Mr R Fraser                             Potterne

 

The Scrutineers agreed the count of 30 Delegates.

 

 

ADOPTION OF STANDING ORDERS FOR THE CONDUCT OF BUSINESS AT CONFERENCE 

The Chairman proposed the adoption of Standing Orders for conduct of business at County Conference.  The proposal was seconded by Mr A Light the Marlborough Delegate and Carried.

 

 

MINUTES OF COUNTY CONFERENCE 2014 

The Minutes of the County Conference held at Trowbridge on 11 January 2014 were approved as a true record.

Proposer:         Mr R Giddings            Salisbury

Seconder:        Mrs S Porter                Swindon         

Carried.

 

 

MATTERS ARISING

There were no Matters Arising.

 

PRESENTATION OF REPORTS

 

County Chairman 

The Chairman thanked the Mayor for his welcome.  He then explained that as the County Report and Plan are contained in the Conference Handbook, which was sent to Delegates before Christmas, he did not intend to dwell on these in this Report, other than to say that the plan is a dynamic document which will be updated as the year develops. 

He said that this is a year of elections within the County.  He was elected for a further three year term unopposed but no nominations had been received for the post of Vice Chairman which became vacant with the retirement of Steve Ashman at the end of Conference.  Accordingly, the Executive Committee had appointed Mr Michael Challinor to the post.   The Chairman welcomed Mr Challinor and thanked Mr Ashman for all his support over the past 3 years.  He told Conference that the posts on the Executive Committee would be voted on later.

The Report in the Handbook gives a good summary of the year, both in areas of strength and weakness.  The Centenary of the Great War had caused it to be another very busy year and he thanked the Branches for their support and hard work and he also thanked the President, Area Staff, Membership Council Representative, the County training Officer and the CS for their assistance.

During the year Branches has made some very generous donations to the County Welfare Fund and this was very appropriate and much appreciated because this fund is used to support serving and ex servicemen and women and their dependents in need within the County.

The past year had seen changes to the County Structure and the way that welfare is delivered.  In addition to Steve Ashman’s retirement, Paddy Croxford has also retired after many years service as Chairman of the County Welfare Committee.  There had too been some sad losses amongst the Branches notably: Bill Foss a past President of Edington, Lt Col Anthony Claydon President of the East Knoyle, Semley and Sedgehill Branch and Cdr Harry Thompson, recent president of the Corsham Branch.

The County Ceremonial Team had been kept very busy throughout this centennial year and he thanked both Brian Mitchell and Cathy Smith for their hard work.  He made special mention of the Standard Bearers who had risen to the challenge of attending the additional events and whose attendance always raised the profile of an event and in particular he thanked Ron Fraser who has carried the County Standard for the past three years.  Finally he congratulated the Women’s Section County Standard Bearer, Amanda Bearryman for her outstanding results in the County and Regional Competitions and finally for gaining third place in the National Competition.

The County Fundraising under Fi Dobson continues its strong progress and the Poppy Appeal closed 2014 nearly 4% up on the previous year.  This year the Appeal is again set to break records being already ahead of the total collected in 2013/14. 

Membership continues to be an area of weakness with the County Membership down once more and trading conditions for our clubs remains difficult.  Perhaps the National Comradeship Initiative will help reverse these trends.

There continues to be an increased need for volunteers both in the Swindon and Tidworth Pop in Centres but also within Branches as Visitors.  Head Office is very keen to capture the statistics of low level welfare conducted by Branches and we will be writing to Branches about this in the near future.

The County’s response to the commemoration of the Great War has been outstanding but the centenary runs for another 4 years and we will need the help of all our Branches to keep the momentum going.

The Chairman closed his address by thanking the membership for his re-election and saying that it had been a privilege to have been the County Chairman for the past three 3 years, which had seen great structural change in the RBL but that the County had acquitted itself well   despite its relatively small membership. He looked forward to serving the County for the next three years.

 

 

County Treasurer 

The County Treasurer explained that the audited County General and Benevolent Accounts for 2013/2014 are shown in the Conference Handbook, which was circulated to Branches before Christmas. 

The end of year balances for the General Account was £4,278, the Benevolent Account was £28,206 and we have a Reserve of £2,872 in a Savings account. 

The General Account ends this financial year up £2,593 on the previous year.  This increase was mainly due to the cancellation of two planned training events.  The primary income for this account is from the annual grant from Head Office which in 2013/14 was £7,215.  Head Office reduced their grant by £1,000 in the current FY to compensate for the carry forward balance in the Training Budget. 

The Benevolent Fund is £4,250 up on the previous year’s closing balance.  This was due to a vast reduction in donations to cases in Wiltshire as we transitioned from the old to new welfare systems.  As explained in the County Handbook the new welfare system is now fully operational and so we should see significant outgoings in the coming year.  We had £7,950 of donations over the 2013/2014 financial year from the following Branches:

 

            RBL Warminster                                                          £2,500

            RBL Chippenham                                                         £2,000

            RBL Morgan Vale & Woodfalls & Redlynch                     £1,000

            RBL Potterne                                                              £800

            RBL Burbage & Easton/RBL Seend                               £500 each

            RBL Edington                                                             £400                  

 

We are very grateful for these donations and we have already received further donations in the current financial year.

 

The Chairman asked Conference if there were any questions arising from either report, after which he would take a vote on both reports together.

 

Mr D Mort, Heddington and Stockley Branch.  Expressed his concern about the Membership Services Project (as detailed in the County Report) which will introduce new procedures this year for the renewal of Cash paying members.  He explained that the current procedure allows the Membership Secretary to keep in touch with the Branch members. The new procedure will remove the Membership Secretary from the renewal process because Head Office will communicate directly with members. This will remove the personal touch from the renewal process and will almost certainly result in a loss of members.  He asked that Branches should be given the option of retaining the current system. 

County Chairman replied that he was aware Branches are concerned about this project and that he will follow it up at the County Chairmen’s meeting in Haig House in March. 

Maj P Williams Trowbridge.  Asked if it could be run as a Motion at National Conference. 

County Chairman said that he understood a Branch from the East of England was running such a Motion. 

Mr M Millward, Wilton Branch.  Said that they had a 94 year old member and asked if there were any exemptions which excused members of a certain age from paying for their membership. 

County Chairman said that Branches could agree to pay for a member’s subscription but that the Branch would have to bear the cost itself. 

There being no further questions the Chairman asked for a vote on both his and the County Treasurer’s Report:

 

Proposed:        Mr E Bridges              Westbury

Seconded:       Mr L Osborn               Cricklade

Carried

     

 

ADDRESS BY THE DIRECTOR OF MARKETING AND COMMUNICATIONS -

MR GARY RYAN 

Mr Ryan began his address by congratulating all those involved with the Poppy Appeal and said the Head Office projection was that the £40M target would be broken easily and the projection is for an increase of 10% on last year.  He mentioned the RBL’s relationship with Sainsbury’s and said that collections from their stores probably accounted for about£7M and the advertising campaign achieved a further £500k. 

He sees his role to ensure that the RBL is understood as an organisation and that there is more to us than just Remembrance. There is a need to modernise our image so that it appeals across all generations.  LIVE ON is designed to do this but SHOULDER TO SHOULDER still exists as a strapline and will do so into the foreseeable future.  New merchandise, literature and display materials are being developed and should be available in the first quarter of 2015 and he is looking at how best to get them out to Branches.  To date he has spent a lot of time visiting the various departments so that he can get a clear image across the business and ensure a consistent approach across the RBL.  

He is looking at our engagement with social media and websites.  The website has had over10M page views and there are over 130k followers on Twitter.  On Facebook, Maxrespect has over 2M followers and the Lights Out project received huge support with over 4M hits.  We have to keep engaged with the public to ensure this momentum continues and being chosen as their favoured charity by the producers of Angelina Jolie’s new film “Unbroken” and by the American National Football League for their Remembrance Sunday match, with an audience of about 4M, are helping us to do this. 

This year the RBL came second in the Harris Charity Brand index just behind Cancer Research UK, which is our highest rating ever and some seven places above Help for Heroes.  However, the Charity is involved in a huge number of events and we should consider whether it would be more effective to do less events better rather than a lot of things less well. 

Mr Ryan then mentioned the Household and Hearing Loss Surveys which had underlined why we need to make ourselves more available to our beneficiaries.  The Pop In Centres, the Knowledge Base and the Contact Centre, which is now open seven days a week, are all helping us to achieve this goal.  In addition there have been considerable successes on the campaigning front, and the Legion’s General Election Manifesto has already achieved a number of changes,  notably our recent success over the Forces Widow’s Pension Rights and the, soon to be launched, “Insult to Injury” campaign.  

The Director ended his report by saying that the changes over the past three years had left the Legion well placed to cope with the challenges of the future. 

Mr J Robbins, Bromham Branch, said that his Branch had experienced that the number of mailshots, some of which duplicated each other resulting in individuals receiving more that one mailshot, had undermined their local Poppy Appeal efforts. 

Mr Ryan replied that fundraising needs to compete at all levels but that we need to improve coordination between National and local levels.  He added that cleaning the database should remove the duplication of mailshots. 

Col M O’Donoghue, Bratton Branch, remarked that the Director had provided a lot of information and asked if it was available on the website. 

Mr Ryan replied that it was on the website but if there is difficulty accessing it then to go through him.

 

 

PRESENTATION BY WILTSHIRE FARM FOODS 

Mr Matt Fitt of Wiltshire Farm Foods (who generously sponsored Conference for the third year running), then introduced his newly appointed marketing manager Amelia Draffin.  Matt explained that

having worked with WFF for the past three years, he will be leaving them on 13 March.  He said that he had thoroughly enjoyed the relationship with the RBL but that in future our point of contact would be with Amelia. 

Ms Draffin then told Conference that WFF had been the Number 1 franchise in the UK over the past year.  She linked their business with that of our own welfare support and she explained the importance of their driving/delivery teams in being a friendly and caring face for their customers.  She then listed a number of the new organisation that WFF are working with and explained how they now work together. 

She ended her talk by announcing a £200 grant to Mrs Amanda Bearryman to assist her with the cost of maintaining/purchasing her Standard Bearer’s equipment. 

Conference adjourned for lunch at 1250 hours and reassembled at 1340 hours.

WOMEN’S SECTION COUNTY PRESIDENT’S ADDRESS 

The President of Women’s Section took the opportunity to tell Conference a little of the history of the Women’s Section and their role.  She explained that the RBLWS is the only body of women organised for this purpose and that they raise their own funds which are then spent within the confines of a number of schemes which she explained.  Mrs Havergal is not only the President of Wiltshire WS but is also responsible for the three Counties of Dorset, Somerset and Wiltshire.  Looking to the future, Mrs Havergal said she was convinced of the need for the Women’s Section and that the demands on them for assistance in the future would only increase.

Mrs Havergal ended her talk with a gardening story which was much enjoyed by Conference!

 

 

PRESENTATION BY THE GUEST SPEAKER, COLONEL NICK MAKIN OBE,

COLONEL ARMY WELFARE SERVICE 

Having introduced himself, Col Makin explained the role of the AWS which is simply to support the Operational Effectiveness of the Army.  However, their support is limited to the regular Amy not the Reserves. Their key functions are:

  • Personnel Support.  Achieved through 100 Army Welfare Workers, both military and civilian all of whom have to attend a 9 month course.  He added that the nature of this role can be very demanding and stressful for the individual Welfare Workers.
  • Community Support.  Which is provided by Civil Servants who are focussed mainly on Youth Activities.
  • Information Support.  Delivered through the system of HIVES which are based in 39 locations and supported by a staff of 55.
  • Housing Advice. Provides service leavers advice on the provision of housing.

Additional functions include:

  • Running the Cotswold Services Centre at Corsham, also know as the Lypiatt Centre.
  • Training the unit Welfare staff.
  • The provision of specialist Army Welfare staff.
  • Administering the 95 Women’s Royal Voluntary Welfare Service (WRVS) staff within units.
  • Specialist support for Ghurkha families. 

Col Makin ended his talk in considering some of the future challenges for the AWS:

  • Implementing the findings of the Welfare Review.
  • The need to restructure the Service.
  • How best to manage units in isolated locations.
  • The need to maintain the relevance and reputation of the Service.

 

 

PRESENTATION BY THE SOMERSET/WILTSHIRE AREA MANAGER – MR ALISTAIR MAXWELL

The Area Manager said that Area team having been fully manned in January 2014, then lost a number of staff but these posts have now been filled and the team is back to full manning.  Good progress has been made against the Area Plan.

  • The Pop In Centre in Regent Street Swindon opened on 15 December.  It has a team of 15 volunteers to assist with the staffing (including three RBL members) and to date there have been 140 visitors, twenty of whom had membership queries.  There is a queue of other Welfare agencies who want to have space in the Centre.  Unfortunately the speed with which the Centre had to be opened did not allow the membership and Caseworkers to be invited but this will be addressed in the New Year.
  • The Tidworth secondary location has been reconfigured and seven volunteers have come forward to help with the manning.  Currently it is only open for limited periods on three days a week but the numbers calling in when it is open are significant.
  • From the CS/MSO perspective nothing has changed.  The Cottage will remain the focus for the Wiltshire Membership.
  • A number of other outreach locations have now been established across the County and the AM ran through a list of these.
  • The delivery output is being achieved and we are working with other organisations is doing so.  In particular we have an excellent relationship with SSAFA in both Counties and they are now using the Case Management System.
  • More volunteer caseworkers have been trained and there are more in the pipeline that require training.  The AM hopes to have 15 volunteer caseworkers trained in each County by the end of 2015.
  • The AM then provided a number of statistics which illustrated the success of the welfare system to date.

 

During 2015 the AM plans to deliver:

  • A stronger working relationship with military units throughout his Area.
  • Closer working with local authorities.
  • Support to the Wiltshire membership.
  • To continue to expand the volunteer base into Branch welfare work and the need to capture data of the welfare that Branches deliver.
  • Increase the volunteering opportunities.
  • Support the Poppy Appeal.

 

 

QUESTIONS FOR THE SPEAKERS 

The following Questions were put to the Speakers from the Floor. 

Mr W Sherman, Trowbridge.  There is a need for local advertising.  Branches don’t get proper recognition of the work they do.

Mr Ryan replied that there is no budget for local advertising but that he would look into it.  He will also look at supporting branches with merchandise.  However, he feels that we should consider concentrating on fewer, but bigger items.

Mrs V Richmond, Devizes. Spoke of a recent case which was referred to the Contact Centre and which, initially, had been dealt with unsatisfactorily.

The AM said that he would follow this up. (Afternote: Mrs Richmond has emailed the details of the case to the AM).

Mr B Mitchell, Trowbridge.  Asked what has been the outcome of the Hearing Survey.

Mr Ryan said he would take the request back to Head Office.

Mr B Mitchell, Trowbridge.  Complained that he has now been waiting for over two years for a response from the Ceremonial Working Group about the recommended supplier ofStandards and ceremonial equipment.

Mr R Garratt said he would take this up with the Membership Council and get back to the MSO.

Mrs I Sinclair, Chippenham.  Asked if we could be given an update on the Battleback Centre either through the website or the Magazine.

Mr Ryan said he would follow this up.

Capt B Darvill, Warminster.  Said that their Branch volunteer caseworker gets involved with soldiers’ families and asked if this was correct.

Col Makin replied that the AWS staff should deal with serving soldiers and their families but occasionally they need to transfer their cases to Charities.  On other occasions the soldier/family may prefer to deal direct with a Charity.  The edges are often blurred but the key is that one way or another the required help is provided to the individual.

 

 

ELECTION OF COMMITTEES 

  • County Executive Committee. The Chairman explained that the County Executive Committee shown at the front of the Conference Handbook had all offered themselves for re-election less Steve Ashman and Paddy Croxford.  In addition there were three new nominations for the Committee.  He would ask Conference to vote separately on the two groups both of which were being elected for a three year term.  He first asked for a vote on the current Committee:
    • Proposed:        Mr D Packwood         Corsham         
    • Seconded:       Mr M Millward           Wilton
    • Carried

 

The Chairman then asked for a vote on the three new nominations, namely Mr Bryan Kingscote of Royal Wootton Bassett Branch and Mr Roger Kingshott and Mr Bob Wright of Warminster Branch.  Their CVs had been handed to delegates with their voting cards at the beginning of conference:

    • Proposed:        Capt B Darvill             Warminster
    • Seconded:       Mr P Collier                Corsham
    • Carried

 

  • County Conference Committee.  Three members are required from the Floor for this Committee.  The current incumbents are Mr P Collier, Mr D Packwood and Mr P Davies.  All three are prepared to stand again.  These appointments are made annually.
    • Proposed:        Mrs S Porter                Swindon
    • Seconded:       Col M O’Donoghue    Bratton
    • Carried

 

  • County Delegate to Conference.  The County Chairman said that he was putting himself forward to be the County Delegate to National Conference at Southport on 16/17 May.
    • Proposed:        Mrs C Smith                Melksham
    • Seconded:       Mr R Giddings            Salisbury
    • Carried

 

 

LOCATION AND DATE OF CONFERENCE IN 2016

The Chairman explained that no Branch has proposed an alternative location for Conference in 2016.  The County Conference Committee has therefore recommended that, following the success of Conference in the Trowbridge Civic Centre for the past two years that it should be adopted as the location for Conference in 2016. The Chairman added that the Bank holiday in 2016 falls awkwardly and reduces the time for Conference Preparation and his suggestion was that Conference should be held on the third Saturday which is 16 January 2016. The Chairman asked for a Proposer and Seconder for the location and date:

Proposed:        Mr A Thompson                      Devizes

Seconded:       Maj P Williams                        Trowbridge

Carried

 

 

LOCATION FOR COUNTY PARADE AND REDEDICATION SERVICE IN 2015 AND 2016

 The Chairman said that there had been no nomination for the County Parade and Service of Rededication in 2015 and so Conference in 2014 had agreed that the Executive Committee should select a suitable location.  This has been done and Melksham is the chosen venue and the date will be Sunday 7 June.

As shown in the Conference Handbook, Devizes Branch had put themselves forward to hold the Parade and Service of Rededication in 2016.  The Chairman asked for a vote to be taken.

 

Proposed:        Mrs C Smith                            Melksham       

Seconded:       Maj P Williams                        Trowbridge

Carried

 

 

MOTIONS FROM BRANCHES 

The Chairman told Conference that there was one Branch Motion this year from Chippenham Branch and it was shown in the Conference Handbook.

 

“This Conference requests the Board of Trustees to take action to ensure that that the contribution made by the Royal British Legion to the Tedworth House Recovery Centre is acknowledged with appropriate signage within Tedworth House.”

 

Reason for inclusion: Residents and Visitors to Tedworth House are currently completely unaware that the Royal British Legion has made a substantial contribution to the Recovery Centre.

 

Effect if passed: Residents of Tedworth House and the visiting public will understand that the Royal British Legion has contributed to the costs of establishing the Recovery Centre.

 

Main argument: Because there is no signage within Tedworth House, or on the roadside signs, which acknowledge the contribution made to the Recovery Centre by the Royal British Legion the residents and general public are completely unaware of this fact.  As a result the Royal British Legion receives no credit for the part it has played in assisting with the establishment of the Recovery Centres.  Not only is this a source of frustration for Legion Members, because their Charity is receiving no credit for its donation, but also the Legion is being excluded from possible fundraising opportunities from being associated with the Recovery Centres.

 

The Chairman asked Mrs I Sinclair to explain why the Branch had put forward the Motion.  Having done this he asked for anyone else to speak in support of the Motion.  Maj P Williams came forward to strongly support the need for signage in Tedworth House to acknowledge the RBL’s contribution.  No Delegate wanted to oppose the Motion. 

 

The Chairman asked for a vote:

 

Proposed:        Mr A Light      Marlborough

Seconded:       Mr K Toft       Seend

Carried

 

 

COUNTY AWARDS - JANUARY 2015

 

The Mayor of Trowbridge together with the Chairman of the Council made the following awards:

THE COUNTESS OF SUFFOLK CUP – awarded for efficiency to the winner in the large Branch category.

                        Winners                      Corsham                   

                       

THE STILLWELL CUP – awarded for efficiency to the winner in the small Branch category.

 

            1st  Place         Shrewton                                                                   

            2nd =                Edington       

                                    Morgans Vale, Redlynch and Woodfalls   

           

           

Highly Commended:

                                    Bromham

                                    Chippenham

                                    East Knoyle, Semley and Sedgehill

                       

THE FOSTER-CURTIS CUP - awarded for efficiency in the Clubs category.        No Entry

        

THE HEAVYSIDE CUP – awarded for the highest percentage increase in membership during the year.                      

               1st Place    Wilton                               14.29%                                              2nd Place   Seend                                5.56%                           

               3rd Place    Burbage & Easton Royal     5.17%

                               

THE COLONEL TEMPEST CUP – awarded for the highest percentage increase in Poppy Appeal collections over 3 years 2011/2012/2013.

 

1st Place          Maurice Betteridge                Ludgershall                + 46.18%

2nd  Place        Mark Cockram                     Old Sarum                + 28.92%

3rd  Place         Lt Col Anthony Hyde            Bratton                     + 22.15%                         

 

THE ANNUAL STANDARD BEARERS COMPETITION  

      1st Place          Kevin Toft                             Seend
      2nd Place         Ron Fraser                             Potterne

      3rd Place =      Drew Webster                       Heddington and Stockley

                             Lee Glyde                               Wilton

 

CATH NEWMAN-EYLES CUP           

 Dale Williams                         Westbury

 

THE LORD LIEUTENANT’S CUP – awarded to the Cadet Detachment which collected the most for Poppy Appeal 2013/14. 

                                    1st Place         2003 (Stratton) Squadron ATC

                                    2nd Place         Trowbridge Detachment Wiltshire ACF (Bugles Platoon)

                                    3rd Place          Larkhill Detachment Wiltshire ACF

4th  Place         1304 (Chippenham) Squadron ATC

5th Place          Chippenham Detachment Wiltshire ACF 

 

COUNTY CERTIFICATES 

The Mayor and Chairman of the Council presented County Certificates to:

  • Mr Robin Guy
  • Mr Brian Mitchell     

The County President than presented a County Certificate to: 

The County Chairman         Mr M Swabey

 

 

THE RAFFLE 

The Chairman thanked all those who had so generously donated Raffle prizes and Mr B Mitchell for running the Raffle. There were 51 prizes and the Raffle had raised £370 and would be very helpful in offsetting the costs of Conference.  Prizes were handed out by the Standard Bearers. 

 

PRESIDENT’S CLOSING REMARKS 

In his closing remarks the President thanked every one for coming to Conference and especially thanked the speakers.  He said a lot of ground had been covered, some of it new.  He said that things do change and will continue to change and that the lack of Government funds and an increasingly aging population will be important players in this.  He thanked Trowbridge for once again looking after us so well and he particularly thanked the Mayor and all those who organized Conference.

 

He wanted to leave Conference with two thoughts:

  • Communications must be improved.  For example, why has there been a delay of two years in recommending suitable providers of Standards and Standard Bearer’s equipment?
  • The Army needs 30,000 Reservists.  They are going to become increasingly important to the Army, and he wondered what the relationship was between the Reserves and the RBL and felt it was worthy of investigation.

 

 

VOTE OF THANKS 

The Vice Chairman gave the vote of thanks to all those who had helped in organizing the day, and especially:

  • Mr Carl Buckingham and his team who are responsible for the administration of events in the Civic Centre. 
  • The Mayor of Trowbridge, Councillor Glyn Bridges, for welcoming us to his town and for being so supportive of the local Armed Forces both past and present.
  • The local Trowbridge Branch for all the support they have provided in assisting with the running of today and to our County Women’s Section for the assistance they have given us throughout the year.
  • Our guest speakers, the Director of Marketing and communications, Mr Gary Ryan, and Colonel Nick Makin for their informative and interesting talks.
  • Wiltshire Farm Foods and their representatives here today, Mr Matt Fitt and Ms Amelia Draffin, whose generous sponsorship has enabled us to use the excellent facilities of this Civic Centre.
  • All who have been with us today, whether as guests, standard bearers, delegates, cadets or visitors for giving your time to support the County.

 

 

RE-ENTRY OF STANDARDS 

The Standards entered and the Chairman presented the County Standard to the County Standard Bearer, Mr K Toft, and duly charged him with his duties.

 

 

NATIONAL ANTHEM 

Conference remained standing for the singing of the National Anthem after which the Standards withdrew.

 

 

CLOSE OF CONFERENCE                      Conference was closed at 1552 hrs.