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1       Name

The CLUB shall be known as the 'Portsmouth & District Canoe Club' (PDCC), or the 'Portsmouth Canoe Club'; hereafter known as THE CLUB.

2       Aim

The aim of THE CLUB is to actively promote the sport of canoeing/kayaking by the organisation of coaching and journeying events suitable for participation at all level and abilities.

3       Membership

         3.1    Qualifications

Any person who undertakes to behave in the best interest of THE CLUB, and in the sport of canoeing. shall be eligible for membership regardless of sex, age, disability, ethnicity, nationality, sexual orientation, religion or other beliefs. However, limitation of membership according to available facilities is allowable on a non-discriminatory basis.

3.2     Classes of Membership

A.     Full Members - 18 years or over.

B.     Junior Members - Under 18 years. Those under 13 will be admitted when one or both parent/guardians are an adult member.  A consent form is required for Junior Members taking part in events organised by THE CLUB when a parent or guardian is not present.

C.     Family Members - Members from any of the above groups living at the same address and will receive one newsletter per address.

D.     Honorary Members (Life)

3.3    Election

A.     Candidates for membership shall make a written application to the Secretary on the form provided.

B.     The power of acceptance and continued membership shall rest with the General Committee, who may refuse to accept an applicant only for good cause such as conduct or character, or likely to bring THE CLUB or the sport into disrepute. Appeal against refusal may be made to the members of the committee in the first instance.

C.     A person who has been expelled from, or refused membership of the British Canoe Union, may not be eligible for membership. 

4        Entrance Fee

A.    All new members are required to pay an entrance fee.

B.    The amount of the entrance fee will be determined by the members in the General Meeting.

5        Subscriptions

A.    On acceptance, new club members will be required to pay the annual subscriptions in addition to the entrance fee.

B.    Members are required to pay their annual subscriptions for the year on the first day of January each year. Those joining after the 1st October are entitled to the following year at no additional cost.

C.    The amount of the subscription will be determined by the members in the General Meeting.

6        Termination of Membership

A.    A member may resign by giving one months notice, in writing, to the Secretary.

B.    A member will have deemed to have resigned from THE CLUB if they fail to pay their annual subscriptions by the 1st February that were due on the 1st January. They may however rejoin at any time during the year, with the entrance fee payment (an additional £3), subject to section 3.3 above.

C.    1. Any member who no longer fulfils the qualifications of Section 3 of this Constitution, or

        2. A member violating the rules and regulations of THE CLUB, or being adjudged guilty of unsatisfactory conduct, may         by resolution of the Committee be suspended or expelled from THE CLUB.

D.    A member suspended or expelled from THE CLUB under para ‘C’ above, may appeal to a Special General Meeting if such appeal is sponsored by not less than six members. 

7        General Committee

A.    The General Committee shall conduct the affairs of THE CLUB as a whole and shall consist of officers as listed in 7B

B.    The General Committee shall consist of:

        1.    Chairperson
        2.    Secretary
        3.    Treasurer
        4.    Other officers as deemed necessary
        5.    BCU Coaches (ex officio) 

C.    The General Committee may co-opt no more than 2 members of the club to its number.

8        Election of The Committee

A.    Only subscribing members of THE CLUB may become a Committee Member

B.    Election of the Committee shall take place at the Annual General Meeting (AGM).

C.    Candidates for the election  to the committee shall indicate their intention by returning, completed, the form provided by the Secretary by the end of September preceding the AGM.

D.    Members unable to attend the AGM shall be allowed a postal vote for the election of the Committee members.  Members wishing a postal vote shall apply, in writing, to the Secretary for a list of the nominees and should return their vote, in writing, to the Secretary. The Secretary must have received this vote at least 7 days prior to the vote.  Failure of the postal system will invalidate that vote.

E.    The General Committee shall appoint a Vice-Chairman from among its number.

F.    The elected General Committee shall serve for one year.

G.    The serving General Committee members shall be eligible for re-election providing this is does not extend the period of service on the General Committee to more than four consecutive years.

H.    The Chairperson may be re-elected  to the position of Chairperson providing this does not extend the period of Chairperson to more than three consecutive years.

I.    Members who have served four consecutive years shall be required to stand down for a minimum period of one year before they will again be eligible for election  to the General Committee.

J.    In the event that insufficient members are prepared to stand for the committee then the restrictive periods in paragraphs G, H and I of this clause can be waived until the next Annual General Meeting.

9        Duties of the Committee

9.1    Chairperson  The Chairperson shall:

A.    Preside at the General Meetings of THE CLUB and at all meetings of the General Committee.
B.    Be responsible for guiding the activities of THE CLUB in accordance with this constitution and general policy as expressed by the majority of the members
C.    Be an ex-officio member of any committee of THE CLUB.
D.    Be or nominate a member as a contact point for Child Protection Issues.

9.2     Hon Secretary The Hon. Secretary shall be responsible for:-

A.    The organisation of the meetings of THE CLUB
B.    Recording the minutes relating to meetings.
C.    All correspondence relating to the general business of THE CLUB.

9.3     Treasurer  The Treasurer will:

A.    Be responsible for the collection of all monies, including subscriptions.
B.    Keep such books of account as required by the AGM.
C.    Produce at the AGM, balance sheets showing the financial state of the General Fund. These to be available as required at the AGM.
D.    Confirm all cheques issued have two signatures.
E.    Make the committee aware of potential financial or cash flow problems.

9.4     Other Officers

The duties of the other officers shall be decided as necessary by the General Committee. 

9.5    General Duties of the Committee

A.    To prepare a regular newsletter, via the Newsletter Editor, to disseminate information to THE CLUB members

B.    To prepare an annual programme of trips and training opportunities. Only those trips appearing in the Newsletter or otherwise sanctioned by the Committee shall be considered Club trips.

C.    To nominate leaders for each of the club events.

D.    To ensure that leaders of the club  events are suitably experienced and qualified for the nature of the event

E.    To encourage the personal development of all members kayaking.

F.    To draw up rules for the safe conduct of kayaking activities within THE CLUB.

G.    To have a power to protect the interests of the members while engaged in Club activities.

10      General Committee Meetings

A.    The General Committee shall not meet less than four times during the year and preferably every two months.

B.    Meetings of the General Committee shall be called by the Secretary on the instructions from the Chairperson or not less than three committee members.

C.    A quorum for the committee shall consist of not less than four Committee members.

D.    Should a vacancy occur on the General Committee between AGM’s the General Committee shall appoint another eligible member to the vacancy until the next AGM.

11      General Meetings

          11.1 Annual General Meetings

A.    The Annual General Meeting (AGM) shall be held between mid-October and the end of November each year, with a maximum gap of 14 calendar months between each AGM.

B.    A Statement of Accounts, as of the preceding end of September shall be laid before the meeting.

C.    The date of the AGM will be issued in the Newsletter to members. If the location is not published members shall be able to contact the Secretary for the location and time at least 14 days prior to the event.

D.    Notices for discussion at the AGM, not of origin from within the General Committee, shall be lodged with the Secretary at least 14 days prior to the AGM and signed by two club members.

          11.2  Extraordinary General Meetings

           An Extraordinary Meeting shall be called on:

           A.    The instructions of the majority of the General Committee.

           B.    A requisition signed by not less than ten of THE CLUB members.

           11.3 Quorum

           A.    All general meetings require at least 15 members to be present to form a quorum.

           B.    If after half-an-hour from the appointed time for the meeting, a quorum is not present, the General Meeting                              shall be adjourned until a time and place fixed by the General Committee.

           C.    If a quorum is not present within half-an-hour of the time fixed for an adjourned meeting, the members present shall              constitute the quorum.

            11.4 General

            A.    Club members shall be given at least 14 days clear notice of a general meeting.

            B.    Under normal circumstances it will be sufficient to inform members of a General Meeting, and the business of the                     meeting through THE CLUB Newsletter.

            C.    Accidental omission to give notice of a General Meeting to a member, or the non-receipt of a notice of a General                    Meeting by a member, shall not invalidate the proceedings of the General Meeting.

            D.    The Chairperson shall preside at all General Meetings, however in their absence a Vice-Chairperson shall preside by                the General Committee.

            E.    A resolution put to the vote at a General Meeting shall be decided by a show of hands. Where more than one person                has been nominated for a position on the General Committee, then in this case voting will be by secret ballot.

            F.    All members over the age of 18 years are entitled to vote at all meetings.

12      Liability

            A.    The General Committee shall manage the affairs of THE CLUB, however, financial or legal liability incurred in the                   rightful exercise of their office shall not be the personal liability of the General Committee but the responsibility of THE                    CLUB as a whole.
            B.    All members who attend club events do so at their own risk, and neither THE CLUB or its officers can accept liability                for any loss or injury sustained of any kind whilst on a club tour, meet or other activity within THE CLUB’s program

            C.    All club members have a duty of care to ensure that they are suitably experienced and equipped and that their                        equipment is kept in a reasonable condition for attending any club organised event.

            D.    All club members, or participants, shall act responsibly and adhere to recognised safe practiced on club trips.  They                shall not knowingly put themselves or any other members of the group at risk by any action or omission whatsoever. If they             are in any doubt they should contact the trip leader.

            E.    ANY trip that involves a journey offshore of ½ NM or more requires paddlers to be BCU 2 Star level or equivalent level.

            F.    Any member may be excluded or included from joining a trip if, in the opinion of the trip leader, their skill and                           experience level or weather or sea conditions warrant it. In such circumstance, at that time, the trip leader’s decision is             final.

            G.    If a member has been excluded from joining a trip they may appeal to the Committee, the committee decision is final.               Representation to the committee must be made via the secretary within 2 weeks of the refusal from the trip leader.

            H.    A suitable buoyancy aid or life-jacket shall be worm at all times whilst paddling.

13        Distribution of Profits

            In no circumstances shall any profit be distributed to Club members. Any profits earned shall be contributed to the General             Fund for the furtherance of the aims of THE CLUB.

14        Club Closure

            THE CLUB shall not be closed down except by resolution of a Special General Meeting convened for the purpose of                         closure. In such an event any surplus assets shall be handed over to a body, or bodies, with similar aims to the present                 club (such as the BCU) or to a charity or charities.

15        Power of Decision

            Any matter not provided for in this constitution, or any question over the interpretation of this constitution, shall be dealt with             by the General Committee whose decision shall be final.

16        Alteration of the Constitution

            A.    This constitution shall not be altered, amended or rescinded, except by a General Meeting resolution passed by                        members of THE CLUB.

            B.    A resolution to effect a change to the constitution must be passed by at least two-thirds of the members present at the             General Meeting.