The organization ( formerly known as “Tiptree Garden Club & Horticultural Society ) shall be known as the “The Tiptree Garden Club” henceforth known as 'the Club'. The Club shall be affiliated to the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) by members vote at the AGM.
The objectives of the Club are to encourage local community interest and improvement in the cultivation of flowers, fruit and vegetables through a varied and programmed set of events benefitting members:
(a) Social meetings, including speakers on horticultural and other related matters
(b) Competitive horticultural shows
(c) Outings, visits and events.
Annual membership is open to all members of the public with an interest in horticulture. A member is a person who has paid a valid subscription, approved by the Chairman or their nominated officer.
All members shall have equal voting rights at general meetings.
The committee may refuse a membership application. A record shall be made and the individual advised. The committee may terminate membership, provided it is in the best interests of the Club to do so. The member shall be given the right to be heard by committee before a decision is reached. They may be accompanied by a friend.
Individual members shall pay an annual subscription. The rate shall be determined at the Annual General Meeting. Subscriptions are due and payable each year from 1st October to the 30th September.
Membership of the Club entitles members to attend programmed events at a reduced rate. Membership also attracts a reduced entry charge for exhibit entries at the Club’s horticultural shows. Reductions shall be as determined at the Annual General Meeting.
3.3 Life Members
Honorary life members are defined as those who have provided outstanding service to the Club. No membership fee will be sought from those accepted as honorary life members. Nominations can only be made by a committee member. Acceptance will be by majority vote of the committee. There should be a maximum of six honorary life members, at any one time.
Elected Officers shall be President, Vice President, Chairman, Vice Chairman, Secretary, Assistant Secretary, Honourable Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer, Publicity Officer and such officers whose appointment shall be considered desirable by the Committee.
Note: A President and Vice President shall be elected but will only act in an advisory role to the committee, as required.
5 The Committee
The business of the Club shall be conducted by a committee ('the committee').The Committee shall consist of both elected officers and volunteer members.
Committee meetings will be held on a monthly basis and minutes shall be recorded. Unless otherwise determined, a quorum shall be the Chairman or their nominated representative and four other committee members. Issues considered at committee meetings may be determined by simple majority of votes cast. All committee members (Including officers) shall have full voting rights.
The committee shall have powers to co-opt additional officers or committee members as necessary in support of Club activities.
6.1 Annual General Meeting (AGM)
The Club shall hold an AGM every calendar year. A quorum shall consist of the Chairman, Honourable Secretary, Honourable Treasurer or their nominated representatives, plus at least 20% of the membership.
The Chairman and Honourable Secretary, or their nominated representatives, shall submit their annual reports. The Honourable Treasurer or their nominated representative, shall also submit their annual report and audited Club accounts.
Previously elected officers shall retire each year, but shall be eligible for re-election. Officers for the ensuing year shall be elected by majority vote of the members present. A financial examiner shall also be appointed. No committee member shall be eligible to act as the financial examiner.
All members are entitled to stand for election. Those members not present at the AGM, but wishing to be considered for election, shall present their signed nomination, along with the name and signature of a proposer and seconder, to the Honourable Secretary in advance of the meeting.
Annual subscriptions and reduced member rates for programmed events and show entry fees, shall be reviewed and altered only with a majority vote of those members present.
Any proposed alterations to this constitution shall be forwarded in advance to the Honourable Secretary. Changes shall only be agreed with a majority vote of those members present.
6.2 Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM)
These meetings shall only be held at such times that the Chairman or their nominated representative receive a request in writing of at least five other committee members or 20% of the total membership. Notice shall be sent to all members at least 14 days in advance. No other business than that detailed in the notice shall be transacted at an EGM. A quorum shall consist of the Chairman, Honourable Secretary, Honourable Treasurer or their nominated representatives, plus at least 20% of the membership.
7 Horticultural Shows
7.1 Rules & Regulations
Shall be as specified in the published annual programme of shows.
7.2 Club Trophies
Management of Club Trophies shall be the responsibility of the Chairman with general duties delegated to nominated committee member/s. Club trophies shall be presented at Club horticultural shows. These will be held by the exhibitor for either a 6 or 12 month period as determined by the committee. Reimbursement for any substantial damage or loss sustained whilst in the care of an exhibitor should be agreed by committee, and then pursued with the individual concerned. General upkeep of trophies will be financed through Club funds.
The committee shall make sure that the Club keeps sound financial records and audited accounts. The financial year shall be from 1st October to 30th September.
All monies raised by or on behalf of the Club, shall be used solely to further the objectives of the Club and only in ways approved by the committee.
The Club shall open one or more accounts with a reputable bank or building society. All bank or building society accounts shall be in the name of the Club. All monies received from any source shall be passed to the Honourable Treasurer or Assistant Treasurer and paid into such account/s. Cheques drawn from Club accounts shall be signed by any two of the following:– The Chairman or Treasurer (or assistant) and Vice Chairman or any other official of the Club. To cover small cash payments, petty cash not exceeding £20 per transaction, may be drawn.
Accounting records relating to the Club shall be available for inspection by any member of the committee at any reasonable time.
Audited financial statements shall be approved at the AGM.
A decision to wind up the Club shall only be taken at an AGM or EGM. There must be a majority vote in favour of the proposal to wind up the Club by those attending the meeting. In the event that a decision to wind up the Club is agreed, the meeting shall then appoint a committee of not fewer than three and but no more than seven, to oversee the disposal of Club assets. The meeting shall give clear indication of the use to which any remaining funds shall be put and the appointed committee shall abide as closely as possible to wishes expressed.
Donated club trophies shall be offered back to the donator, wherever possible. Remaining trophies shall be dispersed or disposed off at the discretion of the appointed Committee.
10 Matters not provided for
Any matters not provided for within this constitution shall be dealt with at the discretion of the Committee.
The committee shall review the Constitution at least every 5 years and any proposed changes to the approved
Constitution shall be presented to the members for discussion at the following AGM.