13th April 2019


Minutes of the Annual General Meeting of the Council and ordinary members of the Society held in the Lecture Room of Lancashire Archives, Bow Lane, Preston on 13th April 2019

The President, Thomas Woodcock CVO, DL, BA, LLB, FSA, Garter Principal King of Arms, took the chair to commence the meeting at 1 p m

Also present were Council members Jackie Roberts, Jacquie Crosby, Jennifer Holt, John Dalton, Tom O’Brien, Alan Kenwright, Dr John Perkins, Dr Colin Rogers, Simon Oliver, Rev Thomas Steel, Ken Taylor, Douglas Wilson and member Kenneth Barry

  1. Apologies for absence were received from Jill Drabble, Tony Foster, Neil Hudson and Malcolm Parr
  2.  The minutes of the Annual General Meeting held 14th April 2018 were approved
  3. Matters arising: Colin Rogers reminded us that in raising the Society’s future under Item 13 of the 2018 minutes he was looking for positive ways to keep us on track. Simon Oliver raised our way ahead in the event of severe strain on the Society. Agreed: discuss under AOB.
  4. Honorary Treasurer and Membership Secretary’s Report: Jackie presented her report for the year to 31 December 2018 as circulated, checked by Independent Examiner David Smethurst.  The deficit of £2,333.79 is the result of our healthy publication schedule. Subscriptions are slower to come in, but a donation of £1000 (anon) was gratefully received, plus Gift Aid on this sum, £250. Miss Proctor, Tasmanian member, has sent £25 to help keep us in business. A dozen members have resigned, including Blackpool Library. We have two new private members.      After sounding out Council members Jackie encashed our January 2016 £30,000 investment with Octopus Investments to realise at January 2019 (after the end of our accounting year) £36,990.15. Our current total balances are £71,754.59. After discussion it was agreed, as proposed by Tom O’Brien, seconded  Alan Kenwright, that the Treasurer be authorised to invest, under  Charites Aid Foundation, £20,000 in a one year bond at fixed interest, and up to £30,000 in two or three tranches in equity funds  for the longer  term. Alan confirmed that we have no large item of expenditure in the pipeline other than expected publication costs. The Treasurer was thanked for the accounts and for her continuing, dedicated efforts.
  5. Honorary General Editor’s Report: As now circulated. Manchester St George NC 11, volumes 189 Samlesbury and 190 Upholland, Billinge and Pemberton were published during 2018. The problems arising from the indexing programme have been resolved. Alan’s circulated report is a record of progress on future publications. Preston Holy Trinity/ Ashton on Ribble has now been sent to members as Volume NC 12 (some are missing Acrobat Reader). Ashton under Lyne is ready for printing. The three volumes for Lancaster require a common introduction. Jacquie suggested Andrew Wright and his research group be contacted. Jennifer Holt has connections there and will ask them whether they can oblige. Wigan, Accrington and Edenfield are being worked on. There was discussion as to how far our high quality work can connect with Lancashire Parish Clerk Online, perhaps so that we do not cover the same ground . Jacquie has acquaintance with Chris Cherry there and will investigate with her how we might best have contact. Jacquie emphasised that the work for Parish Clerk is all voluntary, that they have no funds, & work under the dedicated leadership of a Lancastrian in the USA.
  6. Sales and Publications Report: In the absence of Malcolm Parr, his was presented by Alan as circulated. Sales have declined slightly but continue to be a useful source of income. We continue to acquire old volumes and to make profit on resales. Thanks were expressed to Malcolm for his valued contribution to our image and finances.
  7. Election of Officers: All officers  are willing to stand for election; proposed Colin Rogers, seconded Tom O’Brien that all be re-elected, President Thomas Woodcock, Secretary Neil Hudson, Treasurer Jackie Roberts, General Editor Alan Kenwright, Publications Officer Malcolm Parr, agreed unanimously.
  8. Election of Council: All being willing to stand, proposed Alan, seconded Jackie that they be re-elected en bloc, agreed unanimously. The Secretary to be asked to enquire of Manchester whether in view of our long association the current head would like to serve with us. Action: Neil Hudson
  9. Nomination of Independent Examiner: Agreed that David Smethurst be appointed again, thanks to him for his examination of the 2018 accounts, agreed unanimously.
  10. Any other business:  A lengthy discussion took place on the Society’s future and ability to withstand any strains. Member Kenneth Barry raised various pertinent questions as to how far we have surveyed our membership and tailored our work to their preferences.  Alan and others underlined that yes, whilst consulting members via newsletters and directly, we remain committed to publication of books as our first priority. Current digital work is useful/ necessary but has only a short lifespan. Whilst we now meet only once yearly the officers, and Council members, frequently communicate by email. If deputies were appointed to the main officers it is difficult to see what immediate functions they could perform.
  11. Date and venue of next meeting: On the invitation of Jacquie Crosby, the 2020 AGM will be held at Lancashire County Record Office, Bow Lane, Preston on Saturday 14th March 2020 at 1pm.           
  12. The President thanked Jacquie and her staff for their hospitality and all officers for their contributions. The meeting closed at 2.45pm.