June 14, 2008

Royal Club Annual General Meeting

The one curler one vote resolution (see here) failed to gain the necessary support at the Annual Meeting of the Royal Caledonian Curling Club at the Westerwood Hotel in Cumbernauld today. Although the majority of clubs (seventy of them) voted in favour of the motion, thirty-five did not, and, the required 75% not being reached, the motion failed. Note the figures. Only 105 of Scotland's 570 clubs were represented at the meeting to vote on such an important issue. Such is the democratic process within our governing body. Apparently, the overwhelming number of those playing curling in this country care nothing about the politics of the sport!

However, the few that took the time and effort to be at Cumbernauld certainly saw the diversity of opinion that exists today amongst members about the future. There was much discussion about the consultations of the Representative Review Working Group. Opinions on the future makeup of the Royal Club are becoming polarised. I'll return to this in a future post. Suffice to say here that members have until August 31 to contribute to the consultation process.

On an happier note, a vote to allow Bill Marshall to be elected as the Club's Vice-President was passed, and Bill was duly elected. Matt Murdoch is the incoming President, elected unopposed. Willie Nicoll joined the Board as a new Director. He and Jeanette Johnston (now elected for a second term) were the only candidates for the two vacant positions on the Board.

The Board duly met after the AGM and elected Bob Tait as their Chairman, see the post on the Royal Club website here, and Bob's pic with the old Board is here.

So what else happened? A proposal to increase the subscription by one pound from £16 to £17, was passed, but not before a counter proposal for a two pound increase, to enable more support to be given to senior teams competing in the World Championships, was defeated.

Eve Muirhead and her World Junior Women's Champions were on hand, and should have received their commemorative banner from the World Curling Federation. But it was not at Cumbernauld. Apparently the Royal Club was sent the one meant for Chris Plys and the winning junior men's team from the USA. Oops. Nothing like a simple mixup to raise a smile though! Calling the USCA - can we do a swap?

It fell to retiring Board Chairman Mike Ferguson to talk a little about Vernon. We learned that yes, a conduct panel had met last Monday, and the Board has received a report. What does that say? We were not told.

This is what Mike said at the AGM: "There has been much interest on the events surrounding the Women's World Championships in Vernon. Whilst we empathise with all involved, we fully appreciate that the membership also want comment. Unfortunately as we are still in the procedural stage, our hands are tied and we simply can't go into detail. At this moment, on the 9th of June the conduct panel heard procedural hearing. The morning the Board received a communication with observations on the process. The Board will consider this at the earliest opportunity. As I say, I appreciate that on face value, the apparent lack of action may appear unsatisfactory. However I hope you can understand the position we are in and the challenges we face in resolving this in a satisfactory yet compliant manner."

Top: Blue skies over the function suite at the Westerwood Hotel for the Royal Club AGM today. Mike Ferguson (right) and Colin Grahamslaw jointly chaired the meeting. Below: New Board Director Willie Nicoll and new President Matt Murdoch. Photos by Bob.

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