The Motor Caravanners' Club

Avon Group

Minutes of Committee Meeting held at Castle School, Thornbury on 13 February 2016

The meeting opened at 10.05 a.m.


There were no Apologies as all were present
The minutes of the last Committee meeting held at Chew Valley School on 31 October 2015 had been previously read and approved by the Chairman.


The Chairman opened the meeting by saying that he had received a complaint from one member, on the fact that there was only one entrance in and out and the parking was too close. The member felt that this would cause problems in the case of emergencies.
This was discussed in depth.
Mike Stock suggested that in these circumstances, a leaflet should be distributed stating that due to limited space the 20 foot rule, (which at the present time according to the CFG states that  where possible vans should be 20 foot apart), cannot be adhered to. Also that a fire bucket or extinguisher should be placed outside each vehicle.
Pet commented that in her capacity of being a member of COMs, they have been instructed that if they were not satisfied with any parking issues at any rally they attended they would have to inform the hosts and if the matter was not resolved, they had to leave the rally, and she was happy with the way this rally was conducted.


The secretary said that it was hard work to start off with, but everything has settled down and is now running smoothly.
The membership numbers as of 08 February 2016 stood at 298 compared to 287 this time last year, so a very small increase of 11.
The Avon group booklet arrived 19 January with a couple of errors (mainly the secretaries address) so a slip was printed out and inserted in every booklet, but this did give the opportunity to add a few more changes to the programme that had been made. A total of 330 were posted out.
Kay had asked Mike as to whether the trailer insurance had been made or not, as she could not find any reference to this. On further investigation it was discovered that this had in fact not been paid and the trailer and contents came to a value of £3419.00 (ignoring any items under £250.00 as this was the excess). The first £1000.00 is covered as standard leaving us to pay for the remaining £2419.00 at a premium of £241.90. As the Club allows the Group a 50% discount we owe Head Office £120.95, which Kay would send.


Kay said she had £38.50 cash given to her by Christine from the Balloon Fiesta.
Despite enquiries it was unknown where this money came from, so it was decided to put it into the savings account, where it could be accessed if the need arose.
She had made enquiries as to accessing the accounts online, but the banks recommended she should open a telephone banking account instead. This was agreed for her to do.
The accounts at present stood at:
General Account              £2618.03
Saving Account                £702.94
Charity Account                £2.00
Grand Total                       £3322.97

Kay added that the New Year rally raised £105.67 for MacMillan Nurses.

Rally Officer

Tony said he had made a start on 2017 rallies and would keep us informed when he had received confirmation from the sites.
It will be coming into force from COMs that the Rally Officer will have to do risk assessments for all rallies. He already has to do them for several current rallies.
Mark has offered to stand in for Pete at the Strawberry rally if Pete is not available, and will also do this when required or assist Pete if Pete is not able to do it all on his own.
It was discussed and decided that if we could not get any hosts to run Castlebrook Inn by the end of February, then we would cancel it. Carol will put this on the web.
We still have no hosts for Slimbridge. All we can do is push it and see what happens.
Tony asked if we wanted him to book Briarfields again next year, and it was agreed that although it was a small rally, it was a very pleasant one, so yes book it.
He also asked if we wanted to return to Brixham next Easter, as it was in the middle of April. It was agreed that he should. Mike E. said that he had been told that there were plans for major redevelopment there, and also -  at the moment - the C&CC did not appear to be holding any temporary holiday sites there this year. He will make enquiries with the site.
Tony again asked if we wanted to rebook Castle School, Thornbury, possibly for the AGM.
Again he was told to go ahead.
On the initial paperwork it would show this rally as making a loss, so it was agreed that Kay could take the payment for the group from club funds

Web Administrator

Carol started by saying that she hoped everyone enjoyed the new web layout.
She is still finding new ways of doing things and new features, but all in all she was pleased with how it is running, having had several comments on how fresh and up to date it was.
Carol went on to say that it was the photos that were the most time consuming, with one year alone taking up to 10 hours to transfer to the new programme.
The available statistics are:

December 2015:               Total Visits          7074
                                                MCC                      40%
                                                Google .com      7%
                                                Bing                       7%
                                                Others                  21%

January 2016                      Total Visits          8340
                                                MCC                      53%
                                                Bing                       5%
                                                SV Group             2%
                                                SWW Group       2%

Carol was then asked if she could publish these figures on the web and to continue to do so each month.


A long discussion took place over the trailer.
Trevor said he has had 3 people saying that we should think carefully about disposing of it.
He also stated that he has been offered £750.00 for the marquee which was rejected.
Mike E. showed the assets list showing the vale to be £1819.20 as at July 2015.
If the trailer is retained the mileage payment would remain at 35p per mile, and the only times it would be used this year would be at Gatcombe Farm and Cheddar, and that would only occur if we could get someone to tow it. Tony and Paul both said that they did not think it was that easy to put up and could even be quite dangerous.
Mike S said that at the AGM it was put to the floor and that there were only 4 against and 2 abstainers giving a figure of 13.4% against. It was then put on the web to all 300 members and resulted in only 8 asking for it to be kept – a figure of only 3.3%. Based on all the points thus raised it would be negative to propose to make any decisions until the next AGM. Make this clear on the web and if possible in the magazine.
Mike E. then said that there was a possibility that he knows of a member that may be willing to tow it when required and store it at his property (possibly to do all this F.O.C), but he would not put it up, which then brought on another debate as to who would put it up at any of the rallies. Mike E. will make further contact with him.
Trevor also reiterated that the trailer was just legal – not to put even a matchbox in it, and also that he still has some items in his garage.

It was then asked if the generator could be sold (if we kept the trailer) in order to buy a smaller one. It was felt that this may not be an option as a smaller one may not be powerful enough on larger rallies.


The main theme for the National is “Street Party” to celebrate the Queen`s 90th birthday.
It was decided that the Avon Group would have a red, white & blue theme.
Union Jacks, the Queen`s photos, make things through the years about Avon – Concord, The Suspension Bridge, Cheddar Strawberries etc.
Kate Jones also needs to know if any group can supply fire extinguishers in their own area and we feel we can supply 4.
Carol & Mike said they would marshal the Avon area.
The secretary also needs to have the names of those attending – at the moment he has 6 names.

Rally Planning

Tony & Pet will contact Colin, the owner, with regards to his offer of supplying entertainment, and also the possibility of a mini bus (Cost ???)
The bar will be open on those nights, but normally we will be able to take or own drinks.
We will have use of the hall all day, every day.
There will be 2 car boot sells in adjoining fields.
We are hoping to have an assistance dog demonstration.
The usual Easter bonnet parades and decorate an egg. Bingo, Quizzes and maybe a picture quiz around the hall walls.
There is a very good cafe and farm shop there.
Carol & Mike will get the raffle prizes £75.00

Paul & Mary will get raffle prizes for Strawberry rally £75.00

Trevor & June will get raffle prizes for Balloon £150.00

Pet & Tony will get raffle prizes for AGM £75.00


It was then proposed by Mike Stock professional entertainment cost should be accounted for separately out of club funds for accounting purposes. This was seconded by Pet and agreed. Also in future, 10% would be taken from all rallies that made a profit and transferred into the savings account for that purpose.

Roger Clark has asked if he could do a different type of raffle, which was agreed.

The banner is being re-vamped, but there has been a technical hitch, but it will be ready in time for the National.

With no other business the meeting closed at 1.15 p.m.