South Shields Local History Group Constitution as drawn up with the support and advice of South Tyneside CVS
1) Name

The name of the Organisation shall be South Shields Local History Group (hereinafter called “the Group”.)

2) Objects

The objects of the Group are:

(a) To encourage an interest in the history and heritage of South Shields to the wider community, by providing a programme of awareness and public information,

(b) Promote the study of the topographical, social, political, industrial, educational and religious history of South Shields,

(c) To provide educational, recreational and social activities for members through the promotion of history, heritage, and culture,

(d) To work with others to protect and preserve the heritage of the area,

(e) To develop community spirit and encourage inter-generational work,

(f) To make available and support opportunities for research and learning,

(g) To record and share research information by publishing information for the benefit of the public,

3) Powers

In furtherance of the objects the Group may:

(a) Raise funds and invite and receive contributions by any legal means other than through taxable permanent trading, outside the organisation’s main purpose,

(b) Organise and participate in meetings, training and social events,

(c) Co-operate with other voluntary organisations, community groups, statutory bodies and others to achieve the objects,

(d) Research, collate, publish, print and distribute leaflets, reports and journals, create a website and any other such material as shall be deemed necessary in pursuance of the Objects,

(e) Do all such legal things as shall further the objects of the Group.

4) Membership

4.1 Membership of the Group shall be open to anyone over 18 years with an interest in furthering the objects of the Group on payment of a subscription fee to be determined by the Committee.

4.2 Membership of the Committee shall be open to anyone aged 18 years or over who is also a member of the Group.

4.3 The Membership Secretary will keep a record of the Group’s membership.

4.4 The Committee shall have the right for good or sufficient reason to terminate the membership of any individual or individuals who are deemed to be acting in a way which is considered detrimental to the Group. In the event, the individual or individuals concerned shall have the right to be heard by the said Committee before a final decision is made.

5) The Committee

5.1 The Committee shall consist of not less than 5 nor more than 10 members elected from the membership of the Group.

5.2 Members of the Committee must be aged 18 years or over and fully paid up members of the Group.

5.3 The Committee may co-opt any person or persons with specific knowledge, skills or experience and for a suitable period of time PROVIDED THAT co-opted members account for no more than one third of the membership of the Committee. Co-opted members do not have voting rights.

5.4 Should any member of the Committee fail to attend three consecutive Committee meetings without good or sufficient reason they will be deemed to have resigned from the Committee.

6) Committee procedures

6.1 All matters arising at any meeting shall be decided by a simple majority vote. No members shall exercise more than one vote but in the case of an equality of votes, the Chairman shall have a second or casting vote.

6.2 The Committee shall meet not less than 5 times a year including the Annual General Meeting.

6.3 A quorum shall be one third of the members including at least one officer.

6.4 A special meeting of the Committee may be called at any time PROVIDED THAT at least 14 days notice shall have been given to members.

6.5 At the Annual General Meeting the Committee shall elect from amongst their number a Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer and such other officers as may be deemed necessary.

6.6 The Committee may appoint such sub-committees as shall be deemed necessary and shall determine their duration, composition, powers and terms of reference. Any sub-committee so appointed must always report back to the full Committee as soon as possible.

6.7 The Committee and all sub-committees shall keep minutes of all actions and proceedings and shall ensure the safe-keeping of all the Group documents and records.

6.8 The Committee may make rules to govern its activities and proceedings and those of any sub-committees PROVIDED THAT such rules are not inconsistent with the provisions of this constitution.

7) Nominations to the Committee

7.1 Nominations for membership of the Committee must be in writing and in the hands of the Secretary at least seven days before the Annual Meeting.

7.2 Should nominations exceed vacancies, election will be by ballot of members.

8) Annual Meeting

8.1 The Annual Meeting of the Group shall be held in the month of June each year or at such other time (not being more than 15 months after the preceding Annual Meeting) as the Committee shall from time to time determine.

8.2 At the Annual General Meeting the business shall include:

8.2.1 consideration of the annual accounts

8.2.2 consideration of a report on the Group activities during the previous year

8.2.3 election of Committee members for the following year

8.2.4 discussion of any relevant matter(s) of which prior notice has been given

8.3 The Secretary shall give at least 14 clear days notice in writing of the Annual Meeting to all members. Such notice shall include details of the matters to be discussed.

8.4 A special meeting of the Group may be called at any time by the Committee or at least one third of the membership.

Should such a meeting be requested it must be held within 21 days of the request being made [giving the secretary time to provide 14 days notice].

8.5 A quorum at an Annual General Meeting shall be one third of the membership aged 18 years or over.

This number shall include at least one officer.

8.6 All matters arising at an Annual General Meeting shall be decided by a simple majority vote.

No member shall exercise more than one vote, but in the case of an equality of votes the Chairman shall have a second casting vote.

9) Finance

9.1 All funds raised from whatever source must only be used to further the objects of the Group.

9.2 A bank account shall be opened in the name of the Group and all monies raised must be paid into this account.

There shall be three signatories to the bank account and all cheques must be not less than two of the three signatories.

The signatories must not be members of the same family or household.

9.3 The Treasurer shall keep a record of all financial transactions and shall present regular reports to the Committee..

At the Annual Meeting the Treasurer shall present the annual accounts.

9.4 Once at least every year the accounts shall be independently examined by a suitably qualified person as may be required by statute.

9.5 No member shall receive payments from the Group’s funds other than for reasonable, out-of-pocket expenses incurred whilst carrying out the business of the Group.
Appropriate vouchers and receipts must be produced for any such expenses claimed.

10) Amendments to the Constitution

This constitution may be amended at an Annual Meeting or at a Special Meeting called for that purpose by a resolution passed by a two thirds majority of members present and voting.

No resolution may be passed which would prevent the Group from pursuing strictly charitable purposes.

11) Dissolution

11.1 The Group may be dissolved at any time by a resolution passed by a two thirds majority of members present and voting at a special meeting called for the purpose.

11.2 In the event of dissolution the Committee shall be the body responsible for the orderly winding up of the Group’s affairs.

11.3 After the satisfaction of all debts and liabilities the Committee shall transfer any remaining funds and assets to such other organisation or organisations having objects similar to some or all of the objects of the Group.

12) Declaration

The constitution was adopted at a meeting at:

(venue) South Tyneside Central Library

On (date) 18th June 2007

Signed by the Chairman: J. Smith’s signature

Signed by the Secretary: L. Wilson’s signature