Minutes of AGM 2015

Minutes & Documents

Minutes of the 2015 Annual general Meeting of the Friends of the Boscastle Museum of Witchcraft, 7th November 2015, Wellington Hotel, Boscastle.

Present: Julian Vayne (Chair), Judith Noble (Secretary), Mark Norman (Treasurer), Emma Chopping (Membership Secretary), Nick Miller, Jane Cox, Gemma Gary, Steve Patterson, Jason Karl, Adele and Roger Yeomans, Chris and Amethyst Chopping, Ben Verhaevert, Eve Salthouse, Jan Ensor, Jo O’Cleirigh, Dawn Cowin, Pip McFarlane, Jane McEwen, Paul Ferbrache, John Wait, Sara Kobuszko, Andrew Nott, Gillian Nott, Mariya Limerick, Elaine Bailey, Hannah Fox, Wayne freeman, Peter Brough, Maia Miller, Paul Howse, Joyce Froome, Helen Cornish, Rory Te’Tigo, Louise Fenton, Kerriann Godwin, Deborah Westmancoat, Tracey Norman, Peter Grey, Alkistis Dimech, Laurence Brightman, Karen and Jay Moore, Hannah Stevens, Louise and Phil Whitehouse.
In attendance: Simoln Costin (Museum Director), Peter Hewitt (Museum Manager)

1.    Apologies for Absence: Lizzie Atkins, Adele Alexander, Brigitte Ariel, Connie and Bob Berry, Ros Draper, Evelyn and John Hall, Jemma Hamilton, Paula McBride, Sylvia Statham, Wendy Trevennor, Phil and Sian Wheeler, keth Yardy

2.     Peter Brough and Jane McKewan had been present. Minutes of 2014 AGM approved (proposed Maia Miller, seconded  Adele Yeomans)

3.    Matters arising (not covered elsewhere in the agenda): none.

4.    Chair’s report (Julian Vayne) 2015 had been a year of consolidation. The new trustees had settled in and were beginning to use their new skills. We changed the format of the AGM in order to allow more discussion and debates amongst members. We bought a new PA for Museum to use. We invested £3000 in the new website. A donation had been received of £1000 from PF Devon and Cornwall to conserve and make accessible the PF local archive; JV thanked PF, Maia and Judith who had donated the local archive material. JV reported the sad deaths of Mike Howard and Jon Day. Mike Howard’s contribution to the Museum had been immense and both are sadly missed.

5.    Secretary’s report (Judith Noble). Judith reported that our BAFM membership continues and includes very useful public liability insurance. In addition to the routine preparation of paperwork for the AGM and trustees’ meetings, she has overseen the transfer of the Pagan Federation’s national archives to the Museum and has donated her own PF Devon and Cornwall archive to the Museum. This covers the period 1992- 2010 and includes not only material pertaining to the PF’s local work but also a sizeable collection of material about the 1999 solar eclipse.

6.    Membership secretary’s report (Emma Chopping – circulated). EC thanked Friends for renewing their membership and welcomed new Friends. It was gratifying to see that Friends really understood that our mission is to support the Museum

7.    Treasurer’s report (Mark Norman). Compiling accounts had been difficult and challenging because of protracted difficulties in changing signatories etc on the CAF bank account. He is now working as a priority on GiftAid registration. We are looking forward to a period of greater simplicity in accounting and reporting over the next 12 months. JN proposed a vote of thanks to mark for all his hard work, seconded Jason Karl.

Accounts: The accounts were circulated. The accounts were approved (Proposed:  Emma Chopping,  seconded: Kerriann Godwin)

Subscription rate for 2016: subscription rates will remain the same. Proposed:  Kerriann Godwin, Seconded: Nick Miller)

8.    Newsletter, publicity and website report (Jane Cox and Gemma Gary)
Jane and Gemma are working to improve the newsletter; they encouraged the membership to write content for newsletter. GG gave a talk about the Museum in Norwich which garnered a lot of good feedback. Friends’ website is very well visited and will be rebuilt in the coming year. JV suggested members might wish to write for the newsletter about their favourite objects in the Museum collection.

9.    Museum Director’s report (to be circulated)

10.  Fundraising activities for the coming year: JN suggested that Friends might want to make a major donation to the Museum in memory of Mike Howard. JV suggested digitising the content of the Museum’s collection of The Cauldron, but it was possible this might present major copyright issues. It was unanimously agreed that we would discuss with the Museum and find an appropriate way of remembering Mike.

JV reported that a Heritage Lottery bid was being prepared by Friends for digitising some aspects of the Museum’s collection. This project is at an early stage. Hannah Fox reported that the Museum is doing a photographing objects project which Friends are supporting. Mark Norman reported on the new Poems of Witchcraft and Magic CD which has been released today to support the Museum. Mark would welcome help from individual members in promoting this. JV asked members to promote Friends’ activities via social media. Roger Yeomans asked if Friends might start a Facebook page.

Elaine Bailey raised the idea of more Wheel of The Year celebrations based on the success of the Museum’s Halloween event. Hannah Fox said Friends might volunteer to organise these to support the Museum’s staff. Volunteers welcome, especially for May Day and Midsummer. Hannah Fox suggested paying someone to work on putting the PF archive into mylar sleeves. Simon suggested commissioning a condition report on the collection; JV felt this would be a very good project for Friends to fund.

JN reminded members that Friends can contribute to a wide range of Museum projects and activities. SC also mentioned that the Museum might also need help with the costs of new shelving. Proposed we commission a condition report (prop Belgian mans, seconded Deborah Westmancoat). Agreed unanimously.

11.  AOB: Ben Verhaevert suggested more international activities and promotion outside the UK. He suggested we should have more links with PF International. There was a general discussion of the potential and opportunities of more international links for both the Museum and Friends. JN suggested international ambassadors. Joyce Froome suggested using Friends’ newsletter to promote Friends internationally.

12.  Date and place of next AGM: Saturday 12th November 2016, Wellington Hotel, Boscastle. The May event will be held on 14th May 2016.