Minutes – Annual General Meeting 1st December, 2014

Group photo for members of the 2015 Committee

University of the Third Age Moraira-Teulada

Minutes of the Annual General Meeting held on

1st December 2014 at Salon de Banquettes, Teulada

It is confirmed that the President and the Secretary attended this Monthly Meeting as voted in at the AGM on 2nd December 2013.

Jill Cole made the First Call for the AGM as this is must happen half an hour before the Elections in case there is an insufficient proportion of the membership present to hold an AGM.

Jill pointed out the emergency exits to everyone, in case of an evacuation of the building, checked that members had their mobiles switched off, and also checked that everyone had a raffle ticket.

Before the meeting started Jill wished member Alan Smith a happy birthday and congratulated him for attending the AGM on such an occasion!

The Synopsis of the Meeting held on 3rd November 2014 was read by David Haxon. The full Minutes had been posted on the Website and were proposed by Frank Lee and seconded by Yvonne Romain. The members approved the minutes with a show of hands.

President’s Address

Jill started by passing on the sad news that member Jane Bazenor had passed away, and expressed condolences to Paul and the rest of the family.

Jill thanked Pat Clarke, and the people that had assisted her, for organising the sale of the tickets for the Dinner/Dance and preparing the table plans and menus for El Canor.

In addition Jill also thanked Pat for editing and producing the Newsletter during the last year. Pat was given a round of applause.



Jill Cole said that Titch Crossfield was not able to be present until later and reported that since the last Monthly Meeting on the 3rd November there have been expenses of €1542.07 made up as follows

Room hire 90.00
Payments to groups 66.53
Committee expenses 28.90
Stationery and copying 35.05
Printer & Computer 120.69
Mince Pies for AGM 74.89
Gifts & Raffle 150.00
Committee Members Gifts 298.21
Dinner/Dance Music 460.00
Membership Cards 217.80

Income from the November meeting was €100, and this was made up from 20 new members, who only paid €5 for the remaining two months of the year. This means that the Membership now stands at 1524, made up from 1239 renewals and 285 new members.

Income for the Christmas party was €7150.00 which is included in the Current Account Balance.

Therefore as at 1st December 2014 the following amounts were held:

Contingency Fund 4000.00
Current Account 17 602.81
Cash in hand 1033.04
Total 22635.85

The payment to be made to El Canor for the Dinner/Dance is €7150, and after that and a few sundry expenses have been paid there would be about €12 000 in the Bank Account.

The first pass of the 2015 Budget will be in the region of €15 000 to cover basic expenses, which excludes any provision for subsidies towards any social events. Jill said that the membership fee would be recommended by the committee to remain at €10, but this will be voted on after the Elections.

Group Coordinator

Shirley Baehr said that the Film Group have changed the date to December’s film from 8th to the 15th December as the first date is a Bank Holiday. The film is the much acclaimed The Boy in Striped Pyjamas, and details can be found on the Website.

One of the first groups U3A had when it started was the Sunday Solo Group ably run by Audrey Germann. Audrey had decided to take a well earned break, and Shirley thanked her for starting and running this very successful group. If anyone could take over as Group Leader, Shirley would be pleased to hear from them.

Shirley received good news from the Creative Writing Group who continue to go from strength to strength. Two of their members have had books accepted for publication; they are Vonnie Giles with Short Stories, and Hilary Coombes, who has written a novel. Also Mike Hiller has become a prolific novel writer. They have all said that without the support of the U3A Group this would not have happened. Group Leader Rosemary Sheppard is, naturally, delighted.

The Smartphones and Tablets get together had its third meeting on 2nd December in Café Relax at 2pm, and the Coffee & Cake Group would meet again on 17th December at 11am in Bonissimo Café. There are still some spaces available for the Tuesday Zumba Group and one or two spaces for the Guitar Group.

This year 6 new groups have been started and Shirley hopes to match that in 2015.

Shirley finally thanked all of the very hard working Group Leaders as without them our U3A would not be so successful, and wished everyone a good Christmas and a healthy New Year.

Travel Group

Carol Mantle said that there are two new trips to announce and these were as follows:

  • Day Trip to Ikea 10th March. As ever this popular trip will be to Valencia this time and will cost €10 per person.
  • Day Trip to Valencia Bioparc. This will take place on Wednesday 29th April and will cost €30 which includes the entrance fee and a three hour guided tour. This is a different type of “zoo” as there are no bars, just barriers created naturally using rocks, rivers and bridges.

Both the Cartagena and Prague trips were full but Carol said it IS worth putting names on the Reserve lists.

Cultural Events

The Costa Blanca Male Voice Choir will be presenting a series of concerts as follows

2nd December – El Vergel Casa De Cultura at 7.30.

6th December – Carols in the Square for the Teulada Moraira Lions at 6pm

13th December – Community Carols at Calpe Church at 9pm

17th December – Benitachell Church at 7pm

Amadeus is presenting A Christmas Carol with ALL tickets costing €6, on

3rd December – Espai La Senieta, Moraira

4th December – Casa de Cultura at El Vergel

5th December – Salon Blau in Calpe

Also on 5th December at 7.30pm Benissa Teulada Rotary Club is presenting a piano recital with works by Mozart and Schumann, with tickets costing €10.

6th December – Teulada Moraira Lions present Christmas Cracker lll at the church square in Moraira with carols from Costa Blanca Male Voice Choir & the Salvation Army Band, mulled wine, mince pies, Santa and snow!

11th December at 7pm the English Choir presents a Christmas Concert at La Senieta in Moraira.

13th December Jazz at the Parador at 8.30.

16th December at 3pm – Lady Elizabeth School Christmas Concert at Casa de Cultura Calpe.

1th December Concerts Costa Blanca presents Manon Lescaut at Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía, Valencia.

21st – 28th December a series of concerts in Javea, Denia, Benidorm, Alicante and Valencia is being presented show casing pianists Daniel Wayenburg and Martin Oei.

22nd December – Concerts Coasta Blanca is presenting Placido Domingo in Valencia performing Luisa Fernada.

As usual for more details of all these presentations please look at the website.

Members/Committee Liaison

Brian Nicholls reported back to the members with a summary of items discussed at the last committee meeting.

The request for a Notice Board at Monthly Meetings was met favourably providing the notices are non commercial and not promoting activities in direct competition with any U3A groups.

A For Sale and Wanted page was requested for the Website and this is currently being investigated.

A criticism had been received about how to greet new members in a more welcoming way and which the committee is always trying to find ways to improve. As yet no definitive solution has been found, but the matter is still under discussion.

There had been a brief discussion about the possibility of a summer dance/party instead of a Christmas one, in order to attract more members to attend. Members’ views would be greatly appreciated on this theme.

An announcement about bereavements and an obituary section was made in the last Newsletter.

Brian reminded members that he is not the ONLY point of reference for questions/ suggestions, but that any member of the committee can be approached. However it is his specific responsibility to ensure that comments are raised with the committee and these are personally answered or referred to at the next Monthly Meetings, via the Enews or in the Newsletter.

End of Year Report

Jill wondered where the year had gone and started by saying that this year there had been several new committee members who had brought new (and old) ideas to the meetings resulting in structured arguments and lively debate. Rather than causing friction and disagreement, the meetings had been refreshing with everyone remaining in harmony afterwards.

Brian Nicholls was nominated last year as the Members/Committee Liaison and was thanked for attending all the committee meetings, bringing members’ comments and then reporting back at the next Monthly Meeting. Jill hoped that this showed that the committee was open and willing to listen.

Eileen and David Haxon were thanked for arranging the Speakers that we have had this year, who covered a variety of topics, and it was hoped that this will continue through 2015. Jill said that if anyone has an interesting topic on which to speak to let Eileen, or a committee member, know.

Through the Groups the aim of the U3A was to promote friendship and fellowship to people of Moraira and the surrounding areas. There had been 6 new groups this year, namely Las Chicas Que Comen, Los Chavales Que Comen, Coffee & Cake, Smart Phones and Tablets, Zumba and Guitar lessons. Without the groups U3A would not be such a success and without Group Leaders there would be no Groups. So to this end the Group Leaders have been invited to a meal in January in appreciation.

Jill said that, on reflecting over the events of 2014, we are reminded of friends and family that have been lost, and expressed her and the committee’s condolences to anyone in this situation. In the past it has been requested that a list is read out of all those who have passed away. However it would never be complete as the committee is not always, quite understandably, informed. Members were asked to remember that Rona Hurst, the Care Coordinator is there to be informed and pass on messages to the committee.

Jill thanked the current committee for all the work they had put in during the year, behind the scenes and at the Monthly Meetings. Several Committee Members were stepping down this year

  • Don Roberts, who has been on the committee for nearly 7 years, was thanked for his contribution over the years and was presented with a token of thanks.
  • Sue Popkin, Membership Secretary, who has been on the committee for 6 years was unable to attend the Meeting, and had been given a gift a couple of days before. Sue had passed on her thanks and hoped the new Membership Secretary would receive the same support.
  • Margaret Williamson had been a committee member for 4 years as Assistant Membership Secretary, and she too was given a token of thanks.
  • Titch Crossfield, who had been Treasurer during the last year (but only after her arm had been twisted), but was unable to continue, was presented with a gift and vote of thanks.

As each retiring committee member came forward to receive their gifts, each was given a round of applause by the members.

Jill made the second call for the AGM at 11.05, and then handed over the second part of the Meeting to Malcolm Need as Election Officer. Malcolm introduced himself and said that at each AGM the U3A Constitution requires a new Committee to be elected for the following year’s administration.

Malcolm said that the list of the Nominees and Proposers were available on the Committee Table if any members wish to see them. There were no contested posts, so the procedure was quite straight forward and only required a show of hands for the votes to be registered.

Some of the outgoing Committee had agreed to continue as in previous years. Malcolm asked the members if they were happy to vote as before and they indicated that they were, this meant that a show of hands to register the vote either FOR or AGAINST was all that was required.

The Voting would consist of two parts. Part one would be for the four executive posts which have to be voted on individually. The executive positions are those committee members who are legally required and identified for a specific role. Part two is for the remaining posts and can be voted for en bloc. These are committee posts which are created to fulfil management tasks as required.

Malcolm asked if there were any questions before the voting began, and there were none. Malcolm added that should there be any non members present, that they were not entitled to vote.

The outgoing Committee Members for 2014 who are either retiring or re-standing for election are as follows:.


Treasurer Christine Crossfield
Secretary Margaret Roberts
Membership Secretary Sue Popkin
Deputy Membership Secretary Margaret Williamson
Group Coordinator Shirley Baehr
Travel Group Treasurer Carol Mantle
Deputy Treasurer John Hopwood
Discounts Liaison David Haxon
Speakers Liaison Eileen Haxon
Editor Pat Clarke
New Members Liaison Shirley Tuckey
Press Liaison officer John Manley
Member without Portfolio John Freeman


The Election

Part One

The following nominees stood individually and were voted for separately.

The President Jill Cole was the nominee. There was unanimous vote in favour of Jill.

Vice President David Haxon was the nominee for this position. The members voted unanimously for David.

Secretary Yvonne Romain was the nominee. The members voted with a vast majority for Yvonne to be Secretary.

Treasurer Carin Derken was the nominee and, as she had been unable to attend, the members voted for her in her absence. The members voted for Carin with a majority.

Part two

Malcolm read out the nominees and positions for the rest of the committee posts, and asked the new nominees to stand and make themselves known to the members.

Deputy Secretary Margaret Roberts
Membership Secretary Pat Clarke
Deputy Membership Secretary Prue Jackson
Group Co-Ordinator Shirley Baehr
Travel Group Co-Ordinator Carol Mantle
New Members Liaison Shirley Tuckey (absent)
Deputy Treasurer Steve Higham
Speakers Liaison Eileen Haxon
Press Liaison Officer John Manley
Member without Portfolio John Hopwood
Member without Portfolio John Freeman
Member without Portfolio Lynn Clark
Members/Committee Liaison Brian Nicholls

Malcolm called for a show of hands for all these positions to be voted for en bloc; there was a unanimous vote in favour of all the Nominees.

Malcolm said that the voting procedure was now concluded and asked if there were any matters arising from the election, there were none.

Malcolm handed over the rest of the Meeting back to the President, Jill Cole.

Any Other Business

Jill said that the first thing that needed to be done was to set the membership fee for 2015., and that if the annual fee were to stay at €10 the bank balance at the end of 2015 should be around €10000, however reducing it to €5, the balance would be only about €2000.

The balance in the Current Account at the end of the year would not take into account that, if there is a change of Council after the May elections, we may be charged for the hire of the committee meeting rooms and the hire of the theatre at La Senieta. If this happens the €10000 that is currently being held would need to be used.

Because of this reason and because there may be other unforeseen expenses the committee had recommended that the membership fee remains at €10, and Jill asked for a vote with a show of hands. All members, except for one who was against, voted to keep the membership at €10 p.a.

Next a vote was taken as to whether to continue with the Monthly Free Raffle of €50. The majority of the members were in favour of this with a small number against.

Jill said that the committee had taken the decision to make a donation to Teulada Council in order to show appreciation for the amount of times that U3A uses the theatre and rooms at La Senieta. Apparently the theatre use is charged at €300 per time, and given that this is used by the Art & History Groups, the Drama Group, the 2 Film Groups not to mention the Committee for extra Membership Renewal days, a vast amount of money was saved, and has been saved over the past 6 years. Several groups use the upstairs rooms as does the committee for its monthly meetings. The proviso to the Council was that the money would be used for needy families in the area.

Jill stated that, as well as at the Monthly Meetings, there would be three extra opportunities to renew membership at La Senieta in Moraira on 8th January, 21st January and 19th February. This will be confirmed in an Enews bulletin.

Peter Romain said he was against the U3A paying for groups to use La Senieta as so few groups use the venue; they and members who attend should be paying for its use. Jill replied that this would be looked at by the committee if there was a change of council and payments were asked for.

Mike Lawson said he did not agree with Peter’s view and that the U3A should pay on behalf of the groups.

Anne Cattle from the Drama Group pointed out that although these groups are small they are not for just a few members but are open to ALL the membership when there is a production. There is nowhere else that they could meet where all members could be invited.

A Film Group member said that this group would have to fold as their Licence clearly states that they cannot make a charge for showing films.

Brian Nicholls said that the cultural core of the U3A depends on these groups being able to use the theatre, but then continued saying that the membership fee is very small. A few members commented that it was not the fee was under discussion.

Piotr Azia agreed that if necessary payment should be made as the groups mentioned are all important cultural groups.

Meri Snell said that the Spanish Groups have to pay for their use of rooms at Sol Park and that she couldn’t see the difference.

John Manley reminded members, in response to the comments by Brian Nicholls, that it was not the membership fee that was under discussion, rather than what might happen if and it is a big IF, there was a change of Council at the local election in May and if this were to happen, as Jill had already stated, the committee would have to consider this and decide how to proceed, as for example based on the film group having used La Senieta 8 times it would equate to €2400, a significant amount of money. Jill added that she hoped that in this event U3A would be able to negotiate a reasonable rate.

There was no further business.

The free raffle was then drawn which consisted of a €50 restaurant voucher for Casa Toni, plus 4 x €25 vouchers, two for Pepe La Sal and two for Iceland Supermarkets.

Jill wished the members a Merry Christmas and closed the Meeting at 11.30.

The next Monthly Meeting will be on 5th January 2015

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