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22/06/2020 - Minutes of meeting

Minutes of the RAMSF  AGM 22.06.2020

Apologies – Tom Ames, Simon Browne, Steve Cooper and John Whitefield. 

Present – Les Basham, Mervyn Evans, Sue Garrod,  Nick Hammond, John Handley, Paul O’Keefe, John Raffel and Dennis Tattoo. 


Minutes from 2019 Inaugural General Meeting and Secretary's report


Minutes from last year’s meeting had already been circulated – there were no matters arising that were not covered elsewhere in the agenda.  The minutes were agreed and accepted with one mistake of a misspelt name – Merv said that that would be corrected.

Merv had very little to report on account that all information had been distributed throughout the year – the trustees have met and minutes from those meetings had all been circulated along with requests for further items to be put on the agenda.

Press coverage has been good with articles in the EADT and ITWS covering various events including last year’s IGM, golf day, the quiz and our first bursary to Josh. The secretary is looking to extend press coverage  - as there is little local news Merv is  hoping to use the extra space to put in a couple of articles regarding RAMSF in the hope of extending the number of supporters. 

Wearing a different hat from that of secretary – Merv informed the meeting that the golf day is not going to happen. Despite fourballs being allowed, shotgun starts aren’t. Merv thought that we could have held on and gone ahead provisionally but the owner of the course seemed pretty adamant that he didn’t want us to go ahead this year. Paul asked, why not a couple of four balls? Merv to pursue this excellent suggestion.

There were no questions.


Chair’s report

The fact that our first AGM is taking place via Zoom reminds us all of the huge impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. Our lives are different now to what they were at the start of March and are likely to remain similarly challenged in the months ahead.

It is in this unlikely situation that the RAMSF has operated in over the last few months following its inauguration twelve months ago.

The difficulties of recent times however, should not overshadow the progress our small charity has made in its first year and I firmly believe the fund is well placed to support young athletes in the Stowmarket area next year.

The generosity of many, together with successful fund raising events, means that we have in excess of £3000 at our disposal to help youngsters this coming year.

Highlights of our first year include:

- The creation of the RAMSF Facebook page

- The publication of several articles in the local media promoting the fund

- A well supported golf day which raised nearly £500

- Several trustees attending a presentation evening organised by Stowmarket Striders to receive a donation of £1100

- A superb quiz evening which raised nearly £1000

- The presentation of our first bursary to a young swimmer from the Stowmarket Swimming Club

- Significant progress on the fund’s website which will go live in a few weeks’ time subject to the approval of the trustees

I would like to thank everyone for their support to date. The generosity in word and deed by so many is humbling and I hope you will agree that not naming individuals on this occasion is right and proper; to inadvertently miss someone out in error would simply be wrong. I would simply like to express heartfelt thanks to all those who have supported the fund in the last twelve months.

There is a proposed change to the constitution which would increase the reach of the fund. This is something we agreed to consider last year. If, as I hope, this change is approved today, it will allow more young people to benefit from Ron’s legacy; it is something that I think Ron would endorse.

Finally, thank you for attending this evening; I look forward to seeing you at a RAMSF event in the coming months, and hope that next year’s meeting can be conducted face to face when we can celebrate future successes.

Dennis Tattoo



Treasurer's report

Before Les gave his report, Dennis explained that Les had undergone great problems (caused by the bank) while attempting to set up the account and it was only his patience and persistence that saw a successful outcome. Dennis gave a ‘sincere thank you’ to Les for his efforts.


John Raffel asked about the ‘small charity status’.  Les confirmed that £5000 was the figure we needed to ‘stay below’,  and that has been achieved. Les saw no reason to think that this would change during the coming year.

John Handley spoke about how important the first bursary to a local swimmer has been. Dennis re-iterated how grateful Josh’s mum had been and it was really apt that this particular award reflected the ethos of the fund.



Proposal to modify the constitution


Present wording - 

 '2 THE PURPOSES OF THE CHARITY ARE: To raise funds and then distribute it in the form of grants in order to encourage, motivate and support young members of the three stated sports clubs* to enhance their involvement and opportunities in their chosen sport. The trustees will support individuals or clubs in respect of junior development, with small grants for any aspect of his or her involvement at the discretion of the trustees, including, but not limited to, items of equipment, help with transport for training or competition and access to specialist coaching. Individuals may apply for one grant per calendar year, up to the age of 21. Grants can be made to individuals up to a maximum of £200 per calendar year. *Stowmarket Striders Running Club Stowmarket Swimming Club Stowmarket Volleyball Club A guiding principle of the fund is to seek to distribute the money raised equally between the three clubs identified.


Proposed change reads:

To raise funds and distribute them in the form of grants to clubs or individuals in order to encourage, motivate and support young people in the Stowmarket area to enhance their involvement and opportunities in their chosen sport.  The trustees would welcome applications from individuals and clubs which are affiliated to a national governing body. 


The trustees will support individuals or clubs in respect of junior development, with grants for any aspect of involvement in sport at the discretion of the trustees, including, but not limited to, items of equipment, help with transport for training or competition and access to specialist coaching. 


Clubs and individuals may each apply for one grant per calendar year up to a maximum of £500 per calendar year.


Dennis explained that if the pandemic hadn’t decimated the fund raising activities, we would be pushing the £5000 pound limit. Therefore, following Paul’s suggestion from the IGM last year, the trustees were proposing an alteration to the constitution to widen the scope of who could apply. John highlighted the need for coaches and their need for help financially in their training.

Paul re-iterated a concern that has been expressed before, that we are STILL seen as a hardship fund, and this may be holding others back from applying. John just wondered if the new wording might make the ‘balance’ of distribution one sided. Paul pointed out that it was still up to the trustees to make the decision. Sue pointed out that ‘being swamped with requests’ hadn’t been a problem this last year – we have done really well raising funds this year but haven’t been successful in inviting applications. Nick wanted to know if money was going to start being distributed simply for excellence, as he didn’t like the sound of that and would rather it was spent on higher level training courses. Paul thought that it could be distributed in the form of a bursary.

John asked if the change would enable us to make grants or would there still be a need for an application. Dennis confirmed that there would still be a need for an application.


The motion to change the wording was carried unanimously.


Election of officers

Dennis informed the meeting that he had already approached the trustees and all were prepared to remain in post. Everyone was happy with that.


Any Other Business

Dennis asked if there was any other business – being none from the floor, Dennis raised the issue of a website. He outlined the process that he, John and Steve had undertaken in getting a website prepared. John managed to show us all the website on Zoom as it is at the moment – it was agreed that it looked terrific. It will be forwarded to the trustees for final approval before it goes live. 

Dennis thanked John and Steve formerly and it was clear that all those present at the meeting were very impressed. 


Nick explained he was wondering about setting something up for people to go out on cycle rides and then make a contribution – Les said he wasn’t clear on the gift aid rules, but would look into it. Dennis suggested that Nick should fine tune his thoughts and then pass them onto the rest of us via whatsapp or e-mail. Nick said he would be glad to do that. 


Date of Next Meeting of the trustees

5th. of October, subject to pandemic situation. 

Vice Chairperson

Dennis Tattoo

Sue Garrod

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