2020 AGM


Like everyone in the world effected by the covid-19 situation, we are having to change the way we hold our AGM this year. Therefore we are attempting to do this online by enabling members to consume the content of the AGM in small chunks and allow voting and comment to be submitted via the form in the last step.

We may need another follow-up phase later, but for now please read the sections below followed by completing the voting form below.

(items in red indicate a vote is required)

1. Opening Remarks – Chairman

Gentlemen, Welcome to the first online interactive MWA Annual General Meeting (AGM).
A lot has happened since our last meeting, we are in very changing times. I did not 12 months ago think I would be here as chairman giving the opening address and certainly not at a distance.
Firstly can I offer thanks to our previous chairman Dixie for his valiant efforts, sound guidance and sage advice over recent years. His chairmanship has been an inspiration to all of us. As I am sure you are well aware he retired reluctantly due to ill health and so he could concentrate on treatment. I remain in regular contact with him, and pleased to say he remains upbeat which is not easy in these unprecedented times with the thought of sharing a tot with you guy’s at the next reunion driving him along. I am sure you will join me in wishing him well with the ongoing treatment and ensuring we have a pint waiting for him when he’s ready.
I would also like to record my personal thanks to all the committee for their continued work to keep the association ticking over. Special thanks must go to George Turnbull who not only went to great lengths to organise this year’s reunion but also a standby venue as the virus kicked in, only to find they were both scuppered at the last minute. Oh yes and whilst he was doing all this he also assisted before finally taking over from Dixie the MWA input into Project Vernon. A busy year for George while he also maintained his Treasurers commitments and keeping us financial on the straight and narrow.My thanks also go to Ronnie Barker for his sterling efforts on the website and not allowing his imminent move to Portugal get in his way. Also Shaun Keen for his work in maintaining our Facebook site and as Media Rep also to Taff Slee who as the Membership Secretary has work hard on maintaining the MWA Membership Database and administering the new member applications. I am sure this is what gained him promotion to Warrant Officer. Finally to Pete Whitehead who stepped in at short notice to become the Sweep Storeman to ease Dixie’s workload.  
It is with pleasure and pride that I am opening this AGM as Chairman. As I am sure you are all aware I have been involved in the association and previous reunions for over 20 years in one form or another. During this time I have seen it grow not only in size but in reputation. It is the members that make any association, we are not only continuing to grow in size but have one of the largest serving member’s support of any. We must keep on involving and growing the uniformed element so as to keep the association alive they are its future. 
As I mentioned we are in unprecedented times. We had so many plans put in place for 2020, including the PV unveiling, our AGM, Armed Forces day in Weymouth and of course the reunion. All are on hold with plans to resurrect later this year or early next. This AGM being the first. Hopefully a reunion will follow in late September but more of that later. Thanks you again for your continued support to the MWA, and for partaking in this AGM. I would now like to continue this AGM in traditional fashion with an online blessing from our Association Bish Debs Harvey.

2. Blessing – MWA Bish
3. Apologies

No apologies received at this time.

4. Review of Previous AGM Miutes (2019)

These have been published on line for 12 Mths with no issues raised so accepted as a true reflection of the meeting. Previous AGM minutes can be read from the button below.

5. Review of Outstanding Items

There are no outstanding actions from the previous AGM.

6. Election of Officers

Due to the in-year resignation of the Chairman who held several positions It now requires positions that are filled to be endorsed or where required members to be elected to fill posts. Therefore:
It has been proposed that Taff Reader be endorsed permanently as Chairman. 
It has been proposed that Sean Slee be endorsed as Vice Chairman.
Sean Slee will continue in the short term as the Membership Secretary however if endorsed as Vice Chairman then the position will be advertised.

Please use the voting form below.

7. Membership Secretary Report
8. Treasurers Report
9. Sweepstore Report

This is now included in the treasurers report.

10. Webmasters Report
11. Facebook Report
12. New Agenda Items
1. Standard Bearer – Action SB/Treasurer/Chairman

1.1 Travel costs for standard bearer duties

During 2019, The Standard Bearer incurred considerable, personal expenses, either whilst representing the MWA at organised functions or by attending such as funerals at a families request.  Often this may have required long travel journeys.  In the past, some of these costs have been offset by generous donations from individual members.  Clearly this is unsustainable.  It is therefore proposed that in future all expenses of the Standard Bearer will be met in one of two ways:

  • A: By the MWA, if representing the association and approved in advance by the Committee and subsequently supported with appropriate receipts. 
  • B: By the requesting party, if attending private events such as funerals, weddings etc.  

In any event, the Committee approval must be obtained for all activities.

1.2 Deputy standard bearer required

Currently we only have one Standard Bearer which limits our ability to Parade the Standard particularly in periods of non-availability. A deputy is required to be trained up and support as require, Please give this serious consideration, If willing please contact the Chairman or VC for details.

Please use the voting form below.

2. MWA Charity- Action: Chairman

With the PV project drawing to a close. Also with several of our members currently undergoing Cancer Treatment, It would be good to nominate Cancer Research as our chosen Charity for 2020. Please use the Vote Button to endorse.  If you have a charity you would like to nominate for 2021. Then please include this in the comments box provided.

Pleadse use the voting form below.

3. Southern Rep – Action: Chairman

Due to ongoing commitments it has been necessary for the Chairman to step down from the Southern Rep role. CPO Joe Lyons has kindly offered to take up the post. It will be good to see a serving member to lead the way to DIT session etc. Joe will take on the task post CV 19 restrictions.

Please use the voting form below.

4. Malta TCA/MWA trip 2022 – Action: Sam Cook

This is trip is still in place and is organized for 2022 but taken a back seat during the restrictions. Prices will be confirmed in 2021. If interested please select the option in the voting form.

Please use the voting form below.

5. Reunion 5 year cycle – Action: Chairman

At the 2016 AGM it was unanimously voted that all future reunions would be held in Portsmouth and celebrating with a special reunion every 5years, the last being HMS Warrior 2018. While the move to Portsmouth has had the desired effect and increase attendance at the reunions therefore reaching out further to the membership, I am conscious that with our Northern members we do not fully achieve one of our main objectives in the constitution:-To promote links and maintain comradeship between members and to keep the ‘Minewarfare Spirit’ alive. I would like to propose that during the 5 Year cycle 1 year is allocated for a reunion outside of the Portsmouth area so we can reach to areas and better support our objectives. The first being in 2022.

Please use the voting form below.

6. Date and venue for 2021 Reunion – Action: Chairman

I am aware of the vast disappointment by many members due to the cancelation to the Unveiling of the Vernon monument in March due to CV 19. A number of members have approached me asking when the rededication is likely to be. I suspect in the time it will take to arrange it will likely to early 2021. If it is not that is probably a good time to hold the re-union so that we can include a visit to coincide with a Portsmouth re-union. Therefore I propose the 2021 reunion to be in Portsmouth Circa Mar 21 Date tbc.

Please use the voting form below

7. 26 Sept 2020 Reunion/Function – Action: Chairman

As published in several chairman letters, our 2 Yeoman’s had invited us to a function at the Tower of London. Due to the cancellation of our Mar Reunion they have offered us the opportunity to hold our 2020 reunion at the Tower on 26 Sept20. While this breaks away from the 2016 Reunion decision. This was an opportunity to hold a reunion which would not be available in Portsmouth. Details will be published shortly but I do hope as many as possible can make it as it promises to be a good event.

Please use the voting form below

13. Any other business

A comments box is included for any items you wish to be considered for ongoing business or inclusion in the 2021 AGM.

Please use the voting form below

14. Closing address

The Chairman would like to thank all of you for joining in this the first online AGM. I am sure it will raise a lot of discussion and debate and may raise more questions than answers. I do hope though that it will endorse some key decision as we adapt to changing times and move forward. I would like to emphasise the need to maintain the momentum of the association and to bring new members into the fold. I hope that the election of Sean Slee as VC (If Approved) and the introduction of Joe Lyons as Southern Rep both uniformed members of the Minewarfare Branch will go a long way to achieving this. They are our future

It is as important as ever in these uncertain times that we continue to publicly show our support for the Minewarfare Branch and to use both the MWA Website and the MWA Facebook Group to achieve this. Please support the Media and Website managers by contributing information. You will have noticed a recent drive for life biographies. Have you submitted yours yet?  

I hope that the September Reunion will not be scuppered and that it will be well supported. Once again George has stepped up to the plate to coordinate this event and it will certainly good to share a toast with you guy’s again. 

Keep Safe and Keep Well 



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