Minutes of Committee Meeting, 10.30 a.m. Sunday 16th. January 2011 at
“The Woodlands”, New Hall Drive, Walmley, Sutton Coldfield, B76 1QX

1. Present:-

Malcolm Hughes, Judith Davison, Denise Baum-Pick, Reg Bolton, Peter Fielding, Ray Ward, Tony Allen.

2. Apologies:- Dave Cheshire, Simon Richardson.

Ratification of the minutes of the AGM of 28th. November 2010:- Item 8, Date of Next AGM. Year is incorrect,  should read, 2012. Proposed a true record, PF, seconded RW. Carried.

3. Minutes of previous meeting, 11th. September 2010:-

Proposed a true record, RW, seconded D B-P.

4. Matters arising from Minutes:-

MH wished to add to item 7, 7i. New Talent and item 10, Publicity.

5. Correspondence:-

JD had received an email a from Germany. The gentleman had taken a complete lift of the UK map from our website and put it on their website. He wanted more information re societies and offered to give further information from Germany. He is believed to be Oskar Jonker.

TA asked whether this was legal as our website is resisted to FOBBS and although it is in the public domain it is not there for anyone to take and republish on another site. TA suggested enquiries as to whether we have any copyright. We must also look into the situation of Data Protection. We publish on the website contact details of societies but do we have the societies/individuals authority to do so.

RW put forward that a form of written authority should be put in the membership form.

MH suggested that this should be deferred to Any Other Business.

6. Reports: -

a. Financial Report: D B-P. 4 payments, three of which have taken insurance. Banked almost £1300. 00. Making a list of addresses and all records and details will be put in disc. She has already started this. RB had receipts of £1650.50 for insurance and has £60.00 cash, bank statements, paying in slips have all been handed over to D B-P.

MH asked whether we had “PayPal” particularly as cheques may be fazed out. We do not have “PayPal”  but consideration should be given to make joining and renewal easier.

TA asked about bank charges due to us having a company account. RB said over the last 12 months they were probably £150. 00. It was decided to deal with this later.

b. Companies House: RB, Everything dealt with and in order.   Will check Companies House website.

c. Membership and recruitment of new societies: 24 societies/clubs have jointed, 21 have taken insurance.  From Kath Hughes, Ambion have not received a renewal form. This was due to the wrong contact details being given from Ambion.

Maidstone and Bury St Edmunds Societies are not on our list. RW asked for the details of Maidstone with a view to making contact. RW is still visiting societies in his area. The following Wednesday he is visiting Crawley and has made contact with someone from Chichester.

Membership still £25.00 this year.

d. UK Bonsai Events:

“Winter Image Show” RB everything going well, no problems to date. New venue should be great improvement.

“Best of British Bonsai 2011” MH Everything going well, a few things to finalise and 2/3 queries re trees submitted for selection but Steve Tolley not replying to massages/email. Already receiving payments for advanced tickets.

“Bonsai World 2011” RW confirmed dates, 3/4th. September. There is a problem at present obtaining speakers, Salvatore is not available and Noelanders has not replied.

PF is meeting with director of National Welsh Folk Museum re a national show, but there is no disabled access. PF has also looked at Duffryn Church/Abbey. MH asked PF to follow it up and update committee at later date.

e. Bonsai Instructors Book MH to write to all people in the book asking clarification of travel details as some speakers travelling expenses, particularly at the present time will exceed the talk fee. He will also write to Dan Barton. JD suggested that we should ask for feedback from societies in respect of speakers, how well/badly a speaker performed. It was also suggested that the website could be used for this feedback. The feedback could be used to assess whether a speaker should be included in the book.

f. European Bonsai Association RB requested that a prototype information sheet be circulated to societies re the show to be held 30.9 – 2.10.2011 in Rattigan.

g. WBFF MH is pushing for a major board meeting in Japan later this year. He is liaising with Lindsey BEBB (Australia) to achieve this as there are problems with the new president Mr Ho who is just pushing China forwards at every opportunity, and there has been a lack of dissemination of information to directors.

Photographs of trees submitted from Europe have been sent to WBFF for judging.

h. FNBC & National Bonsai Collection Committee meeting scheduled, 16.2.11. Raffle to raise funds has been organised, draw to take place 10.4.11 at Best of British. Need raffle prizes.

i. New Talent PF needs more information. There is one winner for the final at the present time. There are 4 contestants for the Cardiff Show and DC to hold heat at “Gardens World Live” at NEC in June. RB said that Sussex Show, 3.9.11 will have to be the last heat .MH said that Corin Tomlinson had agreed to hold a heat next year, 2012. RB Costing for material had come to about £60. 00 per tree and we will need at least 25. He said he would speak at Noelanders. MH said that he will take the necessary to purchase material from Noelanders and bring back what he can. TA suggested payment to enter the New Talent Competition. Through the competition entrants could potentially become professional/semi-professional as Tony Tickle did. The cost of entrance could be taken off the price of the tree if purchased after the event. TA proposed entrance fee commencing next year, seconded by MH, carried unanimously. RW proposed that all trees not sold during the heats should be sold off at the final event. Seconded by MH, carried unanimously.

RB stated that there should be at least 2 judges at every event, 3 preferably. The judging criteria is based on a minus score the same as the British Yachting Association.

RW proposed that the competition should change its name to “British Armature Talent”, seconded by RB. Carried unanimously.

Break for Lunch

7. Acquisition of ABBA backdrops:-

ABBA show backdrops, there are 40. 20 have already been sold to ABBA member. Consideration had to be given to whether or not we wanted them now there are only 20, and where to store.

RW said that he has a member’s garage that can be used. MH said that as we would be contemplating hiring them out is would be advantageous if they were stored in the Midlands for ease of access for all regions.

RW proposed the backdrops be purchased, seconded by RB, carried unanimously.

Backdrops needed to be picked up from Bristol and there maybe a length of black material table covers which we can have. To be arranged.

MH said the ABBA also have a register of “British Trees of Recognition”. There are about 170 photographs of trees plus the register. Did FOBBS want this? Unanimously yes.

8. Regional updates:-     

RW has visited 4 societies within his area at the present time and will be visiting Crawley next Wednesday. He intends to make contact with Maidstone so that he can visit them.

PF is trying to get a Welsh show (Cardiff) 2012 but needs a regional rep to cover north west, North Wales, Cheshire and Wirral.

9. Website, publicity:-

Need to update “The Team” on the website. Site is still showing old committee. Publicity:- MH to speak to SR.

10. Insurance for trees:-

MH has had contact with Ray Musk, Insurance Experts Limited re. Insurance for trees. HM said that he had explained to Mr Musk some of the problems associated with this. TA and RB outlined the difficulty of insurance when offered by the NFU some years back. Theft cover was straightforward but the loss of a tree was extremely complicated in relation to disease/negligence etc. All trees had to be independently valued (by who?) and they would only cover up to 80% of the value. The premiums were extremely high. MH agreed to see whether he was contacted again and What Mr Musk came up with.

11. Proposed FOBBS projects:-

Speakers course- It was agreed that the format of the proposed course should be detailed and thought should then be given to the cost for the course. Kath and MH
to prepare details.

Discussion took place re financial assistance to society/societies to put on an exhibition. RB suggested that a maximum of £500. 00 per year would be available and that organisers would have to prepare and submit a business plan prior to the event. No monies would be paid until after the event. RB proposed that this some be available to assist in putting on future shows, seconded by JD, carried unanimously.

RB to draft information to be circulated to member societies.

12. Any Other Business:-

In respect of the German, Oskar Junker who has requested information re societies in the UK, RB suggested that we should notify societies of this mans intention which is nothing more than an exchange of information regarding bonsai and UK/German societies. If nothing is heard within weeks we should just forward the information to him that he requested.

In view of possible problems in relation to data protection it was suggested that membership/renewal forms should contain the details of 2 society contact persons giving their full contact details including email address and a signed authority to record, pass on or place on our website these details.

TA asked whether a check could be made with Nigel Wright, Webmaster as to the legal status of Mr Junker’s actions, taking a page from our website and placing it on another website without any notification to the website owners.

Change of mandate, D B-P is now a signatory for FOBBS. There are now 3 signatories, MH, RB and D B-P.

Next Meeting Sunday 17th. April 2011

Meeting concluded 15.45 hours.