Another British Horse Society c**k-up

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Seemed clear that LP is standing for election as Trustee. Articles were changed in 2013 and this would be allowable.
 

EventingMum

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I couldn't attend the meeting but someone I know was saying LP shouldn't be a trustee as it is against the constitution as she has a pension from the BHS. I would be interested to hear if this was raised last right?
 
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Yes it was raised but it seemed clear from the BHS side that this was not how they interpreted the situation. And that they have taken legal advice.
 

JanetGeorge

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Feedback from the Scottish Meeting:

Around 2 dozen members present. Almost as though they didn’t want a large turnout. It was after the last day of the National Convention, which finished before 5 but the meeting not until 7. Meeting not mentioned at all until the closing remark of the convention.

Some distinct axe grinding. We heard from the former chair of one Scottish committee as to why she felt forced out, heard why their treasurer was forced to resign.

One very silly lady even tried to tell us exactly what the GDPR breach was - as this would have identified people not present and able to defend themselves, many of us stopped her.

Usual concerns about lack of transparency, governance, accountability.

Committees feeling forced into moving and accounts to Unity Trust - needs internet access to operate. Could be a problem in rural areas ...

HQ attitude e.g referring to “pockets of resistance” rather than a recognition that people are raising issues about practicality.
 
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The second hand report above illustrates why “hear say” is not admissible evidence in court. The meeting was lively and the full 2 hours was used in conversation. Let’s not let this lackluster second hand or third hand view from afar detract from the energy still needed to change the situation. Or might that be the real purpose of such a report- to drain energy & interest? To encourage others to give up?
 

PAK

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Key ingredient missing from all above is the members, right at the start, asked for the agenda to be set aside and to use the time to talk about members’ concerns. And that’s what happened.
 
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honetpot

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While I fully agree with you, the new issue of British Horse is out, and I can find anything mentioned about anything, but of course LP gets to write a whole page of guff. So their tactic is to keep the majority of the membership totally ignorant, and they have probabely sat an done the numbers and are playing a waiting game.
 
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While I fully agree with you, the new issue of British Horse is out, and I can find anything mentioned about anything, but of course LP gets to write a whole page of guff. So their tactic is to keep the majority of the membership totally ignorant, and they have probabely sat an done the numbers and are playing a waiting game.
I agree with your description of "guff", "numbers", and "waiting game". Once people heard the news of the CEO's resignation, members may well have thought the struggle was over. But it is far from over and rapidly getting worse. Out of the CEO seat, LP will still have control via her hand picked staff obliged staff but even less responsibility & accountability. Chances would not be good for hiring the CEO the BHS really needs while she is there and part of the decision making. It would be likely to be a clone who like the others "owe" her allegiance. JG & her social media warriors need to beat those jungle drums and rekindle the interest and enthusiasm of members. The BHS Members Support page was once over 1000. If it can get there again or better yet more, this membership cavalry may stand a fighting chance.
 

JanetGeorge

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I agree with your description of "guff", "numbers", and "waiting game". Once people heard the news of the CEO's resignation, members may well have thought the struggle was over. But it is far from over and rapidly getting worse. Out of the CEO seat, LP will still have control via her hand picked staff obliged staff but even less responsibility & accountability. Chances would not be good for hiring the CEO the BHS really needs while she is there and part of the decision making. It would be likely to be a clone who like the others "owe" her allegiance. JG & her social media warriors need to beat those jungle drums and rekindle the interest and enthusiasm of members. The BHS Members Support page was once over 1000. If it can get there again or better yet more, this membership cavalry may stand a fighting chance.
We've got a lot to do - otherwise she will be a Trustee - and probably Chairman - by July. Membership of the FB Group never actually got to 1,000 - we DO have 50 odd 'in waiting' but they haven't answered the questions.

Membership.jpg
 
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1000 BHS members - if they get active - should be a "tipping point". But audacity and arrogance continues to be the BHS's most impressive feature. How about the addition of a new highly focused thread here in H&H with only one objective, perhaps even framing the thread as a declaration of intent, i.e. change the hands that hold the reins. Sheerin, Petersen, Phillips out! or we leave. After all, many members have already left and many are planning to leave if the EGM is unsuccessful.
 
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D66 - Very well said and great suggestions. Let's turn the "you" into "we". D66 - might you draft the core message based on your summary of the 3 key points (spot on!). Then may we have some volunteers to contact hunting other other disciplines? And some people to contact the smaller horse magazines - those will be the ones who are not getting the huge sums from BHS. Anyone have a stand at the Royal Windsor with a free corner? Many hands make light work.
 
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honetpot

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From MPV. There is concern by some members that they or their associates will be, 'got at' if they put their hands up. I have been quite open with my views, in person and in writing to HO, but others who hold the same oppinions are worried to speak out, these are not young people but long standing members. So there is a level of mistrust and suspicion which I have never seen before, who are you talking to and are you going to shop me? So if you do not know people personally there seems to be a reluctance to connect.
There are also well respected senior members that just keep hoping the Board will do the right thing, and it will be resolved by a gentlemans agreement, were everyone will change their spots, rather than using their high profile.
I do think there needs to be some sort of fighting fund to get proper legel advice and pay for adverts if needed. Its funny British Horse is a members magazine but makes no attempt to inform members of the issues, even if it was the HO PoV.

As its is we know that LP nomination has been accepted, I do not know how there can not be any conflict of interest in the interview panel.
So far all we know is..

If your nomination is accepted we would be grateful if you could please save the date of the Election Board Meeting as you will be required to attend. This will be taking place with the Annual Members Meeting on Tuesday 16 July 2019.
I assume this could be the date for the EGM, but who knows. Save the date.
 
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At the meeting on 9 April Scotland, Chairman Sheerin confirmed HQ had received a petition calling for an EGM (Vote of No Confidence in the Chair, CEO and Board) and that he had responded to the one of the people who had signed the petition that he was trying to schedule the meeting for early June. It was pointed out that all members who had signed the petition should have had a response. I agree. I signed and I have not had a response from BHS HQ. He went on to describe the other events that needed to be schedule creating the impression that the early June date might not materialise.
 
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From MPV. There is concern by some members that they or their associates will be, 'got at' if they put their hands up. I have been quite open with my views, in person and in writing to HO, but others who hold the same oppinions are worried to speak out, these are not young people but long standing members. So there is a level of mistrust and suspicion which I have never seen before, who are you talking to and are you going to shop me? So if you do not know people personally there seems to be a reluctance to connect.
There are also well respected senior members that just keep hoping the Board will do the right thing, and it will be resolved by a gentlemans agreement, were everyone will change their spots, rather than using their high profile.
I do think there needs to be some sort of fighting fund to get proper legel advice and pay for adverts if needed. Its funny British Horse is a members magazine but makes no attempt to inform members of the issues, even if it was the HO PoV.

As its is we know that LP nomination has been accepted, I do not know how there can not be any conflict of interest in the interview panel.
So far all we know is..

If your nomination is accepted we would be grateful if you could please save the date of the Election Board Meeting as you will be required to attend. This will be taking place with the Annual Members Meeting on Tuesday 16 July 2019.
I assume this could be the date for the EGM, but who knows. Save the date.
The fact that members are quiet because of fear is evidence enough that something major is wrong and needs members' urgent action. The Board has colluded in the mismanagement of funds and the mistreatment of staff and volunteers. They will not change now. If the BHS is worth having, "feel the fear and do it anyway". Please speak to one another, find out the facts, ask questions (even here on this thread) and please make your views known.
 
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Why are we still waiting for a date for the general meeting called for by members (Articles of Association 24.2)? If a date is not set soon, the meeting might be held after the election. Or is that the intention?
 

JanetGeorge

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Why are we still waiting for a date for the general meeting called for by members (Articles of Association 24.2)? If a date is not set soon, the meeting might be held after the election. Or is that the intention?
The question was asked of the Chairman at the Scottish Meeting, He said that it was difficult finding a date as there was so much to organize with the election etc. I suspect the idea is to delay until after the election and then claim as the CE has resigned, there is a new Chairman, and a few new Trustees (pre-approved, of course) that the Vote of No Confidence is now irrelevant. I think every Member who goes to Badminton should track down the BHSvenue and LOOK for Trustees - and ask them. If just 100 members did that, they MIGHT get the message that a delay is unacceptable.
 
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The question was asked of the Chairman at the Scottish Meeting, He said that it was difficult finding a date as there was so much to organize with the election etc. I suspect the idea is to delay until after the election and then claim as the CE has resigned, there is a new Chairman, and a few new Trustees (pre-approved, of course) that the Vote of No Confidence is now irrelevant. I think every Member who goes to Badminton should track down the BHSvenue and LOOK for Trustees - and ask them. If just 100 members did that, they MIGHT get the message that a delay is unacceptable.
As the Captain said to the First officer- “make it so”.
 
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The question was asked of the Chairman at the Scottish Meeting, He said that it was difficult finding a date as there was so much to organize with the election etc. I suspect the idea is to delay until after the election and then claim as the CE has resigned, there is a new Chairman, and a few new Trustees (pre-approved, of course) that the Vote of No Confidence is now irrelevant. I think every Member who goes to Badminton should track down the BHSvenue and LOOK for Trustees - and ask them. If just 100 members did that, they MIGHT get the message that a delay is unacceptable.
And every member that goes to Windsor! Anyone else notice that the current magazine does even not mention the election at all! Not even a "save the date". And typically this would be the only magazine to be circulated before the election.
 
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Hoping that members will not be drawn off course by tempting offers of "red herrings". Hang fire until later this week. By law they must set a date for the requisitioned GM within 21 - 28 days. That is this week!
 
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The original petition submitted at the GM on 5 January was withdrawn in good faith to allow the Board time to act on the feedback they received. HQ has announced that the meeting will not be resumed. A general meeting, as petitioned on 14 March, which would be open to all members, is the reasonable way forward and must be held soon - not after the election. This is especially true if the election includes LP as trustee. Section 5 of the Articles addresses the conflict of interest regarding Society Trustees and Connected Persons, i.e. those receiving benefits (e.g. pension). At the members meeting on 9 April, it was stated that LP's application could not be commented upon as the nominations process is confidential. However, when the next question referred specifically to the Articles (5.1.3 & 5.1.4) and exclusion due to employment / benefits, the reply was that at the time of the election LP would not be an employee. However, at the time of application and interview, LP would have been an employee. Was that the handwriting on the wall?
 
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As the aoa doesn't specify a different timeline the does the law stand with the company act that the have 21 days to gm date.
Yes, in my opinion, the company act applies here. The date for the requisitioned GM has to be set 21 to no more than 28 days from date of petition accepted. So with bank holidays, that is this week. However, the actual date of the meeting is the BHS' decision. So they might set the date for after the election! What a thought for a new Board member! First hurdle is face a vote of no confidence! And if it is true that LP is standing, then after her election to the Board and possibly her election as Chair, the problems of the past will be set to continue into the future.
 
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