Constitution – Version 0.5
Words of masculine gender should be taken to include the feminine gender unless the context indicates otherwise.
1. The club shall be called BROMSGROVE MODEL FLYING CLUB and will be affiliated to the British Model Flying Association (BMFA).
2. The clubs principal aims shall be:
To provide a suitable flying site(s) for use by the membership
The promotion of safe and responsible model aircraft flying at the Club site(s)
To run the Club as economically and efficiently as possible
To provide appropriate insurance for all members
3. Alterations to this constitution can only be made at an Annual General Meeting or at a General Meeting called for that purpose. Any Proposed alterations must be submitted to the secretary in writing at least 14 days prior to the meeting.
4. The Committee has the right to refuse membership to new applicants. The minimum age for full membership is 18 years.
5. New members will be required to serve an initial probationary period of 6 months. During this time they will not be eligible to serve on the Committee and may have their membership terminated at the discretion of the Committee for unsatisfactory conduct. During this probationary period the member can be dismissed for misconduct without going through the disciplinary procedure.
6. New members will be charged a joining fee. Rejoining members will be charged a reduced fee and new members joining the Club after June 30th will also be charged a reduced fee. All joining fees will be determined by the Committee and reviewed annually.
7. New members will be expected to read and become fully conversant with the content of the Club Constitution and Code of Flying. Links to both documents are included in the Welcome Guide which will be sent to the new club member by the Club secretary.
8. The Committee will determine the membership subscription for the forthcoming year and inform the membership before the December AGM for their approval. Subscriptions are due by 31st December each year. Any member, who has not paid the subscriptions for the ensuing year by this date, in whole or in part, will be deemed to have left the Club. Their place will be allocated to prospective members on the Club waiting list and their name will be added to the bottom of the list, should they wish to rejoin.
9. In order to avoid the patch becoming too busy on good flying days, the number of flying members will be restricted to 55. However, this may be increased with the agreement of the voting Committee members on an annual basis. The Secretary will maintain a waiting list of prospective members wishing to join the Club. Applicants from this list will be invited to join by the Committee as vacancies arise. Admission of new members requiring training may be restricted to avoid overloading club instructors.
10. All flying members must be affiliated to the BMFA, whereas non flying members are not required to be members of BMFA, as long as they are not involved with any organisational duties. Affiliation to the BMFA through the Club will be offered to any new or existing member. Affiliation via another club or Country Membership of the BMFA will be confirmed before membership starts or is renewed.
11. All members are expected to co-operate in the smooth running of the Club and to fully comply with the Club Code of Flying. Failure to do so may result in disciplinary action by the Club which may lead to dismissal.
12. A member may be made an Honorary Member at the discretion of the Committee. Honorary members will be exempt from the annual subscription, but must however pay the BMFA membership fees.
13. Children aged between 10 and 18 may fly (albeit not as bona-fide club members) providing they are BMFA Junior members and observe the Club Code of Flying. The parent/guardian of any such child aged between 10 and 18 must become a member of the Club by paying the full membership fee and must supervise when the child intends to fly. Other children under 10 years of age are not allowed on the flying site unless they are properly supervised by a parent/guardian, who shall not fly.
14. Members may invite guest fliers to the site on arrangement with the Committee but they must be BMFA insured and the club member must assume total responsibility for the actions and safety of the guest. A maximum of 3 visits in any one Calendar year (January – December) are allowed. Visitors must comply with Club Code of Flying. The Club will utilise the BMFA 3 insured visits facility for guest flyers.
RULES, DISCIPLINE AND SAFETY
Club Code of Flying
Additions and amendments to the Club Code of Flying can only be made via proposals at a General Meeting
The Constitution and Club Code of Flying will be reviewed annually, and will be considered binding for 12 months, excepting where urgent action is required. This action must then be ratified by the members at the next General Meeting
16. All Club members are expected to be courteous to each other and no verbal or physical abuse will be tolerated. Any complaint concerning any member must be made in writing and signed by the complainant(s). The written complaint must then be forwarded to the Secretary so that the matter can be addressed at the next Committee meeting.
17. Where an allegation of misconduct is made against a member, the member may be
suspended from all club activities while an investigation is carried out.
18. The Committee may impose a suspension from club activities including attendance at the club flying site upon any member in the event of misconduct. The length of the suspension will be at the discretion of the Committee.
19. Any suspension must be accompanied by a verbal and/or written warning as deemed
appropriate in accordance with Article 20.
20. The Committee may consider removal of membership where conduct on the field or
elsewhere is considered to be prejudicial to the club. Dismissal will be in accordance
with the following procedure in order to comply with the laws of natural justice:
The member is to be given a verbal warning by an authorised Committee Member in which the member is made aware of his misdemeanour and what he is reasonably required to do to make amends.
If the member does not respond or commits further misdemeanours, he is to be given a written warning by an authorised Committee Member to advise him of his misdemeanour and what he is reasonably required to do to make amends.
If he still fails to respond or continues to commit misdemeanours, the Committee should invite him in writing to meet with them at a previously agreed date and time to discuss the situation, advising they are considering withdrawal of his membership.
If he still fails to respond to reasoning or fails to attend without reasonable cause, the Committee can advise him in writing that his membership is withdrawn, stating the reasons why this decision was reached.
When the member is advised of withdrawal of his membership, he must be given the right of appeal. If he opts to appeal, this will be to the Club membership at an EGM which the Committee would call on his behalf at a previously agreed date and time. The motion to uphold the membership withdrawal or reverse it must be in accordance with the voting procedures set out in the Club Constitution.
In the event of gross misconduct, immediate dismissal without warnings may be considered but the member must still be accorded his rights to present his case to the Committee and be given a right of appeal in accordance with sub paragraphs c, d and e above.
In the event of dismissal the Committee will arrange for the member’s current membership fee (excluding BMFA subscription) to be reimbursed in full.
21. The Committee and designated Instructors or Examiners, will be responsible for the running of the flying field at all times. Appointment to the position of Instructor or Examiner can only be made by a Committee decision.
22. Members may be designated as a Trainer at the discretion of the Chief Flying instructor (CFI). The Trainer role is intended to supervise and support trainees who have gained basic flying skills and are progressing towards the BMFA ‘A’ Test.
23. All novice flying members must be supervised by a Club designated Instructor or Trainer. The novice member must attain the BMFA ‘A’ Certificate before being permitted to fly unsupervised.
24. Any member whose flying standards drop below the minimum requirement solo standard will be required to undertake retraining until the desired standards of flying are met.
COMMITTEE STRUCTURE AND APPOINTMENTS
25. The Committee of the Club shall comprise of not more than 5 voting members comprising:
Chief Flying Instructor
Safety & Environmental Officer
26. In addition to the above, co-opted, non-voting members may be elected at the discretion of the Committee.
27. Any Flying OR Non Flying member must hold membership of the British Model Flying Association, if a Committee position or any organisational position within the Club is adopted.
28. Committee members shall be elected at the Annual General Meeting from written nominations received no later than 28 days prior to the meeting, to serve for a period of one year. The Committee will be elected by majority vote by paper ballot from members present. All fully paid up members and honorary members are eligible to vote.
29. Should a committee position become vacant during the year, the Committee may , by a majority vote, co-opt a replacement who will then serve until the following Annual General Meeting.
COMMITTEE ORGANISATION AND POWERS
30. Members elected to office will have full voting rights at all meetings. In the event of a tie the Chairman will have a casting vote in addition to his initial standing vote.
31. The Committee are authorised to carry out negotiations and make decisions in the
interest of the club or on behalf of the membership where necessary without consulting the members.
32. The Treasurer, Chairman and Secretary shall be authorised to operate the club bank account as individuals. The Treasurer will normally operate the account. The Chairman and Secretary will only operate the account when the Treasurer is not available.
33. All expenditure should be authorised in advance and approved by the Chairman. A record of transactions will be kept by the Treasurer and reconciled monthly with the Club Bank Account. A monthly account will be presented at every monthly committee meeting for review and approval. An annual account will be reviewed and approved in detail by the Chairman before being presented for review at the AGM. Any member of the club may request the right to review the club accounts at any time.
34. The Secretary must be informed of any negotiations proposed by club members which affect the Club as a whole and copies of any written correspondence must be submitted to him for record purposes.
35. Any Committee Member wishing to resign must do so in writing.
36. Any member of the Committee who is absent from three consecutive Committee
meetings without reasonable cause will automatically forfeit his seat on the Committee.
37. The Committee may pay accounts and incur any normal liabilities on behalf of the club.
VOTING AND CONDUCT OF COMMITTEE MEETINGS
38. All committee meetings will have an agenda and minutes will be taken as a record of discussions and decisions. Minutes of committee meetings will be made available to members on request to the secretary.
39. A quorum of any Committee meeting shall consist of a majority of Committee Members.
40. All proposals must be seconded and voted upon. A majority vote of those present is
required to carry any proposal.
41. Voting will normally be by a show of hands, however a secret ballot must be taken should any committee member request that this to be done. Proxy and postal votes will not be permitted.
42. Non-committee members may attend committee meetings as observers by applying to the Secretary at least 14 days before the meeting. Any non Committee Member may be asked to leave the meeting subject to approval from the Committee.
VOTING AND CONDUCT OF GENERAL MEETINGS
43. All general meetings will be have an agenda and minutes will be taken as a record of discussions and decisions.. Any other business will only be accepted at general meetings if the Secretary is given at least 14 days notice in writing of the item to be discussed. Any other business raised at a meeting will be discussed at the discretion of the Chairman (or chairman of the meeting).
44. A quorum of any general meeting is to be at least one quarter of the membership.
45. All proposals must be seconded and voted upon. A majority vote of those present is
required to carry any proposal including proposals to alter this constitution.
46. Voting will normally be by a show of hands, however a secret ballot must be taken should any member request that this be done. Proxy and postal votes will not be permitted.
47. Amendments to proposals must be voted upon first.
48. Non-club members may attend Club meetings as observers as invited guests of a club by applying to the Secretary at least 14 days before the meeting. Any non Club member may be asked to leave the meeting subject to approval from the Committee.
49. The Committee, through the Chairman, has the power to ask a person to leave any
meeting in the event of that person disrupting the meeting.
50. Patrons of the club have no voting rights but are free to attend all club meetings.
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETINGS
51. A date for the Annual General Meeting (AGM) will be decided each year by the Committee. At least 28 days notice of the meeting will be given in writing to all Club members.
52. A competent individual (i.e. a non-committee club member) shall be elected by the Committee to carry out an independent examination of the accounts before the AGM. The purpose of this is to verify that the balance sheet is correct and fairly represents the expenditure and receipts of the club, its assets and its liabilities. The accounts will be distributed to all attending members at the AGM.
EXTRAORDINARY GENERAL MEETINGS
53. The Secretary will convene an Extraordinary Committee Meeting within 14 days on
request from any member of the Committee, stating the business to be discussed.
54. The Secretary shall convene an Extraordinary General Meeting of the club by a
resolution of the Committee stating the business to be brought before the meeting, of which 28 days notice has been given to all members in writing stating the business to be discussed.
55. The Secretary shall convene an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) of the club on receipt of a request in writing signed by not less than 10 members of the club, stating the business to be brought before the meeting. The meeting must be called within 28 days of request and 28 days notice must be given to all members in writing stating the business to be discussed.
56. When a request for a meeting is made in accordance with Article 59 and it is not called within 28 days, the requisitioning members may themselves convene an EGM of the Club by giving 28 days notice in writing to all members, duly setting out the purpose for which the meeting was called. Any resolutions passed at such a meeting
shall have the same force and effect as if they were passed at a meeting convened by the Committee.
INSURANCE AND INDEMNITY
57. The club will hold both Civil and Employers Liability Insurance , provided through
affiliation to the BMFA.
58. The club will indemnify all committee members if they incur any liability on behalf of the club.
59. In the event of a Committee Member being awarded damages or costs in the course of proceedings taken by him in his representative capacity, such damages or costs will belong to the Club and not the Committee Member personally and upon receipt that Committee Member will pay them to the Club Treasurer.
60. When there is a joint meeting between the club name and another club, the participating club must be able to provide evidence of adequate insurance cover well in advance of the event.
DISSOLUTION OF THE CLUB
61. Should it be considered necessary or desirable to dissolve the Club, the Committee will call an Extraordinary General Meeting. Should a quorum fail to appear, the meeting will be adjourned and a further EGM must be called within 14 days. The second meeting will proceed even if a quorum is not present and the motion will then be carried by a simple majority vote.
62. On dissolution and after the sale of assets, settlement of all outstanding debts and
the refund of subscriptions for the remaining part of the year to the paid up
members; the funds remaining will be distributed in equal shares to the Club’s nominated charities voted for at the EGM.
63. If the final accounts are less than required to refund the subscriptions to the members, the total money remaining will be donated to the Club’s nominated
Charities voted for at the EGM.
64. All members will receive a final statement of accounts.
Disciplinary Procedure Guidance
Minor faults or shortcomings in behaviour should normally be dealt with informally by a
Committee member with a view to reaching agreement on the improvement required.
Informal warnings should not form part of the formal disciplinary procedure and the formal procedure would not be followed before an informal warning is given. If, however, the problem persists or if the matter is more serious, action under the formal disciplinary procedure outlined in the constitution should normally be taken.
The disciplinary procedure is intended to provide a formal framework to deal with the situation where an individual’s conduct falls below acceptable standards and to ensure fair and consistent treatment of all members in such circumstances.
The procedure outlined is a good practice guide on how clubs should deal with disciplinary
Invitation to a Disciplinary Meeting
The committee should set out in writing to the member, the alleged conduct or other
circumstances which have led them to contemplate formal action or dismissal and the member should be invited to a meeting to discuss the matter.
The meeting should take place before any action is taken (other than suspension, in the event of alleged gross misconduct or police investigation, to enable a full investigation to take place).
The meeting should not take place until
(i) the member has been informed of the basis for the grounds given in the original notice of formal action or dismissal and
(ii) the member has had a reasonable opportunity to consider their response to such information.
At the meeting the committee should explain the complaint against the member concerned and go through the evidence that has been gathered. The member must take all reasonable steps to attend the meeting.
After the meeting the member should be informed in writing of the committee’s decision and
Their right of appeal against such decision to the members at a general meeting if they
are not satisfied with it.
If the member wishes to appeal they should inform the secretary in writing within the time frame stated in the decision notice, and the member should set out specific reasons for the appeal.
The Secretary should call an Extraordinary General meeting of the club to hear the appeal
The member must take all reasonable steps to attend the meeting.
The appeal general meeting may take place after the disciplinary action or dismissal takes
After the appeal general meeting the member must be informed of the general meetings final decision.
At any meeting under the disciplinary procedure the member concerned should be given the right to be accompanied by another club member to act in a supporting capacity but such companion may not usually answer questions on behalf of the member subject to the procedure.
The member concerned also has the right to call witnesses or ask questions of any witnesses called by the committee.
General principles for the operation of the disciplinary and dismissal procedure
formal disciplinary action should not normally be taken until the matter has been
where an allegation of misconduct is made against a member, the member may be suspended from all club activities while an investigation is carried out
the member should be informed that suspension is a neutral act, that it is not a disciplinary penalty and does not imply guilt
the member should be advised of the allegations against them and have an opportunity to state their case before any formal disciplinary decision is made
the member should be provided, where appropriate, with written copies of evidence and relevant witness statements in advance of a disciplinary meeting
at every stage of the formal disciplinary procedure, the member will have a right to be accompanied at any disciplinary meeting by another club member
a member should not be dismissed for a first breach of the rules, except in the case of gross misconduct, when the penalty will normally be immediate dismissal
the member concerned will have the right to appeal against any formal disciplinary penalty
although the disciplinary penalties which may be imposed under this procedure will normally be imposed in the order set out in the constitution, the procedure may be commenced at any stage if the seriousness of the members alleged misconduct justifies this
As part of any disciplinary procedure, where the committee considers it appropriate to do so,
they may impose a disciplinary sanction, which is a penalty. These will generally take the form of some type of warning.
Verbal warning notice
If conduct does not meet acceptable standards, a member may be given a formal verbal
warning. This should set out the conduct problem, confirmation of improvement required
and time scale for improvement to be made, together with the assistance to be provided
to meet the objectives. A record of the verbal warning will be kept but the warning will be disregarded after a six month period (although this time frame is dependent on the
committee’s decision) provided conduct has been satisfactory.
If the offence is more serious or if there is insufficient improvement after a verbal warning
or if a further broadly similar offence occurs whilst a verbal warning remains in force, a
written warning may be given. This will set out the nature of the conduct problem and
confirmation of improvement required and time scale for improvement to be made,
together with the assistance provided to meet the objectives.
The warning should also inform the member that should your conduct fail to improve or
you commit any further disciplinary offence over the next twelve months, (the time frame
is dependent on the committee) then you will be issued with a final written warning. The
written warning will be kept on file, and the member should be informed after what time
period it will be disregarded providing their conduct, attendance or performance has been
Final written warning
If there is still insufficient improvement after a verbal and/or written warning has been
issued or if the misconduct is sufficiently serious to warrant only one written warning, a
final written warning will be given. This will provide details of the complaint, the
improvement required and the timescale for the improvement.
It will also warn that a failure to improve or any further disciplinary offences over the next
period referred by your employer may lead to dismissal or some other action short of
dismissal. The final written warning will be kept on file and the member should be
informed when the warning will be disregarded provided your conduct, attendance or
performance has been satisfactory.
Dismissal or other sanction
If there is still further misconduct or a failure to improve conduct the final stage in the
procedure may be dismissal.
Examples of misconduct
Examples of misconduct which may lead to disciplinary action being taken include, but are not limited to:
failure to comply with BMFC Code of Flying
breach of club policies and practices
Examples of gross misconduct
The club may consider some types of misconduct to be so serious that a disciplinary warning
would be an insufficient penalty. Such offences are known as offences of gross misconduct.
Where the offence is one of gross misconduct the normal penalty will be dismissal without a
prior warning being issued (summary dismissal).
Dismissal for gross misconduct will not normally occur until a disciplinary meeting has taken
Matters which may justify summary dismissal include, but are not limited to:
dishonesty, theft and fraud from the club or its members
deception, for example making untrue statements in membership applications or falsifying expenses incurred on behalf of the club, etc.
vandalism or sabotage of club equipment and property
fighting, or seriously disruptive behaviour or offensive or abusive language
serious misuse of computer, email and internet systems, including posting to club websites or emailing pornographic, offensive or obscene emails to members
misuse of club financial or other confidential club information
acts of bullying, harassment or discrimination
model flying under the influence of drinks, illegal drugs or other intoxicants
misconduct which may bring the club into disrepute or have an impact on its future.
serious breaches of the clubs policies, procedures and safety rules
deliberate or serious damage to the clubs/landowners property or causing loss, damage or injury through serious negligence
any criminal offence carried out at the club site or during club meetings/events where such offence impacts or may impact upon the club