SOUTHWELL RUNNING CLUB
MINUTES OF THE ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
MONDAY, 4 NOVEMBER 2013, AT 7.30 P.M., AT THE FULL MOON, MORTON
1. Apologies for absence
Chris Welbourn, Jen
Sutton, Simon Willington, Janet Evans,
Jackie Hardy, Chris Cregg, Paul Cregg, Michelle Hall, Jo Semmelroth,
Fozzard, Mark Edmondson-Jones, Frances McKinnon, Anthony Gorman, Mick
2. Minutes of last meeting
Approved as a true and correct record of the last AGM.
3. Matters arising
All matters arising from last year’s meeting have been dealt with during the past committee meetings. These include the following:-
· Club subscriptions have increased to £20 per year.
· A new open event, the Southwell Swine, was successfully held for the first time this year.
· The committee had decided not to incorporate the club as a company limited by guarantee.
· It had been agreed that the club race re-runs do need to be better publicised which will assist in avoiding clashes with other events.
· Paul Orton successfully organised an his ultra event around Southwell in March this year.
Chaiman’s Report 2013
The interests of club members in terms of the events, training and general type of running they want to do have continued to increase in diversity. In response to this the committee have worked hard to accommodate and embrace new ideas and formats to match the varied interests of our runners across the entire club. This does mean that changes will occur, which won’t suit everyone and the rate of evolution has gained pace.
Numbers attending the club training sessions have fluctuated in what would appear to be an erratic fashion at times. This has been a cause for concern for the committee and club members alike. I think there are numerous reasons for this but I believe a general theme is that more of our club members are training for and competing in longer distance events throughout the entire year, and in the weeks immediately prior to popular events such as the Robin Hood half marathon many members will taper and prefer not to train with the club.
In years gone by there would typically be a couple of busy times of the year such as April and September when training sessions would be quiet and of course each Tuesday night prior to a summer league race, but this has spread across the entire year with increased numbers of members taking part in XC competitions from November to March for example, and in longer road based events such as the Stamford 30K in mid-February and Ashby 20 in early March. In 2011 for example these two events attracted 16 club members between them, this year 25 with 10 members doing both. Then when you take into account that the Belvoir challenge which attracts around 12-30 runners each year falls between these two events and all within a 4 week period then reasons for low attendance on club nights starts to become clearer.
This year I have spoken to a large cross-section of members regarding training sessions and I’m surprised at how many of our members now struggle to attend weekday evening training sessions on a regular basis due to work or family commitments, all for very genuine reasons.
Another popular theme is that the Tuesday night speedwork sessions are and I quote “precious” to club members. On any occasion when a Tuesday night session is interrupted by an internal event such as the Grand Prix series for example either I or members of the committee will usually receive a complaint that Tuesday night sessions should not be interrupted by internal events. These come from a variety of club members of all ages and abilities. We no longer stage internal events on Tuesday evenings purely for this reason.
To sum up as a club we are running more competitively, more often and for longer distances. The membership as a whole have less time to attend regular evening training sessions but when they do attend, members require high quality, specific sessions focussed on increasing speed and/or endurance. A challenge for the committee over the coming year will be to shape the training structure to suit the changing needs of our membership.
low side membership is slightly down
on last year at around 107 members and the cancellation of the River
to low interest and the Epperstone league race due to being unable to
endorsement from the local authorities without closing the roads were
disappointing for all concerned. But on the high side we have
introduced a new
open trail race: the Southwell Swine which was a major success,
new course for the xc handicap race which was well received as well as
a number of brilliant results in the xc leagues and county
Recently we have received an influx of young members into the club the
which we haven’t seen for some years Road
The Notts Summer league continues to be popular but the number of members taking part this year has fallen slightly compared with previous years. I suspect that some of the reasons already mentioned will have a part to play in this. The first race of the series, our own Epperstone race event was cancelled due to being unable to obtain authorisation from the local authorities without closing the roads which would have incurred costs beyond the means of the league. The whole issue was very disappointing for all concerned. Despite all that our veteran women finished 3rd overall and veteran men 5th.
We supported both the Holme Pierrepont Grand Prix series and the Gordon Whelbourn running week but our numbers were considerably less than previous years. Nigel Watkin won the male V50 category in both competitions.
Half marathons continue to be the most popular distance for road events with SRC being represented at Sleaford, Connemara, Shakespeare, Scunthorpe, Sheffield, Peterborough, Windsor, Palma, Great North, Isle of Axholme, Robin Hood and Worksop halfs to name but a few. This list of half marathons and the number of members taking part continues to grow, year on year.
in marathons has also continued to
The XC leagues have been well supported this year and the club has punched way above its weight in both of them. Our vet men and ladies both finished 4th overall in the North Midlands League which is a superb result considering the quality of the league and that this is the first year we have managed to complete the series with any team. In the East Midlands XC league our veteran men and women both won their categories which is a brilliant result and on the whole has been an outstanding year for SRC in the XC league competitions. We also have our own internal XC competitions such as the Upton Predictor and the handicap XC which Jim Semmelroth has put a lot of effort into organising this year, introducing a new handicap course based at Halam which proved to be a success. Both events were well supported.
Harrigan represented SRC at the
Midland Counties XC competition and next year the national XC
will be staged at
Fell running is now well established within the club and members have taken part in a wide range of events from short evening races in the Peak to long, arduous, team events such as the High Peak marathon. SRC have also been represented in mountain marathon events this year such as the Saunders Lakeland mountain marathon and the OMM (Original mountain marathon) where runners compete in pairs, navigating their way between checkpoints while carrying all their kit for a two day route with overnight camp.
year was the 3rd
fastest growing race genre in the club
appears to be ultra distance with several members regularly training
competing in very long distance events. There have been some remarkable
achievements this year including Wayne Wilmot and Dick Durance who took
the Caballo Blanco event in
Richard Whitehead received a large amount of media exposure for his “Richard Whitehead runs Britain challenge” which involved running a marathon for some 37 days, covering 977 miles from John O’Groats to Land’s End.
July Richard Andrews became the third
SRC member to complete the 42 peak traverse of the
With the exception of our xc events which have proved popular I could have very easily repeated last year’s words to describe our internal events, which started with the line “ I don’t think it has been a good year for our internal events”. For the second successive year numbers have been low for the Grand Prix series events with the exception of the 3 mile race which has been well supported even by normal standards. Both the 1 mile and 10K races suffer from the time of year and clashing with other events. This is something which has become practically impossible to avoid as the club has evolved and the scope of our race calendar has widened.
successfully host the Bramley
Challenge, our annual race with Holme Pierrepont and NOTFAST running
won the event for the second successive year. A fourth club:
The cancellation of the River Relays due to low interest was a major disappointment and the committee will be analysing reasons for this and investigating the feasibility of staging the event in the future.
On the upside we have introduced brand new XC Grand Prix series of 4 events from November to March. Jim Semmelroth has put a great deal of effort into getting this off the ground and we hope that in time it will prove a successful sister event to the traditional Grand Prix series.
August the club put on a new, open to
the public, race event called the Southwell Swine. A trail race with 6
mile options based at Southwell Rugby club and taking in some of the
around the Brackenhurst region. We received lots of positive feedback
and in my
opinion the whole event was a huge success. We received 190 entries and
raising £358.61 which was donated to
Notts Air Ambulance. I should thank the members of the sub committee
events have been few and far between
this year. Wayne Wilmot and Dick Durance gave an excellent and well
talk on their experience at the Caballo Blanco ultra distance event in
and apart from the Christmas party, the hardcore element that frequent
Hearty Goodfellow on random Tuesday and Thursday evenings, and a couple
teams involving Paul Woolhouse, Paul Orton, Darren Corbett, Peter Gault
It has been a year of highs and lows and general fluctuation. There have been some unexpected results in terms of low responses and the coming year will be a challenging one for the committee. I sincerely hope we can at least achieve two things:
· To continue to develop a training structure that provides for the core membership.
· To re-ignite the social and fun element.
But most of all to maintain the fun and friendly atmosphere that is in my opinion the most important theme within this club and to hopefully provide something for all club members.
5. Treasurer’s Update
George presented the
accounts for the financial year 1 September 2012 – 31 August 2013. A summary is included below .
George also presented a breakdown of the
finances in holding the Southwell Swine on 11 August 2013.
Thanks again to
The following members were elected to serve on the committee for 2013/14:-
7. Subscriptions 2013/14
£12 Senior and second claim
£17 Over 60’s
£10 Under 18’s or in fulltime education
£5 Associate (non-running) members
There were seven candidates for the draw. These were drawn by Steve Hargrave. The two club members drawn were Tracey Polak and Jim Semmelroth.
9. Motions for discussion
(a) New Summer League Racing Event
On a show of hands vote the majority felt this was a good idea.
However, Dick Durance felt that the priority should be to establish a firm base for the club.
If we are to
put a race on then our proposal needs to
be submitted by 22 January 2014. The
race will be the first of the season and will take place on a date in
(b) Considering using the rugby club’s new facilities as a training base
(c) Training structure for Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday
This topic prompted a lot
of discussion. Jim Semmelroth said it
would be good to know
what the session was going to be like before turning up, for example,
This topic prompted a lot of discussion. Jim Semmelroth said it would be good to know what the session was going to be like before turning up, for example, on a Tuesday.
Ian asked whether there should be a structured plan for training during the week. Nigel Watkin felt that people wouldn’t turn up if they knew what was on and it was something they didn’t want to do.
At present, the responsibility has fallen on one or two members to run the sessions.
Helen Jones felt that the problem was not the session leaders but the runners not turning up.
It was generally agreed that we should have some “back-up sessions” published for the runners to do if the leader didn’t show up.
said that he likes the variety of the
sessions. He felt that there were issues
around there being a “whipper in” for the slower runners.
We need to take the role of whipper in
Helen Jones said that we have got into the habit of the faster runners leading and the slower ones whipping in.
Jo Harcombe said that she, for example, would be happy to lead sessions if a plan was available.
Lisa Preece said that it was difficult to run a session if you did not know the area – the roads around Southwell without a plan.
Julie Gleeson said that taking a session can be quite onerous as the route needs to be tested out first.
Chrissie said that it would be good to know what the route is if you were left at the back, so you know where to go.
Paul Orton was of the view that a one-hour session was too short. We need more warm-up and stretching and warm-down time.
Nigel Watkins said that most clubs train for two hours even without facilities. However, it was acknowledged that people did not have time to do more than an hour on a week-day evening. People were encouraged to do warm-up and warm-down themselves either side of the formal session if they wished to do so.
Nigel said that other clubs have qualified coaches and have sessions planned. He also said that this is the best club he has been at for people actually sticking together on runs. He has run with Newark AC where people are left behind and at numerous other clubs where this is a problem. He feels that we should work on the structure to make it enjoyable for all members of the club.
Paul Butcher said it would be possible to have structured sessions where people could run at their individual pace and just vary the number of repetitions. This would be good for Tuesday sessions.
Chris Wales said he felt that a bank of sessions was a good idea which all volunteers could access. He, too, is not familiar with the roads in Southwell and this would be helpful.
Ian commented that there is now low attendance for the Thursday sessions. Jo Harcombe said that she is put off from attending on a Thursday as she has no-one to run with. This was agreed as a general theme. People did not want to end up running on their own. Nigel felt that the Thursday format should be the same as Tuesday.
Jo said that if the session was fartleking then she would come along. Dick said that he felt there was more of a social element on a Thursday, a sort of “start of the weekend” feeling.
Chrissie said that she comes to Southwell to run to get the social side but because she is at the back on her own she is not getting faster.
Jim commented that there is a set winter route but people are getting lost as others go off and do their own thing/own routes. Tracey Polak commented that quite often there is no-one to run with on a Thursday. The faster runners go off on their own with head torches on. This means that she and others have to run along the dark roads alone and there are personal safety issues.
Jim suggested putting head torch runs on the Thursday rota.
It was noted that well over half the club had no representation at the AGM this evening. It was suggested that everyone’s views should be canvassed with a range of options in a survey (?) in light of the generally reducing membership and attendance at sessions.
There were no particular comments about the Saturday sessions.
10. Open discussion
Steve Hargrave had a number of issues to raise. He said that he felt our website had a “dead” feel to it. It looked out-of-date and uninviting. Up-to-date information needs to be put on the website, for example, about forthcoming events and putting results on more quickly. The AGM and new news needs to be on. It looked like a dormant club.
Richard Peacock who updates the website said that he needs a proper contact on the committee to tell him what to put on it regularly. This was agreed.
Paul Orton suggested a forum. It was noted that there is a Facebook group. This could be linked to the website. This is a good source of updated information with photos and race results. There is also an opportunity to chat.
It was agreed also that the newsletter ought to be linked to the website. Personal contact details, phone numbers, etc., will need to be taken out for the committee members.
Steve mentioned the Booth League, which is a road and cross-country league which involves smaller clubs. It is Derbyshire-based. It was agreed that this would be discussed in committee. Paul Butcher’s comment was that if we are looking to get into that league we will need to see whether or not we can get teams together, bearing in mind that we could not get a team out for the cross-country relay. Steve Hargrave felt that relays were a good way of getting the club together and team building. If there was a list of people available who are interested in doing the relay races/cross-country races then this gives a nucleus of people who are interested with contact details. Steve Hargrave would then be happy to organise teams.
Both Paul Orton and Nigel Watkin felt that having captains for different events would be helpful. This would then generate further interest.
The issue of team captains will be discussed in committee.
Chris Wales said that it would be helpful to differentiate between events which are important to the club and those which are not as important.
Jim felt that having captains would be a good idea as people would feel valued within the club if they were asked to run.
We then discussed the issue of being able to contact people and the release of contact information, such as telephone numbers and email addresses. Helen Jones said that people could say whether or not they were okay for this information to be released. Chris Wales fsaid there was an IT way of solving this without too much difficulty. We need some way of people confirming that they are interested in particular events and to confirm whether or not they are happy for their personal details to be released.
It was felt that club vests should be worn by those using the advantage of a discount for entering certain events/races.
Ian confirmed that Phil Sturgeon was available now if people wanted to order club kit from him.
The meeting closed at 9.25 pm.