Category Archives: AGM

Notice of Annual General Meeting 10 December 2020

All members of The Richmond Society (Charity number 1169079) are invited to attend the Annual General Meeting which will be held virtually by Zoom on Thursday 10 December 2020 at 7:30 pm.

Please register in advance to attend this virtual AGM by sending an email to We need at least 20 members to attend online to enable the meeting to go ahead and to transact the necessary business.


Before the formal business of the meeting the Trustees will present a review of the Society’s work during the year and members will have the opportunity to ask questions. In addition, a presentation on the Society’s future visual identity will be shared with members.

1. Trustees’ review of the Society’s work during the year and presentation of new visual identity

2. Ordinary resolutions

a. To note the Minutes of the Annual General Meeting of 5 December 2019

b. To receive the Annual Report and Accounts for the year to 30 September 2020

c. To elect the Chairman, Honorary Secretary, Honorary Treasurer

d. To elect or re-elect other Trustees

3. Any other business


The current Trustees are:



Hon Secretary

Hon Treasurer

* Barry May

* Anne Koutsabeloulis

* Andrew Coleman

    Marketing & Comms


Vice Chair and Planning

Systems & Heathrow


Landscaping and Riverside

* Simon Clarkson

Ginny Curry

Louise Fluker

Neil Maybin

* Stephen Speak

* Nicky Wood

The following being eligible offer themselves for election: Barry May as Chairman; Anne Koutsabeloulis as Honorary Secretary and Andrew Coleman as Honorary Treasurer.

The Society has 6 trustees (other than the Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer), one third of whom must retire in accordance with the constitution. Accordingly Nicky Wood and Stephen Speak retire and being eligible offer themselves for re-election having been proposed and seconded.

Under the constitution trustees who were appointed during the year must retire but are eligible to stand for election. Simon Clarkson was appointed a trustee on 11 August 2020 and being eligible for election has agreed to stand. He has been proposed and seconded.

Noel Flannery CIPFA has acted as Independent Examiner for 2019-20. He feels he cannot continue as he is moving away from Richmond.

Further Nominations

Nominations are invited for the positions of Chairman, Honorary Secretary, Honorary Treasurer and other Trustees. These must be submitted in writing by 19 November 2020 to the address below or by email to the secretary at Candidates for election must be Society members who are willing to serve, and must be proposed and seconded by Society members.

How to Participate

Please register in advance to attend the virtual AGM by videoconferencing by sending an email to

We need at least 20 members to attend online to enable the meeting to go ahead and to transact the necessary business so please do join us.

The meeting will be held via Zoom. Your video conferencing experience will be better if you have downloaded the Zoom app and it is up to date. Once you have registered, you will receive a confirmation email containing instructions and the Zoom meeting link which will allow you to join the meeting. You will need to keep this safe and easily available for Thursday 10 December. Check your spam/junk mailbox if you are unable to find it. If you have any problems receiving the link or any queries, please email

We will open the meeting just before 7:15 pm and send you to a virtual waiting room until shortly before 7:30 pm when you will be admitted to the meeting.

The final agenda and relevant papers will be circulated by email in advance of the meeting and will also be available on our website

If you have household membership, each of you has a vote. As voting will be done electronically you each need to register separately and you each need to use your own device for your votes to be counted.

How to ask a question

Zoom has a function called Chat at the bottom of the screen on a laptop or desktop, but it varies depending (a) whether you are using the Zoom app or linked through your browser or (b) the type of device, so you will need to familiarise yourself with this before the meeting.

Press the Chat button then type your question in the space provided and press send. The Chairman will see questions as they are entered and will take them in order. You will have the opportunity to ask a supplementary question after the answer (provided you have unmuted yourself).

After all relevant questions have been answered, the Chairman will put each resolution to the vote. This will be done on screen.

How to vote

When it is time to vote, the Chairman will put each resolution to the vote by means of an electronic poll and will launch the voting. You will see on your screen a box with options to vote in favour or against the resolution or to withhold your vote. You vote by choosing your preferred option. Once everyone has voted, the poll will be ended and the results announced.

Meeting Recording

Please note that we will be recording the meeting for the purpose of producing the minutes and this may be posted on the Society’s website. If you do not wish to be recorded on video, please make sure you disable the video camera icon on your screen.

Richmond Society AGM 2019 – Summary of Proceedings

At the Annual General Meeting Chairman Barry May announced that the charitable objects and the identity of the Society have been under review. Treasurer Andrew Coleman, who had been leading the review, gave more details and explained why this had been included in the agenda as a Special Resolution. Members voted to authorise the Trustees to seek the Charity Commission’s permission to make the change.

The Annual Report and Accounts for the year to 30 September 2019 were approved. The Treasurer reported that higher expenditure (up by 16%) and lower income (down by 9%) had produced a loss of £6,456 for the year. The shortfall was not sustainable. The Executive Committee recommends that membership subscription rates, unchanged at £5 single and £8 household since 2000, must now be increased.

Barry May was re-elected as the Society’s Chairman and Andrew Coleman as Hon Treasurer. Henry Clay, who had been co-opted to the Executive Committee at the beginning of 2019, was elected a Trustee. As required by the Society’s constitution, one-third of elected Trustees retired and offered themselves for re-election. They were Louise FlukerGinny Curry and Neil Maybin who were all re-elected.

One of our longest-serving Trustees, Patricia Spaight, had decided to retire from the role, though she had agreed to continue editing the newsletter. Paying tribute to Pat, Barry said that since becoming Hon Secretary in 1990 she had supported seven different Chairmen. To replace her will be very hard and he, his predecessors, and fellow trustees were grateful for her dedicated service which has made the Society run so smoothly. Pending appointment of a new Hon Secretary, Membership Secretary Ginny Curry will act as Secretary on a temporary basis.

Barry thanked David Izett who, whilst remaining Chairman of the Planning Committee, had decided not to seek election as a Trustee.

Noel Flannery, who was appointed Independent Examiner of the Society’s accounts during the year, was elected unanimously.

Barry closed the meeting with thanks to all Trustees, volunteers and Society members.

Richmond Society Christmas Party and AGM 2019

Richmond Society AGMs are fun. Not many organisations can say that but ours combine the serious business required by the Charity Commission with entertainment and a party.

Regina Gössel singing with Chris Britton on the pianoThe entertainment this year was a programme of Christmas songs and arias sung by one of our members, soprano Regina Gössel, accompanied by pianist Chris Britton (photo).

They concluded their short programme by getting everyone on their feet to join in three rousing choruses of “We Wish You a Merry Christmas”.

Then began our Christmas Party attended by almost 70 members who enjoyed a selection of savoury and sweet finger food with wine or soft drinks.

It all kicked off the festive season splendidly.

The party was preceded by the Annual General Meeting at which Barry May was re-elected as Chairman and Andrew Coleman as Hon Treasurer. Henry Clay was elected a trustee and, Louise Fluker, Ginny Curry and Neil Maybin, were re-elected. One long-serving trustee, Patricia Spaight, decided not to seek re-election.

Paying tribute to Pat, Barry said that since becoming Hon Secretary in 1990 she had supported seven different Chairmen. He said it will be very hard to replace her and he, his predecessors, and fellow trustees were grateful to Pat for her dedicated service which has made the Society run so smoothly. Pending appointment of a new Secretary, Ginny Curry, Membership Secretary, will act as Secretary on a temporary basis.

Barry thanked David Izett who, whilst remaining Chairman of the Planning Committee, has decided not to seek election as a Trustee.

Noel Flannery, who was appointed Independent Examiner of the Society’s accounts during the year, was reappointed.

Barry also thanked trustees, volunteers and members of the Society.

The AGM approved the Annual Report and Accounts for the year ended 30 September 2019. It also featured a presentation on proposed changes in the Society’s constitution to modernise its objects clause. The AGM approved the changes and authorised the trustees to seek consent from the Charity Commission. Once this consent is received we will ask members at an Extraordinary General Meeting for permission to put the changes into effect.

Andrew Coleman, Hon Treasurer, has been leading work on the objects. We are not looking to change the Society’s ethos, or the scope of what it does. The rights of members are not affected.

The identity of the Society – how it presents itself to the world at large – is under separate review. Progress has been achieved and we expect a conclusion in this current membership year.

Membership subscriptions, last increased in 1999, are also being examined and it is likely they will have to increase in 2020 to bring the Society’s income into line with its expenditure.

AGM Agenda and Reports 2017

The papers for this year’s AGM on Thursday 7th December are now available.

Please click the links below if would like to access them.

Papers for the Annual General Meeting 7th December 2017

The full trustees’ reports and accounts for the year 2016-2017

Richmond Society Annual Report and Accounts 2016

The Society’s executive committee’s report and accounts for the year 2016 were presented at the Richmond Society’s AGM on 8th December 2016.

The report can be found on our Annual Reports page, or downloaded from this link.  It includes this annual Statement from the Chair, Professor Ian Bruce CBE.

The last year has once again been encouragingly active for us as you will see in the following committee reports which cover many important topics such as the new borough local development framework, the new leases for Old Deer Park, Heathrow expansion, riverside amenities, public lavatories, alcohol licenses and other subjects including our social events. Thank you to the chairs, committee members and all the others who volunteer to make these activities happen. Richmond Society has no paid staff so everything that happens needs someone to volunteer to do it! I should like most profoundly to thank everyone who helps, and hope that the 100+ members who volunteer find it worthwhile and (mostly!) enjoyable.

At our last AGM in December 2015 we agreed a legal format of a charitable incorporated organisation and a draft constitution. The Charity Commission approved our registration on 7 September 2016 without requiring any significant modification to our draft constitution. Special thanks to our Treasurer Andrew Coleman for steering us through this complicated exercise.

Membership has continued to grow, with 139 new members producing a net increase to a new high of 1,185 at the end of the financial year 30 September. I am fairly confident that at our AGM I shall be reporting that we have topped 1,200. This has contributed to some of the increased numbers attending our events. For example, when we were in the Vestry Hall our talks were usually to 40 to 80 people. We moved to Duke Street Church for a year up to November 2015 to accommodate larger numbers, but unfortunately they were planning major refurbishments and so we switched to the Richmond Adult Community College (RACC) in January 2016. Numbers attending talks are now between 120 and 200 and everyone is delighted with the warm and welcoming atmosphere of RACC.

Last year I reported on our success in lobbying for more community toilets, up from one to twenty-six. Over the first year of their operation some have worked well but a survey we undertook showed that about a quarter are not satisfactory and the distribution of the remainder is uneven e.g. with none along the riverside. You will read several references to this subject in the committee reports and we shall continue to campaign on this issue.

Although technically not in the year under review, it is worth reporting that on 1 October 2016 Richmond Council introduced a shared staffing and management arrangement with Wandsworth Council in order to save money, reduce overheads and protect front-line services. There is now one Chief Executive in charge of the two boroughs. In October we had a Forum on this subject and many members in the audience expressed concern.

Last but certainly not least, we were delighted when Baroness Ronny van Dedem accepted our invitation to become an additional Patron of Richmond Society. Along with her husband Baron Willem van Dedem, who sadly passed away in 2015, she has given the wonderful grounds of Trumpeters House for our summer party for many years. Already she has attended our Annual Review and Awards evening in September and presented the awards.

Richmond Society new constitution

Following the approval of the proposal at last year’s AGM to incorporate the Society, which included also approval of a draft constitution, the Charity Commission has approved the establishment of the Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO).

An increasing number of charities are taking this step as it has the benefits of simplifying contractual arrangements and protecting the position of the trustees.  This change should have no significant effect on your membership of the Society. The charitable objects of the CIO will be the same as at present and the trustees will also not change as a result of the change of legal status. The membership fee too will be unaffected by the change in legal status.

The Richmond Society’s Exec Committee is now transferring all the activities, assets and liabilities of the Richmond Society to the new CIO.

As a result of this change, the Society has adopted a new constitution.

Please follow this link if you would like to view the new constitution.

Richmond Society Annual Report and Accounts 2015

The Society’s executive committee’s report and accounts for the year 2015 can be found on our Annual Reports page, or downloaded from this link.

It includes the annual Statement from the Chair, Professor Ian Bruce CBE.

As we go to press one of the most significant local issues is the decision on whether Heathrow will have an additional runway. If the answer from the government is yes, it will be a blow, especially in the light of earlier promises, but the battle will not be over: there will be judicial process challenges and challenges for Heathrow to meet legal, regulatory and common sense requirements on air quality/health, safety and finance, leaving aside the inevitable outcry over the misery that will accompany a fifty per-cent uplift in planes flying over one of the most populous cities in the world. The Richmond Society has been active in opposition throughout the year through its active participation in Richmond Heathrow Campaign chaired by the indefatigable Peter Willan.

Last year I mentioned Village Planning as one of the subjects engaging our attention, with over 100 members involved in discussing and drawing up priority lists of positive change they would like to see take place. Our method of working has been recommended to other community groups. This engagement has continued during the year with progress already on some of the priorities, such as access to public lavatories. While we still have no additional “good old fashioned public lavatories” the need has been recognised by the Council and increased financial incentives for commercial outlets to make their facilities open to the public has worked. For example numbers of ‘community toilets’ in Richmond and Richmond Hill have risen from only one in full operation to 26. See

We have had another year of excellent speakers organised by Janice Kay with, for example, Michael Frayn drawing in a rapt audience of 300 members and guests. Indeed guests at our talks are a major source of new members who totalled 120 this year, producing a net gain to a new membership high of 1,134 as of the end of the financial year. We are recruiting more members with young children, aided by three events a year aimed at this group, with the high spot over the last year of a Barn Dance in the garden of St Mary’s vicarage using historical tunes and steps which attracted members from one to 90 years.

2015 was a national election year and we were delighted to partner with the Kew Society to put on a Hustings at Duke Street Church at which all the local parliamentary candidates were questioned by our memberships – answers which helped people to decide how to vote. Promoting civic engagement is an important function of the Richmond Society.

Hon Secretaries do a lot of work in relatively little limelight and so it was well deserved to see our own Pat Spaight being recognised among the community awards given by the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames this year. May I also acknowledge Geoff Hyde who, as our Hon Independent examiner, plays an important part in giving people confidence that our affairs are managed properly. We are also grateful to Ginny Curry who has taken up the role of Membership Secretary. Our Executive Committee, and indeed all our committees and volunteers have worked hard this year to bring about our successes, and I thank everyone who has contributed.

Richmond Society AGM 2014

The AGM, on Thursday 11th December, will mark another successful year for the Society.

In his statement, the society’s chair Professor Ian Bruce CBE says:

AGM Annual Report 2014I am delighted that membership has continued to grow for the second year running from 1,042 to 1,094. It is particularly exciting to see the increase in the numbers of people coming to our activities, with a total attendance of approximately 1,800 over the year. These increases are partly because of rising membership but mainly because of our interesting programme … … …

To read the rest of Ian’s review and see the rest of the Annual Report and the accounts, click on
Richmond Society AGM Annual Report 2014.