I have much pleasure in inviting you to the Association’s AGM on Thursday April 17th at Ferriers Barn, Bures, 7.30 for 8.00pm, when Patrick Phillips, the owner of Kentwell Hall, which I am sure is well known to you all, will be our guest speaker. Patrick’s enterprise and drive has made Kentwell a national name and visitors come from far afield to see his re-creation of Tudor England.
This is an event not to be missed. As usual wine will be served prior to the meeting, and please bring any friends with you.
You are also invited to the Association’s Summer Party, which this year will be held at Tilbury Hall, Tilbury Juxta Clare by kind permission of Mr and Mrs Geoffrey Foster -Taylor on Wednesday July 9th at 6.45pm. We are very fortunate indeed to receive this invitation to another beautiful Elizabethan House.
This will be my last letter to you, as like Jeremy Hill before me, I have served as Chairman for three years and the time has come for me to pass the baton to someone else. It therefore gives me the greatest pleasure, to inform you that at our last Executive Committee meeting in 2007, Charles Aldous QC was unanimously elected to take over from me as Chairman of the Association from January 1st 2008. This, of course, is subject to confirmation by members at the AGM.
In a world of increasing regulation and bureaucracy, The Government and Whitehall is putting more pressure on many aspects of the environment in this area and the job of Chairman has become increasingly onerous. In the past, Chairmen served for quite lengthy periods and then retired from the committee completely. Jeremy Hill very wisely decided that it was very much in the interests of the Association that three years as Chairman was long enough, though his valuable expertise and wisdom was not lost when he retired, as he agreed to stay on the Committee. I share his view and feel it is time to hand on to someone else, who will have new ideas and will keep the Association moving forwards, though again like Jeremy I will stay on the Committee if asked to do so.
Charles has been a member of the Association for many years. It is only because he has recently semi-retired that he has had time to join your committee last year, and now is prepared take on the role of Chairman. His legal background and specialist experience in planning and environmental law brings an extra dimension to the Association, which it has not had before and I am sure will prove invaluable. As one would expect from a leading barrister, he is always the master of his brief, and full of wisdom. The Association is extremely fortunate in its new Chairman elect and I wish him well.
The Association’s Web Site is still proving popular. We try to keep the news page up to date, so members and the public at large can see at a glance the issues, and what is more, the action being taken by The Association. However it remains the Association’s objective to be able to communicate with the entire membership by e-mail. So if you are not sure whether we have your email address please contact Mark Dawson e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
I have repeated now, for several years, the need to expand the membership of the Association. The membership is, as it stands today, made up of many who are the wrong side of 60. We need urgently to recruit new members from all walks of life with diverse interests and of all ages, but it is particularly important that we attract younger members, who in the years to come will carry on the work of the Association. Very few members responded positively to my appeal last year. I repeat that if each member recruited just one new member every year the Association would double in membership every year. Then the powers that be would really sit up and take greater notice of us!
Enclosed therefore is the usual new membership form for you to use before the AGM to recruit a new member.
More forms are available on request. In addition I would be most grateful if you could take a moment to complete and return the enclosed slip of paper indicating whether you will be coming to the AGM and also the Summer Party so that we have some idea of numbers at each event. Please return the form in the enclosed envelope.
I look forward to seeing you at our AGM.