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SUN Campaign History - Nov 1998

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Studland United Nudists 1998 AGM - Report

There was a good turnout on November 11th, for which the Board thanks all members, with 38 present at the meeting and over 100 having registered proxies.

After an address by the Chairman, Mark Nisbet, in which Mark reviewed the events of the past year, the financial statement was given by the Treasurer, Sue Dangerfield.

Mark Nisbet was re-elected as Chairman unopposed; Chris Phillips and Jan Welsh were re-elected to the Board. Julia Sims having volunteered her services was duly elected to the Board, which is now eight strong.

Propositions Notified in Advance

Proposition 1. 
That the annual membership subscription be increased to 3.

There was a brief discussion on the costs of various elements which have to be covered by the membership fees. Suggestions offered were that new members should be given a choice between a badge and a membership card; the Secretary felt that this could prove unwieldy to administer and might prove more expensive; a suggestion that a distinctive pennant or possibly an ear-ring might be offered to members was referred back to the Board, which undertook to examine all the options in detail. 

It was proposed THAT, with effect from 1 November 1998 the membership fees be increased to 3.00 per year, with an additional one-off joining fee of 1.00 for new members. On being put to the vote, the proposition was CARRIED

Proposition 2. 
Election of Honorary Life members

After some discussion, the following were duly ELECTED Honorary Life Members: Gill Williams, Reg Chapman, Neil Bateman, Kal Lees and Michael Standerwick

Proposition 3. 
Change of Venue

After a brief discussion, the proposal to change the Noggin'n'Natter venue to the Sir Percy Florence Shelley was CARRIED. The change takes effect from the December 1998 meeting.

Proposition 4. 
Wider Campaigning for nudist beaches in Bournemouth and Poole

Robert Baggs proposed that SUN Group campaign for the establishment of nudist beaches in Bournemouth and Poole. Robert felt that there was a need for this facility which would be of great benefit to nudists who for one reason or another were unable to take advantage of Studland. He felt that, as a major local body, SUN Group ought to support such a campaign and even to instigate it, despite the restrictions imposed by the Articles.

There was an extensive discussion, with members expressing the fear that such a facility might attract gawpers and undesirables, as had been the case at Brighton. It was also pointed out that we are a single issue group and that issue is Studland - we have not yet achieved our objectives there and if we begin campaigning elsewhere it might be taken by the National Trust et al as an admission of defeat.

The meeting noted that a small area of beach at Hengistbury Head, to the east of Boscombe, is already used as an unofficial nudist area, being sufficiently remote to discourage most gawpers and unlikely to cause offence. It was felt that we should continue with our policy of vigorously promoting nudism without offence, eventually thereby persuading the general public that nudism was unremarkable, but that Robert's idea, although sound in principle, was ahead of its time. The proposition was seconded by Julia Sims and on being put to the vote was LOST.

[Jan Welsh asked if SUN Group would back members who stripped off on ordinary public beaches: the Chairman replied that the legal position is, briefly, that unless someone complains there is nothing to worry about, and SUN Group would certainly stand up for any member acting within the law. Basically, members should use their common sense: but we have good archive material and some very influential contacts and we will use these to support our members.] 

Proposition from the floor
Secretary given honorary life member

Bill Markham proposed that Honorary Life Membership be awarded to the Secretary, Colin James. This was seconded by Marianne Grant and, despite the Secretary's protests, on being put to the vote was CARRIED.

Proposition from the floor
That SUN consider a paid life membership fee

Alan Kinsman asked whether paid life membership had been considered. There was a brief discussion from which it emerged that it was difficult to know what figure such a life membership should be pitched at. Clearly it would not be fair to ask the same fee of a 60-year-old as of a 20-year-old, but there might be an optimum figure that would be acceptable to all and the Board agreed to give the matter serious consideration. (If there are any actuaries out there, we would appreciate your comments and suggestions - Sec.)

Proposition from the floor
That SUN consider moving the AGM to an earlier month in the year

Alan Kinsman also asked whether it was feasible to move the AGM date to earlier in the year, when the lighter evenings and higher temperatures might attract a larger attendance. There was a lengthy discussion, during which Reg Chapman made the point that, since the Group's financial year ends, as does the summer season, at the end of September the best opportunity for a comprehensive review of the year is November. Also, it was felt that there might be difficulty obtaining accommodation for the AGM during the season. The possibility of holding the AGM on the premises of a non-CCBN club was also mooted, but there might be constraints on the numbers attending at a small club like, for example, Rivendell. Bill Reeves pointed out that members living outside the immediate area - which a majority of SUN members do - would incur additional expenditure to attend and this might deter many. In summary, the Chairman said that extensive social activity is really outside our remit - our prime function is as a pressure group an while the monthly Noggin'n'Natter meetings are a significant and important part of our activities, anything more is rather ambitious.

Proposition from the floor
That SUN have its own website

David Middleton asked if the Group had its own website. The Secretary said that none of the Board was currently on the Internet, but that we had received several offers of assistance in setting up a site. It was generally felt that it would be worthwhile to do this, and the Board agreed to look into it further.

Robert Baggs mentioned the Dorset Library Service's free access listing facility, DORIS, and offered to obtain details. (Since the AGM we have submitted our details to the Library Service.)

Proposition from the floor
That SUN should become more pro-active

Sue Dangerfield led a discussion on next year's strategy. It was felt that SUN Group ought to become more pro-active, instead of simply reacting to National Trust diktat. After extensive discussion, it was agreed that a complete weekend would be devoted to an inoffensive nude-out to the tree line. The meeting recognised that for this to be a success there would have to be a certain minimum number of members involved; individual action is all very well, but those undertaking it risk being labelled by the National Trust as trouble-making weirdoes who can either be ignored or may be intimidated by National Trust heavies and their police puppets. A mass demonstration would be much more difficult for the National Trust and police to ignore or harass. Reg Chapman suggested that if we can prove that nudists and textiles can mix without problems outside designated areas, this might prove the trigger for the National Trust to abandon their ludicrous attempts to corral us, and might lead to nudism on the main holiday beaches. Richard Wickham reminded the meeting that the problem is the National Trust, not the textiles.

The Chairman thanked Roy Ellis for his generous gift of a home-made Christmas cake for the raffle, which raised 38 and was won by Roger Beech.

A vote of thanks was recorded to the Board for their ongoing hard work. There being no further business, the meeting closed at 11.00 p.m.


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