NOTIFICATION OF A SPECIAL GENERAL MEETING TO BE HELD AT 20:30 ON 14 MARCH 2023 IN THE RANELAGH CLUBHOUSE
THE PROPOSAL IS TO INCREASE MEMBERSHIP SUBSCRIPTION FEES FOR 2023/24 AND TO UPDATE THE MEMBERSHIP CLASSES
This notification is to announce that we will hold a Special General Meeting on Tuesday 14 March 2023 at 20:30 in the Ranelagh Clubhouse.
As part of our Club Constitution (Section 6.2), the Committee can propose changes to the Constitution and Rule Book or any other Club business too urgent to wait for the next AGM by calling a Special General Meeting. We have called this Special General Meeting to increase most of the membership subscription fees for the membership year (1 April 2023 to 31 March 2024) and to remove some of the membership classes. This leads to changes in Sections 3.3 (Class Memberships), 4.3 (Rates) and 4.4 (Reduced Subscriptions) of the Club Constitution.
The rationale for this proposed change is threefold:
1. Rising Costs: All of our costs have been rising for several years and the membership subscription fees have not kept pace with these cost increases. For example:
- Insurance fees are increasing.
- England Athletics charges us to register a runner to compete in England Athletics approved events. This charge is now £17 per runner, where in the past this charge was considerably smaller.
- We have recently had a major outage to our boiler that needs replacing. This is a significant cost which will deplete our cash reserves.
- In the past we have been able to rely on significant profits from our two road races (10k and half marathon) to help balance the books. Our ability to regularly make a profit from these races has been reduced by increases in costs of holding these races and the significant number of alternative races for runners. Although we are hopeful of reversing this trend with the renewed efforts of our respective Race Directors, our view is that this is not guaranteed going forwards.
- Our last increase in membership subscription fees was in 2019.
2. Additional Costs for Track Training: The club has paid for the use of the track at Osterley Sports and Athletic Centre, the costs for which have seen a significant increase in recent years. We have trialled voluntary payment schemes to reduce the cost to the club, and whilst this has been partially successful, we feel the time is right to include track training sessions on a Thursday as part of the core membership.
3. Update Subscription Membership Classes: We believe the membership classes should be streamlined to reflect the current membership profile.
1. Proposed Changes to Membership Classes (Section 3.3):
As per Section 3.3 of the Club Constitution, we have eight classes of membership for individuals where we charge an annual subscription fee (this does not include life memberships): Junior, Student, Retired, Country, Non-Running, Associate, Second Claim and Senior (this includes two sub-categories of Senior membership: waged and unwaged). We also have a separate Family membership discount (please see Section 4.3 of the Club Constitution).
The proposal is to reduce the number of memberships classes by removing those that are rarely used, duplicated and are no longer required. So, we propose to remove Retired and Over 60, Country, Associate; as well as the Senior subcategory of unwaged. We also propose to remove the Student category and to replace it with an Under 25s category.
Our expectation is that anyone on a membership category that is being removed will easily be able to move to one of the 5 membership types listed below. We will of course be happy to discuss any changes with individual members. Finally, we do allow a discount payment mechanism for Family members, but we should note that this isn’t a separate membership classification.
The fee-paying membership classes proposed for 2023/24 are as follows:
- Junior (under 18)
- Under 25
- Senior/Over 25
- Second Claim
2. Proposed Changes to Membership Subscription Fees (Section 4.3):
The 2022/23 membership subscription fees currently are as follows:
- Junior: £20
- Student: £20
- Senior: £50
- Senior (unwaged): £15
- Retired & over 60: £25
- Country: £10
- Associate: £25 (One-off fee*)
- Non-running: £10
- Second Claim: £20**
* Associate members pay a one-off £25 subscription fee which confirms their membership for life.
** Where a Second Claim member makes regular use of the Club’s facilities the Committee may choose to charge the member the full subscription rate, as applicable to their age and status.
We propose to set the following membership subscription fees for the 2023/24 membership year at the below rates:
- Junior: £20 (unchanged)
- Under 25: £20 (replacing Student: £20)
- Senior/Over 25: £75 (previously £50)
- Second Claim: £30 (previously £20)
- Non-running: £25 (previously £10)
3. Proposed Changes to Reduced Subscriptions (Section 4.4):
We also propose to change the membership subscription fee for Family members. Previously Family members who had two Senior members had a reduction of £10 applied and the current wording is as follows:
- A household of two Senior members may have all dependent children under 18 years included as members at no additional cost and will be entitled to a reduction of £10 on the cost of two Senior subscriptions.
The new proposed new family membership fee will be £120 for the membership year 2023/24, which is an increase from £90 for the membership year 2022/23. The proposed changes to Section 4.4 are as follows (new wording in bold):
- A household of two Senior members may have all dependent children under 18 years included as members at no additional cost and will be entitled to a combined Family membership fee of £120.
Finally, we wish to draw our members’ attention to two paragraphs of Section 4.4 of the Club Constitution that will remain unchanged:
- The Membership Secretary shall consider any request for a reduced subscription fee in the event of a senior member not being in employment or being in full-time education, and apply a reduced fee for the membership year if they are satisfied that either condition applies.
- At the discretion of either the Men’s or Women’s Captain, a reduced subscription fee may be agreed for a specific member within a particular membership year if their circumstances warrant.
We wish to emphasise that we have no wish to add additional hardship to any member due to these proposed changes. Our aim is to responsibly manage the finances of the club going forward, but we also want to ensure that we have as many members as possible and do not want financial hardship to deter existing, or future, members from our club.
Our message to all members is clear:
PLEASE CONTACT OUR MEMBERSHIP SECRETARY, OUR CLUB CAPTAINS OR ANY OTHER MEMBER OF THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE IF YOU HAVE ANY FINANCIAL CONCERNS ABOUT PAYING YOUR EXISTING OR FUTURE RANELAGH MEMBERSHIP.
We invite all Ranelagh members to meet on 14 March to discuss and vote on these proposals.
Honorary Club Secretary