Annual General Meeting 2020

Session 2019/2020

Unfortunately, we do not have Minutes available from the previous AGM. It was disappointing that apart from the Committee only five people attended. I would like to thank our immediate past President, Katherine, for all her help and support through this Session. Her guidance and experience were invaluable.

Stock

In August,  it was agreed that, as the majority of Committee Members resided on the south side of Glasgow, our resources and stock would be transferred from the Springburn depot to a more convenient location. As the changeover dates could not be synchronised, Dawn kindly uplifted all the goods from Springburn and the boxes were then stored at my house for the two months interval. I took this opportunity to compile an Inventory of our stock. It is a tribute to our previous Secretaries and Committee Members that Accounts and Minutes of Meetings dating from the 1930s are preserved, and incumbent Committees can draw guidance from previous Committees' experience. Many artefacts, including the Association's leather briefcase, Gathering Programmes, Dance tickets etc were donated to The Museum of Islay Life.
As I would have brought copies of the Inventory to the AGM, please contact me if you wish to have sight of same.

Administration

With help from an outside agency, the majority of pages of The Glasgow Islay Association's webpage have been updated. This is an ongoing project and I do hope you visit the webpage.
Christine and Sean have updated the Club 200 Draw membership roll. Could I please ask members and friends to advise the Association of a change of address etc in order that we have correct, current details.
I have updated the Club 200 Draw Application Form and Membership Form - both available in hard copy and on the webpage.
I intend to compile a Welcome Pack for new members, consisting of receipt for membership fee, Certificate of Membership, brief history (A4 page) of The Glasgow Islay Association and a Glasgow Islay Association car sticker.
We also need to order new merchandise to sell online and at events, and I would also like to update and prepare the Gathering Programme.

Kindred Associations

The Glasgow Islay Association received complimentary tickets for four kindred Associations Gatherings. I thoroughly enjoyed my evenings with The Jura Association, The Lewis and Harris Association, and The Skye Association.Iona attended The Mull and Iona Association Gathering, which she too thoroughly enjoyed. The Gatherings are a wonderful way to forge inter-Association friendships, while enjoying each island's individual culture.

The Annual Gathering

I would like to thank everyone for coming along to The Gathering. We hope you enjoyed the evening of Concert and Ceilidh. A few years ago 'The Beast from the East' tried to scupper us and this year we were just two weekends ahead from 'Lockdown', but us Ileachs are made of sterner stuff! For the first time though, insurance for the event was required which I managed to source and effect. We tried a slight variation of the traditional Programme and would appreciate your thoughts. For next year, I propose to have the hall in cabaret style for the Concert and update the aesthetics and yes, have the Glasgow Islay Association Tartan on display! I would really appreciation your views and suggestions.
A sincere thank you to our very loyal supporters.

Proposals for Session 2020/2021

Obviously, no events can be organised until we are advised of the new regulations in respect of hiring  halls. However, I recently attended a vocational university course on Vikings and am delighted to confirm that the Lecturer has stated they would be willing to give a talk on the Viking find at Ballinaby. Could you give me feedback on whether this would be of interest to you?
I have also secured a female singer for the 2021 (hopefully!) Gathering.
Mairi was instrumental In organising the refurbishment of the Angus Og Ile monument and I have to hand details of previously agreed signage which, when effected, will complete this project.
There was a suggestion last Session to make enquiries regarding a Blue Plaque being installed in Donald Caskie Square, Bowmore in recognition of The Tartan Pimpernel's achievements, and I would propose the Association process the necessary applications this coming Session.
I would also like the Association to be represented at various events e.g. Fèis Ìle, Mòd, Islay Show etc on Islay and would be looking for helpers in that connection.

Committee

To be absolutely blunt, we are in dire straights. I sincerely thank every Committee. Member for their dedication and attendance throughout the last Session. There is a complement of nine Committee Members: two live in Fife; one in Ayrshire; two on Islay and four in Glasgow (south side) and during this Session we had a minimum of five attendees at each meeting.
  Very regrettably, one Committee Member has since tendered their resignation. I noted from previous Minutes that during the 1990s there were three Vice-Presidents and also they enjoyed the luxury of having sufficient Committee Members to form a Benevolent Committee and a Management Committee outwith the main Committee!!
On the night of the Gathering, we had five Committee Members in attendance, and one Committee Member's friend.  One Committee member was looking after the artistes, stage side; while another was looking after the Chair and guests and another was streaming the Concert, leaving only two Committee Members to attend to interval drinks, raffle, tickets etc and quite frankly, it is simply not feasible to run an event on the scale of 'The Gathering' with so few Committee Members.
We desperately need more people to help organise and assist on the evening in order to hold events.

Closing Remarks

It has been a challenging year. I would like to thank everyone for their encouragement and support throughout this Session. I submitted a request to the Gary Innes' Sunday show for all members and friends of the Association and although the requested music was not played I hope the mention helped you feel a closeness with others in the Association during these difficult times.
I have highlighted the various aspects to which each Committee Member contributed throughout the Session in addition to the organising and preparation of The Gathering and sincerely thank all for their dedication and commitment.
While we await what restrictions and regulations will be imposed on us post COVID-19, I will keep doing my best for The Glasgow Islay Association to continue to flourish.

Kind regards
Anne Melrose
President

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