ANNUAL REPORT - 2016
The period under review (2016), has proved a year in which all the affairs and responsibilities of the committee have been handled with due diligence.
We are fortunate to have an Executive Committee with Consultants who have attended to their respective ‘briefs’ as outlined below and accordingly their ‘Reports’ will be published in the next issue of the Newsletter.
Included will be the Financial Report indicating a sound state of affairs holding a credit balance in meeting with budgets set and enhanced this year by the increased subscription introduced in January 2016.
I take the liberty of thanking them all on your behalf for their dedicated voluntary service.
Loss by death. We all share sadness when losing colleagues who have died, last year: Phil Cheal, Alex Cloke, Joyce Finnemore, Sam Johnston and Peter Robertson. As President, I have on behalf of all members where appropriate, written to the ‘next of kin’ and attended their loved ones funerals. Notes of appreciation have been received.
The four Area Reunion groups have met continuing this fine service always enjoyed - not least I would suggest is the guessing game. “Do you remember so and so!” New area groups are very welcome – if any member would wish to be involved in their area of the UK in organising an annual lunch or ‘residential’ please contact the Executive Secretary for information! In mentioning ‘reunions’ I add the deep thanks we owe to Stephen Milner for maintaining links with The British Boys for British Farms Scheme (BBBF) members holding an annual lunch and keeping individual contact. BBBF was started after WW2 and enabled the YMCA to offer training and the placing of young men on farms for work experience at a difficult time in our history – many were employed in farming as a lifelong career.
The Newsletter. The Newsletter continues to be our main means of communication under the skilful editorship of David Smith with Sue his wife the all-important ‘wordsmith’. The World Fellowship of YMCA Retirees uses extracts in their Newsletter, Bridges, which is circulated internationally!
I have deliberately left a major item to the last! Reg Wake following his retirement from the Executive Committee continued as a Consultant to hold the ‘brief’ of ‘Secours Speciaux’ our main Charity and decided it was time to step down as age and common-sense dictated! Mind you he is only in his mid-90s! The World Fellowship of YMCA Retirees in 1994 resolved that support for SS be a priority goal. Reg became a founder member of the SS nuclear group to take the matter further resulting in it being recognised as having a direct relationship with the World Alliance of YMCAs based in Geneva to which the SS Committee is now accountable. REG PLEASE ACCEPT OUR THANKS AND APPRECIATION FOR A JOB WELL DONE! Note: Reg continues as a Consultant.
Now the problem who to succeed Reg? I am delighted to share that David Smith was nominated unanimously by the Committee and was willing to accept an invitation through Bonnie Mairs, the Secretary of Secours Speciaux, to take Reg Wake’s seat on the Secours Speciaux Committee! This appointment will be ratified at our AGM February/March 2017.
Y’s Retired of the UK Committee:
President: Jim Lamb Consultants: Prof David Miller
Executive Secretary: Vic Hills Rupert George
Hononory Treasurer: Ray Allen Reg Wake
Editor: David Smith
Scottish Affairs: Keith Rennie
Independent Examiner of the Financial Accounts: David Bennison
Distribution of the Newsletter: Herts YMCA (One YMCA)
Pensions Representative: Rev Ron Ingamells
(We are indebted to both David Bennison and Herts YMCA for the fine services they have rendered free of charge assisting financial outlay and not least to Rev Ron Ingamells in his final year of service to the Pensions Committee )
It has been my privilege to present this Annual Report. I wish all readers the best of health available and that 2017 will be a year of peace and goodwill.
This letter from the President reflects the Annual Report for 2015.
Members of the Y’s Retired of the UK would wish to be aware that we have enjoyed the year under review without mishaps due to voluntary service from all who hold office and members for prompt payment of subscriptions.
We have been fortunate to have a committee of five executive members and four consultants who have been unanimous in decision making and exercising good practice in management of the Y’s Retired affairs - not least financial! The wise increase in subscriptions as agreed following debate in 2015.
We bear in mind committee members receive no remuneration but give of their time as volunteers in serving the needs of the Y’s Retired of the UK. As shared in the Treasurer’s Report we have met the Budgets set for 2015.
The Area Reunions have continued to be held in the South West, Scotland, Cambridge and am delighted to report that the late Sam Johnston initiated a new area meeting which we are presently referring to as the Southern Group and enjoyed two meetings - another is planned by one of our new members Blair Crawford. Off the record Blair has invited enquiries from members in the Southern area to the third meeting which will be held in Bournemouth in the summer – contact email: [email protected] or tel:07785 286623. Any member wishing to start a Reunion Group in their area please contact Vic Hills who will furnish the names and addresses of retired members residing near to them.
Communication. The Newsletter is our main form of communication with the Membership and Friends of the Y’s Retired of the UK and here express appreciation to David Smith for his fine editorial. Extracts are published also in Bridges the newsletter of the World Fellowship of YMCA Retirees (WFYR).
Loss by death (2015). We have been much saddened during the year to record colleagues who have passed away and here name: Brian Pears, David Belotti, George Reynolds, Eddie Brady, Richard Gooch, Phil Heath, Gordon Wickens and Les Yeates E&OE. We acknowledge with due reverence their service to the YMCA.
We give thanks and are indebted to the following. The Committee as listed below *, David Bennison (Independent Examiner of the Financial Accounts), Herts YMCA (distribution of the Newsletter), Rev Ron Ingamells (Pension Fund) and here record thanks to Stephen Milner in keeping in touch with the British Boys for British Farms scheme and developing reunions of their retirees. Included in this issue of the Newsletter are reports from the Treasurer, Executive Secretary, Newsletter Editor, Scottish Group, Secours Speciaux/WFYR and Indian Retirees (UK).
The year under review has proved one of success in support of YMCA Retirees.
Committee Members 2015. President: Jim Lamb, Executive Secretary: Vic Hills, Honorary Treasurer: Ray Allen, Newsletter and Website Editor: David H Smith, Scottish Rep: Keith Rennie, Consultants – Sam Johnston, David Miller (Lay), Indian Affairs (UK) : Rupert George & Reg Wake.
Members are reminded that should they be interested in serving on the committee to contact Vic Hills, Executive Secretary. It is not an onerous piece of service!! Whilst preparing this report I have received the sad news of the passing of Sam Johnston and add this tribute.
The passing of Sam Johnston has come as a shock to those who have known or heard of this stalwart of the YMCA. His death after bravely fighting cancer over recent years was indicative of his nature. He gave of himself without reserve in all areas of life whether personal or nationally as the driving force in raising substantial -funds in the establishing of a National Memorial to the YMCA or counselling a young person in need of comfort or support.
Sam played his part as a consultant to the Y’s Retired of the UK Committee as he did in service to the churches of Wesley and Dry Drayton Methodist Churches where he was pianist for the congregational singing.
We have all lost a friend, a colleague and a man devoted to his family and now live without his presence, his wry sense of humour, his contribution to debate and discussion but nothing takes away the positive memories of a true Christian gentleman. Warm regards,
Jim Lamb President