General Meetings

Annual General Meeting of the SOCIETY of FRIENDS of the FLEET AIR ARM MUSEUM at 1800 on Thursday 27th September 2018 in the Auditorium, followed by the Grand Draw at 1845.

 AGENDA for the 38th Annual General Meeting of the SOCIETY of FRIENDS of the FLEET AIR ARM MUSEUM at 18.00 on Thursday 28 September 2017

President to take the Chair

  1. Apologies for absence.
  2. Approval of the 2016 AGM Minutes.
  3. Approval of the Minutes of the Special General Meeting of 30 March 2017.
  4. Matters Arising from the Minutes.
  5. Motion: ‘That “Family Membership” be added to the membership categories listed in paragraph 7 of the Society’s Constitution.’
  6. Motion: ‘That the Annual Subscription for “Family Membership” (2 Adults and up to 3 children) shall be £32.00.’
  7. General Manager’s Report.
  8. Chairman’s Report.
  9. Treasurer’s Report and approval of the accounts.
  10. Election of an Independent Examiner.
  11. Membership Secretary’s Report.
  12. Grand Draw Report.
  13. Talks, Visits and Social Report.
  14. Jabberwock Editor’s Report.

General Manager to take the Chair

  1. Election of President.
  2. Election of the Council.

President to take the Chair

  1. Any other business.

Minutes of the Special General Meeting of the SOCIETY of FRIENDS of the FLEET AIR ARM MUSEUM at 19.30 on Thursday 30 March 2017

 Those present:

 SOFFAAM Council Members

Richard Hufton – Chairman

Graham Mottram – Vice Chairman

Robert Heath – Membership Secretary

Ivan Childs

Tim Smith

Rosanne Crowther

Ian MacKinnon

Malcolm Smith – Secretary

Other Attendees

Gordon Johnson – President

Taff Lewis

Philip Unwin

Approximately 68 Society members

1.      Introduction

The Chairman opened the meeting and welcomed the attendees. He asked the Vice Chairman to outline the reason for holding this SGM.

2.     Background

Graham Mottram explained that the foundation meeting of the Society had been held in November, as being near the date of the Battle of Taranto, so that subsequent AGMs had been planned to be held on its anniversary. Conditions in November being normally both dark and cold, the date had been moved to the first Sunday in October.

3.     Proposal

Gordon Johnson took the chair and read out Paragraph 10a) of the Constitution, as follows:

“The Annual General Meeting of the Society shall be held on the first Sunday in October…”

Paragraph 13 states, in effect, that any amendment to the Constitution had to be approved at a formal meeting. Member Philip Unwin had contacted the Chairman in late 2016, requesting Council to consider moving the date of the Society’s AGM from the first Sunday in October to the lecture evening in September or October. This was discussed at the December 2016 Council meeting and a proposal to amend the Constitution to read “The AGM shall be held before the September talk” was carried unanimously. Subsequent correspondence suggested that this amendment might be too restrictive, what if there was no talk in September, for example? Gordon asked, firstly, that the proposed amendment should itself be amended, to read: “The AGM shall normally be held before the September talk …”  The proposal was made by Ivan Childs and seconded by Taff Lewis. It was carried unanimously.

The President then asked for a proposer for the final words. Philip Unwin proposed and this was seconded by Ivan Childs. It was also carried unanimously. The Secretary accepted the action to amend the Constitution and to inform all interested parties. This concluded the business of the meeting.

There being no other business, the meeting closed at 14.50.

The minutes given above are approved.
Position: Chairman
Signature: (Original signed)
Date: 30 March 2017

 Minutes of the 38th Annual General Meeting held at the Fleet Air Arm Museum on Thursday 28 september 2017

The Grand Draw was held before the meeting started. The meeting started at 18.00 with 27 members in attendance. Present:

Gordon Johnson, Chairman

Malcolm Smith, Secretary

Attendees as listed at Annex A.

1.             Apologies

Apologies had been received from Derek Moxley, Jan Stuart, Tim Smith, David and Jenny Smith, Richard Macauley and Peter Dallosso.

2.             Approve the Minutes of the 36th Annual General Meeting held on 2 October 2016

The minutes were approved by the meeting and later signed by the Chairman.

3.             Matters Arising from the Minutes

There were no matters arising.

4.            Action to update the constitution

The motion that Family Membership be added to the membership categories listed at paragraph 7 of the Society’s Constitution was proposed by the Secretary and seconded by Christopher Shores. The motion was passed unanimously and the Secretary accepted the action update the Constitution accordingly.

Action 1: Secretary to update the Constitution at paragraph 7

5.             Family Membership Subscription

The motion that the annual subscription for Family Membership should be set at £32 was proposed by Ivan Childs and seconded by Graham Mottram and passed unanimously.

6.             General Manager’s Report

The General Manager, Marc Farrance, reported as follows

The frontage of the Museum had now been completely re-finished with new graphics. Also new was the Queen Elizabeth Carrier playground at the front of the Museum and he thanked all the sponsors of this important facility, especially SOFFAAM for putting up the essential third party payment.

Other improvements inside the Museum included the Cold War to Kabul exhibition, the Captain Winkle Brown medal display and the Orientation and Welcome Gallery. Public response to these changes has been very positive. He thanked the Society for its support to these changes, also to the provision of funding towards the Barracuda restoration.

The Museum has finally been able to begin working towards repairs and remedial work to the bridge and staircase structure at the Museum.  The existing bridge and stairs require maintenance and this includes replacing all fixings, localised steel repairs where appropriate, to remedy any areas of corrosion, encasing the column bases in concrete and the whole structure repainted.

The Museum attracted a good number of visitors during July and August 2017, primarily the school holiday period. This represents a slight increase (4%) compared with the same period in 2016.

7.             Chairman’s Report

The Chairman, Richard Hufton, reported as follows:

After six memorable and rewarding years as your Chairman, I am stepping down. This is because of domestic and logistic issues arising from my move to Dartmouth and I believe that the time has come to elect a more locally-based Chairman. Over the past decade, I have seen support to the Society increase steadily and this is in no small measure due to the effort of our Membership Secretary, Robert Heath. The Society is now 38 years old and inevitably many of our founder members are deceased. We have modernised our organisation, with initiatives such as the website and the introduction of full colour to Jabberwock, which now attracts many readers’ letters. Our talks programme has gone from strength to strength and thanks are due to our energetic Talks and Visits Secretary, Rosanne. This year has seen donations to the Museum, in support of major projects, totalling nearly £29,000. None of these activities would have been possible without the willing support of all 14 members of the Council.

I hope you will all support the forthcoming membership election; my nomination for Chairman is the former Director of the Museum, Graham Mottram. I have known Graham for many years and I am sure that you will give him your full support. Thank you all again, I step down in the knowledge that this Society is one of the best of its kind in the country.

8.             Treasurer’s Report

The Treasurer, Martin Turner, reported as follows:

As you will see from the annual accounts your Society currently holds total funds of £42,986. During the year we donated £28,814 to the Museum for the various projects referred to by the General Manager above. At the end of my first year as Treasurer, I am pleased to say that the Society is in a healthy financial state.

Gordon then asked for the Meeting to approve the financial accounts. This was proposed by David Wright and seconded by Ernest Lear. The proposal was carried unanimously.

9.             Election of Independent Examiner

Malcolm Smith proposed that Malvern Carvell should continue to act as the Independent Examiner and the proposal was seconded by Chris Adams. The proposal was carried without dissent.

10.         Membership Secretary’s Report

Robert Heath reported as follows:

The current paying membership total is 1060, which is a small increase in total over the past 12 months. 94 new members have been gained, but a great many of our older members have turned a new chapter. Following several enquiries, the new category of family membership has been introduced to enable parents to include children in their membership. To date 10 new family memberships have been taken up and as word spreads, we look forward to it having a broad appeal. Members receiving Jabberwock via the internet have increased to 115.

Once again, I ask all members to try to encourage their friends and contacts to join. At £12 p.a. it is not expensive and it does give astonishingly good value. We are all volunteers, so the FAA Museum benefits from every penny we collect. My thanks to all members for their loyalty to date. It is worth it.

11.         Grand Draw Report

Bill Ellison reported as follows:

The results of last year’s Grand Draw were as follows:-

Ticket Sales of £1971, which generated £1245.50 to our funds. This year’s ticket sales started at Air Day in July, and we raised £228 on the day – a little less than last year. Once again, I must thank the Museum and their staff for accommodating us and supporting us in their marquee.

This year’s overall ticket sales are about the same as last year and I would like to thank all those individuals and businesses who have given or sponsored prizes for the draw, as well as those who have made donations.

12.         Talks and Visits Report

Rosanne Crowther reported as follows:

The past twelve months have, as always, provided our members with a wide variety of speakers and subject matter.  Our speakers range from various walks of life, some still serving personnel and others non-military. The subjects ranged from flying the Lynx during the Falklands conflict, the Barracuda project, HMS Ark Royal and the joys of flight in a hot air balloon! Our “Summer Special” lecture was given by Captain John Hutchinson, a previous BOAC and British Airways Concorde pilot. John gave us a detailed account of the fatal Air France Concorde. This particular lecture drew in 160 members and guests resulting in a substantial profit for SOFFAAM and a very generous donation to the RNLI.

Visits and Outings

RNLI College at Poole

A full coach of members and guests made the journey to Poole for the best part of a day. The groups all had an opportunity to see the huge pool where most of the training was undertaken along with the chance to be the duty driver on a rescue mission. There were several presentations and some members were taken out doors to see the RIBs in which the individuals undertake their training. After a stroll down to the RNLI Museum we all gathered for lunch back at the college. Before leaving the building there was a chance to buy various items in the gift shop before returning to Yeovilton, much wiser on the knowledge of the RNLI.

RAF Brize Norton

Due to security changes on the station the Commanding Officer will only allow a maximum of 20 visitors at any one time. I did not accompany the visit but I understand from the 20 that did go a good time was had by all. Due to repairs to the runway there was no flying taking place which was a bit of a disappointment to some. However, the warm welcome extended to the group by the personnel in Air Traffic and the time taken to show them around the C17 more than made up for this.

Christmas lunch

It has been agreed by the council to defer Christmas lunch to January 2018. This will be held on Saturday13 January 2018. You will find all the details in the next edition of Jabberwock.

May I take this opportunity to say that this will be my final year in this post. I feel that after 14 years of doing it, it will be time to hand over the reins to someone else this time next year. Fear not, I have a good range of speakers and visits in mind for next year, these being:

Possible visits for 2018

  • Bristol Airport and SS Great Britain
  • Air Traffic control, RNAS Yeovilton and possibly Historic Flight
  • The New Aerospace Bristol
  • WW2 RAF Fighter Command Control, Uxbridge
  • The new Southampton museum and possibly the Sunderland museum

Finally, I would like to convey my sincere thanks to the Council in supporting me with my various proposals for talks and visits.

13.         Editor’s Report

Malcolm Smith reported as follows:

Jabberwock 89 is well in hand and due for issue in early November. My thanks as always to the many correspondents and other contributors, your input makes it varied and (I hope) always interesting.

The Society’s website still receives a steady stream of visitors and more than half of our recent new members joined by downloading the form from this source. A new video, of the talk by Dave Morris on the Barracuda restoration, is available on the site. I expect also to be able to upload another new item on the RAF Cosford visit.

14.         Election of President

The General Manager took the Chair.

The Chairman proposed that the meeting elect Gordon Johnson as President. The proposal was put by Chris Adams and seconded by Rosanne Crowther. The proposal was carried unanimously and Gordon is duly elected as our President.

15.         Election of Council

Council members not seeking re-election this year are Richard Hufton and Ian MacKinnon. Society members who have volunteered to stand for election to the new Council are listed at Annex B. As these numbers make up the defined fourteen-member Council, there was no requirement for a selection process. Ernest Lear proposed that all 14 should be elected and this was seconded by Richard Hufton. All were elected unanimously.

16.         Any Other Business

Gordon Johnson resumed as Chairman.

The Chairman thanked the two retiring Council Members, Richard Hufton and Ian (Mac) MacKinnon, for their valuable service and reminded those present that the success of the Society depended on the work done by Council Members and other helpers.

Graham Mottram asked whether the new arrangements for the meeting were thought to be satisfactory. Numbers of attendees were almost exactly the same as the previous AGM and Marc Farrance confirmed that, as far as the Museum was concerned, he was quite happy with the revised arrangements.

There being no other business, the meeting closed at 18.50.

 Approval of the Minutes given above.

 Position :

 Signature :

 Date :


SOFFAAM agm, 26 sep 2017 – list of attendees


Gordon Johnson

General Manager:

Marc Farrance

Council Members:

Graham Mottram

Richard Hufton

Chris Adams

Bill Ellison

Ian Mackinnon

Rosanne Crowther

Christopher Shores

Ivan Childs

Robert Heath

Martin Turner

Malcolm Smith (Secretary)


Ernest Lear

Stuart Crowther

Gil Johnston

Geoff Freeman

Glyn Millard

Amanda Gallaher

Eachan Hardie

David Maclean

H C Lewis

R Chambers

Philip Unwin

Chris Wilson

Ray Newman

David Wright

Joan Wright




Gordon Johnson


Graham Mottram

Vice Chairman:

Ivan Childs


Martin Turner

Membership Secretary:

Robert Heath

Talks and Visits Organiser:

Rosanne Crowther

Secretary and Jabberwock Editor:

Malcolm Smith


Chris Adams

Bill Ellison

Tim Smith

Chris Shores

Richard Macauley

David Smith

Gil Johnston

Jim Humberstone