Incorporating changes made at the AGM on Wednesday 25th February 2015
Rule 1. The Society shall be called the "Crowthorne Amateur Theatrical Society".
Rule 2. There shall be the following classes of membership:-
a. Full Members who are entitled to the social privileges of Society membership and to attend Wednesday meetings of the Society on a regular basis and are eligible to participate in productions. There are four classes of full member. These being:-
i. Adult Members aged 16 to 60 at the commencement of the Society's financial year.
ii. Senior Members aged over 60 at the commencement of the Society's financial year.
iii. Junior Members aged under 16 at the commencement of the Society's financial year.
iv. Student Members in full time education at the commencement of the Society's financial year.
b. Associate Members who are entitled to the social privileges of Society membership.
c. Honorary Members who have this honour conferred upon them by a general meeting of the Society and as such are not liable to pay subscription charges. Honorary members shall have the same privileges of membership as Associate members.
Rule 3. The Society's financial year shall run from 1st February to the 31st of January.
Rule 4. Subscription rates for all classes of membership shall be determined at an Annual General Meeting. The Committee has the power to waive or reduce individual subscription fees in cases of hardship. Associate members wishing to upgrade to Full membership may do so by paying subscriptions equivalent to the difference between Associate and Full subscription rates on a pro-rata basis for the period of this membership change.
Rule 5. All persons seeking membership or a change in their class of membership shall have their applications determined by the Committee.
Rule 6. The meetings, rehearsals and social events of the Society may be attended by all eligible members. At the discretion of the Committee, members whose subscriptions are in arrears may for such time forfeit these and all other rights and privileges of membership and their membership may lapse if arrears reach three months.
Rule 7. The Society shall be managed by a Committee consisting of at least five but no more than seven members of the Society excluding Associate members. The Committee members shall remain in office until the next Annual General Meeting subject to resignation or removal by a General Meeting with a two thirds majority. The offices of the Committee shall be:-
a. The Chairman, who will preside over all meetings of the Society (except sub-Committees) but if they are absent, the Vice-Chairman shall take their place. If both are absent, the meeting shall elect a temporary Chairman.
b. The Secretary, who shall prepare the agenda and keep minutes of all Committee and General Meetings. The minutes shall be open to inspection by any member on request.
c. The Treasurer, who shall keep full accounts which shall be audited prior to submission to the Annual General Meeting by a person appointed by the Committee. The accounts shall be open to inspection by any member on request.
d. The Membership Secretary, who will be responsible for keeping all membership details up to date and for recruitment of new members of the Society, and who shall prepare the social calendar and manage the organisation of the events upon it
e. The Public Relations Secretary, who shall co-ordinate all forms of publicity and fundraising activity, as well as maintain the corporate image of the Society.
If the above positions are filled the AGM has the power to elect up to two additional voting members to the Committee who shall have no portfolio. The position of Vice-Chairman will be elected from the Committee by the Committee with the Chairman having the casting vote. A quorate Committee may co-opt a substitute to fill any vacancy listed as a, b, c, d, e or f, giving preference to any Committee member without portfolio.
Rule 8. The Committee must be quorate to make any decisions. The quorum is four voting members.
Rule 9. The quorate Committee can appoint sub-Committees for specific purposes provided that such sub-Committees include at least one Committee member. The quorum for sub-Committees is two.
Rule 10. Committee meetings shall be open to any member of the Society unless the Committee votes to exclude all non-Committee members by a vote of two thirds majority.
Rule 11. All surplus monies of the Society shall be deposited or invested as the Committee may decide. Cheques and any other withdrawals shall require the signatures of both the Treasurer and one other Committee member so authorised by the Committee.
Rule 12. The Committee shall endeavour to ensure the programme of events enables as many members of the Society to participate in some way.
Rule 13. The Committee shall have the power to suspend or expel any member of the Society who shall render themselves unfit for membership of the Society. Before any such member is suspended or expelled, the secretary shall give them seven days written notice to attend a meeting of the Committee, and inform them of the complaint(s) made against them. No member shall be suspended or expelled without first having had an opportunity to appear before the Committee in order to answering such complaints made against him/her, nor unless at least two thirds of the full Committee vote in favour of his/her suspension or expulsion.
Rule 14. The Committee shall be responsible for the selection of director and dates for each production. The Committee shall appoint a director for each production at least four months before the dates it set for the production. The director shall be responsible to the Committee for all aspects of the running of the show and as such may be replaced by a two thirds majority vote of the Committee should they contravene the guidelines set for a director.
Rule 15. The guidelines for the director shall be:-
a. To select a production with regard to the wishes and involvement of members of the Society, the Society's resources and capabilities, and commercial viability;
b. To appoint and manage a cast and crew, demonstrating fairness and integrity;
c. To attend Committee meetings as an ex-officio non-voting member;
d. To have due regard to any constraints set by the Committee;
e. To show and act with full commitment to the show;
f. To fulfil any other requirements which the Committee may have requested of the director as a condition of granting them permission to direct that production.
Rule 16. The Annual General Meeting (AGM) shall be as soon as possible after the end of the Society's financial year, and in any case within thirteen months of the previous AGM, to transact the following business:-
a. Approval of minutes of previous AGM and of any intervening general meeting.
b. The Chairman's report.
c. To receive, and if approved, to adopt a duly audited statement of the Society's accounts to the end of the preceding financial year.
d. To consider the proposal to vary the level of subscriptions.
e. To elect the members of the Committee. If any position is contested, all candidates must be allowed to state their case before a secret ballot is executed. The ballot shall be counted using the 'first past the post' system.
f. Changes to the constitution which must be posted at the time of the meetings notification.
g. Any other business. The quorum for a general meeting is one third of Full members or ten Full members if less.
Rule 17. Written notice calling an AGM shall be given by hand, post or by electronic means to all members at least seven days before the meeting, or fourteen days before the meeting if dissolution of the Society is to be proposed. Notice addressed to the last address notified to the secretary shall be good notice. Accidental omission to send notice or non-receipt of the same shall not invalidate the proceedings at the meeting.
Rule 18. An Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) may be called at any time by resolution of the Committee, or shall be called within fourteen days of a written request to the secretary signed by one-fifth of the Full membership or ten Full members if fewer.
Rule 19. An Emergency General Meeting shall be called if the Committee becomes unquorate and is unable to co-opt additional members. Such a meeting shall be for the election of Committee members to fill vacant spaces.
Rule 20. All votes shall be decided by a simple majority unless the proposal constitutes a change to the constitution, in which case this will be decided by a two thirds majority of members eligible to vote. Members with subscription arrears are not eligible to vote. Members not present may vote by giving a written proxy to another member eligible to vote. In the event of any equality of vote the Chairman of the meeting shall have an additional, casting, vote.
Rule 21. Members shall be personally responsible for any items loaned to them. The Committee may charge a member for any item damaged or lost whilst in the care of that member.
Rule 22. The Society shall not be liable for any uninsured injury or loss to members or visitors or the property of either, however caused.
Rule 23. If a General Meeting of the Society convened at least fourteen days beforehand, by notice specifying the intention to propose the dissolution of the Society, shall resolve by a two thirds majority of members entitled to vote that the Society be dissolved, then the Committee shall take immediate steps to convert, into money, all property of the Society (with power to postpone the conversion of any particular property if a General meeting so authorises). Out of the proceeds of such conversion, the Committee shall discharge all debts and liabilities of the Society, and any balance remaining shall be disposed of as a General meeting may resolve; and thereupon the Society shall for all purposes be dissolved. If the Society shall not have resolved upon the disposition of such balance within six months after the date of the resolution to dissolve the Society, then the same shall be distributed equally between all persons who were paid-up Full members at the date of such resolution.
A copy of the Constitution can be downloaded here