Bicester Riding Club Constitution

The Club shall be known as the Bicester Riding Club (referred to herein as the Club).

The objectives of the Club shall be: 

• To encourage riding as a sport and recreation, to promote good fellowship amongst  riders and to improve and maintain the standard of riding and horsemanship.

• To organise instructional meetings, lectures, competitive events and other activities to  further knowledge and enjoyment within the Club. 

• To be affiliated to the British Horse Society via British Riding Clubs and to support  and co-operate with recognised ancillary organisations. 

• To support local bridleway groups with a view to assisting in the opening those that  have been closed and maintaining and more clearly defining those that are in  existence. 

• To concern itself with any matter which will benefit the horse and horse rider/owner in  the district. 

Membership 

Persons who have attained eighteen years of age are eligible to join the Club and, subject to  acceptance of their application by the Committee and payment of the due subscription for the  current period. The Committee may confer honorary membership upon any person deemed  by them to have rendered notable service to the Club.  

The current annual subscription, as agreed by the Club’s Committee shall be payable on the  first day of January each year. Any member whose subscription is more than one month in  arrears shall have their name removed from the membership list following written advice of  such arrears. Subscriptions are for the full year (1 January to 31 December).  

All members will be subject to the regulations of the Constitution and Code of Conduct and  by joining the Club will be deemed to accept and abide by these regulations as adopted by  the Club. 

The Committee may refuse membership only for good cause, such as conduct or character  likely to bring the Club, the sport or The BHS into disrepute. Appeal against refusal may be  made to the members. However, limitation of membership according to available facilities is  allowable on a non-discriminatory basis.  

Likewise, the Committee, on agreement, may seek to expel any member of the Club who has  breached any of its Rules and who, in the opinion of the Committee, has been found to  exhibit conduct incompatible with the aims and Constitution of the Club. Such member shall  be informed of the Committee’s decision and they shall be called upon to provide an  explanation of their conduct and to have the opportunity to answer the claim.

Administration of the Club 

• All powers of management shall be vested in the appointed Honorary Committee  consisting of the Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer and two other Committee members.  A quorum shall be formed by any four officers of the Committee. 

• At the Annual General Meeting each year all members of the Committee shall retire.  Retiring members shall be eligible for re-election. 

• The Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer shall be elected annually by the Committee  from amongst their number. 

• The decision of the Committee shall be final unless over-ruled at a General Meeting.

• The Committee shall be the sole authority for the interpretation of the Rules and for  anything relating to the Club not contained in the Constitution and Rules. Their  decision shall be final and binding. 

• The Committee may formulate resolutions for the detailed running of the Club and  elect sub-committees for any special activities of the Club which the Committee may  authorise. 

• The Committee shall have the power to co-opt members for specific roles on to sub committees, any person so co-opted shall report directly to the appropriate  Committee member within the Club and shall retain office only until the following  Annual General Meeting. 

The financial year of the Club shall commence on 1 January in each year. 

The income of the Club shall be used solely for furthering its objectives and for no other  purpose. 

The Annual General Meeting shall be held in January of each year to transact the following  business: 

• To fill vacancies on the Committee  

• To receive and if approved to adopt a Statement of the Club’s Accounts to the end of  the preceding year 

• To deal with any specific matters which the Committee may desire to bring to the  attention of the members.

Notice convening the General Meeting shall be sent to the  members not less than 14 days before the meeting and shall specify the matters to  be dealt with. Members may advise additional items for inclusion to the Committee  within 7 days of the Annual General Meeting and these will be included at the  Committee’s discretion. 

An Extraordinary General Meeting may be called by the Committee or by a request signed by  not less than five members specifying the business to be discussed. The Secretary shall give  all members 10 days’ notice of the date of such a meeting will specify the matters to be dealt  with at the meeting. 

The Club’s accounts must be kept up to date and be available for review with three days’  notice of any request to view. 

These Rules may be added to, repealed or amended by resolution at any Annual or  Extraordinary General Meeting. No such resolution shall be deemed to have been passed  unless carried by a majority of at least two-thirds of the members present and voting thereon,  and provided that prior notice has been sent to all members stating the proposed  amendment.

The Committee shall, from time to time as deemed necessary by law or change of regulation  from the British Horse Society and/or British Riding Clubs, update the Terms and Conditions  of joining, together with the Club’s Data Protection and Privacy Policies. Such changes will  be advised to the membership prior to amendment. The Constitution and Rules of the Club  may only be amended or repealed by a majority vote by members at the AGM or EGM. 

Welfare of the Horse/Pony 

All members and non-members attending BRC events and training are required to adhere to  the British Riding Clubs Code of Conduct for the welfare of the horse/pony, which can be  found here http://www.bhs.org.uk/enjoy-riding/british-riding-clubs/brc-handbook.  

Any BRC member, spectator, rider, coach or judge must inform the official steward or secretary, immediately at a Club event, or the BRC Chairman (chair@bicesterridingclub.co.uk), if they are concerned about or have witnessed a potential  welfare issue or rough or unfair riding or training. 

Examples of welfare issues may be (but are not limited to): 

• Lameness: Riding any unsound pony/horse  

• Tack: Incorrectly fitted tack 

• Over-working: Riding or competing on an exhausted, lame or injured pony/horse 

• Distress: Ignoring the obvious distress of a pony/horse, whether caused by the rider or  other external factors 

• Excessive physical force: use of the whip and/or spurs causing unnecessary suffering

• Blood: Any sign of blood on an animal is cause for concern 

At all stages whether preparation or taking part in clinics or events, welfare must take  precedence over all other demands. This includes good horse management, training  methods, farriery, tack and transportation. 

Safeguarding of Children 

British Riding Clubs, to which BRC is affiliated, is a Member Body of the British Equestrian  Federation (BEF) and adheres to the BHS Policy on safeguarding which can be seen at http://www.bhs.org.uk/safeguardingchildren 

Dissolution of the Club 

A resolution to dissolve the Club can only be passed at an AGM or EGM through a majority  vote of the membership. 

In the event of dissolution, all debts should be cleared with any club funds. Any assets of the  Club that remain following this will be given or transferred to another registered British Riding  Club, a registered charity or the sport’s governing body for use by them in related community  sports.

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