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Oxfordshire Family History Society

Constitution


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1. TITLE
The name of the organisation shall be the Oxfordshire Family History Society.

2. OBJECTS
The objects of the Society shall be to advance public education in family history and genealogy primarily within the county of Oxfordshire. As ancillary thereto the Society may:
  1. Help co-ordinate research into, and transcription of relevant county records and make them freely available.
  2. Co-operate with Family History and other Societies with similar interests.
  3. Do all things necessary to further the said objects.

3. MEMBERS
There shall be the following categories of members:
  1. Ordinary
  2. Family
  3. Institutional
  4. Honorary
  5. Such other categories as the Executive Committee from time to time may decide.

4. THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
  1. The Executive Committee shall consist of four officers: a Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer and Editor, together with not less than three and not more than eight committee members.
  2. The Executive Committee shall administer the affairs of the Society and shall meet at least four times in each year and shall determine the rules and procedures to govern its own meetings. A quorum of the Executive Committee shall consist of three of its members, one of whom must be an officer.
  3. The names of candidates proposed for election to the Executive Committee must be submitted to the Secretary of the Executive Committee so as to arrive not less than 21 days before the Annual General Meeting, and a statement that the candidate has agreed to stand must be included. If there are more candidates than vacancies on the Executive Committee the Chairman shall appoint two scrutineers to hold a ballot at the meeting, and shall announce the result at the end of that meeting. If there are fewer candidates than vacancies further nominations may be accepted at the meeting, at the discretion of the Chairman.
  4. Minutes of the proceedings of the Executive Committee shall be taken by the Secretary or by another member of the Society appointed by the Executive Committee and entered in the Minute Book. They shall be confirmed at the next relevant meeting and signed by the Chairman as correct.
  5. All elected members of the Executive Committee shall retire each year but shall be eligible for re-election.
  6. If any elected member of the Executive Committee shall be unable to complete his or her full term of office, the said Committee may co-opt any other eligible person to serve until the next Annual General Meeting.
  7. The Executive Committee may appoint annually sub-committees, either ad hoc or permanently, which under the authority and with the approval of the Committee shall be empowered to deal with particular questions. The Executive Committee may nominate such persons as they consider appropriate, including persons not members of the Committee. All recommendations of sub-committees must be submitted to the next following meeting of the Executive Committee.
  8. The Executive Committee shall lay down the form and manner in which candidates shall apply for membership of the Society.
  9. The Executive Committee shall be empowered to elect Honorary Members of the Society.

5. GROUPS

The Executive Committee shall have the power under Clause 4(g) to establish Groups in the furtherance of the Society's objects. The objects of any such Group shall reflect the objects of the Society, but may specialise within them. The constitution, officers and rules of any such Group shall be decided in consultation with the Executive Committee. Any such Group shall be subject to such Standing Orders or other Conditions that the Executive Committee may from time to time prescribe for its operation.

Each Group shall identify itself as "Oxfordshire Family History Society, [identifier] Group", may use the Society's letterhead, suitably modified, and the Society's logo. Its meetings shall be open to any Member of the Society.

Each Group shall appoint a Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer to coordinate and manage its business.

Each Group shall manage its own financial affairs but shall not have power to incur expenses beyond any sum voted to them by the Executive Committee. If this sum is insufficient, a Group may raise funds but shall make clear that such funds are for the Group alone. The income and property of the Group, howsoever derived, shall be applied solely to the promotion of the objects of the Group and of the Society as set forth in the Society's Constitution, and no part thereof shall be transferred to the benefit of any individual without the prior approval of the Executive Committee. However, out-of-pocket expenses properly incurred by an individual on behalf of the Group may be reimbursed from the Group's funds.

The Treasurer of each Group shall render an annual account of its financial affairs to the Treasurer of the Society not later than 31 January in each year, so that such annual account may be included in the annual account of the Society for presentation at the Society's Annual General Meeting. On request by the Executive Committee, the Treasurer of a Group shall present to the Treasurer of the Society an interim statement showing the current state of the Group's finances.

A Group may be suspended at any time by resolution of the Executive Committee. The Group shall forthwith cease all activities and its assets shall be frozen. The Executive Committee shall investigate the situation promptly and with due diligence and may, at its discretion, either allow the Group to resume operations or require it to be wound up, all assets being transferred to the Society.


6. PRESIDENTS AND VICE-PRESIDENTS
The Society may elect at the Annual General Meeting a President and Vice-Presidents whose names have been proposed by the Executive Committee.

7. SUBSCRIPTIONS
  1. The Executive Committee shall from time to time determine the annual subscriptions for each category of membership, which shall be subject to confirmation at the Annual General Meeting or at an extraordinary meeting called under Section 9.
  2. Any member who is in arrears with the subscription shall be notified by the Treasurer. If the said member is still in arrears after six months, he or she will automatically cease to be a member of the Society.

8. FINANCE
  1. The Executive Committee shall be responsible for the Administration of the Society's funds. The Committee shall have the power to invest funds in Trustee Securities or to place them on deposit or loan with financial institutions approved at the Annual General Meeting, or to hold funds in current account or in a clearing bank. The Executive Committee shall not, however, raise loans or mortgages chargeable on the funds or properties of the Society without the express approval of an Annual General Meeting.
  2. Two members of the Executive Committee, one being the Treasurer or his appointed deputy, shall sign all cheques and other documents governing the finances of the Society.
  3. The Treasurer shall keep a regular account of all receipts and payments in a manner approved by the Executive Committee and shall present to the Executive Committee when requested an interim statement showing the current state of the Society's finances.
  4. The income and property of the Society wheresoever derived shall be applied solely to the promotion of the objects of the Society as set forth in the constitution and no part thereof shall be transferred to any person without the approval of the Executive Committee
  5. No payment shall be made from the Society's funds to any individual member of the Society except as payment of out-of-pocket expenses incurred on the Society's business and with the approval of the Executive Committee.
  6. The Society's financial year shall end on the 31st December. "The Accounts, checked according to the current requirements of the Charity Commission, shall be submitted to the Executive Committee at least 14 days before the Annual General Meeting.
  7. The person or persons who shall check the Accounts according to the current requirements of the Charity Commission shall be appointed annually at the Annual General Meeting.
  8. Individual members of the Executive Committee must declare any personal financial interest in any matter under discussion and shall not vote on the matter in question.
  9. Sub-committees shall not have power to incur any expense beyond any sum voted to them by the Executive Committee.

9. THE ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
The Annual General Meeting shall be held at such time and place as shall be decided by the Executive Committee. The business of the Annual General Meeting shall be to:
  1. receive reports on the activities of the past year from the Chairman,
  2. receive and approve the accounts of the Society, duly checked according to the current requirements of the Charity Commission
  3. elect a President and Vice-Presidents in accordance with Section 5,
  4. elect the officers and other members of the Executive Committee of the Society,
  5. transact any other business of the Society.

10. EXTRAORDINARY GENERAL MEETING
The Executive Committee shall have the power to call an Extraordinary General Meeting and shall be bound to do so within 28 days on receiving notice in writing specifying the business and signed by not less than 20 of the members of the Society. The business to be transacted must appear on the agenda and no other business may be discussed.

11. AMENDMENTS TO THE CONSTITUTION
The Constitution can be altered or amended at an Extraordinary General Meeting of the Society and then if the proposed alteration or amendment receives two-thirds of the votes of members of the Society present at the meeting; provided that no such alteration or amendment shall cause the Society to cease to be a charity at law.

12. RESIGNATION OF MEMBERSHIP
Any member who wishes to withdraw from the Society shall give notice in writing to the Secretary of the Executive Committee.

13. EXPULSION OF MEMBERS
If the conduct of a member shall be judged such as gravely to damage the welfare of the Society as a whole then a meeting of the Executive Committee at which at least two-thirds are present may expel the member concerned. The member shall have the right to appeal against this decision at the Annual General Meeting or at an Extraordinary General Meeting, at which he or she shall have the right to speak but not to vote. The motion for expulsion must be carried by two-thirds of the members of the Society present at the relevant meeting.

14. DISSOLUTION OF THE SOCIETY
A motion for the dissolution of the Society may be submitted to the Executive Committee three months before the Annual General Meeting or in accordance with the rules governing an Extraordinary General Meeting. If such a motion shall have been passed, any assets remaining on dissolution of the Society after satisfying any outstanding debts and liabilities shall not be distributed amongst the members of the Society but will be given to such charitable organisation or organisations with objects similar to those of the Society as the meeting may direct.

1st amendment 20.3.1978
2nd amendment 15.5.1985
3rd amendment 28.10.1996
4th amendment 26.10.1998

Registered Charity Number 275891

© 2002 Oxfordshire Family History Society
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