Re: A meeting to agree an amicable parting of ways
Posted by: barry herbert
Date: May 2, 2009 05:15PM
First of a big thank you to Mike and Greg in trying to reach an amicable settlement to this saga.
If I am understanding the outcome correctly all the points that Greg and Mike raised were agreed and presumably points raised by Gareth and Sally-Ann were also agreed.
To not go the next step and agree that the Steam Car Club of Great Britain Limited ceases to trade and the Name "The Steam Car Club of Great Britain" be abandoned seems farcical.
One comes to ask why is the limited company so important? Everyone in the Steam Car movement knows that two clubs now exist. All 320 members have received numerous missives from both sides highlighting this fact, but there is only one which has produced an actual magazine and a working website. It does not require a degree in ergonomics to place a bet on which club the majority will move over to. Witness the membership of "Steam Car Club reaching nearly 200 members and this only in about 10 weeks. It will increase even further when the second issue of the magazine is published and old Limited club members realize the situation and change over. Also, over the coming months old membership fees become due and will not be repeated and the membership of the Limited company will drop and continue to drop.
I think Greg and Mike's stance on the company is a correct one. Why do Gareth and the G15 want this company so badly? It is not as if the current members it has i.e. those whose membership has not been terminated (although they do not have the authority to do this) by Sally-Ann and her "Board", will stay with the Limited company. I know, as do lots of other members, that they are sick and fed up of the childish actions of the G15.
Here we have an opportunity to close the saga once and for all and again, Gareth and the G15, take a stance that is difficult to understand. If they are so confident that their future club has to be Limited then so be it. I have no complaints about that. Surely they can come up with a new company whose name that has not got Great Britain or British in its title. It is not a lot to ask is it? Both clubs then start off with a level playing field and members will decide which club to join with their feet.
Or is there an ulterior motive? There must be. Could it be to cause outside bodies i.e. Veteran Car Club, National Traction Engine Club, and Department of Vehicle Licensing, etc., to believe that they, Gareth and the G15, represent the views of the steam car world? We already have Stuart Gray self appointing himself onto the committee of the VCC as representing the steam car movement. Who voted him on to that position? Do members feel he can give a true and fair view of the steam car movement? And who amongst them does the National Traction Engine Club look towards as representing the Steam Car movement? The Goddards?
No it all comes down to Gerry, Stuart, Gareth, the Goddard’s and other members of the G15 (ignoring Peter Stevenson who had the wisdom to walk away from the situation) wanting to be all powerful and con outsiders that they are the experts of steam and know everything. We hear that Ian Sparkes is not happy with the way Gareth and the others are carrying on. What about Dave Webster? Is he a happy bunny with it all? No it comes down to Gareth, Stuart, Gerry, Sally-Ann and the Goddards. They are all the cause of the dispute. It is a bit much when Gareth and his cronies cause members, within his own G15, to be upset about the way things are going.
Gareth and the G15 keep talking on about representing members and member’s views. They talk about listening to members. Well I have got a message for them. The members, all 325 of them have been contacted and if feeling inclined have voted and sent in proxies for the meeting on the 7/5. The chances are that the 2 motions will be passed. If Gareth and the G15 are so intent of following the wishes of members then they should accept the verdict of the 7/5 EGM, adjourn the 10/5 EGM which was called by them as "a Board" and not by members, and form their own new club. If the wishes of the members at this meeting is however, to vote against the motions then we will back off as any decent group would. But of cause this is where the difference is between the two parties.
The change of the voting of the resolutions from an ordinary one as per the members wishes to a special one, per the “Board”, is vexatious to say the least being called 3 days after the members EGM. The “Board” had the chance to call the EGM but did not within the time scale. To call one 3 days later, using the same resolutions, is just vexatious and, therefore, according to the 2006 Companies Act, the resolutions of the 10/5 EGM will be invalid and illegal (Section 303 (5) of the Companies Act 2006).
The only valid resolutions are those called by the members at their 7/5 EGM which is still going ahead. The ”Board” takes its instructions from the members not the other way round. That is what democracy is all about.
Gareth and the G15 have got to realize that their standing in the Steam Car movement is at an all time low and cannot get much lower. This is not just in the U.K. but also in America and Australia. The word is spreading fast and will continue to spread as long as the saga continues.
So come on Gareth and the G15, if you want to stop all the phorum posts, all the bad feelings, etc. then just agree to Greg and Mike's original conditions in that you will co-operate in ensuring that SCCGB Limited distributes its assets and ceases to trade by backing the two resolutions, proposed by members, at the EGM of the 7/5. You can then form a new Limited company with a new name and a properly thought out set of Articles which the SCCGB Limited has not got. The current SCCGB Limited articles are not appropriate for the running of a steam car club as you well know.
A telephone call from you Gareth to Mike Clark agreeing this and the whole episode could be put to bed.