1. NAME AND OBJECTS
1.1 The club shall be called "The County Bridge Club".
1.2 The objects of the Club are to encourage the promotion, including education, and the playing of contract bridge, and to be a Social Club providing members with all things incidental to the playing of contract bridge.
1.3 The Club shall be affiliated to the Leicestershire Contract Bridge Association and the English Bridge Union.
2.1 The property of the Club shall be vested in three Trustees appointed by the Committee and confirmed by deed and shall hold office until they resign or are removed by a resolution of the Committee.
2.2 The Trustees shall deal with the property as the Committee from time to time shall direct by resolution of which an entry in the minute book shall be conclusive evidence.
2.3 Provided that the Trustees act as directed by the Committee, they may be indemnified against risk and expense out of the Club property.
3.1 The Club shall be managed by a Committee consisting of the Officers, who shall be the Chairman, the Secretary, the Treasurer, the Tournament Secretary, the Membership Secretary and four members.
3.2 All members of the Committee shall be elected by ballot annually at the AGM.
3.3 The Committee shall meet at least every two months as agreed by itself, as required by the Chairman, or as required by any 3 Committee Members by written notice to the Secretary.
3.4 At any meeting, 4 members present shall constitute a quorum.
3.5 The Chairman, or whoever takes the Chair in the Chairman’s absence, shall not have a casting vote and in the case of an equality of votes, the motion shall be deemed defeated.
3.6 The Committee shall have power to fill casual vacancies, to co-opt members and to form Sub-Committees.
4.0 ANNUAL GENERAL MEETINGS AND SPECIAL GENERAL MEETINGS
4.1 The Annual General Meeting (AGM) shall be held within 3 calendar months of the end of the financial year (which shall be 31st March) on a day to be fixed by the Committee.
4.2 The business of the AGM shall be:
To receive the Annual Report of the Committee and Statement of Accounts for the preceding financial year and, if thought fit, to approve and adopt the same.
To present the Chairman’s remarks.
To elect the Officers and Committee for the ensuing year.
To appoint the Reporting Accountant for the ensuing year.
To alter and/or add to the Constitution.
To consider any other business (AOB).
4.3 Notice of the AGM together with a copy of the Statement of Accounts (together with the Accountant’s Report) shall be sent to all members at least 14 days before the date set for the AGM.
4.4 Members shall notify the Secretary in writing should they wish:
To propose any alterations and/or additions to the Constitution. Any such proposals shall reach the Secretary at least 30 days prior to the date of the AGM.
To raise any matter under AOB. Any such notifications shall reach the Secretary at least 7 days prior to the date of the AGM.
To propose any member as an Officer or Member of the Committee. The nomination/s shall be signed by a proposer, a seconder and the nominee, all of whom must be current members of the Club. Any such nomination/s must be displayed in the Club at least 7 days prior to the date of the AGM.
4.5 A Special General Meeting (SGM) shall be called by resolution of the Committee, or on the written application sent to the Secretary signed by not less than the lower of 25 members or one fifth of the total number of members, stating the purpose/s for which the meeting is required.
4.6 At least 14 days notice of a SGM shall be sent to all members.
4.7 The Chairman shall preside at all General Meetings. In his/her absence, a member selected by the meeting shall take the Chair.
4.8 Every member present in person and entitled to vote shall have one vote upon each and every motion. The Chairman of a General Meeting shall not have a casting vote and in the case of an equality of votes, the motion shall be deemed defeated.
4.9 The accidental failure to give notice of any General Meeting to any member shall not invalidate the meeting or any decision made thereat, provided that notice has been given to at least 75% of the current members.
4.10 Motions for all matters discussed at all General Meetings shall be deemed to have been passed on a simple majority (over 50%) of all members present and entitled to vote, except for motions proposing any alterations, additions or repeal of the Club’s constitution. In such cases, the motions will only be passed where three-quarters (over 75%) of members present and voting are in favour of the motions, and any such changes shall be notified forthwith to the Chief Officer of Police and the Clerk of the Local Authorities.
4.11 The quorums at all General Meetings are as follows:
For motions proposing any alterations, additions or repeal of the Club’s constitution, 40 members, with the exception of clause 8.2, when half the members or 40 members are required, whichever is the greater;
For all other business, 10 members.
5.1 Membership of the Club shall consist of full, honorary life, associate, country, student, and honorary members.
Members may be elected life members by the Committee.
Associate members are those entitled to attend such Club sessions as shall be decided by the Committee.
Country members are those residing outside Leicester and Leicestershire.
Student members are those attending full time education courses.
The Committee shall have the power at any time to elect any member as an honorary member of the Club for such period and upon such terms as it may think fit. Honorary members shall be entitled, subject to any restrictions imposed by the Committee, to all the benefits and privileges of membership, except that they may not attend or vote at General Meetings and may not be Officers of the Club or Committee members.
5.2 Any person wishing to become a member of the Club shall apply by completing and forwarding such form prescribed from time to time by the committee and the application must be proposed and seconded by existing members of the Club unless the Committee decides otherwise. Particulars of proposed new members shall be exhibited on the Club notice board for a minimum of 14 days.
5.3 Any member wishing to object to an application for membership should notify the Secretary in writing.
5.4 The Committee shall have the sole right of refusing membership. In declining an application the Committee may give a reason but shall not be obliged to do so.
5.5 All members shall undertake to observe the Rules of the Club.
5.6 In the event of a complaint being made to the Committee about the conduct of a member of the Club the Committee may investigate the complaint but if a written complaint is received signed by at least three members of the Club it shall investigate the complaint.
5.7 On investigating such a complaint the Committee shall give the member whose conduct is the subject of complaint an opportunity to be heard and put forward evidence in his/her defence (this includes witnesses if appropriate). If a live hearing takes place the member may be accompanied by a friend or representative who need not be a member of the club. Additionally, the member has the right to have questions put to the complainant and supporting witnesses (if any).
5.8 If, having investigated such a complaint, the Committee is of the opinion that the member has behaved in an unacceptable manner or in such a manner as to cause injury to the interests of the Club, then the Committee may reprimand the member, suspend the member from the privileges of membership for such a period as it may think fit, or expel the member from the Club.
5.9 The Committee shall forthwith notify the member of any decision made on the investigation of a complaint about his/her conduct, and may if it thinks fit publicise the decision by displaying a notice at the Club.
5.10 An appeal shall be brought before a General Meeting of the Club against any decision to reprimand, suspend or expel a member of the Club following the investigation of a complaint about his/her conduct.
5.11 Notice of such an appeal must be in writing, and delivered to the Secretary within two weeks of the notification to the member of the decision of the Committee.
5.12 In the event of an appeal being made against it, the decision of the Committee shall not be put into effect until the appeal has been determined.
5.13 On the appeal being heard by a General Meeting of the Club, the General Meeting shall have power to overrule the conclusion of the Committee, or to uphold it, in which event the sanction imposed by the Committee may be confirmed or varied (to any sanction which the Committee was empowered to impose, or to none).
5.14 Nothing in this Constitution shall preclude the Committee from referring a matter of conduct to the Laws & Ethics Committee of the Leicestershire Contract Bridge Association, or to the Laws & Ethics Committee of the English Bridge Union if it considers it appropriate to do so.
6. SUBSCRIPTIONS AND ENTRANCE FEES
6.1 Annual subscription and entrance fees shall be as decided by the Committee.
6.2 Subscriptions become due on 1st May each year.
6.3 Members failing to pay their subscriptions after 7 days notice of the fact that it is in arrears shall lose membership.
7.1 Members shall be entitled to introduce guests. Each member is entitled to introduce up to three guests on any one occasion or at the committee’s discretion.
7.2 Any person (other than those awaiting acceptance of membership application) may be introduced only 4 times in any 12 month period or at the Committee’s discretion.
8.1 All profit shall be for the benefit of the Club, or for charitable or benevolent purposes.
8.2 If at any time the Club is disbanded, any funds remaining will be used for charitable purposes or paid over to the Leicestershire Contract Bridge Association or the English Bridge Union solely for the furtherance of the game of Contract Bridge, to be decided by the Club members at a General Meeting.
8.3 Table fees, guests’ table fees and the opening hours of the Club shall be as decided by the Committee.
8.4 Subject to the Club premises being open the permitted hours for the supply of intoxicating liquor shall be decided by the Committee to conform to the conditions permitted by the Licensing Authority.
8.5 The supply of intoxicating liquor shall be restricted to members of the County Bridge Club and their bona fide guests.
8.6 The Committee has the right to refuse to supply intoxicating liquor to any person.
8.7 Intoxicating liquor may be sold to persons attending the Club premises for the purpose of playing competition bridge provided that they are members of the Leicestershire Contract Bridge Association or a similarly accredited association and that such competitions are authorised by the Club.
Approved 13th June 2007