Minutes of the 36th Annual General Meeting of the Highland District of the Scottish Bridge Union held in the Lion Hotel, Auldearn on Thursday 1st May 2008.

1. Members Present

Chairman Bill Richardson
Vice-chairmen Dave Cotton, Tim Wickens
Treasurer Hamish Cameron
Cairngorm/Grantown John Wilson
Caledonian Lorna Matheson (Committee), John Copland, Ronnie McQueen
Dingwall Alan Whiteford
Forres Ken James (Committee)
Inverness Ann Wickens, Margaret Telford (Committee)
Nairn Ian Caithness
Nairn/Compass Rhoda Walker, Yvonne Gunn
Ness Scott Rae, Laura Ross, Don Greig
Speymouth Gordon Inglis
Sunninghill Ronnie Spink, Margaret Spink

2. Apologies for Absence

David Ward, Margaret Robertson, David Robertson, George Marshall, Peter Cook, Sandy Hepburn, Andrew Ramsay, Dilys Spence, Sylvia Entwistle.

3. Minutes of 35th AGM

These were approved with no amendments.

4. Chairman's Report

Bill Richardson said that the District had had a decent year with a successful Congress and he had managed to attend several SBU meetings. He noted that David Ward had stepped down as Secretary and was sorry that he was not present to be thanked in person for all his hard work over the years. He expressed his thanks to Hamish and the Competition Convenors for their efforts during the season and to the club secretaries for their support.

Bill said that he had been very sorry to learn of the recent death of Donald McLeod of Stornoway.

5. Secretary's Report

In David Ward's absence, Ronnie McQueen advised that a letter had been received from Peter Cook tendering his resignation as Education Officer.

6. Treasurer's Report

The Treasurer presented the Accounts for 2007/08, which showed an increase to the funds of £1,988.80. It was confirmed to the meeting that the figure of £ 3,069 shown against the Congress was the net income.

The accounts were unanimously adopted.

7. Master Points Secretary's Report

Noted that there were no problems in this area.

8. Education Officer's Report

As previously noted, Peter Cook had written tendering his resignation, in the course of which he thanked the Chairman and all others who supported the novice events, and the Committee for financial support. It was noted that the Ness club will endeavour to continue the improvers sessions.

9. Election of Office Bearers

Bill Richardson was proposed to continue as Chairman by Dave Cotton and seconded by Tim Wickens; there being no other nominations, he was duly elected. Dave Cotton and Tim Wickens were unanimously elected Vice-chairmen; Hamish Cameron, Treasurer and Lorna Matheson, Master Points Secretary. Ronnie McQueen was proposed as Secretary by Bill Richardson, seconded by John Copland and duly appointed. Alan Whiteford was proposed as Education Officer by Ann Wickens, seconded by Bill Richardson and duly appointed . Tim Wickens agreed to continue as Auditor.

Bill Richardson proposed that David Ward be added to the Committee and this was unanimously agreed.

The following Committee members would continue to serve in addition to those noted above - Sandy Hepburn, Ken James, Ivan Montgomery, Hamish Pringle, David Robertson, Ker Robertson and Margaret Telford.

10. Highland District Congress

The Chairman reported that the 2007 congress went well, although numbers were slightly down it is still the biggest in the country ; bridgemates were used for the first time - he noted that Highland District were the leaders for bridgemate use in Scotland. He paid tribute to the Congress President, Margaret Telford and announced that the 2008 President would be Nick Rushton (Moray).

There was some discussion about the Finals format, with some support for final qualifiers all to play each other, although it was pointed out that this would require either fewer qualifiers or much more time allocated to the finals. The Chairman said that nothing could be done this year but agreed to consider the possibility of a change in future.

The Chairman paid tribute to Eric Steel, who has given unstinting support as a Director over many years, but can no longer continue. He proposed inviting him to be the District's guest this year and this was agreed.

It was proposed that the District purchase a new Duplimate machine for Congress and this was approved.

Ann Wickens expressed the meeting's appreciation of Bill's running of Congress and asked that he consider whether he should have some assistance to share the burden; it was agreed that Bill would think about this for future years.

11. 2008-2009 Schedule of Events

The proposed schedule was approved with amendments following some discussion. The revised version is attached.

12. District and National Competions

The undernoted Convenors were agreed;

National Pairs Bill Richardson
Men's Pairs Tim Wickens
Ladies' Pairs Ann Wickens
Rayne Cup David Whyte
Scottish Cup Andrew Ramsey
HD Teams Jim MacQueen
Swiss Pairs David Ward/Tim Wickens
District Pairs Dave Cotton
Jim MacPherson Don Greig
HD Sim. Pairs Ivan Montgomery
Master Point Events David Ward
No Fear/ Next Step Scott Rae

Until the future of the Lion Hotel is confirmed, it was assumed that it would still be an event venue, along with the Elgin Bridge Centre.

13. Scottish Cup

Dates as per Schedule of Events; last date for entries, Saturday, September 27th,2008.

14. Stationery

Still a stock available for clubs. It was noted that pink scorecards were much more expensive.

15. AOCB

It was noted that the Wick St. Clair club should be removed from the SBU affiliated list

The Secretary was asked to note various changes of Club Chairmen and Secretaries and promised to circulate the revised list in due course.

16. Date of Next AGM

Tuesday, 5th May 2009.