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Draft Minutes of Committee Meeting 17th October 2022

MINUTES of a committee meeting held at Abbey Fields Community Centre on Monday 17th October 2022

PRESENT: Colin Massey (Chairman), Stewart Aylward, Rex Butler, Michael Dufton, Mike Hill, Michael Leek, Tony Mason (Secretary), Richard Sharp, John Williams.

APOLOGIES: Paul Balmer, John Gerrard

MINUTES OF LAST MEETING: Held on 27th June 2022 were approved and signed.

MATTERS ARISING: Item 2 Management of Club website sub committee report.  Dealt with under Officers reports – Webmaster/Communications Officer


CHAIRMAN Colin said that we had now been meeting at AFCC for a year and the venue worked well with Covid guidelines observed.  The Annual Lunch is on the agenda.  Colin has contacted two members who have not attended meetings either in person or online.  He found this a useful exercise and will continue to contact such members.

VICE CHAIRMAN Nothing to report.

TREASURER Michael presented accounts to date and noted that the average speaker cost is running at £59 and that hire of AFCC has just doubled to £30 per meeting.  A small surplus accrued from recent trips.  The projection to the end of year is a small surplus but for 2023 the projection is a shortfall.  The committee discussed the level of subscription for 2023 and decided to keep it at £35 but to make members aware that the main costs (speaker fees and room hire) are uncertain and the subscription may need to rise in 2024.  An increase in the number of subscribing members would help mitigate this.

PROGRAMME SECRETARY Richard is urgently seeking a speaker for the next meeting.  Costs are an issue, particularly when travelling a longish distance in view of fuel prices.  The speaker at the last meeting requested a donation to a charity or charities of our choice.  The Winchcombe Museum and the Children’s Society were nominated.

EVENTS SECRETARY Mike said the Swindon Steam Museum trip was good but their admin was awful.  The next event is skittles and pizza at the Winchcombe Working Mens Club on 17th November at 6.00pm.  A sign-up list is on the website.  Proposed events for 2023 are: February Indian Restaurant; April day out Gloucestershire waterways; trip to National Space Museum in Leicester (2 hours away by car); trip to Lord Leicester Hospital in Warwick.

EQUIPMENT STEWARD Nothing to report.


ROOM STEWARD John had sent a report which was read by Colin.  

“The rota arrangements for each meeting are working well and as a result, the workload is now evenly spread amongst the eight members selected and myself. 

Rex Butler generally deals with the Audio Visual set up but either Paul Clark or myself can assist as and when needed. 

Recent problems with the lapel microphone have been sorted. 

A problem I have noted is that at times the projector has not been turned off after the meeting and the security drop down bolts in the cupboard have not been properly activated.”   (John will be asking all users of the AV equipment to ensure this is done to reduce wear on the projector fan and the cupboard is secure.)

WELFARE OFFICER John continues to send the usual cards etc and is in touch with various members including John Hayter and Arthur Ruddock.  Nice to see Tim Morgan and Keith Vibart-Baldwin back at meetings.

WALK’S CO-ORDINATOR The midweek break in Crickhowell went well, despite a bit of Welsh rain, after frantic phone calls beforehand.  Next walk is 9th November round the Slaughters.

SECRETARY Nothing to report.

WEBMASTER / COMMUNICATIONS OFFICER The sub committee meeting was Stewart and Andrew as both Michaels couldn’t make it.  They looked at the structure of the website and thought it was fine as it was although there were some security issues which have now been fixed.  The ability to put posts on the website will be restricted to Webmaster, Programme Secretary, and Secretary.

The Home Page is up to date – a question was asked if there was enough information on it.

The number of entries on the Notices page will be restricted.

Stewart noted that the number of visits to the website had fallen from 42 in June to 29 in October.

The licence with Siteground (to host the website) has been renewed but this will be kept under review as it seems expensive. Webmaster to undertake detailed review before the next renewal is due next summer.

There was a discussion about the club having a Facebook page.  Also discussed was whether we should continue to send general emails to members as blind copies. It was considered prudent to continue the use of blind copy emails as there is always a chance that an email could be forwarded outside of Probus and if email addresses were visible, there is a chance that the email address could become available externally. Stewart will set up a group email for this.

2. RECRUITING ‘YOUNGER’ MEMBERS This item was held over from the previous committee meeting.  Noted that the average of members has risen slightly and there is a need to recruit younger members to help ensure the future of the club.  Colin will draft a letter to members and a poster for display in the town.  Michael D to speak to Gill Cocks.

3. CLUB INSURANCE POLICY RENEWAL Agreed to renew – premium same as last year.

4. ANNUAL LUNCH 2023 Dumbleton Hall has been booked for 13th January 2023.  Colin is aiming to keep the cost per head the same as last year at £38 per head for 3 courses.  This is based on 50 attendees.

5. OFFICERS FOR 2023 Paul Balmer is standing down but all other committee members are willing to stand for re-election. Stewart proposed that the post of welcoming steward should be extended to including responsibility for promoting membership. Thus the role of the welcoming steward should be merged into that of membership secretary and that from 2023, this post will replace that of welcoming steward. Stewart was asked to update these roles on the website.

6. CORRESPONDENCE An email had been received from the partner of a member to which a response had been sent by the secretary.  The exchange was discussed and the matter considered closed.

7. HONORARY MEMBERSHIP CANDIDATES 4 members will be proposed at the AGM – Richard Dowler, John Williams, Patrick House, and John West.

8. ANY OTHER BUSINESS The Club dress code and observance was discussed.  This is not in the Club Constitution but agreed that the unwritten code of ‘smart casual’ – taken to mean jacket and preferably tie – should be extended to ‘no jeans’.  Potential new members should be made aware of the code before attending meeting.

DATE OF NEXT MEETING To be agreed after the AGM

Approved and adopted as a true record.

Chairman Date 

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Bird spotting with Norman Cooke

A number of us enjoyed an excellent walk in the nature reserve at Coombe Hill on Tuesday 6th September. 

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Minutes of Committee Meeting 21 February 2022

PRESENT: Colin Massey (Chairman), Stewart Aylward, Paul Balmer, Rex Butler, Andrew Cordery, Michael Dufton, Mike Hill, Michael Leek, Tony Mason (Secretary), Richard Sharp

APOLOGIES: John Williams, John Gerrard

CO-OPTIONS TO COMMITTEE: Stewart Aylward and John Gerrard were co-opted to the committee as Webmaster / Communications Officer and Room Steward respectively.

MINUTES OF LAST MEETING: Held on 4th October 2021 were approved.



CHAIRMAN          Colin announced that, the Mercia Probus Club had been wound up and the remaining assets had been distributed to 3 local charities.

VICE CHAIRMAN        Nothing to report.

TREASURER        Michael presented accounts to date together and noted that 54 members had paid subscriptions and 10 had not.  Room hire £60 (including £45 relating to last year) and speaker fees £70.  The gratuity cheque for the Annual Lunch has not been presented.

PROGRAMME SECRETARY       Richard thanked Andrew for support with setting up the external speaker on a Zoom link last week (speaker had tested positive for Covid).  Roy had given Colin a memory stick with an emergency quiz which he will pass to Richard.

EVENTS SECRETARY        Mike gave resume of the trips he is organising and the numbers signed up for them.  The Javelin waste disposal trip on 22 June is now full.  He said the cost of a coach is now £450 so this is significant if not many going.

EQUIPMENT STEWARD         Rex said batteries are costing £1 per meeting and suggested using rechargeable ones.  Agreed that Mike H would speak to Paul Clark about AFCC doing this.

MEETING STEWARD        Paul said he has a list of people who need a badge but doesn’t know how to print them.  Stewart offered to help.

ROOM STEWARD        Nothing to report.

WELFARE OFFICER        In John’s absence, concern was expressed that some of our more vulnerable members may have felt lonely as a result of keeping safe. (See also item 4)

WALK’S CO-ORDINATOR       No report.

SECRETARY        Nothing to report.

WEBMASTER / COMMUNICATIONS OFFICER        Stewart thanked for volunteering to take over.  He wants to encourage use of the website by regular emails to members drawing attention to items posted on the website.  Stewart will set up a group email address for the committee and in due course a group email address for all club members.  These will be for committee use.

2. CLUB COVID POLICY AND GUIDELINES        Agreed to leave as is for now.

3. ANNUAL LUNCH 2022 FEEDBACK AND PROPOSALS FOR 2023         Colin said 63 members and guests had booked but only 52 attended on the day.  This was partly due to concern about Covid safety and partly sickness.  Ellenborough Park refused to make any refund.

Colin had asked those who went to complete a questionnaire but received only 20 replies.  Most were OK with the venue but some thought it rather severe.  Opinion varied considerably on food and service and some said we should not go back.

Colin and Paul have looked / are looking at a number of alternative venues.

4. POLICY ON INVITATIONS TO WIDOWS to fee paying events       This was raised at the AGM.  There is no policy at present.  It was considered that, if an invitation was to be issued, 12 months bereavement before the Annual Lunch would be the appropriate limit for that event.

It was felt there were wider welfare issues to be considered and a sub-group of Colin M. Michael D, John W would look at this.

5. CORRESPONDENCE        Nothing.

6. ANY OTHER BUSINESS        Stewart had been appointed Independent Examiner at the AGM and has now joined the Club committee.  The Club Constitution does not prohibit this and Stewart is happy to remain as Independent Examiner.

Appreciation was expressed for the work Andrew has done on the website and virtual meetings.


27 June 2022 at 10.30 at AFCC.

Approved and adopted as a true record.

Chairman Date 

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Minutes of Committee Meeting 04 October 2021

MINUTES of a committee meeting held at the White Hart on Monday 4th October 2021

PRESENT: Roy Loudon (Chairman), Paul Balmer, Rex Butler, Michael Dufton, Mike Leek, Tony Mason (Secretary), Colin Massey, Richard Sharp, John Williams

APOLOGIES: Andrew Cordery

MINUTES OF LAST MEETING: Held on 7th June 2021 were approved.




Roy announced that, all being well, he would be moving to Cornwall at the end of November.  He noted that there had been two recent meetings where the member rostered to give the vote of thanks had not been present and a replacement had not been arranged.  Roy also noted that visitors / guests should have a sponsor.

VICE CHAIRMAN                 

Nothing to report.


Mike presented accounts to date together with a projection of to the year end.  These showed that the club would finish the year with £718 in the bank but two deposits totalling £480 have been paid including £360 for the Annual Lunch which will be held in mid January 2022.

No subscription was levied in 2021 but, following discussion, a subscription of £35 will be proposed for 2022 at the AGM in January.  It is anticipated that this will enable the club to break even in 2022.  The preferred method for paying subscriptions is BACS but cheques will be accepted.


Richard is looking for a replacement speaker for 12 November as the original has recently had a stroke.  He would welcome suggestions for speakers (both internal and external).  The programme for 2022 is in course.

John Williams offered to organise a talk and demonstration of CPR.

EVENTS SECRETARY                    

Colin reported that the club can visit the Bugatti museum when convenient.  Bristol Aerospace is open for socially distanced tours.  Colin suggested holding back for the present.


Rex suggested asking speakers what kit they will be using and to bring a usb stick.  Need to check out kit requirements to use the AFCC projector and also to check the operation of the hearing loop.

MEETING STEWARD                      

Paul said members are not using the speaker rating tins – only 9 for last meeting.

ROOM STEWARD                

Michael said the move to use the AFCC had gone well.  At present two room stewards are setting up for meetings but might be able to revert to one.  Covid protocols are not being fully observed.  Suggested that chair should point out fire exits and meeting point as members may not be aware.


John reported that John Hayter may be in Cirencester Hospital for some time, John Franklin is moving to Evesham, and we are unlikely to see Brian Eaton, Alan Tompsett, and Mike Mellors at meetings. 


No walk in October as John is away, next walk Nov 17 from Halfway House Inn, Kineton at 10.30


Nothing to report.


No report from Andrew.  Chairman to write to Andrew on behalf of the membership thanking him for his work on WebEx and Zoom thereby enabling us to continue with our fortnightly meetings during the lockdowns.

Not known how many members use the club website.  Suggested the club uses a Facebook closed member group.  Michael L to set up with assistance from Michael D.

2.         ANNUAL LUNCH 2022         

The Ellenborough Hotel is holding a deposit and Roy and Colin will visit with a view to booking a date in the week commencing 10 January 2022.

Suggested having a St George’s Day or Trafalgar Day lunch but no decision made.

3.         OFFICERS FOR 2022                       

Vice Chairman and Events Secretary needed.


Committee agreed to propose 3 members for Honorary Membership at the AGM.  They are Brian Pickering, Malcolm Webb, and Alan Tompsett.

5.         CORRESPONDENCE                      

Agreed to renew the club insurance policy – premium £71.92.

6.         ANY OTHER BUSINESS      

Mid week break 2022: following the much enjoyed trip this year, it is proposed to organise another next year.  John Williams offered to lead on setting this up. Colin Massey would speak to Stewart Aylward to ask him to produce an aide-mémoire for organisers use in the future. Suggested the organisation should be part of the Events Secretary’s remit.

Thanks to Stewart Aylward, John Brooks, and John Williams for organising the 2021 event.


7 February 2022 at 10.30 at the White Hart.

Approved and adopted as a true record.

Chairman                                                        Date

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Minutes of Committee Meeting held on 7th June 2021

PRESENT: Roy Loudon (Chairman), Paul Balmer, Rex Butler, Andrew Cordery, Michael Dufton, Mike Leek, Tony Mason (Secretary), Colin Massey, Richard Sharp, John Williams


MINUTES OF LAST MEETING: Held on 17th February 2021 were approved.

MATTERS ARISING: Deputy for Andrew for setting up virtual meetings – Andrew is in discussion with Phil H and Stewart.


CHAIRMAN Roy thanked committee members for their responses to his March email re membership.  The majority were in favour of retaining male only membership but wives / partners would continue to be invited to virtual meetings.  

Roy noted there were 3 potential new members – application forms to be sent to them.  A discussion ensued regarding the levying of subscriptions (currently in abeyance due to the healthy club finances) and joining fees.

The possibility of hybrid meetings was raised from when the Methodist Hall reopens.

VICE CHAIRMAN Colin thanked Michael for stepping in with a presentation at the last club meeting when the scheduled speaker encountered difficulty joining on Webex.

TREASURER Mike reported the only expenditure this year – 6 speakers amounting to £260.

PROGRAMME SECRETARY Richard is checking the inherited programme for 2021 to ensure speakers will present online.  He asked how often internal speakers should be used – 2 or 3 in the programme in addition to member profiles with 2 or 3 as backups.  Appeal to be made to members for talks.

EVENTS SECRETARY Colin reported that the club can visit the Bugatti museum when convenient.  Bristol Aerospace is open for socially distanced tours.  Colin suggested holding back pending the lifting of Covid restrictions.

The midweek break at the end of September to Atcham is still on at the moment.

EQUIPMENT STEWARD Rex questioned whether the club had equipment for hybrid meetings.  This was thought not to be a problem.

MEETING STEWARD Paul said an average of 40-42 members were attending virtual meetings.

ROOM STEWARD Michael said if we return to the Methodist Hall, social distancing etc may need to be observed.  At the present time there is no date for the hall to be reopened.

WELFARE OFFICER John reported that Alan Tompsett is not expected to leave the nursing home, and Tom Hancock is very frail.  John Franklin has altzheimers and collapsed doing the recce for the forthcoming walk.

WALK’S CO-ORDINATOR Next walk is June 23 from the Childswickham Inn, 10.30 start, 4 miles, fairly flat.

SECRETARY Discussion re electing members to Honorary Membership.  Policy to be drafted and posted on the website.

WEBMASTER Andrew said there was general agreement to switch to Zoom and this would happen after the meeting on Friday (11th June).  Andrew will speak to Stewart about taking over the website.



Roy’s next quarterly newsletter to members starting is end of June.

The meeting invites from Roy are seen as a good reminder.


27 September at 10.30

Approved and adopted as a true record.

Chairman                                                           Date 

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Minutes of Committee meeting held 17th February 2021

PRESENT: Roy Loudon (Chairman), Paul Balmer, Rex Butler, Andrew Cordery, Michael Dufton, Mike Leek, Tony Mason (Secretary), Colin Massey, Richard Sharp, John Williams


MINUTES OF LAST MEETING: Approved, no matters arising


CHAIRMAN Roy welcomed members and thanked Mike and Richard for joining the committee.  He said having to have meetings online was not what he had looked forward to but they would have to continue for some time.  He said Probus is about fellowship and we don’t really get that online.  He wanted to use this meeting to consider how to get more people involved online and even join the club.  Also how to communicate with members.

Roy noted the reliance on Andrew to set up the online meetings and to guide speakers/presenters not familiar with Webex.  He suggested Andrew should have a deputy but Andrew explained we had tried this only to find that Webex rules only allow the subscriber to set up meetings.

VICE CHAIRMAN Nothing to report.

TREASURER Mike has taken over the accounts from John H and is in the process of setting up a new mandate with the bank.  Changes to mandate agreed.  Mike said the preferred method of members paying subscriptions or for lunches/outings is by BACS, or failing that by cheque which can be paid in using an app.  Cash is not welcome!

PROGRAMME SECRETARY Richard said he had inherited a programme for 2021 but some changes were having to be made because of the continuing use of online meetings – 14 May Jon Burchfield will be doing his profile in place of Kate Bellamy who didn’t want to present online.

Suggestion of using virtual online tours, say of museums, preceded by a talk.  How to get feedback from members on speakers? – use survey monkey.

EVENTS SECRETARY Colin had made a provisional booking to go to Bugatti museum on 20 April but he will speak to them about going in the autumn instead.  He will also speak to Bristol Aerospace to remind them of our deposit for a visit.

The midweek break at the end of September to Atcham is still on at the moment.

EQUIPMENT STEWARD Nothing to report.

MEETING STEWARD Only meetings had been via Webex – discussion on use of speaker ratings.  

ROOM STEWARD No intention at present to open hall/building.

WELFARE OFFICER John reported that Alan Tompsett is not expected to leave the nursing home, and Tom Hancock is very frail.  Robin Reckitt has had Covid and recovered.

WALK’S CO-ORDINATOR John has several walks planned and ready to go when we can.

SECRETARY Mick Clark has resigned membership.  Discussion re joining fee for new members and subscriptions at present time.

WEBMASTER Andrew suggested changing to Zoom platform when the current subscription to Webex expires and using Zoom for the next committee meeting.  Michael suggested that notifying members of the move to Zoom might encourage more to join online meetings.  

The website is a way of engaging with members and Andrew invited committee members to add things to it or send them to him.

Noted that some members are quite selective about the meetings they attend.  Andrew said Mercia Club are not meeting at present and suggested having a quiz on alternate Fridays.



Roy is going to do a quarterly newsletter to members starting at end of March.  Colin suggested issuing a hard copy to members who are not on email or do not have access to the website.

Question re Paul Clark’s survey of members’ requirements from the club – what was the result?

Colin asked if Mercia are likely to resume meetings when possible?  Approach to be made to Mercia to invite their members to our online meetings.


8th June at 10.30

Approved and adopted as a true record.

Chairman Date 

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35   Programme   (Programme items archive (in date order))

36   widgetkit id=”36″ name=”Rogues Gallery” (Full Rogues Gallery)

37   Homepage top slider ( Winchcombe photo slider on Home page)

38  widgetkit id=”38″ name=”Rogues Gallery”  (Photo slider for Rogues Gallery box on Notices page)

39   Committee members (Names and photos of Committee members members)

40   Homepage text (About Probus/Probus Club of Winchcombe)

41   widgetkit id=”41″ name=”Members’ News & Comments”   ( Titles of items on list in Sidebar B on Notices page) Same as 43

42   widgetkit id=”42″ name=”News & Comments intro” (Content of N&C page linked from Archives )

43   widgetkit id=”43″ name=”Members’ News and Comments”  ( Titles of items on list in Sidebar B on Notices page) Same as 42

44   widgetkit id=”44″ name=”Notices”   (Items appearing under “Notices”)