District AGM

Posted on 13th October 2020 by Greg Piskosz

Thank you to everyone who made it to the AGM.   For those who could not make it the Executive Committee thought it worthwhile to summarise the evening.

(Special welcome to David Stokes our county commissioner.)

District Chairman.

May remember that at last AGM Brian Scott stood down after many years of service.  I Identified 2 potential candidates and had conversations with those individuals.   Sadly it did not come to fruition.   One dropped out in the new year and the second in June at the height of the Covid pandemic, so the search for a Chairman goes on

Executive Committee

There are a number roles that have automatic membership of the Executive Committee :

Chairman                                                        Vacant

Treasurer                                                        Geoff Aiden

Secretary                                                        Carole Atkins

District Explorer Commissioner                     Scott Dougherty

District Youth Commissioner                         Beth Forster

District Network Commissioner                    David Holmes

All of the above Adult Volunteers have agreed to remain in post, and we are delighted that is the case.   Especially Carole and Geoff who provide invaluable input from non uniformed members

In addition there are four elected Adult Members, and also two elected Young People Members.     In this context young person is someone aged 18-25, due the being a Trustee you have to be over 18.

At the time of the AGM there were three nominations for the elected Adult Members Posts
David Welch

Sharon Gibbons

Mike Winn

Therefore there was no need for an election and David, Sharon, and Mike were elected unopposed to the exec.


In terms of young people at the time of the AGM there was only one nomination –

Abigail Openshaw, who is elected unopposed to the exec.


The District commissioner is also able to co-opt adults to the exec up to the number who have been elected.   Angie Forster – Appointments secretary, and who has played a huge part in modernising our approach to appointment committees, is co-opted to the Exec committee


The district is in a very healthy financial position, with total funds of £97,596. This is made of cash in the bank of  £91,377 and loans and assets of £6,219

Income from Capitation and camps etc , more less equalled expenditure.   There we no large  single expenditure item. The district is in a very healthy financial position.  Copies of the full accounts were distributed prior to the AGM

District Commissioners Report

let’s look back at the priorities for last year and the achievement against those objectives

2019/20 Priorities

  • Employ part time Growth & Development Officer
  • New Group in Ouston & Kibblesworth
  • District Events/opportunities for Beavers
  • Improve retention from Scouts to Explorers
  • Improve conversion from Explorers to Adult Volunteers
  • Shout about Scouting in CLS
  • Support for Groups
  • Consider more District resources
  • Out & About More

What went well

Census data­- overall we have a reduction of 5% = 21 yp, breakdown below:

B          -2

C          -9

S          -16

Ex        +6

Considering growth over the last 6 years we should not be too disappointed.  This reflects national and regional trends, especially in scout to explorer retention

Recruit G&D officer – work took place over Christmas and new year with Regional Development  team on role spec etc.  we were looking to recruit early this year for a spring start.   However just as we were about to advertise, F2F scouting was suspended, which put a halt on our plans.   We will be asking the exec to re-affirm the allocation of funds for a Growth & Development officer at the first meeting of the new exec.

Out and about – visited lots of groups and events more so than in previous years, especially in scouting from home.    Invited to and attended lots and lots of on line meetings, sometimes more than one at the same time.   Amazing quality of programme across all groups who all did something.  Special shout out to explorers, met every week since closure.

Not so well………..

As a result of Covid and the dramatic effect this had on scouting the remainder of our priorities remain un resolved.   Covid 19 has hit us very hard, a huge challenge to adults and young people.   So we have put all our priorities for this year on hold, to focus on just one… supporting groups wherever possible in whatever way possible – programme, RA’s group meetings, offer of financial support, regular comms, being there

2020/21 priorities – we have not set many, but these are key to continuing successful scouting in CLS

  • All groups and all sections remain – currently no indication that this will not be the case
  • Return to Face to face Scouting – 2nd cls and explorers already met, 1st burnmoor & 4th Weeks away, Lumley approved, ready to set a start date, Waldridge  and Newfield working on RA’s
  • Continue with on line scouting
  • Adult Recruitment & Adult Training…. Opportunity to try and tap into parent goodwill…. Great work with mandatory, need to push ahead and support woodbadge completion
  • District Support – financial, resources, time
  • Review District Plan – facing a new and challenging scouting future, need to reflect and plan for whatever state we are in at the end of all this
  • Do Our Best – Simply. As I say on St Georges day when we talk about our promise, not be the Best, but do MY best……   It is not a Race, not a competition……  all we can do, each of us, is our best

Closing remarks…

These are difficult times, but what marks us apart is the way in which we hold to our Scout Promise and to our Values of Integrity, Respect, Care, Belief and Co-operation.  I have been in awe and humbled in the way that our Adult Volunteers have behaved and responded, with those values


In the way that you have honoured your promise and continued to provide scouting to our young people, that you didn’t just do nothing, but carried on in new and innovative ways


In the way that you have behaved with each other and our young people.   Understanding that not everyone is able to continue with scouting, not able to give as much time as others, not have the same skills as others.


In the way that you have looked after each other and our young people.   The impact of the interaction between fellow leaders and with young people cannot be underestimated in supporting positive mental health and well-being, of feeling valued and cared for.


In the way that you have held to the belief that these difficult times will pass, that Scouting will continue, that we still have a purpose and a positive contribution to make, and that we can make that contribution


In the way that you have worked together, across your sections, across groups in the District, in supporting County Activities. In sharing ideas and opportunities.

We have an amazing group of committed, capable and enthusiastic Adult Volunteers in CLS, offering a mix of amazing experiences for all our young people.   I feel privileged to be part of this amazing team.   As we now move towards a return to Face to Face Scouting I am filled with the utmost confidence that this next phase of Scouting will just as successful, impactful and fulfilling.

I mentioned our Promise earlier, the thing that binds the Scout Family worldwide.   We promise to…

Do our best…

Uphold our Scout Values

Help Other People

For the past four months or so there are not enough words….. but those ten are a good start

So simply THANK YOU, for all that you have done and will continue to do