Objectives of the Club
To facilitate participation in, and promotion of recreational and competitive running.
Membership of the Club
Membership of the Club is open to adults over the age of 18. The club membership year runs from 1st April to 31st March. Individuals who wish to become members of the Club must apply via the website and pay the appropriate subscription fee. The Committee shall admit that person to membership unless to do so would be contrary to the best interests of the sport or the Club. By becoming a member of the Club, every member agrees to abide by the Club’s Constitution, Rules and Policies; the Rules of Competition and other rules and regulations of UK Athletics Limited; and the rules and regulations of England Athletics Limited (or relevant successor bodies).
The Club has three different classes of annual membership set out below.
1. First Claim Members
Anyone satisfying the general admission criteria (as determined from time to time by the Committee) can become a First Claim Member, provided that: they are an amateur as defined from time to time by UK Athletics. First Claim Members are entitled to receive notice of, attend and vote at Annual General Meetings (AGM) of the Club.
2. Second Claim Members
Individuals with First Claim to another running club can train with the Club and join as ‘Second Claim’. They cannot enter the Club Championship or vote at the AGM.
3. Life Members
Only in exceptional circumstances shall Life Membership be granted in recognition of a significant personal contribution to the Club. First Claim Members are able to put forward a nomination for Life Membership of an individual together with reasons to the Committee. The decision to award Life Membership lies with the Committee and is final. Life Members are exempt from payment of annual subscriptions but otherwise have the same rights as First Claim Members.
Membership fees are due on 1st April each year. Fees are reviewed and each year and set by the Committee. New members joining after 1st January each year do not need to pay a membership fee on the 1st April immediately following.
Members having arrears of subscriptions will not be eligible to participate in the affairs or activities of the Club, including voting in any meeting, the London Ballot and Club Championship. Payment of a full subscription at a later date will enable the former member to be readmitted by the Committee and results count towards the Club Championship.
Cessation of Membership
Members may resign from membership at any time by notice to that effect given to the Secretary. A member who resigns is not entitled to any part refund of subscriptions. Membership is not transferable and shall cease immediately on death or on the failure of the member to comply with any condition of membership set out in this Constitution.
The Committee has the power to expel a Member when in its opinion it would not be in the interests of the sport or the Club for him/her to remain a member. Such expulsion shall be carried out in accordance with the club’s Disciplinary Procedures.
Any person shall, upon ceasing to be a Member of the Club, forfeit all rights to and claims upon the Club and its property and funds.
The Club Committee
The day-to-day management of the Club shall be deputed to a Committee consisting of an Ex-Officio Honorary Officer (Club President) and nine elected Officers:
1. Club President
The Honorary President of the Club shall perform duties representing the Club and may provide guidance on strategy and probity as required. The President shall be a member of the Committee. The President shall be nominated for a three-year term of office by the Committee and be ratified by the members at the AGM. The President will serve one term and if at the end of the term the Committee cannot agree a successor, the position is to be elected in line with the Election of Committee process outlined below.
2, Officers’ Roles
The Officers of the Club are: Chair, Treasurer, Secretary, Men’s Captain, Ladies’ Captain, Off-Road & Cross-Country Captain, Membership Secretary, Welfare Officer and the Social Secretary, who are nominated in accordance with the procedure entitled “Election of Committee” and elected annually at the AGM. The Officers remain in office after their election for a one-year term until the end of the AGM after their election and are eligible for re-election. These Officers may delegate and assign tasks to other members.
Election of Committee
Any Member may be nominated by any other two Members, with his/her approval, as a candidate for any of the Committee Member posts by notice in writing (including email) to the Secretary at least two weeks before the date of the AGM. A Member may accept nomination for any of the separately elected posts constituting the Committee, subject to being eligible to hold only one of these posts at any time. If a Member shall be elected to a post during the prescribed course of business, his or her name shall be deleted from all subsequent voting for the remaining elected posts at that meeting. If there is only one candidate for the post of any Officer, that candidate will be declared elected unopposed. If the number of candidates is more than one, ballot papers will be prepared containing all the names proposed: every eligible Member may vote for each office; the candidate with a simple majority will be elected.
The office of an elected member of the Committee will be vacated if he/she:
- resigns at any time by notice in writing to that effect given to the Secretary and such resignation shall take effect immediately.
- ceases to be a First Claim Member or is excluded or suspended from the Club under disciplinary proceedings.
- is suspended from holding office or taking part in any activity relating to the administration or management of a Club by a decision of England Athletics Limited or UK Athletics Limited.
- is asked to resign by all the other Committee members, acting together.
The Committee has the power to appoint a Member to fill any casual vacancy on the Committee or amongst the Honorary Officers until the next AGM. Any Honorary Officer or Committee Member so appointed will retire at the next AGM but is eligible for election at such meeting in accordance with the provisions for Proceedings at General Meetings.
The Committee will meet as often as necessary in any manner agreeable to the Committee (including telephone and social media). The quorum necessary for transaction of business is half (rounded to the nearest whole) of the members of the Committee. A meeting of the Committee at which a quorum is present and has been properly convened is competent to exercise all the powers and discretions invested in the Committee by these Rules.
The Committee may act notwithstanding any vacancy in its numbers, so long as the number of members of the Committee entitled to vote is quorate, in which case it is entitled to act only for the purpose of appointing or arranging the election of new members of the Committee. Questions arising at any meeting will be determined by a simple majority of votes, illustrated by a show of hands. In the case of an equality of votes, the Chair will have a casting or additional vote.
The Committee may regulate their meetings and proceedings as they think fit. As soon as is reasonably possible after a meeting, the Secretary will distribute minutes of the meeting to the other Committee members for comment.
The Committee may invite persons who are not members of the Committee to address a meeting of the Committee.
Powers of the Committee
The Committee is responsible for the management of the Club and has the following specific powers to:
- make Club Rules and regulations to allow for the day to day operation of the Club and its activities. Such Club Rules may not supersede or contradict provisions of the Constitution and must be reasonably available to Members
- operate a Members' Welfare policy in accordance with the Policy and Procedures issued by UK Athletics Limited.
- appoint any person or persons to accept and hold in trust for the Club any property belonging to the Club or in which it is interested. The Chair from time to time is nominated as the person to appoint new trustees within the meaning of Section 36 of the Trustee Act 1925. A new trustee shall be nominated by resolution of the Committee and the Chairman shall by deed duly appoint the person or persons so nominated as the new Trustee or Trustees of the Club. The provisions of the Trustee Act 1925 shall apply to such appointment.
- make and give receipts, releases and other discharges for any amount payable to the Club and for claims and demands of the Club.
- issue, sign, draw, endorse, negotiate, transfer and assign all cheques, bills, drafts and promissory notes to operate on the Club's banking accounts.
- enter into all such negotiations and contracts and rescind and vary all such contracts and execute and do all such acts, deeds and things in the name of, and on behalf of, the Club as they may consider expedient.
- pay all the costs and expenses of, and incidental to, any of the aforesaid matters and things.
- determine how and by whom any such power shall be executed, operations effected and documents signed or things done.
- appoint Members or sub-Committees to exercise such functions as the Committee may require.
- organise Club activities.
- the members of the Committee and any trustees appointed under paragraph (c) above to act as trustees are entitled to an indemnity out of the assets of the Club for all expenses and other liabilities properly incurred by them in the management of the affairs of the Club.
The accidental omission to give any such notice to, or the non-receipt of any such notice by, any person entitled to receive the same will not invalidate the proceedings at any General Meeting. Every notice calling a meeting will specify the general nature of the business to be transacted and will specify if the meeting is to be an Annual General Meeting.
At all such meetings the President or Chair, or in his or her absence a member of the Club selected by those members of the Committee present, shall take the Chair. Every Member shall have one vote unless disqualified from voting. Votes may be given personally or by proxy. Every resolution submitted to a meeting shall be decided by a show of hands, the Chair of the meeting shall have a casting vote in the event of a tie.
The following rules shall apply to all General Meetings:
- the quorum for a General Meeting is twenty Members personally present and entitled to vote. No business shall be transacted at any General Meeting unless the required quorum is present. If, within an hour following the time appointed for the meeting a quorum is not present, the meeting shall stand adjourned to a time and a place agreed by the majority of Members present. If, at such adjourned meeting a quorum is not present, those Members who are present shall be a quorum and may transact the business for which the meeting was called.
- all resolutions (and amendments thereto) shall be put to the meeting.
- resolutions proposed for consideration by a General Meeting shall be submitted in writing to the Secretary at least two weeks before the date of the meeting.
- amendments may be proposed at any time during debate, although the Chair shall have the right to require these to be put in writing together with the name of the proposer.
- the Chair shall deal with amendments in the strict order in which they are proposed, although he/she has the right to refuse amendments which negate the resolution. If an amendment to a resolution is proposed, no further amendments well be proposed until the first is disposed of. If an amendment is lost, a further amendment may be moved to the original resolution, but only one amendment will be submitted to the meeting at one time; if an amendment to a resolution is carried, then the resolution as amended will become the resolution to which further amendments may be proposed.
During the course of debate the proposer of a resolution may accept an amendment to the resolution, in which case the amended resolution shall become the resolution under debate. The proposer can withdraw a resolution or amendment. The resolution shall be debated and decided by the meeting.
The Chair of the General Meeting may, with the consent of the meeting, adjourn the same from time to time and from place to place but no business can be transacted at any adjourned meeting other than the business left unfinished at the meeting from the point at which the adjournment took place.
Annual General Meetings
The Annual General Meeting of the Club shall be held within three months of 31 March each year for the following purposes and order of business:
- to receive from the committee a statement of accounts for the preceding financial year;
- to elect the Officers and the Committee and to ratify the selection of the President.
- to decide on any resolution which may be submitted to the meeting as per these Rules.
- Not less than three weeks notice of an Annual General Meeting specifying the place, day and time of the meeting shall be given to the Members.
The AGM will elect a Returning Officer from those present to oversee any elections conducted at the meeting.
Special General Meetings (SGM)
Members will be given not less than three weeks notice of a Special General Meeting specifying the place, day and time.
Within four weeks of requisition in writing of not fewer than ten Members entitled to vote at such meetings, the Secretary will convene a SGM stating the business to be raised. No other business is to be discussed at a SGM.
The Treasurer will ensure proper accounts are kept and provide Committee Members with accurate financial reports on at least a quarterly basis. The Club’s financial records shall always be open to inspection by the Committee. The Club’s Financial Year runs from 1st April to 31st March inclusive. The Treasurer shall present accounts for the previous Financial Year to the AGM for consideration and copies will be available to Members at the meeting. If the Accounts are not accepted at the AGM, a qualified accountant may be appointed to investigate members’ concerns. The club aims to cover its costs each year through membership fees and club events. The property of the Club, other than cash at bank, shall be vested in the Trustees who shall deal with the property as directed by resolution of the Committee. The Club’s facilities will be provided to its members without discrimination.
London Marathon places
As the Club is affiliated to England Athletics, it is entitled to receive a number of entry places into the London Marathon each year. These places will be allocated to club members via an open ballot. Entry into the ballot is open to those members who have been members of the Club as of 1 June before the ballot date who have forwarded their “rejection slips” to the Club Secretary no later than 24 hours before the deadline.
In the event that there are insufficient rejection slips to fill the available places, all the rejection slips entered into the ballot will receive the club places. Any remaining club places will then be allocated in an open ballot of any members expressing an interest in accepting a club place. A list of reserves (3) will also be drawn in the ballot. Once a member has received a ballot place and taken advantage of it, they may not enter the ballot for the next three years.
There are 3 categories of Championship - road, cross country and off road. All Club Championships are only open to First Claim Members and will run in line with the club membership year. Only races competed in whilst a First Claim Member count. The club will conduct a championship review prior to the start of the new season which will serve to shape the format of upcoming year and ensure any changes agreed can be implemented for 1 April. All members are encouraged to participate in the review.
Road Running Championship
All races organised under the British Athletics Federation, Association of Marathons and Distance Races or the International Amateur Athletics Federation Rules qualify for inclusion in the Club Championship. Open Championship awards will be awarded to the men's and women's winner and runner-up at the following distances: 5k, 5miles, 10k, 10miles, Half Marathon and Marathon. Veteran trophies will be awarded to the men's and women's winners and runners-up from men aged 40+ and women aged 35+ increasing at 5-year intervals, at each of the above distances. A member’s age for the Championship is determined by their age on the first day of the Club Championship year, being 1 April.
The winner in each category/distance will be the athlete with the lowest total combined time for their best two races at that distance, except for marathon where only onetime counts. Trophies will also be awarded to the overall Men’s and Ladies’ Club Champions. They will be, respectively, the winner of all their six distances, or if no one so qualifies, then the winner of the next highest number of the specified distances. If there is more than one overall winner, the Champion will be chosen by the number of runners-up positions gained. If there is still more than one overall winner, then the Men’s and Women’s Captains will use the World Association of Veteran Athletes Age-Graded Tables to determine the fastest athlete, who shall be declared the Club Champion.
Park run results will be recorded on the same basis as above i.e. 2 races to count, and trophies awarded accordingly. However, parkrun results will not count towards to Club Championship.
Cross Country (XC) Championship
The Club XC Championship is based upon results in the North-West Cross Country League races. In each race, the first man from the Club scores 50 points, the second man scores 49 points, and so on. At the end of the league season, the best 5 scores count for each club member. For both the mens and womens championship the person with the highest total points score is declared the XC Championship winner and the second is the runner-up. The next highest veteran (40+ years) is declared the Men’s Vet winner, and the next veteran is the Vet runner-up. The Womens Vet category is 35+ years.
Off-Road Championship Rules
Each year the Off-Road & Cross-Country Captain will select a list of off-road races for agreement with the committee – the results from which form the basis of the Championship. There are four categories: senior men, senior women, veteran men over 40 and veteran ladies over 35. The first fifty competitors will score points towards the Championship: 50 for 1st, 49 for 2nd, 48 for 3rd, and so on. Points are allocated according to the positions (not times) in the final race results. The best five scores will count towards the final positions and in the event of a tie, the competitor with the most race finishes will win. A minimum of five completed races are required to enter.
It is the member’s responsibility to submit appropriate evidence of their race times.
The Club takes number swapping very seriously. UKA Rule 209 states that an individual is not permitted to take part in a race with another runner’s bib number unless a formal transfer has taken place with the approval of the race organiser. Runners doing so risk disqualification and a ban from competing, whilst the club may be punished too.
A member undertaking a race that clashes with those organised by the club, (currently The Penny Lane 10K and Clarkes Gardens Cross Country) will not count towards the Club Championships.
Application of Surplus Funds
The Club is a non-profit-distributing organisation. All surplus income or profits are to be reinvested in the club and will be used to further the Club’s objectives for the benefit of the membership as a whole. The Club may also sell and supply food, drink and related sports clothing and equipment. It may also remunerate members for providing goods and services, provided that such arrangements are approved by the Committee (without the Member being present) and are agreed on an arm’s length basis.
Interpretation of Club Constitution & Rules
The Constitution may be added to, repealed, or amended by resolution at any Annual or Special General Meeting carried by a simple majority of the Members voting thereon. The Committee shall be the sole authority for the interpretation of the Constitution and of Club Rules. The decision of the Committee upon any questions of interpretation or upon any matter affecting the Club and not provided for by the Constitution, shall be final and binding on the Members except if otherwise directed by the Club in a Special or Annual General Meeting.
Dissolution of the Club
If at any Special General Meeting a resolution for the dissolution of the Club is passed by a majority of the Members present, a further Special General Meeting shall be convened, to be held not less than four weeks thereafter (of which two weeks written notice shall be given to each Member in addition to the other provisions for Notices), to further consider the matter.
The members may vote to wind up the Club if not fewer than three quarters of those present and voting support that proposal at a properly convened Special General Meeting. If successful, the Committee shall proceed to realise the property of the Club and discharge all liabilities.
Any property remaining after the discharge of debts and liabilities of the Club shall be paid to or distributed to another community amateur sports club for road running or athletics, or to UK Athletics Limited for use in community-related road running initiatives, or to a charitable organisation having similar objects and affiliations, as nominated at the SGM.
The Club does not tolerate the physical or mental abuse, harassment, discrimination or defamation of any of its Members during, or subsequent to, club events. The Constitution draws attention to the various polices on the club website (such as social media). Any Member may be disciplined or excluded from membership of the Club if his/her conduct has been, or is likely to be, prejudicial to the interests of the Club. The Club is a non-political organisation.
Exclusion will be agreed by resolution of a majority of at least two thirds of those present and voting at a properly convened Committee Meeting.
Such Member shall have one month's clear notice of the Committee Meeting sent to him/her together with details of the case against him/her. The Member is entitled to attend the Meeting and be heard in defence, but shall not be entitled to be present at the voting or take part in the proceedings other than as the Committee shall permit. If the Member is a member of the Committee, he/she can not vote.
Any Member disciplined or excluded from the Club for disciplinary reasons may lodge an appeal with the Committee and shall thereupon have the right to demand that the matter be referred to three arbitrators: one chosen by the Committee, one chosen and paid for by the aggrieved party and one by the two arbitrators. In the event that the first two arbitrators fail to agree on a third, the third arbitrator shall be appointed by UK Athletics Ltd or other relevant organising body as nominated by the Committee. Such arbitrators have the power by their award to annul the disciplinary action or exclusion, or to annul it subject to the performance of any condition, which the arbitrators may think fit to impose.
Any notice required to be given under this Constitution will be deemed to have been given and received having been sent by mail or email to the last known address of the member, as appropriate, or by publication on the Club's website.