Minutes of a committee meeting held at Macclesfield Methodist Church on 9th May 2019 at 7.30 pm.

1 - In Attendance: Harry Newton, John Robinson, Bob Jenner, Graham Waters, David Collins, Geraint Jones-David.

2 - Apologies for Absence: David Hyde, Keith Jones, John Wilkin, Forbes Furmage.

3 - Approval of Minutes:

The minutes of the committee meeting held on 5th March 2019 were approved. Proposed by John Robinson, seconded by David Collins and agreed unanimously by the committee.

The Chairman duly signed them.

4 - Matters arising from previous minutes:  It was agreed that these would be dealt with under 6 below.

5 – Financial Update:

The Treasurer delivered the following analysis and comments -

a) Balance (at 8/5/19) is £13894.55 this includes most income and expenditure for Gala (net inflow of approx. £260 still to come) and deposits for IoM with a couple of minor costs still to be paid, e.g. Bouquets. 

b) Our end of April balance was circa £11450 which was bolstered by fantastic Gala and Gift Aid from HMRC. 

c) My rough cash flow forecast for end April was c£9000. This significant improvement on forecast is almost wholly down to the Gala concert. Net contribution, once all costs are accounted for, will be around £3500 which is better than anything in my tenure and certainly better than the £2000 we budgeted for. Notable in this performance was higher ticket sales than in recent years (at a new higher price!), advertising revenue was £800, program sales made a profit o about £80 (previously a loss), however we underestimated sales when printing and regrettably ran out. Refreshments made a profit c£200 (previously zero). The raffle brought in about £200 which is similar to previous events.

d) If Tatton doesn’t go ahead, we still have quite optimistic forecasts for contributions from Chapel and Wilmslow concerts, and un-forecasted income from Llandudno, 

e) Given the approximate nature of these figures we are still on course and the EOY still looks OK but with a balance reduced by c£2000 over the year (this compares with previous expectations of around £3000).

6 – Review of events since the last meeting:

Gala Concert –                                                                                                         

Despite the obvious financial success of the concert and the excellence of the program, our performance (particularly the theatrical way we performed The Creation) and the quality of the guest artistes, the general feeling was not to use Fallibroome again.

The acoustics were very poor. The audience could not hear the soloists. The piano was far too loud. Access was a nightmare due to the positioning of the Raffle Ticket sales. Many people found the access to the upper seats very awkward. 

It was agreed we had learned a number of lessons – 

  1. we must improve on the ‘forward planning’ of details using the Events Checklists.

  2. Staging requirements cannot be left until the day of the event.

  3. We need more involvement from the membership, particularly in erecting and removing staging, seating, etc. It is always the same faithful few that do the work (It was agreed that the Secretary, through the committee, would review the Events Checklist document then send it to all members plus have a hard copy printed out and on view at rehearsals. Section Reps would then lean on their people for volunteers.

Possible Future Venues – Committee members, in conjunction with the Music Team, will actively start looking.

The Chairman will be writing personal letters of thanks to a number of members whose contributions were invaluable. Bill Pinnock, Robert Lynn, Jan Wilkin, Audrey Skelton, Tony Williams, to name a few.

On a positive note the Publicity leading up to the concert was excellent and thanks must go to; 

John Wilkin, ably assisted by Jan, Ciaran for the quality of his interview on local radio. 

Tony Williams and The Wilkins for the arduous task of positioning banners. 

Bob Jenner and Team Wilkin for printing and distributing Flyers and Posters. 

The Program was arguably the best we’ve ever had, and thanks must go to David Hyde for his work on this.

6a – Future Events:

David Hyde submitted the following report for discussion – 


After a recent ad hoc Committee meeting called on 1 May by David Hyde it was decided that we would not be accepting in the offer to perform at Tatton on 14 December this year. This was mainly due to doubts about our ability to sell sufficient tickets this year to make the event a success.

David has thanked Tatton for their offer and said we would like to perform there in 2020. This is following the discussions held previously with Tatton regarding the possibility of performing there in alternate years.

New Events

Bridlington – they have invited us to return in June 2020. We may be able to combine this with a return concert with the Gateshead Low Fell Singers.

The committee agreed in principal and asked the David to add it to the Events Diary and proceed with confirming details for discussion at the next meeting.

Macclesfield MS Society - Laurie Kennard is very active and would like us to perform at one of their monthly meetings (which are always on Mondays) at the Salvation Army Hall as part of our charitable work. I have suggested Monday 25th November, which is a rehearsal day and it is two days after our concert at Chester. 

The committee agreed that this was an excellent idea and asked that David confirmed it to Mr Kennard. Furthermore, the choir would be prepared to hold a normal rehearsal at the Salvation Army Hall any time convenient to both parties.


Bollington – none.

Chapel Ladies concert – Single page program with one or two advertisers on the reverse. Charge – donation. It was agreed to use existing copy from the gala program. 

Llandudno – it will depend on whether we can find one or more full-page advertisers willing to use space, possibly at a register rate. Charge it to be decided. Geraint Jones-David recommended that we only provided a one-sheet document listing the items we will be singing that evening at a charge of £1.

Wilmslow – Full program, possibly using Wilmslow-based advertisers? Charge to be confirmed.


Are we planning on having any fliers at the Bollington festival?

Yes – They will be given to Martin Tute for distribution.

Ticket purchase data – this data should not be held or used for any purpose other than issuance of tickets.

Additionally, the committee discussed:

Chapel Ladies concert

Bob Jenner agreed to take control of this event’s planning and will discuss this issue with David. Bob will shortly call a planning meeting: probably before a rehearsal. (this has taken place).


Bob Jenner questioned whether we had to pay the church.

Transport – The secretary confirmed there was a provisional booking in place for a 53-seater coach at £450. The committee felt a coach was unnecessary but subsequently agreed that Section Reps should canvass their people and it may be that a smaller vehicle could be needed. If so, the Secretary will go out to tender with local companies.

Remembrance Concert – Bob Jenner raised the question of holding a Remembrance Concert. A date of 9th November was proposed with St Michaels as the venue, if available. Proceeds, after deduction of costs would go to an appropriate charity, eg Help for Heroes / British Legion.


David Collins will look into the seating arrangements for the concert.

Isle of Man

It was felt that Members should be reminded that even though they were in the party travelling to the Isle of Man, unless they were up to scratch in words and music they would not be included in the team for the competitive section of the trip.

Robert’s decision will be final.

Based on their travel preferences (coach or plane) and rooming requirements (single, double, sharing) the treasurer will shortly let each member know the amount of their first payment.

7 – Section Reps reports:

T1 – Nil

T2 - Recruitment must be given a top priority and should justify a separate meeting.

B1 – Nil

B2 - Nil

8 -Any other Business:

It was agreed that there should be half-hour committee meetings prior to rehearsal nights on a regular basis to discuss one topic each time.

9 – Date and venue of next Meeting:

Thursday 13th June. 7:30 pm - Macclesfield Methodist Church.

The secretary has booked the venue.

There being no further business the Chairman thanked members for their attendance and closed the meeting at 9:27 pm.

Signed as a correct record – Harry Newton (chairman)…13th June 2019