Peter Thorpe Bell_115Constitution


2. AIMS & OBJECTIVES  The association is apolitical and exists principally to promote in every practical way the interests of its members, their partners together with widowers of the association. The association may engage in voluntary activities supportive to the fire and rescue service, its charities and the community in general. Additionally, the association may promote such social activities as may be considered reasonable in the interests of its members.

3. EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE & OFFICERS  The officers of the association shall be the PRESIDENT, CHAIRMAN, VICE CHAIRMAN, SECRETARY/ TREASURER plus THREE REPRESENTATIVES from each area, north, central and south. In addition, there shall be two representatives with a countywide reference. These fifteen officers shall form the association’s EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE. All officers, with the exception of the President, shall be elected annually at the Annual General Meeting. The Post of PRESIDENT is an honorary appointment selected by a ballot of the membership.

The business of the association shall be managed by the Executive Committee assisted by a LIAISON OFFICER from the Dorset & Wiltshire Fire & Rescue Service. The Liaison Officer shall be appointed by the Chief Fire Officer and Chief Executive. The Liaison Officer shall be ex-officio and without voting power. The quorum for a meeting of the Executive Committee shall be five voting members including the Chairman or Vice Chairman.

The Chairman of the association shall chair the Executive Committee, or, in his/her absence the Vice Chairman will take the chair. The Executive Committee shall have power to regulate its own proceedings and hold meetings at the direction of the Chairman, or, in his/her absence, the direction of the Vice Chairman. The Executive Committee shall have the power to co-opt and task sub-committees/working parties or members onto the Executive Committee, as deemed necessary, in order to progress development and policy matters.

4. MEMBERSHIP  To be eligible for membership, an applicant should normally satisfy the following criteria but, in all cases, admission into membership is at the discretion of the Executive Committee.

(a) Have served in a fire service in the United Kingdom, whether in an operational capacity or otherwise and have retired, resigned or retired on medical grounds. Except in the case of those in receipt of an ill health pension, the minimum period of qualifying service shall be FIVE years.

(b) Widows/widowers whose partners met the criteria in (a).

(c) Have paid the annual subscription as set by the Annual General Meeting.

(d) The Executive Committee shall have the power to bestow HONORARY MEMBERSHIP or HONORARY LIFE MEMBERSHIP upon any person as they deem appropriate.

(e) Allegations against any member of bringing the association into disrepute and/or serious misconduct of any kind shall be heard by a tribunal normally consisting of the Vice Chairman and two other Executive Committee members. The tribunal shall have the power to expel the member from the association. There shall be a right of appeal against the decision to expel. The appeal shall normally be heard by the Chairman and two other members of the Executive Committee that did not sit on the disciplinary tribunal that awarded the punishment of expulsion.

5. MEETINGS  The Annual General Meeting of the association shall normally be held in May or June. The quorum for the AGM shall be sixteen voting members. Voting shall be by show of hands or by ballot, to be determined by the chairman. Each member attending shall be entitled to one vote with the Chairman holding the casting vote in the event of a tie.

6. Notice of the date of the Annual General Meeting, together with an invitation to members to stand for election or re-election to the Executive Committee, shall be published on the association website ( and in the newsletter (The Branch) by the last day of February.
An Extraordinary General Meeting (quorum 16 voting members) may be convened by the Chairman or through a collective request submitted to the Secretary by any six members of the association. An application for an Extraordinary General Meeting must be submitted in writing to the Secretary at least 28 days before the intended date of the meeting. The Secretary shall give members 14 days notice stating the business to be transacted at the meeting.

7. FINANCE  The financial year of the association shall end on 31st March. The annual subscription shall be determined annually at the Annual General Meeting and shall be paid in advance.
The Executive Committee shall have authority to allocate the association’s funds as they deem necessary providing the expenditure is justifiable and in accordance with the aims and objectives of the association (see paragraph 2).
The Treasurer has delegated power, in consultation with the Chairman, to commit or spend up to £400 for the benefit of the association. The association shall maintain its own bank account and all funds belonging to the association shall be deposited and utilised through these accounts. Cheques shall only be drawn on the association’s account(s) if signed by two of the following three officers – Chairman, Vice Chairman, Treasurer.  The audited statement of accounts shall be submitted for the approval of the Annual General Meeting by the Treasurer.

8. AMENDMENTS TO THE CONSTITUTION  The constitution of the association shall only be revoked or amended at an Annual General Meeting or an Extraordinary General Meeting. Members shall receive 14 days notice of any meeting at which amendments to the constitution are proposed.

9. DISSOLUTION OF THE ASSOCIATION  The association shall not be dissolved except following an Extraordinary General Meeting called for that purpose at which two thirds of the voting members present vote for dissolution. The meeting that decided to dissolve the association shall also be responsible for determining how its assets are dispersed.

June 2019