AGM 2021

Letter from the Committee

Dear Member(s) August 2021

As you are aware, John Smith resigned as Chairman due to ill health at the end of 2020. We are pleased to report that he is now in fit and well but is taking at a slower pace! We continued to operate as a Corporate Committee and, as we approach our 2021 Annual General Meeting (14 October 2021), we would like to thank all our members most sincerely for their continued support during an extremely difficult time. We are sorry that not all members have been able to access our lectures via Zoom – the video communications platform unheard of at the beginning of 2020, but now a tried and tested way of “meeting” friends and relatives on-line.

The Committee very much hopes it can look forward to your continued support in 2022 at a reduced annual membership fee of £30 per person (from £45 in 2019). Bearing in mind that £14.00 of every subscription goes to “The Arts Society” (the operating name of the National Association of Decorative and Fine Arts Societies) we feel that this is excellent value to include ten lectures and a quarterly magazine. Attached are details of our 2020 Programme of lectures, and two Special Interest events this year, which we hope you will find interesting and encourage you to join us – hopefully face-to-face, after such a challenging time over the last 18 months. The Committee continues to explore other events and Visits but this continues to be difficult as entrance to venues and coach travel remains restricted. We will keep you posted and hope to be able to update you soon.

The Arts Society” will not be issuing membership cards in future following a decisive poll who voted overwhelmingly to discontine the cards. It is, however, is planning an “awareness campaign” during September and October to increase membership so if you know of a friend or relative who would like to join the Society, please invite them to one of our lectures at the special “visitor” price of £5 per person, per lecture.

When we look back over the last ten years our Committee comprised thirteen members, including a Chairman. Our Treasurer, Stephen Knott, is stepping down at our AGM and Margaret Wicks has been nominated as his replacement. The Committee has been indebted to Stephen for his help and guidance over the last four years and is very grateful to Margaret for agreeing to take on a new role. We now have only six Committee members, and without a Chairman or Vice Chairman, although we are extremely fortunate to have the help and guidance of Laurence Shafe (Website), James Moore, Spencer Needs (IT/Zoom), Lindy Wilson (MailChimp) and Val Goodhart-Riley. We are grateful to them all; without them we simply could not function. We are evermore keen for volunteers and would appeal to anyone to help us continue to function as a Society, especially for teas, when we revert to normal lectures once more! Please talk to a member of the Committee for more information (details on your Programme card).

During the year we have remained in touch with Elmbridge Borough Council concerning Hersham Village Hall, following its abrupt closure in 2017. The Hall continues to be licensed as a Covid test centre, so any decision is still on hold. However, All Saints Church Hall has undergone some (much-needed) repairs and continues to update the Hall and its facilities. We will advise you as soon as we know where and when we will meet.

Because of the uncertainty of a venue for our meetings, at the time of writing we are unable to confirm the location of Special Interest events in September or December so these will be held via Zoom. On 16 September 2021 we will welcome Linda Smith to tell us more about “Great Tarts in Art” and on 2 December our Festive SID will be with Sandy Burnett “From Tchaikovsky to Tin Pan Alley”.

The Arts Society” offered to help Member Societies support their arts locally with a Community Grant of £250 to donate to a local arts cause. TASW was very happy to propose Riverhouse Barn and we are delighted to confirm that the award has now been granted to the Barn.

We do hope you will complete the attached renewal form and look forward to seeing you either face-to-face or via Zoom in the near future.

Treasurer’s Report and Accounts 2020-2021

The year, even from the financial perspective of the Society, has been dominated by the effects of the restrictions arising from the COVID epidemic. In mid-2019, when we were planning for the year 2020/21 it was difficult for the Society to predict how COVID restrictions would affect the operation of the Society. Would we be able to return to “live” lectures, visits and special interest days or would there be a significant future period when
they would be in abeyance? We had to plan financially for both scenarios and the renewal fee was set accordingly.

In the event, the COVID restrictions precluded any “live” events in the year. There have been no “live” lectures, special interest days or visits. The Committee have, of course, done the very best they can to provide “online” events that have been interesting and well received.

From a financial viewpoint, this has relieved the Society of payments for hall hire, the expenses associated with “live” lectures and other expenses such as speaker’s travel expenses. We therefore ended the year with a surplus that we could not have expected at the start.

On the other hand, there has been a significant reduction in membership numbers. Membership numbers are key to our health. They provide not only the funds we need to function but also allows well attended lectures, visits and special interest days as well as providing the funds.

It is for these reasons that we have set the 2021/22 subscription at £30.00 per member. It recognises that members have not received the quality “live” lectures that we previously have provided and uses our reserves to subsidise such lectures that we hope to see next year. Bearing in mind that about 50% of this subscription will be passed to The Arts Society itself, it means that for about £15.00 for the year, members will, COVID permitting, have the range of interesting and lively lectures that we have provided in the past.

We hope you will continue to support us.

Stephen Knott
Hon Treasurer
July 2021


The Nineteenth Annual General Meeting will be held at 2pm on 14th October 2021

(Voting will be on-line or by paper voting)


  1. Apologies for absence.
  2. To agree the Minutes of the Annual General Meeting held on 10 October 2020
  3. To receive and approve the Committee’s Report.
  4. To receive the Accounts for the year ended 31 March 2021.
  5. To elect the Officers of the Society for the forthcoming year.
  6. To elect the Committee of the Society.
  7. To elect a Financial Examiner of the Accounts for the year beginning 1 April 2021.

The Officer of the Society standing for election under item 5 above is:

Honorary Treasurer Mrs Margret Wicks

The Officer of the Society standing for re-election under item 5 above is
Honorary Secretary Mrs Diane Ball

The members of the Committee standing for re-election under item 6 above are:
Mrs Sue Hughes, Mrs Alison Lornie, Miss Margaret Sale, Mrs Valerie Woolford

The Financial Examiner of the Accounts nominated for re-election under item 7 above is:
Mr Peter Hare

Yes No Ordinary Resolutions
To receive and approve the Committee’s Report
To receive and approve the Accounts of the year ended 31 March 2021
To elect the Officers of the Society for the forthcoming year
To elect the Committee of the Society
To elect a Financial Examiner of the Accounts for the year beginning 1 April 2021

Diane Ball

Secretary TASW


Copyright The Arts Society Walton, 2017
Canaletto (Giovanni Antonio Canal), A View of Walton Bridge, 1754, by permission of the trustees of Dulwich Picture Gallery, London