Constitution

ABBEY HEY ALLOTMENT SOCIETY
(formerly Ackroyd Avenue Allotment Society)
CONSTITUTION

1. NAME The name of the Society shall be Abbey Hey Allotment Society

2. AIMS & OBJECTIVES
a. To defend and promote all member’s legitimate interests and activities in the field of allotment gardening.
b. To work with the City Council to manage the allotments effectively and fairly, and to maintain and improve facilities.
c. To provide a facility for all members only to purchase horticultural supplies at a minimum cost.
d. To provide support, mentoring and advice (if requested) particularly for new members.
e. To encourage biodiversity and gardening methods which do not harm the environment generally and actively promote a healthy and safe surrounding for members and their families.
f. To develop links with groups and organisations with common interests locally and nationally.

3. MEMBERSHIP
a. Membership of the Society is open to all individuals and organisations sharing the above Aims and Objectives, subject to the approval of the Committee.
b. Only members who are also plot holders at Abbey Hey Allotment Site, and have agreed to abide by the Society’s rules are entitled to vote. However Members may submit a ballot form to the Society to be received at an agreed time for the AGM & EGM. All other meetings if members wish to vote they must attend.
c. Membership subscriptions shall be determined at an AGM and become due on 1st November each year. Membership shall cease if the annual subscription is more than 30 days overdue, or on the death, resignation or expulsion of an individual member. On the death of a member the Council shall be informed.
d. An up-to-date register of members shall be kept by the Secretary, containing current addresses and telephone numbers, which members must provide.

4. MEETINGS
a. Annual General Meeting (AGM) to be held between 1st – 30th May each year after at least 14 days notice to all members, to receive audited accounts and reports by Officers and Committee, to elect new Officers and Committee, and to consider any other matters relevant to annual meeting.
b. Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) may be held within 28 days of a request in writing from at least 12 voting members, to the committee, who may also call such a meeting with 28 days notice to members if they deem it necessary.
c. The quorum for a General Meeting shall be 20% of members entitled to vote. The Chairman shall have a casting vote.

5. OFFICERS & COMMITTEE
a. The voting members present at the AGM shall elect a Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer as Officers of the Society, plus nine other members (three from each site) to form a Management Committee, and shall also appoint an auditor who must not be a Committee member.
b. All Officers and Committee members shall relinquish office each year, but be eligible for re-election.
c. The Committee shall have the power to co-opt further members, in the event of vacancies arising or special circumstances, and opt to appoint sub-committees.
d. After election Officers shall carry out the business of the Society, subject to the approval of the Committee, which shall meet to discuss at least five times a year, with a quorum of eight.

6. FINANCE
a. The Society shall have an appropriate bank account, payments from which must be authorised by two out of four signatories (the three Officers plus one other member). Payments to the Society should only be taken by the Chair, Secretary or Treasurer. Stores handling will only be dealt with by the elected Store Manager and a record shall be kept of all monies received.
b. The Treasurer shall prepare a brief summary of the Society’s finances for each monthly meeting, and a detailed, audited annual statement of accounts for the AGM.
c. Any substantial or accumulated surplus of income over expenses shall be used for the benefit of the Society.

7. AFFILIATIONS
The Society may affiliate to any organisation sharing its aims and objectives, such affiliations to be decided by the Committee and presented to the membership for approval. Membership of any affiliation must be proposed and agreed at the AGM.

8. APPEALS
a. Any voting members wishing to challenge a decision made by the Officers of the Society or the Committee (eg. in the event of an expulsion from the Society), may, initially, appeal to the Chairperson of the Committee, who will raise the matter at a Committee meeting, and if still not satisfied, may appeal to a general meeting of the Society, but to no other organisation.
b. A request to the City Council to terminate the tenancy will automatically follow expulsion. The plot holder may only appeal to the City Council against termination of tenancy.

9. AMMENDMENTS
This Constitution may only be revised or amended by a two thirds majority of those members entitled to vote (i.e. plot holders) present at the AGM or an EGM of the Society, all members having been notified of the proposed change at least 14 days before the meeting.

10. EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES
The Society operates an equal opportunities policy for all existing members, and for those wishing to become members, and will avoid any discrimination on the grounds of age, class, employment, disability, politics, race, religion or gender.

11. DISSOLUTION
The Society shall only be dissolved by a motion passed and attested to by the signatures of at least three quarters of the voting members. Any assets or surplus fund on dissolution shall be distributed equally among the voting members, or handed over to another group or organisation with similar aims as might be recommended by the Association of Manchester Allotment Societies, as agreed by a majority of members present.