The Committee Meeting held Wed 14th January 2004

Prior to the main meeting a sub-committee met at the President's house to consider our application to the "Awards for All" scheme. The intention is for the Society to run a series of workshops on digital photography and its allied subjects.

To make this possible it is necessary to acquire a club electronic projector, lap-top (ie portable) computer and associated software. A variety of advantages would then accrue. It would assist us in raising the general expertise of club members in the digital field. The workshops would be widely advertised and we would expect an increased club membership to result. It would be possible to display "digital prints" in a similar manner to slides. Members could prepare short presentations at home on their own computer, save them to CD, and then play the results for all to see. In particular, members could prepare short presentations to present to the audience at the beginning of a Digital Workshop and run them prior to the session being thrown open for general discussion on the topic in hand. It would be an obvious resource to use if the club was invited to show its wares to the general public, through presentations to schools and osocieties. Tony Redford reported on contacts he had made which would allow us the use of a top quality projector at our imminent annual exhibition. The plan was to photograph (digitally) all digital prints entered for the inter-club digital competition and display them in turn on the large screen as the judge considered the actual print on the Print box. This would be a great opportunity to assess the finer points of the electronic projector.

Gordon Robson reported on plans for the Annual Exhibition. Judging (by Keith Brown) would take place on Sunday 18th January. We expected to receive Sponsorship from BaseCamp, KeeJet, Bob Rigby, Hodder Paper and Board, and Jessops. It was questioned whether Jessop's £25 offer was sufficiently large to make it worth accepting. Gordon agreed to follow this up. Jonathan Bawden had agreed to look after the trophy side of the event, retrieving trophies and organising their appearance on the night. Tony Redford had organised the team of helpers for the two competition nights. It was agreed to charge 20p for the programmes. This would reduce wastage, and encourage the audience to retain their programmes for a second night. Joyce reported on the wording of the new Alan Adshead trophy to be awarded to the winning club of the Digital Club Competition. Estelle would provide the cash floats. Bill Chadband would provide Radio Microphones for the Judges/Speakers.

Richard Scaife reported on progress with next Session's syllabus. He had included six evenings of "Digital Workshops" on the assumption that our bid would be successful. Richard had circulated slips to members inviting them to offer an evening, half an evening, or smaller contributions to the programme, and he awaited members responses. Discussion then widened to how best we could serve diverse members interests and how we encouraged new members. It was noted that several newcomers had been seen at earlier meetings but they had not returned. Our President, Joyce Streets, had made a special effort to encourage new members, but it was not usually clear what they wanted from the club. Some suggested that newcomers were often keen to talk to someone about newly acquired cameras and that our meetings generally did not offer much time (at the tea break) to deal with such things. An alternative might be to encourage a 7.30 start with general announcements and discussion programmed into the session, though it was not clear that newcomers would turn up early enough to make use of such an arrangement. We could perhaps ensure that spare copies of the session programme, and Focus were available for immediate distribution to all newcomers to encourage them back. The Methodist Hall would not be available in future on a Tuesday evening, but in any case was acoustically very poor. Richard agreed to investigate the Community Centre up the road, and the new Church Hall near the cross-roads as possible alternative venues (as an alternative to the small room we have been forced to use at the beginning of each month).

Frank Hutchinson reported on his recent publicity ventures. Colin Pickles invited comments re the Christmas Dinner. It was agreed that though the food was excellent and the evening an enjoyable one, the restricted space was a problem we should face for next year.

The next committee meeting was fixed for Thursday 26th February at the Robson's House.

Bill Chadband