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Showing content with the highest reputation since 02/25/2019 in all areas

  1. 6 points
    Hi If you don't know me my name is Dennis Balsdon and I was Mrs Bell's predecessor as Chair of the CPS. In the past few years: We have hosted the European CP Exhibition and Exchange. We have hosted the International Plant Society Conference at Kew Gardens which was attended by Sir David Attenbdorough and over 160 of the leading botanists and growers from around the world at which we made a profit in excess of £5000. We have introduced new CP events and shows at RHS Wisley, RHS Harlow Carr, RHS Rosemoor, RHS Tatton Park, The National Botanical Garden of Wales and at Birmingham Botanical Gardens. Members of the committee have given over 200 talks at garden clubs and at other institutions including the RHS. For the last two years we have been invited to the RHS Chelsea Garden Show at which we won silver gilt medals. We have made grants from our conservation fund to 6 organisations both in the UK and overseas which are involved in plant/habitat conservation. We took over the CPUK forum when it was in danger of folding. We have tried to promote our relationship with the UK's commercial growers. We have maintained our membership numbers at over 300 for the last ten years at a time when many specialist plant societies are shedding members. All this has been done by a dedicated group of volunteers who give of their time, expertise and in many cases their own money in order to enable the Society to achieve its objectives. Some of these volunteers have served on the committee for decades. For part of this time Mrs Bell filled a number of minor roles on the committee. We have always had difficulty in recruiting new members onto the committee (particularly for the position Chair) but in the last year we have managed to recruit a new membership secretary, a new seed bank organiser and a new conservation officer (Loakesy). Late last year I decided that due to my advancing age and health issues it was time that a younger person took over from me. Mrs Bell volunteered to be Chair and was elected by unanimous vote of the remaining committee. I was elected by the committee to be a non-executive trustee of the Society. Mrs Bell was appointed as a trustee by virtue of being the Chair. Following her appointment as Chair I pointed out to Mrs Bell administrative issues which I thought needed to be improved and she had the support of me and the committee in making those improvements. Mrs Bell then undertook a review of the Society's procedures but rather than make those changes in cooperation with the committee she decided to write to the Charity Commission in which she claimed that the Society was so badly administered that she wished to dissolve it and form a new organisation to replace it. She has stated on many occasions that the Commission had approved this action but has not been able to produce evidence of this approval. She then proposed that a Special General Meeting be held with the aim of dissolving the Society. It was at this stage that opposition to her arose from the committee members. She then persuaded me to resign as a trustee implying that this was supported by the committee. This was not true. She also persuaded Tim Bailey (my predecessor) and Flick Foreman (a past treasurer) to also resign as trustees. The only other remaining trustee was Phil Wilson (the current treasurer) who refused to resign. In this letter she made a number of accusations to the effect that the Society was so badly administered that it should be dissolved and replaced by a new organisation, that there were financial irregularities, that decisions were improperly made and that we had no records of those decisions. Taking these points in turn: I and the committee accepted that some changes to our administrative practices needed to be made; there have been NO financial irregularities, all expenditure has been made in furtherance of the Society's objectives, receipts are held for all expenditure and the accounts are published at the AGM and End of Season meetings; the committee is spread out across the country and 99% of all decisions are made via email. We have these emails going back at least 10 years. During her time on the committee Mrs Bell took part in these decisions. We have the minutes of all AGMs except for 2017 and 2018. This was a recognised oversight. As a trustee Mrs Bell had access to the the Society's file on the Charity Commission website. She changed the password to this file so that the other trustee could not access it. Despite not having any agreement from the Charity Commission for her actions she wrote to the Commission stating that she was appointing four new trustees (one of whom is not a member of the Society) and that she and they would form a "board" to takeover the Society. She has repeatedly stated that she has approval for this action from the Commission but has but is unable to produce it despite many requests. The committee passed a vote of no confidence in Mrs Bell and removed her as Chair. She was replaced as Chair by Phil Wilson who will serve until we can find permanent replacement. She has ignored this vote and now describes herself as de facto chair and de facto trustee. Her actions have brought the Society into disrepute to the detriment of its reputation, its members and the achievement of its charitable objectives. I know that the committee is determined to defend the Society. Dennis
  2. 4 points
    I must have missed the fb post,but would be interested to see what is going off. It's always been good to get things out in the open to stop Chinese whispers and get both sides so everyone gets a fair chance to have their say. Ada
  3. 3 points
    I remember a few years ago going to a Kew open day where not many people turned up. But while waiting to go in a couple of the committe members who did not not introduce themselves but spent the whole time bad mouthing other committe members. Not a very impressived show! And had seen similar siturations at a CPS Reading meeting. Been in too many clubs and societies where Big Name members or organisers seemed to more important than the ordinary member... So hopefully any changes will be for the better not more of the same just with different people!
  4. 3 points
    new rules to run the society better are welcome at any time,but who has been accused of what? names please,proof? many of the people who give their time freely are genuine people trying to do a job,many miles apart from others and getting together can be awkward. I'm all for moving forward and modernising but totally against being dictated to by one person or a committee ran by the old friends network when you don't know who is pulling the strings. The problem is anyone who takes any position has to make decisions that won't suit all people,all of the time. Then the bickering starts and that's why anyone with any sense keeps well out of it,so in the end its everyones fault and we get what we deserve. and the answer is NO. ada
  5. 2 points
    There has been a facebook post outlining issues, some serious, within the CPS committee. The post also provided corrective actions that have been proposed. However, the post also indicated that differences of opinion with a number of current committee members. Rather than respond in facebook I thought CPUK may be more appropriate. A) Could the membership be fully informed of the reputed issues? B) I would like to see the views of those accused of bringing the CPS into disrepute? C) I would like to see the proposals in detail for the corrective action with timescales? I've been a member for a long time. I'm as keen as everbody else to see this sorted but transparency and member backing are essential for this, and the society, to suceed. Cheers
  6. 2 points
    Admin note: I've merged the two topics relating to this matter together in their entirety. Anyone can post. Forum rules (2004) apply.
  7. 2 points
    This is a personal response and not on behalf of the Committee. I am sure that we will also have a formal response from the Committee in due course. WITHOUT PREJUDICE To start with I would like to state that I agree with many of the intentions that Annette initially stated as aspects of the CPS that she wanted to review. The website for example does look dated and clunky and really does need a makeover/restart. I have only been on the committee a relatively short while and I hope that everyone who knows me would understand that I have only ever tried to work to the benefit of the Society and members. I certainly don’t have any long standing personal disagreements with anyone. I believe that all and any actions that I have ever taken were within the law and also within the remit of the governing document. I will of course continue to work within remit of the governing document of the Society and will also absolutely respect the written advice of the Charity Commission. I have no concerns about long standing, respected members such as Stephen Morley joining the executive of the Society but conversations with the Charity Commission have raised concerns about how this was done. Personally I am unclear how we have reached this point. However I do want to understand this. Today I have submitted written instructions to start a formal process under UK law to clarify the statements made above by Annette as I have not yet seen any evidence to support these, despite repeated requests. I have no wish to tarnish the reputation of anyone involved but I will pass on the results of this process to the wider membership in due course so that we can have absolute clarity on these issues. Regards, Steve
  8. 2 points
    2019 turns out to be a good season for the largest catapult-flypaper trap. The catapults fling prey in 75 milliseconds, faster than the VFT. Now, the plants are flowering nicely at our greenhouse.
  9. 2 points
    I had an early morning delivery a couple of weeks ago Finally all finished, I hope to move my plants tomorrow
  10. 2 points
    Dear all, I will post and update information about lectures prepared on EEE 2019 in Prague here. Exact dates and times have not been chosen yet, but will be in advance. The lecture hall has more than 100 seats, so it should be large enough, and we are not going to demand any registrations for the lectures. Confirmed lectures: Dr. Tomáš Hájek: The fate of peatbogs during the dry years and their future in the changing climate Oliver Gluch: Winter flowering Pinguicula species - impressions from natural habitats in Mexico Dr. Lubomír Adamec: Ecophysiological characterization of aquatic carnivorous plants: are they different from terrestrial ones? We are looking forward all of you in June! Adam Veleba
  11. 2 points
    I made this some years ago. I'm sure you will agree it turned out rather nice.
  12. 1 point
    Better airflow and strong light. Happened to me until i did that
  13. 1 point
    Thanks for the various responses - hopefully this won't run on Facebook and I invite both sides to present their case to the membership, with supporting evidence, at their earliest opportunity.
  14. 1 point
    We will be doing so.
  15. 1 point
    Norfolk Island pine - Araucaria heterophylla
  16. 1 point
  17. 1 point
    Biloba "Moolooaba" is flowering!
  18. 1 point
    No, that soil will be fine, it is almost new! Many people mix up a large batch of compost for their plants, put the mix in a bin of some kind or bag and then use from it throughout the season and it can last many months without problems even when it is kept damp. So go ahead and use your compost, you should not have any problems. Rob
  19. 1 point
  20. 1 point
  21. 1 point
    Very nice,won,t be long before its full
  22. 1 point
    Welcome Justin.
  23. 1 point
    Hi Justin, welcome to the forum.
  24. 1 point
    Here is a link to my Nepenthes Tenuis viscous fluid video.
  25. 1 point
    What's disgusting about this matter is this seller as done this many times before and gets away with it . On top of this that seller is a sponsor of this forum and the moderators know about all this and done nothing to protect future buyers on this forum .