Sign in to follow this  
Vic2

CPS committee changes debate

Recommended Posts

Flick,

There are several comments about the state of the CPS website in this thread and think that it is safe to say that members are typically not satisfied with it. Could I ask you to pass these views to the committee?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Vic's allegations are blatently untrue.

For the record - neither do I.

Well said and thank you.

Flick

Present Treasurer of the CPS

No, they're not. That's proven. Even the CPS Secretary confirmed it on this thread. The CPS is sitting on a mountain of members' cash - for years - with no plans to use it for CP conservation, one of your principal charitable objectives.

N.B. This is in no way a criticism of Flick, an excellent Treasurer.

If it wasn't for her sorting out the finances, the Society wouldn't even know it had many thousands of member's money for promoting its charitable aims.

It's what (isn't) being done with it - year after year after year - that is the problem.

Flick can't authorise spends without the Committee. And the Committee can't authorise spends without the definite approval of - you've guessed it :biggrin: - the Chairman, Vice-Chairman (and Trustees) of the CPS, the Rt. Hons Steve Cottell and Paul McKeown. Who can't be bothered to give their input.

Result: No initiatives by the CPS, for years.

All those attempted, e.g. a previous EEE in the UK proposed by members in the South-West (including Derek Clavell-Bate and Phil Wilson), withered from total lack of response from Chairman and Vice-Chairman when the Committee - which included me then - tried to get behind the idea.

Until Tim came along, teamed up with Dennis and effectively took on the roles of Chairman and Vice-Chairman. Hooray!! :clapping: The CPS, its members and the UK CP hobby owe you big time, boys! :yes:

I'm not going to bother with the rather desperate attempts to discredit me by Flick.

Simply a case of: If you can't attack the message, attack the messenger.

I will state - yet again - that I have never, ever told any untruths.

I have been very careful not to do so, as that would simply allow the CPS to

divert attention from the proven and appalling neglect by the CPS Chairman and Vice-Chairman.

Speaking of which... :rolleyes:

The CPS Chairman and Vice-Chairman have still not bothered to respond in any way in their own defence, or in defence of the Society they were elected to represent.

The evidence over several years confirms that Steve Cottell and Paul McKeown do not give one whit for their Society, other than what they can get out of it for themselves.

Steve and Paul like attending the Chelsea Flower Show and Gardener's World Live for free, arranging plants and chatting.

They have failed to attend Committee meetings and failed to respond to all attempts to contact them regarding CPS business.

But I have never, ever known them to fail to claim their free tickets.

Quod erat demonstrandum:

Seeing is believing.

Steve Cottell has till 28th March (today!!) to respond to serious allegations made by the Society.

I personally bet that he cannot even be bothered to reply and save his reputation, let alone the Society's.

IMHO, Steve Cottell is the worst Chairman the Society has ever had.

Soon to be proven yet again.

Vic

Edited by Vic2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I just thought I'd add a few comments as membership secretary.

Steve has been a tremendous chairman of the society for many years who has worked tirelessly for the good of the society.

Regards to all

Dennis

Regards to you too, Dennis :biggrin:

Sadly, I have to prove that what you said above is untrue.

At the Committee meeting before the 2009 AGM, Phil Wilson proposed a motion criticising the poor performance of Steve Cottell as CPS Chairman, which was seconded by Flick Foreman and myself.

This has been posted before and was unchallenged by the CPS. Probably because it's true :rolleyes:

I don't know why you're defending the CPS Chairman, Dennis, but you know he's an unmitigated disaster in this role. (We've talked about it in better times).

I admire your steadfast loyalty to him, but you must know it's misguided.

Would Steve raise a finger to defend you or the Society in return?

Will he or Paul come to your or the Society's aid on this thread?

I very much doubt it. They can't be bothered.

Go well, and the best of British with the EEE. (I'm still willing to help with the graft!!) :clapping:

Vic

Edited by Vic2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My opinion is .

I dropped out of the cps a while ago due to the fact the cps is in such a mess . My money is better spent being a sponsor of the forum where you get more benefits for your money .

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It may be better if this thread is quietly brought to a close. It seems to have degenerated into a slanging match in which no side is winning.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It may be better if this thread is quietly brought to a close. It seems to have degenerated into a slanging match in which no side is winning.

I disagree. Whilst there may be some 'slanging' going on, I believe that comments from others are valid and constructive, so should be allowed to continue. If the debate goes outside of the forums rules then it is the forum moderators role to intervene. Locking the thread could/would be seen as blockings peoples freedom of speech.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It may be better if this thread is quietly brought to a close. It seems to have degenerated into a slanging match in which no side is winning.

I disagree.

I do believe that the CPS website is dreadful and has been for quite some time. A total revamp could well attract new CPS members. However I don’t believe that the poor website is the whole problem. Attracting new members is one thing but will these new members continue to support a Society that has, in my experience, little or no regard for its Membership?

I can’t understand people supporting the present CPS Chairman when I know that his apparent disregard for the membership has lost the Society members. Any Society must be open to the views of its members and above all the Committee must be accessible to the membership. I realise that the Committee have lives outside the CPS and it may take time for them to reply to emails but it is simply not acceptable to ignore them. If you can’t find time to read and reply to member’s concerns and suggestions you should not be doing the job!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ah, here we go again. Just as the thread is gaining some positivity and progressing towards solutions for at least some of the CPS' problems along comes Vic to stir up a load of (insert your own word here) and start pointing the finger again.

Vic, rather than continually going over the same things time and time again how about just letting it go?! Maybe it's time to accept that as you're not a member the committee is under no obligation to answer any of your accusations and despite certain people not coming to the society's defence this in no way infers guilt.

Also, I take my hat off to Jerry and Carl for offering their time and skills. I'm glad to see that there are a few out there that can offer some constructive criticism and then their help to put things right rather than just point out faults. Unfortunately I have absolutely no expertise to offer but thanks again to all who give up their free time for mine and everyone else's benifit.

Dave

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Flick,

There are several comments about the state of the CPS website in this thread and think that it is safe to say that members are typically not satisfied with it. Could I ask you to pass these views to the committee?

Absolutely. I will email all the committee and also bring it up at the meeting before the AGM.

Regarding the prospect of holding the AGM further North, do any members have any ideas for suitable venues?

I'm glad to see that there are a few out there that can offer some constructive criticism and then their help to put things right rather than just point out faults. Unfortunately I have absolutely no expertise to offer but thanks again to all who give up their free time for mine and everyone else's benifit.

So am I. If everyone just keeps on critiscising, makes me wonder if I want to carry on, what is the point? I could just turn up at meets and events and buy plants.

Please don't say you have no expertise.........you enjoy carnivorous plants and want to help the Society, those are the only qualifications you need to volunteer. Most of us are in no way experts, we just do our best and give up our time. Some of us (not me) are clever though :-) We have vacancies for General Committee Members, why not put yourself forward?

Talking of potential General Committee Members, how would it be if we got them from different parts of the country? That way more districts and members would be represented at meetings and the AGM? Please come forward if you would be interested.

Vic, rather than continually going over the same things time and time again how about just letting it go?! Maybe it's time to accept that as you're not a member the committee is under no obligation to answer any of your accusations and despite certain people not coming to the society's defence this in no way infers guilt.

Well said!! Actually much better said than the words I was going to use. I have been thinking all day about how to express how I personally feel about Vic and his constant sniping. None of it could have been written here!

Go well, and the best of British with the EEE.

Does that mean you are not coming to the EEE Vic?

Flick

Present Treasurer CPS

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
If you can’t find time to read and reply to member’s concerns and suggestions you should not be doing the job!

I would like to thank the committee members who have taken the time to reply to this thread. I do get disheartened though when in the past I have attempted to contact other committee members and get no reply.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Talking of potential General Committee Members, how would it be if we got them from different parts of the country? That way more districts and members would be represented at meetings and the AGM? Please come forward if you would be interested.

Hi Flick,

What about Northern Ireland? I do not know of very many growers here, but there could well be more than I think. I don't know about the others, but I don't have the time and money to be flying back and forth to go to meetings. How could we be included in that case? Even for my family and I to go to England for the EEE, it requires a lot of planning and expense.

It can be very annoying when NI is left out of everything that goes on. Not that it is anyone's fault, but we are a little...separated from the rest of the UK, which is inconvenient.

Thanks for your time and the extensive replies you have been giving in this thread :smile:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

May I make a suggestion now. This thread has been running a while and looking through it there is a genuine will from present comittee members, non comittee members and newbies (me) to use our collective skills/talents/knowledge to enlighten the non CP world of our amazing plants. Can i suggest a new thread is started where we can discuss the website/Marketing with those that currently perform it and are hampered by time and those who want to help can get involved. Then this thread can continue on its "he said, you said...." way or we can agree that there can be no agreement - all stop sounding like an episode of Midsommer Murders and actually enjoy our friggin hobby as it enters Spring and if I dont see a seed germinate soon then this story will end with "............... and then he turned the gun on himself"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Ah, here we go again. Just as the thread is gaining some positivity and progressing towards solutions for at least some of the CPS' problems along comes Vic to stir up a load of (insert your own word here) and start pointing the finger again.

Vic, rather than continually going over the same things time and time again how about just letting it go?! Maybe it's time to accept that as you're not a member the committee is under no obligation to answer any of your accusations and despite certain people not coming to the society's defence this in no way infers guilt.

Also, I take my hat off to Jerry and Carl for offering their time and skills. I'm glad to see that there are a few out there that can offer some constructive criticism and then their help to put things right rather than just point out faults. Unfortunately I have absolutely no expertise to offer but thanks again to all who give up their free time for mine and everyone else's benifit.

Dave

With all due respect, I think you're missing the point, Dave.

The Yellow Brick Road to improvement has been travelled, in words, many times before in the CPS.

Good people have put forward good ideas, but - as in the classic definition of a Committee - the ideas have been led up a cul-de-sac and quietly strangled, just as soon as it reaches the point where a decision or action is required from the CPS Chairman or Vice-Chairman. :smile:

They have to leave their leadership roles and Trusteeships at the annual elections, if the CPS is to have any reasonable chance to implementing its good resolutions. This is a very sad fact of life, but history has shown it's true nontheless.

I was thinking about Jerry's really inspired post earlier :biggrin: and I did some research.

The idea of elections at the EEE, where most of the membership will be, is excellent, IMHO.

Sadly, Rule 12 of the Society's constitutional Rules (see 'em HERE) require that elections take place by May.

However, Rule 14 allows for members to vote at an AGM - or a Special General Meeting - to alter Rule 12 and extend the elections deadline to July and the EEE.

(Rule 15 allows for a Special General Meeting to be called at any time "if requested in writing by at least ten members of the Society." As described in Rule 14, an SGM doesn't have to be for dissolution of the Society - it can also be used to alter the Rules).

Is this a starting point for holding CPS elections by secret ballot - with the majority of the membership present - at the EEE, guys 'n' girls?

Hopeful of Letchworth :biggrin:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
May I make a suggestion now. This thread has been running a while and looking through it there is a genuine will from present comittee members, non comittee members and newbies (me) to use our collective skills/talents/knowledge to enlighten the non CP world of our amazing plants. Can i suggest a new thread is started where we can discuss the website/Marketing with those that currently perform it and are hampered by time and those who want to help can get involved.

Whilst I am willing to invest time in helping where I can, we would need agreement from the committee as a whole before considering any changes. Lets not forget that the CPS has an internet officers, so he would need to be in agreement before any changes to the website are made. It would be a pointless exercise developing ideas without agreement. This could be the stumbling block, as previously mentioned contacting certain committee members in nearly impossible. That is why I asked Flick if it could be brought up at the AGM.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi Flick,

What about Northern Ireland? I do not know of very many growers here, but there could well be more than I think. I don't know about the others, but I don't have the time and money to be flying back and forth to go to meetings. How could we be included in that case? Even for my family and I to go to England for the EEE, it requires a lot of planning and expense.

It can be very annoying when NI is left out of everything that goes on. Not that it is anyone's fault, but we are a little...separated from the rest of the UK, which is inconvenient.

Thanks for your time and the extensive replies you have been giving in this thread :smile:

Hi James

I apologise for not including Northern Ireland, my error. I am sure there are loads of growers and enthusiasts in Ireland. The CPS has given Conservation Funding, plants and personal assistance to the Peatland Conservation Council in Ireland.

Yes, of course you would be welcome as a a Committee member from Ireland - why indeed not? When we had a committee member from Scotland, there was a proposal to help with the cost of attending meetings - maybe not every one, but at least one a year. As a rule, none of the committee charge for attending meetings etc, but when the need arises, we help. The fuel costs for the trips to organise the EEE in Chester for example were paid for - not a problem. Before this is taken the wrong way, I am not for one minute suggesting that the committee get all their exotic travel expenses paid! Legitimate costs to attend the AGM and represent a community of members sounds good to me.

I hope that you join us.

Flick

Present Treasurer CPS

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The whole committee is up for re-election at the AGM. There are also vacancies and the opportunity to create new committee posts.

ANY MEMBER of the CPS can stand for election. The reason the committee usually get re-elected 'en masse' is because there are no other proposals.

If any CPS member is interested in standing for one of the currently filled positions - why not get a proposer and a seconder (shouldn't be too difficult among friends/colleagues from within the CPS community) and let the committee know by email or in writing?

And/or why not come forward as a General Committee Member from a geographical area or as an Internet Officer/Assistant or a Marketing Committee Member? The possibilities are many. Just state what post you would be interested in, introduce yourself and say what you would like to bring to the committee.

The proposals/emails/letters will be brought to the AGM and voted on. No problem.

Flick

Present Treasurer CPS

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi Flick,

What about Northern Ireland? I do not know of very many growers here, but there could well be more than I think. I don't know about the others, but I don't have the time and money to be flying back and forth to go to meetings. How could we be included in that case? Even for my family and I to go to England for the EEE, it requires a lot of planning and expense.

It can be very annoying when NI is left out of everything that goes on. Not that it is anyone's fault, but we are a little...separated from the rest of the UK, which is inconvenient.

Thanks for your time and the extensive replies you have been giving in this thread :smile:

James,

For a start you could join the committee as a general member. Although we hold official committee meetings several times a year a lot of committee business is conducted on a day to day basis by email. Given where you live we wouldn't expect you to make meetings. We had a similar situation some years ago when our journal editor was in Glasgow. We didn't see too much of him!

As for organising events and meetings that really is down to local members, assuming there are more than just you of course! Remember that we only officially organise two CPS meetings a year. The AGM and the end of the year meeting. Other open days and meetings are entirely organised by individual members. It's a bit of a vicious circle of course because without a network of open days people don't get interested in the plants and so on. It's no coincidence that you tend to get concentrations of members in the area where there are growers with large collections or commercial CP nurseries. The CPS can help with planning open days. We will publicise it for a start of course. We will also cover food expenses for any open days as long as they are held by non-commercial growers. And we can give plenty of advice. What we can't do is provide growers to come along!

Another question that members sometime ask is for details of growers in their area. Unfortunately as far as I'm aware the good old data protection act means we can't just give out other members' contact details. A shame really but I suppose some people wouldn't be too happy to have their details given out. We used to have a contacts and plant sales section in the newsletter but this really just turned into a place for advertising plant sales. Why not contact Tim and see if you can get something into the next Planta Carnivora?

For a while I've been pushing to get the AGM moved around various areas of the country. The major problem we come up with is locations. We really need local contacts to help here. Personally I'd like to see the AGM move around at least three locations in the country. The south east, the south west and the west midlands. I know that's not the whole country but it's a start. Birmingham seems to be a pretty good compromise for the north to me since it's a couple of hours drive from most of the country (though not all before all you northerners get your keyboards out!). I have a location here in the south west in Taunton, which again is more accessible for other parts of the country than say Cornwall.

If anyone has any more ideas on this we'd love to have them. If you know of a local school, village hall or something else that we could hire for the AGM for instance - preferably not too far off the beaten track! Public transport is useful but not essential. Wisely is only easily accessible by car after all. It is a sad fact that the majority of public organisations such as RHS Wisely are now so commerically orientated that they don't see the benefit of hosting organisations such as the CPS. We can and will pay of course and things such as plant sales can throw a massive spanner in the works.

I realise that holding the AGM in Birmingham for instance isn't going to help you much in Northern Ireland. Maybe one day we'll be able to have one in your part of the country. I've always wanted to visit Northern Ireland. :-)

Anyone who has any more ideas can post here of course or contact Flick or myself.

Phil

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Whilst I am willing to invest time in helping where I can, we would need agreement from the committee as a whole before considering any changes. Lets not forget that the CPS has an internet officers, so he would need to be in agreement before any changes to the website are made. It would be a pointless exercise developing ideas without agreement. This could be the stumbling block, as previously mentioned contacting certain committee members in nearly impossible. That is why I asked Flick if it could be brought up at the AGM.

Absoutely. We act as a committee and so we have to agree any action more serious than whether to drink one or two cups of coffee at a meeting. :-) Certainly Darren. our Internet officer would have to okay any group formed to look at the website and I would expect him to coordinate the group too. These sort of changes don't happen over night too. Any new website needs to be planned and jobs assigned. And there is the added complication that the committee needs to approve things and make suggestions from time to time.

Phil

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The whole committee is up for re-election at the AGM. There are also vacancies and the opportunity to create new committee posts.

ANY MEMBER of the CPS can stand for election. The reason the committee usually get re-elected 'en masse' is because there are no other proposals.

If any CPS member is interested in standing for one of the currently filled positions - why not get a proposer and a seconder (shouldn't be too difficult among friends/colleagues from within the CPS community) and let the committee know by email or in writing?

And/or why not come forward as a General Committee Member from a geographical area or as an Internet Officer/Assistant or a Marketing Committee Member? The possibilities are many. Just state what post you would be interested in, introduce yourself and say what you would like to bring to the committee.

The proposals/emails/letters will be brought to the AGM and voted on. No problem.

Flick

Present Treasurer CPS

Just to reiterate what Flick has already said. Committee elections have always been carried out by block vote because they have never been opposed before. But also it's to save time. With a fairly large committee it's a bit of a long and tedious process to elect every member one at a time.

But if there is a consensus at the AGM we can change this at any time. Personally I think we'd get more complaints if we spent the best part of an hour electing the committee one at a time. That's good plant buying and coffee drinking time going to waste!

Phil

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The reason the committee usually get re-elected 'en masse' is because there are no other proposals.

Flick

Present Treasurer CPS

Unfortunately, 'en masse' (block) voting means that the incredibly neglectful Chairman and de facto Vice-Chairman get to keep their posts and Trusteeships every year, by default.

For some reason - a wish to see all the posts filled, or the prestige and first pick at the free tickets, perhaps? - Steve and Paul always stand for Chairman and de facto Vice-Chairman, though they have proven that they no interest whatsoever in fulfilling these roles.

Better that the Chairman and de facto Vice-Chairman posts (and the associated Trustee positions) remain vacant, than occupied - and blocked - by amiable people who can't be bothered to do the jobs, and so screw the Society in the process.

Vic

Edited by Vic2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi James

I apologise for not including Northern Ireland, my error. I am sure there are loads of growers and enthusiasts in Ireland. The CPS has given Conservation Funding, plants and personal assistance to the Peatland Conservation Council in Ireland.

Yes, of course you would be welcome as a a Committee member from Ireland - why indeed not? When we had a committee member from Scotland, there was a proposal to help with the cost of attending meetings - maybe not every one, but at least one a year. As a rule, none of the committee charge for attending meetings etc, but when the need arises, we help. The fuel costs for the trips to organise the EEE in Chester for example were paid for - not a problem. Before this is taken the wrong way, I am not for one minute suggesting that the committee get all their exotic travel expenses paid! Legitimate costs to attend the AGM and represent a community of members sounds good to me.

I hope that you join us.

Flick

Present Treasurer CPS

Well of course the conservation funding was for an organisation in the Republic of Ireland but that's close enough geographically, if not politically. :smile:

If my memory serves me right, any committee member can claim traveling expenses though only one person has ever done so. Not even our ex-journal editor in Scotland claimed travelling on the odd occasion that he made the journey south.

Phil

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I hope that you join us.

Flick

Present Treasurer CPS

Cor... can I join, too? :biggrin:

I'm told I did a good job as Internet Officer :yes:

Aieee!! :shout:

Please, please, don't hurt me... it was just an idea, for pity's sake... :smile:

Cowering-in-the-Nuclear-Bunker of Letchworth :biggrin:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
With all due respect, I think you're missing the point, Dave.

Well with all due respect I think you're wrong Vic!

The Yellow Brick Road to improvement has been travelled, in words, many times before in the CPS.

Good people have put forward good ideas, but - as in the classic definition of a Committee - the ideas have been led up a cul-de-sac and quietly strangled, just as soon as it reaches the point where a decision or action is required from the CPS Chairman or Vice-Chairman.

So what good ideas have been put forward that have been led up a cul-de-sac and quietly strangled then? If you had any idea about how a committee works you would realise that committees can and do reach decisions every day without the input of the chairman. In fact the only special voting and decision making that a chairman has to make is that he or she has the casting vote in the event that the committee is unable to reach a majority vote. Certainly the chairman and (sic) vice-chairman have no authority to prevent the committee from taking a decision. The committee works as a democracy.

And as for the comment about the vice-chairman, this is yet another vacuous untruth wrapped up to make it seem fact. As it happens the CPS does not have and to my knowledge has never had a Vice Chairman. Oh dear - is this a sign that the cracks are starting to appear when Vic has to make up committee posts to attack them?

Sadly, Rule 12 of the Society's constitutional Rules (see 'em HERE) require that elections take place by May.

This is correct of course.

Yes rule changes can be submitted 21 days in advance of the AGM or Special Meeting to me, as general secretary and if ten members request, we can call a special meeting. So if there are ten members who think it a good use of society time and funds to change the AGM to Chester Zoo then you know what to do.

Is this a starting point for holding CPS elections by secret ballot - with the majority of the membership present - at the EEE, guys 'n' girls?

Always glad to expose yet another lie wrapped up as fact from Vic. There are no CPS elections by secret ballot as he knows this perfectly well since he was in fact at one point an elected member of the committee.

Phil

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Absoutely. We act as a committee and so we have to agree any action more serious than whether to drink one or two cups of coffee at a meeting. :-) Certainly Darren. our Internet officer would have to okay any group formed to look at the website and I would expect him to coordinate the group too. These sort of changes don't happen over night too. Any new website needs to be planned and jobs assigned. And there is the added complication that the committee needs to approve things and make suggestions from time to time.

Phil

Phil, do you agree that in general that the website needs updating?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Better that the Chairman and de facto Vice-Chairman posts (and the associated Trustee positions) remain vacant.

Vic,

Given the chance, do you think that anyone else would stand for these positions?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
Sign in to follow this