Alcester Helicopter Club Constitution and Club Rules

Alcester Helicopter Club Constitution BMFA club No 0654

1. The club shall be called the Alcester Helicopter Club and will be affiliated to the British Model Flying Association.
2. The clubs principal aim shall be the promotion of safe and responsible model helicopter flying.
3. All members, without exception must obey all club rules. Failure to do so may result in disciplinary action by the Club which may lead to dismissal.
4. All members must be members of the BMFA and must be able to provide evidence of such on request. The only exception to this is for those members who play no active part in the club whatsoever; i.e. social members only, all flying members must comply with the CAA’s operator and pilot ID requirements .
5. When there is a joint meeting between the Alcester Helicopter Club and another club, the participating club must provide evidence of adequate insurance cover well in advance of the event, if the said club is not affiliated to the BMFA then each individual member of the said club must provide evidence of insurance cover; i.e. BMFA membership.
6. Members may invite guest fliers to the site on arrangement with the Executive Committee but they must be BMFA insured (or equivalent) and the club member must assume total responsibility for the actions and safety of the guest. Guests must fly under supervision of instructors if their ability requires it, and such arrangements must be made in advance of the visit. Guest fliers may only fly at the site for a maximum of 3 sessions per club year (August-July) after which they must become a member of the club to fly.
7. A “member” means any class of membership.
8. A member may be made a life member for extensive services to the club. Life members can only be created by a majority ballot of club members at a general meeting.
9. The committee has the right to refuse membership to new applicants and refuse membership renewal.
10. New members will be required to serve an initial probationary period of 6 months. During this time they will not be eligible to serve on the committee and may have their membership terminated at the discretion of the committee for unsatisfactory conduct.
11. New members’ subscriptions shall be subject to status, plus the joining fee and key deposit as decided at the AGM.
12. Members who have allowed their subscription to lapse for less than one year will not normally be asked to re-apply for membership but may be subject to the payment of the joining fee, but will be required to pay the full 12 months subscription if the maximum membership number has not been reached. For new members a reduced subscription will apply from March when they will be reduced to a fee agreed by the committee. The committee reserve the right to ask for a formal membership application if it so wishes.
13. Persons letting their membership lapse for 1 year or more will be required to re-apply for membership and pay the joining fee on their return to the club. The maximum membership will be 30 flying members unless a vote at a general meeting allows an increase in numbers.
14. All field safety rules and regulations will be reviewed at least annually, and will be considered binding for 12 months, excepting where urgent action is required. This action must then be ratified by the Committee at the next club meeting or at a general meeting. The field safety rules are considered as a supplementary code to those laid out by the BMFA’s Membership Handbook, compliance with which is mandatory within the Alcester Helicopter Club.
15. Any complaint concerning any member must be made in writing and signed by the complainant(s). The written complaint must then be forwarded to the Secretary so that the matter can be addressed at the next committee meeting, if the secretary is unavailable to receive the complaint then it must be handed to the club Chairperson.
16. The committee may impose a flying suspension not exceeding 60 days upon any member in the event of misconduct. Any suspension must be accompanied by a verbal and/or a written warning as deemed appropriate in accordance with Article 17.
17. The committee may consider removal from the role of member’s ant member who’s conduct on the field or elsewhere is considered to be prejudicial to the club. Dismissal will be in accordance with the following procedure in order to comply with the laws of natural justice: A. The member is to be given a verbal warning by an authorised Committee Member to advise him of his misdemeanour and what he is reasonably required to do to make amends. B. If the member does not respond, he is to be given a written warning by an authorised Committee Member to advise him of his misdemeanour and what he is reasonably required to do to make amends. C. If he still fails to respond, the Committee should invite him in writing to meet with them at a previously agreed date and time to discuss the situation, advising they are considering withdrawal of his membership. D. If he still fails to respond to reasoning or fails to attend without reasonable cause, the Committee can advise him in writing that his membership is withdrawn, stating the reasons why this decision was reached. E. When the member is advised of withdrawal of his membership, he must be given the right of appeal. If he opts to appeal, this will be to the Club membership at an EGM which the Committee would call on his behalf at a previously agreed date and time (this would normally be the next club meeting). The motion to uphold the membership withdrawal or reverse it must be in accordance with the voting procedures set out in the Club Constitution. . In the event of gross misconduct, immediate dismissal without warnings may be considered but the member must still be accorded his rights to present his case to the Committee and be given a right of appeal in accordance with sub-paragraphs C, D and E above. . In the event of dismissal the Committee will arrange for the member’s current membership fee to be reimbursed to the nearest 1/12 of the fee to the remaining time left to the renewal date.
18. Any alteration to this Constitution can only be made at a General Meeting called for the purpose. Any proposed alterations must be submitted to the secretary in writing at least 14 days prior to the meeting. FLYING
19. The Committee, officers and instructors, will be responsible for the running of the flying field at all times. Appointment to the position of Instructor or Examiner can only be made by a Committee decision.
20. All flying members must attain the minimum standards of flying required under the Alcester Helicopter Club training scheme before receiving the BMFA ‘A’ Certificate and being allowed to fly indirectly supervised. The minimum standard will be the correct use of the peg board, be able to start the machine in a safe manner, carry the machine out to the take off point in a safe manner and be aware of other flyers around him.
21. Any member whose flying standards drop below the minimum requirement solo standard will be required to re-join the training scheme until the desired standards are met. COMMITTEE
22. The Committee of the club shall comprise of not more than 5 members, including the Executive Committee. A quorum of any Committee meeting shall consist of a majority of Committee Members.
23. The Executive Committee shall consist of three officers. These shall be Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer. The other two members at a Committee Meeting can be made up of a club member elected by the membership to represent the membership (these may not be the same two members at each meeting)
24. One senior club member can be appointed on an annual basis as the club’s BMFA Delegate who may represent the club at all relevant meetings; the clubs committee can also represent the club if needed.
25. Any Committee member or members who fly’s and is involved in any organisational position within the club, must hold membership of the BMFA, none flying members do not need BMFA membership but are advised to become a member of the BMFA.
26. Committee members shall be elected from written or verbal nominations, at the AGM, to serve for a period of one year. The Committee will be elected by majority vote by a show of hands from eligible members present.
27. Should a committee position become vacant, the Committee may co-opt a replacement who will then serve until the following AGM. This will be from a majority vote from the Committee members; the Committee can also call an EGM to elect a new committee member from the membership.
28. Members elected to office will have full voting rights at all meetings. In the event of a tie the Chairman will have the casting vote which will be a final decision.
29. The Executive committee reserve the right to carry out negotiations and make decisions in the interest of the club or on behalf of the membership where necessary without consulting the other Committee members, but must inform the committee at the earliest convenience.
30. Each Executive is required to submit a sample of his signature for banking purposes.
31. Money may only be withdrawn from the fund by cheque signed by not less than two Executive Officers.
32. The secretary must be informed of any negotiations proposed by club members which affect the Club as a whole and copies of ant written correspondence must be submitted to him for record purposes.
33. The secretary will receive an annual honorarium to cover out of pocket expenses not covered under the normal conditions of withdrawal from club funds, the amount of which will be decided at the AGM. He may also present a quarterly claim towards telephone costs for consideration by the Committee, all phone calls must be logged with dates and to whom called and the phone bill presented showing these calls, any pay as you go mobile calls must have the dates and whom called to a maximum of £10 per quarter unless the secretary tells the committee that the sum has been exceeded.
34. No member of the Committee or officer of the club may be a Committee Member or officer of another model flying club without permission of the AHC club membership
35. Any Committee Member or Officer wishing to resign should do so in writing.
36. Any member of the Committee who is absent from three consecutive Committee meetings without reasonable cause will automatically forfeit his seat on the Committee.
37. The Committee may pay accounts and incur any normal liabilities on behalf of the club. If a Committee Member engages or becomes involved in court proceedings, whether criminal or civil in his representative capacity on behalf of the club, as opposed to his capacity as a private individual, the club will indemnify the Committee Member in respect of any fines or damages or costs awarded against the Committee Member.
38. In the event of a Committee Member being awarded damages or costs in the course of proceedings taken by him in his representative capacity, such damages or costs belong to the Club and not the Committee Member personally and upon receipt that Committee Member will pay them to the Club Treasurer. VOTING AND CONDUCT OF MEETINGS
39. All meetings will be minuted. Any other business will be accepted at general meetings if the member attends in person.
40. A quorum of any general meeting is to be at least 3 members providing there is enough membership numbers to cover the amount of persons
41. Voting will normally be by a show of hands; however, a secret ballot must be taken should any member request that this is done. Proxy and postal votes will not be allowed.
42. All proposals must be seconded and voted upon. A majority vote is required to carry any proposal.
43. Amendments to proposals must be voted upon first.
44. Non committee members may attend committee meetings as observers. Any non Committee Member may be asked to leave the meeting subject to approval from the Committee.
45. Non club members may attend Club meetings as observers as invited guests of the club by applying to any Committee Member. Any non Club member may be asked to leave the meeting subject to approval from the Committee.
46. The Committee, through the Chairman has the power to ask a person to leave any meeting in the event of that person disrupting the meeting.
47. Patrons of the club have no voting rights but are free to attend all club meetings. . . ANNUAL GENERAL MEETINGS
48. A convenient date for the Annual General Meeting will be decided each year by the Committee (normally the first Monday in February). At least 28 days notice will be given in writing to all Club members.
49. Annual subscriptions and the joining fee will be decided at the AGM.
50. Subscriptions are due by the 1st August each year. Any member who has not paid the subscriptions for the ensuing year by this date, in whole or in part, will not be allowed to fly until they have done so. BMFA membership must be in place before flying.
51. An Auditor or Auditors shall be elected by the Clubs Committee to examine the accounts before the AGM to verify that the balance sheet is correct and fairly represents the expenditure and receipts of the club, its assets and its liabilities. EXTRAORDINARY MEETINGS
52. The Secretary will convene an EGM within 14 days on request from any member of the Executive Committee, stating the business to be discussed.
53. The Secretary shall convene an EGM of the club a resolution of the Committee stating the business to be brought before the meeting, of which 14 days notice has been given to all members in writing, email, text or phone call stating the business to be discussed.
54. The Secretary shall convene an EGM of the club on receipt of a request in writing signed by not less than 3 members of the club, stating the business to be brought before the meeting, of which 14 days notice has been given to all members in writing stating the business to be discussed.
55. When a request for a meeting is made in accordance with Article 54 and it is not called within 28 days, the requisitioners may themselves convene an EGM of the Club by giving 14 days notice in writing to all members, duly setting out the purpose for which the meeting was called. Any resolutions passed at such a meeting shall have the same force and effect as if they were passed at a meeting convened by the Committee. DISSOLUTION OF THE CLUB
56. Should it be considered necessary or desirable to dissolve the Club, the Committee will call an EGM. Should a quorum fail to appear, the meeting will be adjourned and a further EGM must be called. The second meeting will proceed even if a quorum is not present and the motion will then be carried by a simple majority vote.
57. On dissolution and after the sale of the assets by open auction, settlement of all outstanding debts and the refund of subscriptions for the remaining part of the year to be paid up members, the funds remaining will be distributed in equal shares to the Club’s paid up members.
58. If the final accounts are less than required to refund the subscriptions to the members, the total money remaining will be divided equally between the fully paid up members.
59. Any single member can carry on the club’s business and retain the clubs name and BMFA status even if the majority of the membership decide to leave the club

60. In the event of low membership numbers the clubs officers can remain in office until such times an increase in membership allow a full vote, a club officer can on behalf of the club sponsor the flying sites field rent , this will give the member the casting vote on any matter arising , and once a full  membership with a secure and financially viable state the member will gain an honorary  membership.

61. In the event of a single member covering the majority of the field rent then the said member can use his/her own bank account for the collection of the clubs fees (if the amount received exceeds the field rent then the next annual club fee will be accordingly adjusted )

62.Theclub will comply with any change to the ANO or model flying regulations within the UK


The club will follow the OCI and BMFA recommendations on data protection held within the clubs Privacy Policy
The club will follow the guidelines to comply with the proposed changes in air navigation with regards to flying model aircraft under the EASA regulations when they are finalised and active
The club will comply at all time with the Air Navigation Order
1. The club should, whenever possible, support local charity events when asked. i.e. school summer fairs, firework displays, etc. Whenever it is practicable to provide a relevant display of what we do. Whether or not money changes hands largely depends on the circumstances around which the event is based. These conditions should be finalised well before the day of such an event.
2. Only money raised at these events should be made available to donate to worthy causes. No money will be diverted from the member’s subscriptions unless agreed to at a General meeting by a majority vote.
3. In the event that the Club is approached for sponsorship of a member or their close associate who is involved in a charity event, the Club members will make a decision on the amount to be donated subject to the balance of the clubs funds.
4. The Club reserves the right to periodically donate funds to charities. The amounts and gaining charities must be agreed by majority vote at a general meeting.
5. The current Club charities are: – The Warwickshire and Northamptonshire Air Ambulance and the County Air Ambulance and St John’s Ambulance.

Closure of the Club
1. in the event of the club closing all funds will be donated to the clubs chosen charities
2. if the club closes all equipment in serviceable order will be valued and offered to club members to purchase
3. with closure of the club any member that has loaned/donated funds or equipment and the clubs accounts are at zero or in a negative insolvent state then that member will be given any equipment available to meet the debt, if the valve of the equipment is less than the loan the member shall accept the items as full and final payment

1. All fliers must observe field discipline and comply with the Air Navigation Order (this can be found on the CAA web site),all relevant BMFA safety codes as contained within the BMFA Member’s hand book and Civil Aviation publication (CAP) 658.
2. On matters of field safety needing an immediate decision, the responsibility lies with instructors, examiners, a member of the Executive Committee or two committee members, in that order. Any instructions must be accepted without dissent. However, should a member believe the instructions to be wrong, then he should bring this to the attention of the Committee through Article15 of the Constitution. All club members are deemed to be safety officers.
3. Any pilot not holding their solo qualification for the type of aircraft they are flying must not fly without supervision of an instructor or their specially appointed deputy if the instructors are absent from the field. If no instructors are present at the site, a Committee Member or any member holding the BMFA ‘A’ Certificate may act as an appointed deputy until an instructor arrives.
4. Due consideration must be given at all times to trainee or novice pilots in the circuit. In the event that the pleasure or concentration of a pilot is affected by the flying style of another pilot, precedence will be given to the pilot who was airborne first. Intimidating flying of any sort is not permitted.
5. No more than 5 aircraft will be airborne at any one time unless noise is perceived to be unacceptable then the number will be reduced.
6. All flying is to be done in the designated areas only. No flying over the pits, parked cars or the public highway. All flying is restricted to a maximum of 400 feet from ground level what ever type or size of model flown, all pilots must land if any low flying full size aircraft is approaching the flying site.
7. All fliers must observe the established flight line and stand in the designated areas whilst flying. Any variation to suit daily conditions may be made by the Club’s safety officers. Any spectators must remain in the pits/spectator area whilst flying is in progress.
8. Any person wishing to enter or cross the runway area must seek clearance from any pilots flying at the time before doing so.
9. All vehicles must be parked in the designated areas only.
10. All members will be allocated their own 35 MHz frequency and this must be obeyed at all times and a named peg must be placed on the peg board whilst flying/operating transmitters, 2.4 GHz users should place a peg on the 2.4GHz peg board next to their name. The club membership will be limited to 30 so no duplication of 35 MHz flying channels occur, with the general demise of the 35MHZ frequency and with the majority using the 2.4GHz spread spectrum frequency the use of a peg board for 2.4 GHz is now relaxed and not needed, however if there is an influx of 35MHz in operation then the limits on membership and peg board use will be as per the first opening statement and the amendment will be disregarded
11. All transmitters are to be checked if malfunction is suspected. Any Tx found to be crossing over onto other channels is not to be used until the fault has been rectified. It is recommended that a range check is to be done after any hard landing or crash repair on a model.
12. Before switching on, the pilot must ensure that he is operating on the frequency he believes he is on and may display the appropriate frequency as a Tx pennant as well as the named peg on the peg board.
13. Frequency numbers must be called out before the Tx in question is switched on.
14. All radio equipment must be approved for use in the UK, any over sea’s guest must have radio equipment suitable for use in the UK as for