Friends of Siegerland

Friends of Siegerland AGM minutes April 18th 2018 6pm – held at The Red Lion’s meeting room

Present: Keith Dyall, Clive and Beryl Gullick, Ken and Ann Holmes, Ann Aslangul, Jim Regan, Irene and Wilf Nichols, Laure Bardouillet, Christian Schwarz, Eva Roberts, Michael Baker, Mary Peters.

Apologies:  Leila Salzedo, Lorely Atkinson, Harry Branchdale, Helen Massey, Michel Aslangul

In his chairman’s report Keith mentioned the very successful visit of the Siegerlanders to England last year.  The group visited Kenwood house with a walk from there, across Hampstead Heath, to Hampstead.  This was followed by our welcome dinner at Izgara in Whetstone.  As well as many members, this was also attended by the Mayor, Brian Salinger and his Mayoress Kate.  The restaurant kindly presented them with a big bouquet.

After the two free days at the weekend we spent the Monday at the Docklands Museum with lunch at the Ledger Building followed by a walk around the Docklands.  Tuesday was spent at Kew gardens.  Before travelling home we met up to eat the two cakes kindly brought by Laure. We had our farewell dinner at Fresh Fry.  All events were much enjoyed and well attended.  We were also blessed with good weather.  The only downside was that Jochen, one of our visitors was not well and Keith had to miss a lot of the visit. This was a very great pity.

Since then we have started to have a series of social and/or fundraising events, such as the dinner prepared by Irene and Laure, and a lunchtime soups and desserts followed by a raffle.    There will be a walk coming up in June and tea and cakes in July, plus of course the visit to Siegerland in May, all in 2018.

Sadly, we are inevitably losing some members who have been very active and of key importance in the past.  Len Harvey, who was the chairman before Keith, passed away recently.  Barbara Oldham is also no longer able to participate.  She has been a key member for many years.  However on a brighter note, Keith who has had a very difficult year for various health reasons is now improving.

Having got the website set up and the leaflets and posters printed, a major focus is now on the urgent need for recruitment, especially of younger people, and we need to be active in getting the message out!  A number of positive suggestions were made at the AGM which we will now act on. These are the use of High Living Barnet and also having a stall at the Barnet Christmas Fair, when the High Street is closed.   Other helpful, practical suggestions are always welcome.)

The treasurer’s report showed that we need to work hard to maintain current levels of finance but nevertheless we are in a healthy state.  Many thanks to our German friends for a kind donation.

The membership secretary’s report showed that our membership has remained steady though it is important of course that we grow!  Membership remains at £5 for individuals or families.

Election of committee

Beryl Gullick has decided to stand down from the committee where she has worked hard for many years.  She has organized an enormous number of social and fundraising events.  Together with Barbara, this was how the group fundraised for many years.  We are very grateful to them both for all of this work.  Luckily Beryl has said that despite leaving the committee she is still happy to help in other ways.  Also leaving the committee is Michel Aslangul, for the time being at least, as he has many other commitments.  We wish him well with those. The committee now consists of:

Chair : Keith Dyall

Secretary: Irene Nichols

Treasurer: Clive Gullick

Membership Secretary:  Ann Aslangul

Last but by no means least: Laure Bardouillet.  The committee is smaller but for the membership it is enough.

We all stayed to enjoy a meal together.  This is a very important part of the AGM!

Many thanks to all who attended.                                                                 Irene Nichols (secretary)

Friends of Siegerland