FoRS – Friends of Ramsgate Seafront

Our Constitution

1. Name
1.1 The name of the group shall be Friends of Ramsgate Seafront (FoRS).
2. Aims & Objectives
2.1 The aims and objectives of the group shall be to:
• Protect and encourage the use of Ramsgate Seafront and Open Spaces
• Promote a sense of community around the area of Ramsgate Seafront
• Protect, enhance and preserve a safe environment for flora and fauna and to promote such schemes as will benefit and nurture wildlife
• Keep all group members of The Friends of Ramsgate Seafront informed of relevant developments
• Raise funds to support the activities of the group
• Act in respect of any proposal that is contrary to our aims and objectives
• Work towards and actively support community, social and environmentally sustainable developments that enhance and allow regeneration of Ramsgate seafront
3. Powers
3.1 In order to achieve its aims and objectives the group may:
• Raise money;
• Open bank accounts;
• Acquire and manage buildings;
• Take out insurance;
• Employ staff and contract for services;
• Organise events;
• Do anything that is lawful which will help to fulfill its aims.
4. Membership
4.1 Membership is open to any person aged over 18, or corporate bodies or associations interested in furthering the group aims and objectives.
4.2 Membership of the group shall be open to any individual over eighteen without regards to disability, political or religious affiliation, race, sex or sexual orientation who is interested in helping FoRS to achieve its aim and willing to abide by the rules of the group.
4.3 Junior membership is available.
5. Membership Admission procedures
5.1 The Management Committee may:
• require applications for membership to be made in any reasonable way that they decide;
• refuse an application for membership if they believe that it is in the best interests of FoRS for them to do so.
6. Role of members
6.1 It is the role of each member of FoRS to positively promote the aims and objectives of the group.
6.2 Members have the right to vote at General meetings.
7. Termination of membership
7.1 Membership of FoRS comes to an end if:
• the member dies, or, in the case of an organisation (or the representative of an organisation) that organisation ceases to exist;
• the member sends a notice of resignation to the Management Committee;
• any sum of money owed by the member to the group is not paid in full within six months of its falling due;
• the Management Committee decides that it is in the best interests of the group that the member in question should be removed from membership, and passes a resolution to that effect.
7.2 Before the Management Committee take any decision to remove someone from membership they must:
• Inform the member of the reasons why it is proposed to remove him/her/it;
• Give the member at least 21 clear days’ notice in which to make representations to the Management Committee as to why he/she/it should not be removed from membership;
• At a duly constituted meeting of the Management Committee, consider whether or not the member should be removed from membership.
8. Membership fees
8.1 The organisation may require members to pay membership fees.
9. Management
9.1 FoRS shall be administered by a Management Committee of not less than 5 and not more than 9 individuals elected at any point throughout the year as vacancies arise.
9.2 The Officers of the Management Committee shall be: the Chairperson, the Vice Chairperson, the Treasurer and the Secretary.
9.3 Members will be disqualified from holding an Officer role (Chair, Vice-Chair, Treasurer, Secretary) if they have been convicted at any time of any offence involving deception or dishonesty, unless the conviction is legally regarded as spent.
9.4 The Management Committee may co-opt on to the Committee individuals that they feel will help to fulfill the aim of the group, not exceeding the maximum set out in this constitution.
9.5 The Management Committee shall meet at least six times a year.
9.6 At least three Management Committee members must be present to form a quorum for a Management Committee meeting to take place.
9.7 Voting at Management Committee meetings shall be by a show of hands. If there is a tied vote then the Chairperson will have a deciding vote.
10. Duties of the Officers
10.1 The duties of the Chairperson are to:
chair meetings;
• represent FoRS at public functions/meetings that the organisation has been invited to,
• act as spokesperson for FoRS when necessary.
10.2 The duties of the Secretary are to:
• prepare in consultation with the Chairperson the agenda for meetings of the Management Committee and General meetings;
• take and keep minutes of all meetings,
• collect and circulate any relevant information.
• attend to any correspondence and if necessary bring to the attention of the Management Committee or relevant officer.
10.3 The duties of the Treasurer are to:
• supervise the financial affairs of FoRS;
• apply for and manage external funding;
• keep proper accounts that show all monies received and paid out by the organisation.
11. Retirement and removal of Management Committee members
Any Management Committee member ceases to hold office if he/she:
• resigns by notifying FoRS in writing to the Management Committee;
• is absent without good reason and/or without notifying the Management Committee from 3 consecutive meetings;
• dies,
• has become physically or mentally incapable of acting as a Management Committee member and may remain so for more than three months.
12. Finance
12.1 All monies received by or on behalf of FoRS shall be applied to further the aim of the organisation and for no other purpose.
12.2 Any bank accounts opened for the organisation shall be in the name of the Friends of Ramsgate Seafront.
12.3 Any cheques issued shall be signed by the Treasurer and one other nominated member of the Management Committee.
12.4 FoRS shall ensure that its accounts are independently examined every year.
12.5 FoRS shall produce annual accounts in the month of March.
13. Annual General Meeting
13.1 FoRS shall hold an Annual General Meeting (A.G.M.) each year.
13.2 All members shall be given at least fourteen days notice of the A.G.M. and shall be entitled to attend and vote.
13.3 The business of the A.G.M. shall include:
• receiving a report from the Chairperson on the organisation’s activities over the last year;
• receiving a report from the Treasurer on the finances of the organisation;
• electing a new Management Committee,
• considering any other matter as may be decided.
14. General meetings
14.1 The Management Committee shall hold however many General meetings throughout the year that they consider conducive to realising the aims of the group.
15. Alterations to the Constitution
15.1 Any changes to the Constitution must be agreed by at least two-thirds of those members present and voting at any General Meeting.
16. Dissolution
16.1 The Group may be wound up at any time if agreed by three-quarters or 75% of those members present and voting at any General Meeting. In the event of winding up, any assets remaining after all debts have been paid shall be given to another community group with a similar aim.
17. Adoption of the Constitution
17.1 Until the next AGM takes place the persons whose names and signatures appear at the bottom of this document shall act as the Management Committee referred to in this Constitution.
Name   Signed   Dated

Friends of Ramsgate Seafront (FoRS)
Code of Conduct for Management Committee members

It is the responsibility of Management Committee members to :
• Act within the constitution and the law – being aware of the contents of the group’s governing document and the law as it applies to The Friends of Ramsgate Seafront.
• Act in the best interests of the group as a whole – considering what is best for the group and its beneficiaries and avoiding bringing the group into disrepute.
• Manage conflicts of interest effectively – registering, declaring and resolving conflicts of interest. Not gaining materially or financially unless specifically authorised to do so.
• Respect confidentiality – understanding what confidentiality means in practice for the group, its Management Committee and the individuals involved in it.
• Have a sound and up-to-date knowledge of the group and its environment – understanding how the group works and the environment within which it operates.
• Attend meetings and other appointments or give apologies – considering other ways of engaging with the management committee if unable to attend committee meeting(s).
• Prepare fully for meetings and all work for the group – reading papers, querying anything you do not understand and thinking through issues in good time before meetings.
• Arrive at meetings on time and stay until the end where possible.
• Actively engage in discussion, debate and voting in meetings – contributing positively, listening carefully, challenging sensitively and avoiding conflict.
• Act respectfully with all – respecting diversity, different roles and boundaries and avoiding giving offence.

Management Committee members are expected to honour the content and spirit of this code.