Probus Club emerges successfully from Coronavirus

At the Bishopsteignton Probus Club AGM, members elected Peter Hartley as chairman and David Carpenter-Clawson as vice chairman. The outgoing chairman, Baz Carpenter, said that when elected two years ago, he was daunted by the task because previous chairmen had done an excellent job. However, he was quickly reassured by the smooth way the first few months went with good speakers and topics, increased club membership and a super Christmas Lunch at the Cockhaven Arms.

However, as the Club entered the New Year, much of the country closed down due to Coronavirus and because
members could not attend gatherings, the committee had to make decisions to ensure the Club thrived. Firstly, it was decided to introduce zoom meetings at which members could watch presentations on their home computers. Later, when subscriptions were due, the committee agreed to cancel the 2021-22 subscriptions because some club members were unable or were uninterested in watching zoom presentations. As outgoing chairman, Baz Carpenter generously paid for and presented to the Club a banner stand featuring photos of the club’s many activities.

At the recent AGM, the Honorary treasurer Tony Corlett explained to club members that deciding on a subscription-free year reduced significantly the Club reserves because although the club did not pay for a venue for meetings, payments were made for speakers, zoom licenses, and other expenses. He proposed an increase in annual subscriptions and members voted unanimously for an increase to £35,

The chairman and club members were very appreciative of the Programme Secretary, Henry Merritt, for providing an excellent range of speakers and topics during Covid, especially as several clubs had been inactive during that time. He then presented the list of fortnightly speakers and topics for the forthcoming year, including a presentation entitled, “Make Mine a Morgan” by Alex Sulley on 2nd November and “Day Sailing to Stockholm” by Roger Saunders on 16th November. Although it is a men’s club, wives are invited to selected presentations and to all visits and meals, including the forthcoming Christmas Lunch.

Attached photo: Outgoing Probus chairman, on left, hands over the chairman’s chain, to Peter Hartley.

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