The WSL Band 2014 AGM was held at the Neville Hall on 15th January, with about 20 members attending. This was the first AGM to be held in January, rather than November, as agreed at the preceding AGM in November 2012.
Reports from the Chairman, MD and Secretary noted that 2013, though lacking the extra activity of 2012's royal jubilee, had been a busy year, with 15 public engagements and a very successful trip to visit our friends in Germany. The band had performed twice at a new venue, Henley Bandstand, and quality of performances had been good, with just one exception due to poor turnout. There had only been one indoor public concert. This not only had an impact on income, but also reduced the focus on thorough rehearsal of a programme, which was regrettable. The further reorganization of carolling rounds was appreciated. Carolling income was somewhat down on the previous year, partly due to poor weather that led to two routes being abandoned and an indoor version of "Carols Round the Pound".
The May trip to Germany in the centenary year of our exchange partners Musikverein Friesheim had been a success, despite the difficulties caused by the collapse of the coach company that was originally booked to transport us there, and a fire at the village 'Westminster' pub where members of the two bands habitually congregate. Dates for the visit and opportunities for performances had been constrained by other local events. Nevertheless, a good time was had by all, and the joint open-air concert in Lechenich went very well amidst heavy rain showers. The AGM agreed to set up a separate fund to support the exchange, which has been launched with a generous contribution from a member.
Membership stood at 25. Three members had left in the course of the year, and there was one new recruit. There was a long debate at the meeting about connection between what is rehearsed, how it is rehearsed, and the influence on attendance and general motivation, and this gave everyone food for thought. There was a consensus that the band should try to promote itself by organizing more concerts, and that this would make rehearsals more focused and probably improve attendance.
The Treasurer's report noted that the band once again made a cash profit in 2012-2013 (the financial year running from 1st October). Depreciation of assets meant there was again a loss overall, though less than the previous year's.
The meeting voiced the band's appreciation of the efforts by Howard Lunn to look after equipment and uniforms. Dave Oakes was thanked for his work as Treasurer, and especially for continuing this work despite eye problems. Natalie Harvey's work on updating the library was noted. Those present were unanimous in their thanks to Jane Lynn for her work as chairman, and in particular for making the visit to Germany a success despite all the odds.