Constitution

Adopted by Steering Group, meeting Tuesday 6th June, 2006 at Kingsford Hall, Cryol Road, Ashford.

NAME

  1. The name of the community forum will be South Ashford Community Forum

OBJECTS & FUNCTIONS

  1. The objects and function of the community forum will be
    • To find out and represent the needs and aspirations of the community and to work with private, statutory and voluntary bodies to take any action as appropriate.
    • To promote community spirit within the Community Forum boundaries (the community area as shown on the attached map).
    • To be a means whereby the community is able to voice opinions on local matters, which affect their lives and wellbeing.
    • To raise money and other resources necessary for fulfilment of the above.

    The Community Forum will be non-party in politics and non-sectarian in religion.

MEMBERSHIP

  1. Membership of the Community Forum is open to all residents within the community area and those working within the community area in a paid or unpaid capacity).
  2. There shall be a Standing Committee elected from the membership of the Forum at the Forum Annual General Meeting. The Standing Committee will consist of a Chair, Treasurer and Secretary plus a minimum of two and a maximum of twelve others. They will be elected at the Annual General Meeting to serve for two years but will be eligible for re-election if they so wish. Half of those elected will come up for election at each AGM. (hence of those elected at the first AGM half will stand for re-election after one year).
  3. The Forum and Standing Committee may invite advisors, professionals, members of the public to address or attend meetings of the Forum and/or Standing Committee, depending on the matters to be discussed. Such individuals are not allowed to vote but can support and advise the Forum.

ORDINARY MEETINGS

  1. The Community Forum will be promoted widely and hold regular meetings. It will be as democratic and open about its business as possible It will keep written records and minutes of all meetings. The minutes will be presented to the next meeting for approval, Any resident of the community area has the right to see any minutes of Community Forum meetings.
  2. At least five Standing Committee members must be present in order to take a decision on behalf of the Forum. The Forum aims to work by consensus but where this is not possible, decisions will be taken by majority vote (other than changes to this constitution).
  3. All meetings of the Forum will be conducted in a manner of mutual respect, regardless of opinions, race, sex, religion, sexuality, disability or an other personal characteristics. The Forum will do its best to overcome any obstacles to people giving their view or getting involved in the Forum.

ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING

  1. Once each year the forum will hold an Annual General Meeting. Written notice and an opportunity to nominate people for officers and committee will be widely publicised within the community area. At this meeting the existing committee will present a report of the forum’s activities including accounts for the year, and half of the existing committees will stand down. The officers and committee for the next year will be elected by majority vote. Nominations for the Standing Committee will be signed by the nominated person and the proposer and seconder. Any amendments to the constitution must be made at the Annual General Meeting and must be agreed by two thirds of the members present. At least eleven forum members must be present for any vote to be valid.
  2. If nobody is willing to stand for election, the Forum will decide whether to start procedures to conclude the operation of the Forum, It is the responsibility of the existing committee to recruit a new committee or dissolve the Forum

DISSOLUTION

  1. The forum may only be dissolved at a public meeting where the future of the forum has been clearly publicised on the agenda in advance of the meeting. A proposal to dissolve the forum will only be carried if agreed by two thirds of the members present or if the forum is unable to form a committee. On dissolution the funds of the Forum will become the property of Ashford Borough Council who shall also be responsible for its liabilities.

FINANCE

  1. The forum can raise money as it sees fit so long as it is spent in line with the forum’s objects and functions. The forum will open a bank account in its name and nominate three signatories (not from the same household) of whom any two will be able to sign cheques. The treasurer will keep financial records and ensure auditing of yearly accounts.

A copy of the Constitution can be downloaded from our Publications page