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The Times They Are A-Changin’...

New Chairman's update - November 2022

The Club has come a long way over the last 2 years to become one that, I believe, we can all be extremely proud of. Steve Dawes, our outgoing chairman, and his team of committee members deserve a huge amount of credit for all of their hard work, which has completely transformed the Club.

But it’s time for some changes, and with effect from yesterday's Annual General Meeting (AGM), there are now a few new faces on the committee, as some existing members have decided to stand down and others have taken their place. A big ‘thank you’ goes to Steve, who is now our Club President and also to Alan Alewood, Graham Morrisson and Pete Booroff, who are leaving the committee, for all you have achieved.

I am really proud to have been confirmed as your new Chairman at the meeting, and we now also have Marwood Jeans as your Treasurer, David Lillystone as your Ride Events Lead and Gary Cook as your Welfare Officer.

Although there have been changes, the direction of travel remains the same – with the aim of making the club as good as it can possibly be for you all.

Our Survey Said:

In September we asked for your opinions as part of the Member Survey. Over 70% of you responded and provided us with an amazing level of detail about what you like and what you think we can do better. You gave your views and we listened – and as a result, the committee has big plans for 2023. This will involve refining and fine-tuning what we currently do, as well as introducing some new ideas too, to ensure we offer a fantastic solution for all of our current and prospective members. Work is already underway and you should start to see some early changes pretty soon.

Casting the Net Wider:

All of these good things only happen through the efforts of a relatively small number of people within the Club. It would be unthinkable if we let these individuals burn themselves out or lose interest, as the end result would be a much poorer club. So over the coming months we want to increase the number of people involved in organising and supporting club activities, and better share around some of the workload.

In the member survey over 90% of you indicated that you were willing to support one or more different activities, and we now need to turn this from a willingness into action. Our aim is to identify a variety of opportunities ranging from leading specific activities to providing support, and we will share with you details of what we are looking for. The intention is that none of these roles are particularly time-consuming, but the cumulative effect of many people doing a small amount is to share the work more widely.

We have 3 immediate opportunities that we are looking to fill:

  1. Social Secretary – this is not as daunting as it may sound, as the intention is to build a team to support social events, so that no one has too large a role – and we already have a number of people volunteering to support. But there does need to be someone to coordinate things, and that’s what we are looking for.

  2. Training Coordinator(s) – As we roll out training to our Ride Leaders, we need someone to support Shaun Ward, our Member Development Lead, in finding suitable venues for the courses, liaising with these venue teams, sending invitations, chasing attendees, etc.

  3. Coach – this role will support Shaun Ward in delivering Induction training to new and inexperienced members, covering a range of group riding skills. You will receive training in the British Cycling Level 1 Award in Coaching Cycling, and the expectation is that you will support 3-hour training sessions approximately once a quarter.

Please don’t just assume that someone else will step up for these roles. We really do need more of you to volunteer a small amount of yourtime. If you would like further details, please let me know.

Read All About It:

The survey told us that members want to know more about what is going on in the Club, and so I will be sending out a regular update, which will include what’s happening across the club, new developments, things the committee are working on behind the scenes, what’s coming up in the next month and areas where we need your help.

Your input will help to make this an engaging read, so if you are involved in anything that you believe others should know about, please send me details.

So what’s happening at the moment?

Things you hopefully didn't miss in October:

  • 49 different rides, at a variety of paces, over the month

  • Our 'Come And Try IT' (CATI) event on 02 October

  • The last Time Trial of the season on 05 October (apart from our Boxing Day TT)

  • The 5 counties charity cycle ride on 17 October

  • Our Curry & Quiz Night at the Bowlers Arms on Friday 21 October

  • The visit to Calshot Velodrome on 28 October

  • The opportunity to buy club kit at a discounted rate through our second supplier, Nopinz

And in November:

  • Our virtual Team Time Trial Team will race every Thursday evening. If you are keen to join, please contact Steve Dawes or myself

  • We are running first aid courses targeted at Ride Leaders during November. There are still spaces on the second course, so if you are interested in attending please contact Shaun Ward

  • The new committee has its first meeting on 08 November

  • Remembrance Day rides on Sunday 13 November

  • The Kalas Club Kit Shop is now open until Monday 14 November. This is your opportunity to buy from the excellent range of cold-weather, winter gear, including winter jackets, gilets, bib tights, etc. Any kit ordered will be delivered around mid-January

  • Work to plan a Festival of Cycling in Newbury, as part of our Centenary celebrations, will continue. The aim is to collaborate with a wide range of other cycling organisations to jointly deliver an amazing festival, and we are currently establishing a cross-organisation Steering Group to lead this activity which will meet towards the end of November

  • And of course we have around 42 Emerald, Green, Blue, Red and Black rides running during the week and on Sundays

What do you think?

Please let me know what you think of the Chairman’s update. It’s there to be informative and interesting, so if you can think of any ways it can be improved, please let me know.

Chris Matthews


November 2022



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