MERCHANT NAVY ASSOCIATION BOAT CLUB ROYAL DORSET YACHT CLUB, 11 CUSTOM HOUSE QUAY, WEYMOUTH DT4 8BG 12 JULY 20171.MeetingThe meeting opened at 14.00 hours. The Commodore welcomed members to the seventh MNABC Annual General Meeting also Captain John Rose, Director (Maritime), CHIRP and Malcolm Wright MBE, RNLI Operations Manager, Weymouth. He expressed his thanks to RNLI Weymouth Coxswain Andy Sargent for the morning conducted tour for members, around the station including the Severn Class Lifeboat “Ernest and Mabel” which proved very interesting.Paul Compton was thanked for arranging the Royal Dorset Yacht (RYDC) as the meeting venue and to their staff for providing an excellent buffet.The attendees introduced themselves to the meeting.2.PresentMembers: C Edwards (Commodore & Chairman), R Anderton (Rear Commodore), T Brant (Secretary), D Hearn (Membership Secretary & Webmaster), P Compton, S Donnelly and R Ellison.3.Apologies for AbsenceApologies were received from:J Booth, D Buckpitt, P Clarke, F Corlett, R Jobson, D Jones, P Kennedy, J Mountain, M Mathison, G Peaston, E Pepper, J Sail (Rear Commodore), N Whitaker, A Williams, Mrs C Williams and C Woods (Vice Commodore).4.Minutes of the last Annual General MeetingThe Minutes were proposed by D Hearn and seconded by R Anderton.5.Matters arising from the last Annual General Meeting5.1Website - The Chairman thanked David Hearn for his continued excellent work on the website.5.2Defaced Red Ensign – No progess had been made. Information had been received that permission was not required for a defaced Red Ensign – Commodore to investigate.6.Commodore’s ReportCommodore’s report – can be read HERE. The report was accepted. He thanked Rod Anderton for providing a MNABC pennant for the Commodore’s boat and another for flying at the Royal Dorset Yacht Club. At midday, the Commodore and Seamus Donnelly had sailed their boats through the opened Town Bridge flying MNABC pennants and moored at the RYDC.In the Weymouth area, the MNABC would be working closer to the RNLI and the Maritime Volunteer Service. 7.Committee The Commodore thanked the Committee members for their work in the past year.8.Date of the next MNABC AGMWednesday, 11 July 2018 at Weymouth.9.AGM ClosureThe AGM closed at 14.30 hours.OPEN FORUM1.Boat Safety DVDThe Commodore stated that further sales of the DVD “Boating Basics Guide” were being investigated. 2.Norfolk BroadsRon Ellison agreed to work with Chris Woods in the area.3.MNABC FacebookD Hearn would investigate the feasibility of setting up a multi-media system for the Club.4.Open Forum ClosureThe Forum closed at 14.45 hours.PRESENTATIONS1.A very interesting presentation was given by Captain John Rose, Director (Maritime), CHIRP (Confidential Hazardous Incident Reporting Programme) Maritime regarding how the system operated and how lessons were learnt. Copies of the CHIRP Maritime Feedback reports were handed out.2.Malcolm Wright MBE, RNLI Operations Manager, Weymouth gave a good insight into the operation of the two Weymouth Lifeboats and the challenges for the service The Commodore thanked both presenters for their most interesting presentations.
First of all I’m taking the opportunity to remind everyone that the 2017 MNA Boat Club AGM will be held at The Royal Dorset Yacht Club in Weymouth on Wednesday 12th July, so if you’ve not done so already please get that date in you diary now, and if, as I very much hope, you plan to attend then please let David Hearn our Membership Secretary know as early as possible to enable us to advise the RDYC of the numbers – David’s email address is email@example.com, and his phone number (for those without an email facility) is 01308 482427. If you would like to partake of the buffet lunch this will cost £10.00 per head, payable by 30th June at the latest – see separate note.If you need overnight accommodation you’ll need to book very soon as mid-July is more or less high season and Weymouth gets pretty fully booked! The Gresham Hotel (www.greshamhotel-weymouth.co.uk) /on the seafront is popular with MNA members, but may well be fully booked already, and The Esplanade Hotel (www.theesplanadehotel.co.uk) also on the seafront is owned by a friend and may be well worth a try. As far as the past year since we met on The Broads last summer is concerned, on the plus side our “Boating Basics” DVD has proved popular and during the year we provided supplies to a couple of boat-hire operators for use with their clients and the revenue from these “sales” proved sufficient to cover our production costs. We can supply more of these DVDs to individuals, clubs or commercial operators at a price that covers our production costs plus a small contribution to the MNA Boat Club funds so if any members know anyone or any organisations that might be interested do please let me, or our vice-commodore Chris Woods, know.Again on the plus side our Webmaster (and membership secretary!) Dave Hearn has done a great job keeping our www.seafarersafloat.com website up to date with interesting news etc. and he’s also the webmaster for the MNA Weymouth, Portland & District Branch and has developed their website at www.mnaweyportdist.uk into a really informative website, including lots of photos and articles about the new Merchant Navy & Fishing Fleet Memorial that the local branch achieved in having erected on Weymouth seafront last November.If you’re able to make our Boat Club AGM in July do make sure to take a look at this very impressive and evocative memorial to our fellow seafarers lost in the wars of the last century On the downside, as far as our SeaVue Maritime Safety Scheme is concerned 2016 has been a disappointing year because, after a lot of effort by both parties our joint venture with the Maritime Volunteer Service to establish a “Lyme Bay Resilience Region” with patrols at sea and along the shore both by boat and by vehicle failed to get up and running due to a lack of recruits, and this initiative has now therefore been shelved, at least for the time being. However the SeaVue Scheme itself is still thriving of course, although we could do with a lot more feedback from members about their boating experiences that Dave can add to the website please! Following the demise of the Lyme Bay joint venture with the MVS I’ve taken on a role as the RNLI Community Safety Officer for the Weymouth Lifeboat area. The Lifeboat Operations Manager for the Weymouth Lifeboats (who is to be the guest speaker at our AGM this year) is an old friend and former Coastguard colleague who convinced me that the recent RNLI “Respect the Water” mission to extend their activities to include the notion of enhancing safety not just at sea but also along the coast and as regards inland waters too seems to complement the objectives of our own SeaVue Scheme, and is therefore something that we should get involved with as a means of extending our SeaVue activities. This RNLI initiative is not just a service to members of the public who go boating, windsurfing, kayaking etc. but also includes those members of the general public who are beach or riverside anglers, or who simply frequent our beaches, coastal paths, and river-banks for all sorts of reasons including for example dog-walking, or flying a kite, and who are often just as vulnerable, and usually far less aware of the dangers, than boat owners are. The development by the RNLI of this Respect the Water campaign aims to reduce the number of fatalities resulting from drowning by 50% by the year 2024 and I see a very real opportunity for the MNA Boat Club’s SeaVue Scheme to contribute to this initiative especially as the RNLI are actively encouraging the establishment of “partnerships” in terms of the development of area “Coastal Community Lifesaving Plans” (CLPs) to achieve that 50% reduction in the number of lives lost. Having taken on the CSO role earlier this year I’ve been fortunate in having been able to recruit a team of very well-qualified and experienced people, includes two members of the MNA, two former Coastguards, four members of the National Coastwatch, the RNLI Lifeguards area supervisor and the skipper of a charity boat running trips for the disabled locally! I’ve taken the liberty of inviting this team of Coastal Community Safety Advisers join us at the AGM so hopefully there will be a chance for members to meet them and find out more about the respect the Water campaign...I’m also aware that other members of the MNA, and MNABC, have been involved in working as volunteers with the RNLI in a variety of capacities, include as Boat Safety Advisers, Sea Safety Advisers etc. and now with the introduction of the new RNLI Coastal Communities Lifesaving Plans (CLPs) I think there is scope for the MNABC SeaVue scheme to make a contribution not least by ensuring that our “Spot, Plot, Report & Record” watchkeeping role extends to keeping an eye on vulnerable members of the public using the coast in all sorts of ways as well as those undertaking “boating activities” In that context our webmaster David has been on something of a learning curve recently getting to grips with providing us with a presence on Facebook, which he has now succeeded in doing and which is a great response to the requests that we’ve received from some members for a “website forum”Although obviously I can’t speak for them I’m sure that RNLI Community Safety Officers at other Lifeboat Stations around the coast would welcome being approached by any members of the MNA or MNABC who may be interested in becoming involved with the RNLI as members of the Community Safety teams working to deliver the Respect the Water campaign I’m also convinced that most if not all our Boat Club members, including those who seldom if ever go afloat themselves, must come across situations by the sea, on the coast or around inland waters during their day to day activities which are potentially hazardous, or even potentially life-threatening, or perhaps just interesting or even amusing and which if posted on our Facebook pages might be of interest to other members of the MNABC, and/or which might even justify a contribution to the Nautical Institute’s CHIRP programme, Before concluding this report I must mention other on-going activities that have progressed well du ring the year which have been the further development of the MNA Boat Club website www.seafarersafloat.com which, thanks mainly to the expertise and huge amount of work that David Hearn our MNABC webmaster and membership secretary has put into it is now being acclaimed by our members as an attractive, interesting and very useful resource; over the past year since my last report the website has received over 7,000 visits, including almost 4500 by first-timers, and a total of 67,594 “hits” Thanks again to David we now have a quite sophisticated membership database that includes details of members boats etc. as well as the usual contact details etc.For the future, my personal ambition is for the Club is to develop a still more pro-active role for the SeaVue Scheme and to continue to further develop our working relationships the RNLI, MCA and other organisations with an interest in maritime safety such as the NCI, the MVS, the NSBA the SSG and Trinity House as well as with the Nautical Institute’s CHIRP and MARS maritime safety alerting schemes. Of course everything we achieve is the result of teamwork on the part of your committee, and I must pay tribute to the work put in by all the members of our committee including of course our national chairman John Sail, and our representatives on the MNA national council Tim Brant (our secretary) and Rodney Anderton as well as our vice-commodore Chris Woods, and membership secretary/webmaster David Hearn.Clive Edwards