Minutes of the London Area Meeting for Thursday 20th January 2022 by ‘ZOOM’ AT 20.00
Present: Steve Brett (Bickley); John Lewis (Epping & North Weald); Tim Billings (Concord); Bob Ryan (Bickley); Martin Dilly (Croydon); Alan Robinson (Eynsford); Neil Bradshaw (FOOHLS)
Apologies: for absence; Dave Warren (Concord); Julie Fisher (Flyin’Fish)
Minutes of the previous Meeting: Nothing to discuss.
Matters Arising: Nothing to discuss.
Chairman’s report. Nothing to report.
Vice Chairman’s report. Steve said that very little had happened.
Secretary’s report. John Lewis initiated a discussion about the next meeting. It was decided that the next meeting would be by ‘Zoom’ with the one after that at the Golf Centre.
Treasurer’s report. Tim Billings said that he had that he had little to report and funds currently stood at £2,224.43 with £600 having arrived from the BMFA.
Achievement Scheme Coordinator’s Report. Bob Ryan said that he would be offering an Examiner’s Day at Bickley at some point with a date to be decided. He explained the new regulations regarding examiner status-club examiners had to demonstrate to committee members (2) a B certificate schedule to the required standard. They also had to successfully complete the RCC test annually. Steve Brett commented that it was not possible to obtain an operating ID until the age of 18 which rather went against the aim of trying to encourage young model flyers.
London Area Delegate’s Report. Martin Dilly reported:
1) The Home Office are proposing changes to the law on nitromethane; one option is to limit the amount in fuels to 16%, down from the current 30%. The proposals are here:
Changes will affect a significant number of flyers and you are urged to contact the Home Office to object to any change as detrimental to our sport.
2) 47 flight safety incidents were reported last year under the mandatory reporting system. 33 were about models flying beyond visual line of sight, and none reported the failsafe as having worked.
3) The vice-chairman will not be standing for election in November.
4) The proposed changes to Council were approved. The Chief Executive is now a voting member and a new post, Members’ Director, will be open for election in November. His responsibilities include liaising with Area committees and promoting regional events, youth engagement and Achievement Schemes.
5) The strategic review looking at the future organisation of the BMFA continues; it is felt that the present Council has too many voting directors, currently 32, and one possibility is to have a single person representing the Areas, rather than 13 delegates, with a similar plan for tech. committees. The intention is to have about 15 directors. (7 Executive Directors, 4 non -Executive Directors and up to 3 Area Directors).
6) In is intended, with the support of all clubs to set a Guinness record for the number of model aircraft airborne at the same time, 1200 on May 15th. Video evidence is required and details are on the website.
7) 5-6 BMFA-branded gazebos are to be bought at a total cost of up to £10K for the use of clubs at events. The intention is to have them stored at various sites round the country to minimise collection and return costs.
8) Arrangements for the centenary exhibition at Buckminster are progressing, with a public opening date of July 18th; club representatives may be invited on the previous preview weekend.
London Area P.R.O. Report. Martin mentioned that some Area Meetings took place before Council Meetings. This was felt to be a good strategy to adopt.
Safety Advisor’s Reports. Bob Ryan reported on one incident involving a ‘fly-away’ and stressed the need to check batteries in models. The Bickley member had been encouraged to submit a report and the model had been recovered from a tree. Bob reiterated the need to submit reports which indicated to the CAA that the ‘system’ was working.
Education Officer’s Reports. Nothing to report
Silent Flight Report. Bob said that he had been incapacitated and had nothing to report.
Free Flight Report. Martin Dilly reported that the site on Salisbury Plain had become available and that the Croydon Club would be asking for funding again.
Helicopter Report. Alan Robinson reported that he was waiting for dates for some drone racing events and that they would be available on the EMHC website. An ‘‘Open Day’ was planned for 29th May and a ‘Scale Day’ for 4th September.
RC Power Report. Steve Brett said that there would be a number of events at Bickley including: a ‘Fly-in’ on 1st May, an ‘Open Day’ on 10th July and a ‘Scale Day’ on 14th August. Bob Ryan mentioned that the Club would also be celebrating a 50th Anniversary-really a 52nd!!!
Fixed Wing Turbine Report. Steve Brett said that due to COVID he had nothing to report.
London Area Webmaster: There was a general feeling that work was needed in this area. Dave Wray was suggested as a person who might be able to help and John Lewis agreed to approach Dave to see if he would be willing. (It was also implicit that Bill Wheeler would be approached to see if he had any problems with this course of action.)
1.Martin Dilly said that we needed to promote events to boost the idea of a ‘BMFA London Area’ and felt that a Fun Fly competition might be a good starting point. There was a general feeling that this would be a good idea and committee members agreed to look at possible dates with their respective clubs.
Martin suggested using a ‘Doodle Pole’ to coordinate meeting dates and John said he would look into this. The next meeting will take place on Thursday 10th March at 20.00 by ‘Zoom’ with the May 12th Meeting at Pedham Place Golf Centre.
The meeting finished at 21.15