Item Description. Minutes

Remarks/People Involved

Minutes of the RNPA AGM held at the Ridgewood Manor Hotel Rochester at  1030 on Sunday 11th October 2015.

Ship/Place/Originator. Secretary

Original Reference.

Date/ Date range. 11-10-2015

Now Held By. Secretary

Date added to archive. 26-10-2015

Historians No. Hist1267


Those present.


Tony Darbyshire                    - Chairman

Peter Bunting                         - Vice Chairman

Maurice Larcombe                - Acting Secretary - Historian 

Valerie Darbyshire                 - Treasurer

Raymond Whitehouse            - Social Secretary

Stephen King                         - Membership Secretary

Hilary King                            - Newsletter Editor




George & Rita Mewton, Ray Pogson, Paul Yockney, Mike and Janet McKnight, John Flack & Andrea Dowling, Keith & Jo Tuttle, Caroline Kelly, Mike & Jean Keeling, Mike Gilbert, Bridget Bunting, Roy & Elizabeth Penny, Bill Porter, Angela Pogson, Doreen Larcombe and Pam Whitehouse.




Daniel Du Feu  , Rob Harding, Dave Morris, David Price, Bill Simpson,

Ian Wrightson, Less Warr and Roger Smart, Nigel Craft, Joan Roberts, 

Russ Whalley and Bob Lomax             


Item 1. Approval of the minutes of the last AGM was proposed by Roy Penny and seconded by Mike Gilbert. Carried unanimously and Tony signed


Item 2 . Roll of Honour.


Peter read out the names of those who had crossed the Barr namely  -

John Edwards, Cecilia Philbrick (Nee Marsh), Clem Oliver, Ron Graham and Steve Collinson          


            Tony then asked for a period of silence and reflection to remember them.


Matters arising - covered below


Item 4. Election of Officials.

            Tony asked if anyone would like to volunteer to serve on the committee. There being no volunteers Tony explained that Jan had offered to serve as the permanent secretary. The appointment was proposed by George Mewton and seconded by Rita Mewton. Carried unanimously.   



Item 5.  Chairman's report.

            Tony thanked all those who had contributed to the running of the association.He asked for a round of applause for Ray who had worked particularly hard on the weekend activities. He said, in his role as webmaster, that he had not a great deal of time in recent months to continue the development of the ‘site.He went on to say that the structure was now in place and, over time, it would continue to be developed further. (See Item 12, Website Progress). However, the website has already been picked up by several ex-RN phots., and three of those have now joined the Association as a result.

He said that he had visited  new member, Denis Toff, who lived close to him. He also mentioned the other new members, Alan Harvey and Reginald Davis MBE. Ian Johnson had been in touch but had not yet rejoined the association.



Item 6. Secretary's report.


            Jan reported that the centenary celebrations at DSOP and the dinner in the RAF Museum was very well presented and a great success. He said the committee had suggested that some of the items held by the association could    be offered to DSOP with the proviso that we could have some of the Naval equipment on loan should we wish to put on an exhibition of our own.


            Jan said that he had been in contact with the other Naval Airman branch association mainly with a view to obtaining concessions from museums etc. In  the process he had discovered that the Portsmouth museums did have a  veterans concessions which amounted to a £10 day ticket for any or all of the attractions. Full details and the normal prices will be published in the next  newsletter and on the website.


            Jan continued that Catherine Kelly had raised the question of photographers input to the 100th anniversary celebrations of the formation of the WRNS in 2017. As Historian he agreed to collect all the information he held on the WRNS and offer it to the WRNS association keeping Catherine in the loop.


Item 7. Treasurers report


            Val produced a comprehensive report on the finances of the association with income and expenditure for the year to 30th June 2015. It was explained that although more complicated all cheques for social events should be made out to   the RNPA and Ray undertook to make this clear in future mailings. She explained Hilary had audited the accounts and that there were some debtors and that we had outlays for the current weekend and a replacement printer for Steve & Hilary but that we were basically in a healthy financial position.


            She also produced a list of equipment held by the association which as agreed by the committee is held at zero value.


            Steve asked if members were content with the subscription amount and it was decided that they should remain the same for next year.


            Bridget Bunting proposed and Roy Penny seconded that the treasurers report  be approved and it was carried unanimously.


Item 8. Membership Secretary's report


            Steve reported that there had been an increase of 5 members over the last year and that the membership now stood at 149 of which 32 were joint members. Because of the concession at museums he would be issuing additional cards to joint members in January.


Item 10. Newsletter editors report


            Hilary thanks all those who had submitted articles for the newsletter and said she had several in the pipeline. She asked that anyone who had taken pictures over the weekend transfer them to her computer. Tony asked that anything sent to him for the website should be at web publishing size but that files for the both the newsletter and the historical records should continue to be sent at high resolution.


            Steve said that he had had a good deal on the printer and if anyone was thinking of buying one they should contact him for details.



Item 11. Social Secretary's report.


            Ray talked through the arrangements for the visit to Leeds Castle and went on to express the committees concern about the falling numbers attending. reunions and asked if anyone had thoughts about the reasons.


            He went on to explain what the committe would recommend for the following years.


            2016 Portsmouth or Bristol

            2017 Cosford

            2018 Plymouth or Bristol

            2019 HMS Excellent and IWM


Emphasizing that the 2019 event would be the 100th anniversary of the formation of the photographic branch and that we should make this a major event.


Tony said that the committee had decided to do a survey of all our photographer contacts as to why they did not attend reunions and went on to ask if anyone would object to combining our reunion with that of other Naval Airman branches. Jan said that he had undertaken to do the survey in consultation with the other committee members and ask if anyone had relevant questions to send them to him.


It was suggested from the floor that an earlier notification of the next years venue and date might produce a better attendance and it was agreed that the 2016 event should be in Portsmouth area and that Ray should publish a date in October in the very near future.


Catherine Kelly said she thought we should also survey the members who had attended to find out what they thought of the various aspects of the weekend. Jan said that he would arrange a survey after consulting the committee.


Ray reported on the 2015 Peregrine Trophy presentations which were attended by eight members of the association on HMS Ocean at Greenwich. Catherine asked if it were possible to include a prize for photographs entered by ex photographers and Jan undertook to investigate the possibilities.


Jan explained that Catherine had also asked about the RNPA input to the 100th anniversary of the formation on the WRNS and said that he had agreed to collect all the WRNS photographic material he had and send it to the WRNS Association


Item 12. Website progress


Tony explained the original aims and content of the website in a special session prior the AGM. As mentioned earlier in the minutes he said that he had not had very much time recently to progress the website because of other commitments.

He explained that the website was to there for members of the Association to access and contribute to, particularly with their own personal profiles. They can make comments on any part of the 'website where there is the opportunity to do so. All comments have to be vetted by the webmaster who will assess their legitimacy for inclusion. No comment is automatically put up for others to read without approval from him, or a moderator.

Some members did raise concerns about the privacy of their personal information. He explained that only paid-up members of the Association can gain access to all elements of the ‘site. This is safeguarded to ensure that only legitimate members can see the whole website.

He went on the explain that in order to get full access to the personal profiles of other members he/she has to register. Each person who requests full access is thoroughly vetted. Such individuals have to provide evidence that they did serve as a navy phot. Once they’ve been vetted the consultant webmaster then issues them with a personal invite-code. Without an invite-code, a visitor can never gain full access to the personal profiles of our members, thus ensuring that it is secure.

He did stress that each member who registers should ensure that they have a strong password for their login.

He explained that instructions on how to do this are on the website, under the HELP tab. The help tab has written documentation on: the RNPA website, member profiles, how to register, how to gain full access to the ’site and finally, a Site Guide on how to make best use of the website.

In order to help with the development of the ‘site, Tony asked for input from members to help fill out the various sections. He would now have time to progress the ‘site but, with help from others, it would make the progress much quicker, particularly with the historical elements, i.e., ships/squadrons/phot. schools/shore establishments/history etc.

Tony said that Paul Cowpe, the Association’s original webmaster, had offered to help with the future development of the website. He will be writing to him to give him full ‘administrator’ access in due course. He added that Mike McKnight had also offered to help with the website       


Item 13. Clothing Sales 

            Steve reminded the members that although he did not keep a stock of clothing items they could be ordered and took very little time to be produced

 Item 14. AOB 

            Catherine asked if it would be useful to have a Royal sponsor of the association and/or make a short documentary with a view to publicising the 2019 anniversary

             Andrea Dowling asked if it would be a good idea to ask for a non-refundable deposit from people expressing an interest in attending events but Ray said that it would complicate                 matters and not help in increasing numbers.          


Tony then thanked all members for attending and closed the meeting at 1219