1st January 2015
Below is a transcript of a letter I received a few days ago as a member of the Clan Leask Society. I wont make any comment as I have no idea what’s been going on. It just seems a shame. I will say however that OCR (Optical Character Recognition) is now so much better than it used to be. I am not aware of one mistake in the scanned-in text.
4th January 2015
I have received an email today, 4th January 2015 concerning recent events. Here it is reproduced in its entirety.
4th January 2015
STATEMENT TO CLAN LEASK SOCIETY MEMBERS RE EGM 24.1.2015
We are aware that a letter, dated 16th December 2014, was sent out to members giving notification of an Extraordinary General Meeting. However, following this, it is felt that members deserve clarification of the facts, hence this written Statement.
In September, the Chairman received notification from Susan Leask that she would be stepping down from the Council of the Society at the next AGM and that the Newsletter being prepared would be her last. This meant that a new Membership Secretary would be required and also a Newsletter Editor as she held both roles. This was concerning to the remainder of the Council as there were many matters which needed discussion, including Aboyne which had made a loss, in preparation for the AGM. A Council meeting had been proposed for 11th October 2014, but we were advised that neither she nor the Chief would be able to attend any Council meetings for the remainder of 2014.
However, it was felt that a Council meeting was urgently required, so it was decided to go ahead and a meeting was held at a Penrith venue. In a democracy, this is perfectly in order. A meeting had been cancelled the previous October 2013 for the same reason. Bearing in mind the distances some members have to travel, the Secretary was left with the expense of a pre-paid hotel bill that had to be cancelled on that occasion.
This Council meeting proved to be most constructive and all the problems were addressed. The Treasurer offered to undertake the Membership Secretary’s role in tandem with the duties of Treasurer. Bearing in mind that originally, the Treasurer and Membership Secretary’s roles were done jointly by Elizabeth Mitchell, this seemed quite appropriate. The Secretary had also gained two members willing to become Council Members at the AGM in 2015.
It was felt that good progress had been made and it was the intention to advise members in the December Bulletin and seek approval at the AGM. Further, to assure members, that although there had been many changes within the Council recently, the three Office Bearers (Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer) were enthusiastic and prepared to continue by moving forward and embracing modern technology so that the Society could reach all corners of the globe. By embracing change, this would enable the Society to survive into the future.
It was following upon the above meeting that the present situation developed and everything came to a halt. Upon hearing of the outcome of the meeting, the Chief stated, amongst other things, that he did not share the same views as the present Council and, further, that he hoped someone else would take on the role of Membership Secretary and not the Treasurer. We questioned whether we could afford to brush off willing volunteers.
We now had conflicting opinions yet a democratic meeting had been held. In a democracy, one normally accepts the decisions made at any meeting. At no time has the Chief undertaken verbal communications with the Office Bearers. To our astonishment, emails ensued and, consequently, the Officers were unable to fulfil their roles despite all the hard work that had been going on behind the scenes to resolve the problems with which we’d been presented. The situation became untenable. We had understood that the Chief’s position was as an ex officio member of the Council.
Once this situation had arisen, the Constitution of the Society requires that the matter be dealt with in a formal way – an Extraordinary General Meeting.
Past Chairman/Secretary/Treasurer 30.12.2014
16th December 2014
As Leask Clan Chief and in line with the constitution of the Clan Leask Society, I am acting as interim Chairman of the Clan Leask Society. The Chairman resigned in November, the Secretary and Treasurer resigned a few days later. I proffered my resignation, to give them the opportunity to work without me, but to no avail.
I am calling an EGM (please see enclosed page), so we can appoint members to take on roles on the Council. This is the time of year we usually send out the subscription forms, however as we do not have a Council to accept payments, I suggest that we should not accept subscriptions until after the EGM, (so no subscription forms have been sent out).
This is a sad situation to have arisen after all the work done by Council members, in the past. The ethos of the Society was ‘fun, family and friendship’!
On a personal note, I would like to say that my wife and I have enjoyed being members and supporting the Society. For over twenty years, we have regularly attended AGMs, the annual gathering at Aboyne and since being on the Council we have attended virtually every Council meeting. My wife and I, sadly, see no option but for us to resign from the Council and thus distance ourselves from the Society. We resign as of the morning of the EGM. To be clear, I am resigning from the Council but will of course still be active as Clan Chief out with the Society. If you want to contact me in the future, as your Clan Chief, please use my email: —
I have organised the EGM, will collect replies for attendance and if necessary will chair the meeting.
Leask of that Ilk
Clan Leask Society needs a new Council, vacant positions are – Chairperson, Secretary, Treasurer, Membership Secretary and Council Members If you are interested in any of the above positions, please forward your name to me. If you intend to attend it would be useful to have an idea of numbers, please forward your name to me.
Clan Leask Society
Notice of Meeting
NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that an Extraordinary General Meeting of Clan Leask Society will be held at Dunblane New Golf Club, Dunblane at 11.30 hrs on Saturday 24th January 2015 to transact the following business.
1. Apologies for Absence.
2. Opening Comments and Reasons for Meeting.
3. Voting of Council Members.
4. Closing Remarks.