Revised Level 3 Flying Restrictions from 14/9/2020 until further notice
Your Committee have reviewed updated BMFA advice and advise the following for members and visiting fliers. This is in addition to the advice already supplied about ensuring your fitness to go to the Down and fly.
It’s a game of two halves, everyday flying and competitions/events
We cannot provide a person at the slope at all times to ensure compliance with social distancing with the result that the default number of people from different households allowed to fly at any one time is 6. In order for this to happen it is important that you email name, date, time in and time out to our track and trace email database at:
We will keep an eye on it and if it is looking busy we will try and let you know.
This data will be kept for 21 days for NHS use if there is an outbreak. It is also important that you also email the above address if you develop symptoms after visiting the Down so that we can inform NHS.
Some members (actually, just Midweek Mike and me) have volunteered to be covid policemen at the time they are at the slope, so it may be possible to run two groups of 6 providing track and trace data and social distancing happens.
Given that social distancing is required at all times, we suggest a flight-line max of 4 people as this should ensure clarity of communication between fliers over the 6 metres
Competitions and Events:
We will do a number of things before hosting an event:
1/ Risk assessment
2/ BMFA questionnaire
3/ Provide a volunteer covid policeman/woman for the duration
Many thanks to those of you who attended the meeting last Saturday. Turnout was excellent and the meeting went very well with contributions from everyone, which was great.
Thanks also to all of you who sent apologies – 21 in total – it made a big difference to know who was not coming and how you wished to vote on the electric assist rule change.
The meeting seemed to run well in the Dolphin pub and an afternoon slot seemed to suit a good number of people. I am sure we will be using this venue again next year.
Below is a summary of the key points that came up in the meeting. The full minutes will be written and circulated as soon as possible.
I hope you all have an excellent winter with flying and or building – 2017 promises to be a good year for WSRFC – I look forward to seeing you sometime up the hill.
Rule Book Changes
The new club rules and associated version of the club handbook were discussed and the matter of accepting the new proposal, to allow electric assisted flight, was voted on. The motion to accept the new handbook and rules was carried, with a unanimous vote for at the meeting, plus 21 further votes for and 1 vote against by proxy .
This change has immediate effect and is simply a continuation, in permanent form, of the trial that has been running for many years.
Please be extremely considerate and conscious of the fact that electric-assisted flying is permissible for height gain only and in general terms for the allowance of soaring when the lift is very light or when it is not on the slopes. What we as a club must avoid, is giving the impression to visitors and other non-members that e-flight in general is allowed at Whitesheet – which it is not.
The club committee (and also the club membership) will continue to monitor the use of e-soaring in 2017 and the matter will be reviewed again at the 2017 AGM. Minor tweaks or rule changes can then be made if necessary.
I very much hope that the changes will allow more soaring to take place at Whitesheet, more of the time. I also hope that these changes will encourage greater membership and better participation in future events at the hill, as our flyers will be encouraged to make the journey and meet up, knowing that the weather conditions have a lower impact on whether or not they will get some flying in.
Let’s all make the most of this opportunity in 2017.
The club remains in a healthy state, financially. On the 7th November, the closing balance of the main club account stood at £5346.21. The balance of the road funds account stood at £392.87.
It was agreed that in order to simplify the accounting burden on the Treasurer, the funds in the road repair account will be transferred to the main account. The road fund account can then be closed.
The fund in the road repair account will however be ring-fenced in the club accounting documentation, to reflect that the source of this money was from donations specifically for the repair of the road. Should road repairs be funded by the club in future, this money will remain available for this purpose.
The club had made more effort in 2016 to spend the money it received from subscriptions. This had taken the form of gratuities for land owners, stickers and posters for members and prizes for the competitions. Ignoring BMFA fees (which come in and go out of the accounts in equal measure) the club expenditure was £824.95 against an income from membership fees of £860.
Some of the expenditure in 2016 (sticker materials, vagabond prize for example) will roll over to 2017 and these costs will not reoccur next year. The committee will continue to think of ways of using the club funds to benefit the membership in 2017. Anyone with good ideas are encouraged to get in touch.
With the aim of avoiding further excess accrual of funds in the club account, it was generally agreed that the club was spending at around the right level, along with setting appropriate fees for the membership.
The following committee was proposed and voted for at the AGM:
Chairman – Chris Lamming (I’m afraid you are stuck with me for another year!)
Vice chair – David Bradfield
Secretary – Julian Yelliah
Treasurer – Ian Duff
Membership Secretary – Den Larking
Competition Secretary – Stuart Wallace
Scale Secretary – Chris Williams
Additional Committee Member – Jess Nichols
Membership Fees and BMFA Renewal
The present fee rate of £10 for adult members and £0 for juniors was proposed and accepted. This will remain the fee rate for the forthcoming year.
If you are intending on renewing your BMFA membership through the club (which is encouraged), please could you forward your membership fee and BMFA fee to Ian as soon as possible, preferably before the end of December. This makes the job of processing the membership applications with the BMFA much easier, in terms of the group-order/bulk purchase of membership. Please see the join page for Ian’s details:
The 2016 WSRFC AGM is being held this coming Saturday, November 12th at the Dolphin Public House in Gillingham. The meeting will start around 230pm.
All attending will be entitled to a free drink and food will be provided.
So far I have received 5 apologies with proxy votes in the proposed vote on the handbook changes.
Please make every effort to attend this important meeting or instead register your vote on the handbook changes. Please email your vote to me using…
Or call me on 07833 680723 if you prefer.
If you wish to remind yourself of the wording proposed for the changes, the new version of the handbook can be downloaded here:
For the AGM to be quorate we require 15% of the membership to turn up – please do your best to be there.
Proposed Rule book changes on Electric Assisted Flying
You may be aware that the club has been working on negotiating with the National Trust on new rules for electric assist (for climb-out) at Whitesheet Downs. The committee will soon be issuing the final draft of the proposed changes to the handbook, that will outline what these rule changes mean and how it will effect the way the hill is used.
In essence, we now have full support from both the National Trust and the BMFA to make a permanent change to our club rules, that will allow electric power for the purpose of height gain only. This has been possible on an on-going trial basis since 2009 and it is now time for the club to choose whether to incorporate the change to our handbook or to stop the trial and all electric flight from this year’s AGM onwards.
I am presently working on the final draft of the handbook and hope to send it out well in advance of the AGM in November. Full details of the AGM will also be issued in the same notice and you will be invited to express your views on the changes. Expect something similar to last year’s AGM, with an afternoon or early evening start, with a free drink and food provided.
For those not able to attend the AGM, which is now likely to be held on Saturday November 26th, there will be an opportunity to vote by proxy on this important change. Additionally, all members not attending the AGM will have the opportunity to make a statement, for or against the change, prior to the vote and there will be an organised discussion on the matter before we finally decide.
Please make every effort to attend the meeting (full details to follow) and to take part in the vote.