Greenhavens Network (Seaford to Telscombe)

Community Group Constitution

1. NAME The name of the group shall be Greenhavens Network hereafter referred to as the Group.

2. OBJECTIVES The objectives of the Group are to:

  • Encourage greater awareness of parks and green spaces; the coastal strip stretching from Seaford to Telscombe and up to Lewes as a resource and amenity for our residents and visitors.
  • To assist volunteers with the management/training they require to improve and protect parks/green spaces and ensure the greatest possible access and use by residents and visitors.
  • Act as a collective voice for all open space groups across the coastal strip that stretches from Seaford to Telscombe and Lewes when working for change and/or improvement whilst striving to support national, regional and local green strategies.
  • Raise general awareness of any challenges facing parks and green spaces and work in partnership with authorities and landowners to overcome them.
  • Promote parks and green spaces (including gardens and verges) as a setting for climate change resilience, biodiversity, enhancement and health and wellbeing hubs. Including the establishment and encouragement of ‘Community Groups’ to sustain their green spaces for themselves and future generations.
  • Assist in raising standards in the quality and regeneration of these areas by helping to secure the necessary funding to support volunteers in this sector.
  • Work with other stakeholders including local authorities who support the aims and objectives of the group.
  • Promote awareness, conduct campaigns and to provide training and education on green issues for the community.
  • We are an apolitical organisation. Greenhavens will treat all people with equal respect, concern and consideration and recognises the contribution made to the community by all individuals.

3. PARTICIPATION IN THE FORUM

Full membership is open to all groups associated with parks and green spaces in the Greenhavens area who support the above objectives and who are willing to adhere to the constitution. Other organisations for example local authorities and individuals may be Associate members without voting rights.

  • Where it is considered membership would be advantageous or detrimental to the aims and activities of the Group, the Management Committee shall have the power to grant or refuse membership.
  • The membership of any member group or individual may be terminated or suspended by resolution passed at a meeting of the forum.
  • Members shall have the right to appeal via an independent mediator determined by mutual agreement of the management committee.

4. MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE

A. The Group will be managed by a committee of no less than six (6) people including four officers: the Chair, the Vice Chair, the Treasurer and the Secretary and no more than fifteen (15), who must be at least 18 years of age. Nominations for committee must be notified 7 days before the AGM.

B. Committee Members will be elected by those members attending the Annual General Meeting or by proxy vote and will serve for a period of three years unless there is a majority vote in favour of electing a new committee at a future AGM.

C. Should a committee member resign before the next Annual General Meeting a postal or online ballot will be held to appoint a new member of the management committee. However, the committee is empowered to co-opt additional non-voting members at any time if a specific need arises.

D. Any conflicts of interest must be declared at the start of the committee meeting.

E. The Committee will be responsible for pursuing the aims and objectives of the Forum and may take such actions, as it deems necessary in pursuit of those aims and objectives, including decisions mandated by the membership at a meeting of the forum.

F. All decisions made by the committee will be approved by a simple majority of the committee. The Chair will have a casting vote in the event of a tie.

G. The quorum at a Management Committee meeting shall be three (3) committee members.

H. It shall be the responsibility of the Chairperson to chair all meetings or a designated deputy in his/her absence. All Management Committee meetings must be minuted and accessible to interested parties within two weeks of the next agreed meeting.

I. The committee shall have the power to set up Task Groups as deemed necessary in the pursuit of the aims and objectives of the forum who shall be accountable to the Management Committee. Task Groups may only make recommendations to the Management Committee.

J. The Committee will report to the membership on activities at the Annual General meeting and an interim report that will be published on the website.

K. Committee members are expected to conduct themselves in a proper manner and if they fail to do so they will be expected to resign.

5. FORUM MEETINGS

A. The Forum shall meet at least annually. Meetings shall enable the Group to discuss actions and monitor progress to date, and to consider future developments.

B. All members shall be given at least seven (7) days’ notice of when a meeting is due to take place unless it is deemed as an emergency.

C. At least 3 committee members must attend in order for a meeting to take place.

D. The committee shall arrange its Annual General Meeting within 3 months of the end of the financial year, giving at least 21 days’ notice, for the purpose of:

  • Receiving the Annual Report of the Committee
  • Receiving agreed accounts
  • Electing a new committee
  • Voting if necessary, on proposals to amend the constitution.
  • Agreeing actions to be undertaken by the Management Committee during the next 12 months.

E. The quorum at an Annual General Meeting shall be six (6) full member groups.

F. All full member groups are entitled to one vote at the AGM. Voting shall be made by a show of hands on a majority basis. In the case of a tied vote, the Chairperson or an appointed deputy shall have a casting vote.

6. FINANCE

A. Any money acquired by the Group, through the Treasurer including donations, contributions and bequests, shall be held in an account operated by the Management Committee in the name of the Group.

All funds must be applied to the objectives of the Group and for no other purpose.

B. Bank accounts shall be opened in the name of the Group. Any payments etc relating to the Group’s bank account shall be approved by at least two (2) of the following committee members: Chair, Vice Chair, Treasurer; Secretary.

C. Any income/expenditure shall be the responsibility of the Treasurer who will be accountable to ensure funds are utilised effectively and that the Group stays within budget. An annual financial statement shall be presented at the AGM.

D. Any sum to be spent of £250 or more must be approved by the committee.

7. COMPLAINTS

Greenhavens Network has a complaints policy and procedure. Details are available from the secretary and on the Greenhavens Website.

8. ALTERATION OF THE CONSTITUTION

A. Any changes to this constitution must be agreed by a majority vote at either an annual general meeting or an extraordinary general meeting.

B. Requests to amend this constitution, for votes of no confidence or dissolution of the Group must be conveyed to the Secretary formally in writing by a minimum of six (6) full member groups. The constitution will either be adopted at the next AGM or the Secretary and other officers shall then decide on the date of an extraordinary general meeting to discuss such proposals, giving members twenty-one days (21 days) notice.

9. DISSOLUTION

The Group may be dissolved if deemed necessary by the members in a majority of full member groups at an extraordinary general meeting. Any assets or remaining funds after debts have been paid shall be returned to their providers or transferred to local charities or similar groups at the discretion of the Management Committee.

This constitution was amended at the EGM, on the 8th July 2020.