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Constitution of the Southampton University Guild of Change Ringers


1  - Name

The society shall be called ‘The Southampton University Guild of Change Ringers’.

2  - Society type

The society shall be placed in the students union group or category best suited to the Guild as decided by the committee.

3  - Aims

          (i) The aims of the Society shall be to introduce and promote the art of change ringing, and to encourage           regular participation in the art.

          (ii)  Members are encouraged to participate in the activities of the Winchester and Portsmouth Diocesan           Guild, to whom this Society is affiliated.

4  - Membership

          (i) Full membership: is open to any registered student or registered member of University staff upon           payment of the membership fee as set by the Society’s committee. Full membership is valid only whilst a           current student or staff member.

          (ii) Past Membership: is automatically gained after spending any amount of time with SUGCR as a full           member, having attended/worked at Southampton University. Past Membership is for life or until it is           upgraded to life membership. Past members shall be entitled to the same rights and privileges as full           members except they may not hold a position, nominate or vote in the election of the committee.   

          (iii) Life Membership: is open to any past member of the society, having become a life member of the           Southampton University Students Union (SUSU). Life Members are entitled to the same rights and           privileges as full members except they may not hold office, except for the position of President. Life           members can be elected at any time upon presentation of proof of SUSU life membership to a member of           the committee, and are formally accepted at the AGM. 

          (iv) Associate membership: is open to any person who rings regularly with the Guild in Southampton but is           not qualified for full membership. Associate members can be elected by a majority vote of the committee at           a minuted committee meeting, and members are formally accepted at the AGM. Membership shall then be           reviewed annually at the AGM. Associate members shall be entitled to the same rights and privileges as full           members except that they may not hold office and are not eligible to contribute to Peals which are to be           credited to the Society unless approved by majority vote at an AGM or EGM, and if the band concerned is           willing (see 9(i)(a)). Associate members can nominate and vote in elections if they are a student at           University and the majority approves this at the AGM.

          (v) The Societies Officer must always be provided with an up to date copy of all member names and           corresponding student numbers.

          (vi) Expulsion of members:

                    a. The Committee shall have the power to expel any member from the Society, after discussion with                     the Societies Officer, on the grounds of misconduct, or for conduct of a nature opposed to the objects                     of the Society and the Students’ Union.

                    b. Where any member of the Society is expelled by the Committee, a report of the matter shall be                     made to the next General Meeting of the Society.

                    c. Students who are expelled from any Society have the right of appeal to the Societies Department                     Committee.


5 - Committee

          (i) The administration and management of the Society shall be the responsibility of its Committee. The           Committee shall be comprised of the officers of the Society; in order of seniority these shall be:

                    a. The Master: the Society’s figurehead to all external interests. The Master will chair all meetings,                     including the running of practices and Sunday service ringing. Any other tasks that do not come under                     the jurisdiction of other Committee members will additionally be the responsibility of the Master. Note                     that this position is referred to as a ‘President’ in ordinary Union parlance.

                    b.  The Vice-Master: the Master’s deputy, who shall run all ringing and chair meetings in the Master’s                     absence. Additionally responsible for organising quarter-peals.

                    c. The Secretary: the Secretary shall keep minutes of Society meetings which shall be available to the                     Societies Department Committee. It is the responsibility of the Secretary to deal with all                     communications on behalf of the Society and its committee. The Secretary shall produce and                     maintain a list of all members, including up to date contact details, which shall be available to the                     officers and committee of the Society.

                    d. The Treasurer: the Treasurer shall maintain the accounts of the Society, which shall be available for                     examination at the AGM. Any funds spent by the Society must follow Union regulations (as set out in                     the Constitution and Grant Aid) and be authorised by the Treasurer and the Master. The accounts of                     the Society shall be available to the Societies Officer and the Societies Department Committee.

                    e. The Social Secretary: responsible for organising social events for the Society and assisting the                           Secretary (c) where needed. By Union regulations, at least one of the socials must be alcohol-free for                     all involved.

          (ii) It is recommended that one of the Committee be a first-year student.

          (iii) There are in addition three other society posts, viz. an Archivist, a Steeple-Keeper and a Webmaster.           The Archivist shall be one of 5(i)(a-e) above; the others may be non-Committee.

6 - Election of the committee

          (i) Elections for Committee members shall be held at the AGM. The Secretary shall invite nominations at           least 7 days before the meeting.

          (ii) The elections will be advertised to Society members on the email list.

          (iii) The elections shall be carried out by show of hands or secret ballot, to be decided by the Chair at the           start of the meeting. Should there be a tied result, the Master may vote in favour of one of the candidates or           may declare the post unfilled.

          (iv) If a full committee is not elected for any reason, a Secretary shall be elected with the responsibility of           ensuring that elections for the remaining positions are held by the end of the summer term.

          (v) Results of the elections, together with names, student numbers and contact details of those elected,           shall be submitted to the Societies Officer within 14 days of the election.

7  - Meetings

          (i) Weekly practice nights: normally, there shall be a meeting of the Society from 7:30-9pm each Thursday           during term time for tower bell ringing.

          (ii) Annual General Meeting (AGM):

                    a. The Society AGM shall be held in the Spring Term.

                    b. Notice of the AGM shall be issued at least 14 clear days in advance and advertised to Society                     members.

                    c. Officers of the Society shall be elected at the AGM. The Secretary shall invite nominations at least 7                     days before the meeting.

                    d. Current members at the meeting shall have the opportunity to ask questions of the candidates                     running for Committee and non-Committee posts.

          (iii)  Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM):

                    a. An EGM can be called by the Master or Secretary of the Society, or by written application to the                     Master of at least 6 members of the Society, together with a written statement of the objects for which                     the meeting is being called.

                    b. At the EGM no business other than that specified in the written statement shall be discussed.

                    c. At least 24 hours notice of an EGM shall be given. The meeting must be held within 7 days of the                     request being given to the Master.

                    d. In the event of either a vacancy in the Committee arising during the year or the failure of an AGM to                     fill any Committee post, an EGM shall be called to elect a replacement.

          (iv) Conduct of meetings:

                    a. Voting: every full member of the Society present at a meeting shall be entitled to one vote upon                     every voting matter. Only full members are entitled to vote and no proxy votes shall be accepted for any                     purpose.

                    b. Quorum: the quorum at all meetings shall be 12 Full members or half the Full membership,                     whichever is the lesser.

                    c. Minutes: The Secretary of the Society shall keep minutes of all Society meetings, which shall be                     available to the Societies Officer and the Societies Department Committee.

8  - Constitution amendments

          (i) No alteration may be made to this constitution except at an AGM or an EGM.

          (ii) The Society committee at the General Meeting shall first approve amendments to the constitution.

          (iii) The committee shall hold a vote to pass any constitutional changes. This shall be done by ballot or a           show of hands, at the discretion of the meeting. Should there be a tie, the Master shall have the casting           vote.

          (iv) Any amendment shall come into force immediately but not retrospectively.

9  - Ringing

          (i) Performances:

                    a. Peals may be credited to the Society if rung by a band comprised of any combination of full, past, life or honorary members of the Society. Peals not conforming to these rules but wishing to be associated with the Society may instead be credited to the “Society of Hartley Youths”.

                    b. Quarter peals may be credited to the Society if rung by bands comprised of over 50% full and/or                     past members of the society.

          (ii) The conductor shall be responsible for providing the Archivist with details of performances to be credited           to the Society.

          (iii) Central Council ruling shall be adhered to with respect to peals.

          (iv) The Society is not obliged to accept quarter peals where they offend general ringing principles in the           opinion of the Committee.

10  - Honorary positions

          (i) The Society shall have the power to elect an Honorary President from among its Associate and past           members. This post will normally be held for three years.

          (ii) The Society shall have the power to elect Honorary Vice-Presidents for persons deemed worthy of this           distinction.

          (iii) The Society shall have the power to elect Honorary members as persons deemed to have contributed           greatly to the society. Honorary members shall hold the same rights and privileges as past members           except they may not hold the position of President. Honorary members shall be elected at an AGM and           retain the status of Honorary member for life.

11 - Guild Assets

          (i) The Guild has various assets for which it is responsible. These are as follows;

                    a) A set of 27 handbells

                              i. The location of where these are to be stored is to be agreed at the AGM

                    b) The Hartley Twelve Mini Ring

                              i. The Hartley 12 mini ring is permanently situated in St Mary’s Church, South Stoneham

                              ii. If the location of the Hartley 12 needs to be changed, the new location must be agreed at                               either the AGM or an EGM

                    c) 1 bell; ‘Ting’

                              i) To be kept with the current Master

                    d) The Felstead Cup Trophy

                              i) To be kept with the winner for that year



This version of the constitution was accepted at the EGM on Saturday 27th January 2018