Further to the Open Forum held on 2 March 2022, the Chair and the President have penned an open letter to update our members on proposed amendments to the articles of association at this year's AGM.
On 1 March the Members’ Council (Council) voted for the proposal “Should the BMC present the changes to the articles as outlined in the paper to the Open Forum on Wednesday 2nd March” (17 for, 1 against). The proposed changes were:
to promote the physical and mental health benefits of participation in the activities of Mountaineering.
to support and encourage all individuals, particularly young people and underrepresented groups, who are interested in mountaineering to:
participate and progress in their activities at all levels.
develop the knowledge to engage with the outdoors in a sustainable and respectful way.
to develop the skills and knowledge appropriate to understand the risk and make and independent knowledgeable decisions.
On 2 March the proposed changes, and their intent, was almost universally supported by attendees of the Open Forum, but there were concerns that:
the changes might better be instantiated in policy not the articles of association (Articles).
that the change had not been discussed with the membership enough, particularly in line with the MOU aspiration of two rounds of Area discussions.
This view was broadly reinforced by comments on the BMC Watch Facebook Group1.
Outcome of Board Meeting on 5 April
Proposed Changes discussed on 1 and 2 March
Both the President and Chair remain fully committed to the principles and intent of the proposed changes. Noting however the concerns of some members we proposed the Council Ethos and Ethics Task and Finish Group be asked to review the principles and intent of the proposed changes and to:
propose updates to the BMC Policies on participation.
if necessary, recommend any changes to the Articles for 2023, to support the policy.
This was agreed by the Board.
Article Change for 2022
The interpretations that different members and staff take on the wording in the 2005 Policy and the Articles has been disruptive to the business and has taken significant amounts of both ours and others time; to the detriment of other, and we believe more important, activities. This cannot be continued any longer.
As a consequence, we proposed a single addition to the Objects that clarifies the intent of the various policies and the proposals that were supported by Council and the Open Forum attendees.
The timeliness of this matter means that there is no realistic opportunity to undertake an extensive review of this change and hence the Board decided the proposed change be taken directly to the members for their decision; in accordance with Article 23.4 and 23.7 (see below)
The following change to the Articles will be proposed to the 2022 AGM as a Special Resolution.
To add a new object at 4.13 "encourage and promote membership of the BMC to Mountaineers and those interested in Mountaineering."
The Board have committed to holding an open AGM Q&A session on Wednesday 20 April at 7pm where this, and any other AGM matter can be discussed. Members will also have the opportunity to raise this issue at the Area Meetings which will run between 19 and 27 April.
Roger Murray, Chair of the Board Andy Syme, President
Reference extracts from Articles
23.4. When the Board is required to consult with or seek the agreement in relation to a Reserved Matter, it shall, in its sole discretion, either refer the relevant Reserved Matter to the Council in accordance with Article 23.5 and 23.6, or directly to the Voting Members in accordance with Article 23.7.
23.7. To the extent that the Board decides to refer relevant Reserved Matters directly to the Voting Members there shall be no requirement for the Reserved Matter to come before the Council, and the relevant Reserved Matter shall be taken to the Voting Members for a decision at a General Meeting or an AGM.
 It was also commented by a number of Area Chairs and Reps that Areas would not necessarily want to discuss this issue as it was potentially seen as ‘more governance stuff’.
Pre- AGM Q&A
As noted above an open Q&A session will be held on Wednesday 20 April 7pm
To register for this event please use the link below:
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
The BMC AGM is being held virtually on Wednesday 18th May 2022
Have your say, make your voice count with your vote.
It would be fantastic to see as many members as possible join us.
This year, the BMC’s AGM is being held virtually using the platform Zoom webinar. You can join us on Wednesday 18 May at 7pm to have your say on the running of the BMC, from the comfort of your own home.
READ: More about the 2022 AGM and how to vote and attend