Long-distance walker Chris Townsend explains why he’s helping to build a better BMC by voting for our new constitution.
Chris Townsend, one of the BMC's hillwalking ambassadors, is one of the world’s most respected experts on long-distance walking. Chris has ticked off many incredible routes including the Pacific Crest Trail, the length of the Canadian Rockies (a first), the Yukon Territory south-to-north, Scandinavia end-to-end, the Munros and Tops (another first) and the Scottish Watershed. Here, Chris explains why he's voting Option A in the upcoming BMC AGM.
The BMC is one of those background organisations that it’s easy to ignore without realising how important they are. I first joined the BMC many years ago when I learnt about its access work. That’s still a reason, along with conservation and training work and generally representing hill-walkers and mountaineers.
I'm voting Option A because I think the measures will make the BMC a stronger organisation and also a more transparent one.
Retaining Sport England funding is essential. Some seem to think this funding is primarily for competition climbing and the Olympics (neither of which interest me in the slightest). However, Sport England does many other things: for example funding the hill-walking officer - and it’s very important for hill-walkers that this post continues.
The funding is also behind starting BMC TV, an increasingly comprehensive and useful collection of films. Then there’s also the BMC Youth Officer and other work. It might be nice to think the BMC should be independent of Sport England, but it’s not practical unless it becomes a much smaller organisation with far less influence.
I also support Option A because the BMC is a major funder of Mountaineering Scotland’s access and conservation work so that would suffer too if funding was lost.
The hillwalking, mountaineering and climbing community is very broad but its participants have many interests in common. An umbrella organisation overseeing all of these is the best way to ensure all have a voice.
This is an article promoting Option A. The recommended option from the BMC National Council (supported by the Organisational Review Group, BMC Board of Directors and BMC staff) and Mountain Training.
Please do vote in our upcoming AGM
We need 75% of the votes to be in favour of one option in order to adopt a new constitution. If you're a BMC member, please check for an email from ERS for your personal URL to vote. It's quick, simple and only takes a minute.
Your AGM: Thanks for your vote!
This year's historic AGM had a record voting turnout, with 6,796 of those votes being made online. We want to thank everyone for having their say and helping to shape the future of the BMC.
Detailed info on the BMC AGM 2018
Find out more about the last AGM. It's a complicated topic, so start with this one:
We were asking our members to vote on some significant changes to the BMC's constitution. Part of the discussion was the relationship between the BMC and Sport England.
There were two constitutions to vote for: Proposal A (as recommended by National Council) and Proposal B, proposed by a group of members. To learn more about the two proposals, you can read a detailed comparison written by BMC honorary solictor Martin Wragg.
How did the recommendations get decided? Read more about the process that lead to this stage, including the reports from the Organisational Review and more.
Watch the Open Forum debate
We held a debate in Manchester on 15 May for both options to be discussed. You can watch the livestream here:
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