The name of the Association is The W. H. Auden Society ("the Charity"), or such other name as the Executive Committee may from time to time decide with the approval of the Charity Commission.
Subject to the matters set out below the Charity and its property shall be administered and managed in accordance with this constitution by the members of the Executive Committee, each known as Director, constituted by clause G of this constitution ("the Executive Committee").
The object of the Charity ("the object") shall be to promote, encourage, maintain, improve and advance the education of the public in contemporary English Literature through promotion of the study of the life and work of W.H. Auden (1907-1973) and his literary contemporaries.
In furtherance of this object but not otherwise the Executive Committee may exercise the following powers:
(i) power to join in arranging and providing for: the production of publications, the holding of meetings, conferences, lectures, seminars, visits, exhibitions, readings, performances, and other appropriate events, activities, and projects;
(ii) power to raise funds and to invite and receive contributions provided that in raising funds the Executive Committee shall not undertake any substantial permanent trading activities and shall conform to any relevant requirements of the law;
(iii) power to buy, take on lease or in exchange any property necessary for the achievement of the object and to maintain and equip it for use;
(iv) power subject to any consents required by law to sell, lease or dispose of all or any part of the property of the Charity;
(v) power subject to any consents required by law to borrow money and to charge all or any part of the property of the Charity with repayment of the money borrowed;
(vi) power to employ such staff (who shall not be members of the Executive Committee) as are necessary for the proper pursuit of the object and to make all reasonable and necessary provision for the payment of pensions and superannuation for staff and their dependents;
(vii) power to co-operate with other charities, voluntary bodies and statutory authorities operating in furtherance of the object or of similar charitable purposes and to exchange information and advice with them;
(viii) power to appoint and constitute such advisory committees as the Executive Committee may think fit;
(ix) power to do all such other lawful things as are necessary for the achievement of the object.
(1) Membership of the Charity shall be open to:
(i) individuals (16 years and older) who are interested in furthering the work of the Charity and who have paid their annual subscription laid down from time to time by the Executive Committee;
(ii) any body or unincorporated association which is interested in furthering the Charity’s work and has paid any annual subscription (any such body being called in this constitution a "member organization").
(2) The Executive Committee may unanimously and for good reason terminate the membership of any individual or member organization: provided that the individual concerned or an appointed representative of the member organization concerned (as the case may be) shall have the right to be heard by the Executive Committee, accompanied by a friend, before the final decision is made.
F Honorary Patrons
The Charity shall have up to eight Honorary Patrons who will be appointed by the Executive Committee for a period of five years, and who will be eligible for re-appointment at the end of that said term.
(1) The Executive Committee shall consist of up to six Directors, all of whom should be paid-up members of the Society.
(2) All members of the Executive Committee shall serve for a period of five years from the date on which they came into office but they may be re-appointed.
(3) The Executive Committee may in addition appoint not more than three co-opted members but so that no-one may be appointed as a co-opted member if, as a result, more than one-third of the members of the Executive Committee would be co-opted members. Each appointment of a co-opted member shall be made at a special meeting of the Executive Committee called under clause J(1) and shall take effect from the end of that meeting unless the appointment is to fill a place which has not then been vacated in which case the appointment shall run from the date when the post becomes vacant.
(4) Nobody shall be appointed as a member of the Executive Committee who is aged under 18 or who would if appointed be disqualified under the provisions of the following clause.
(5) No person shall be entitled to act as a member of the Executive Committee whether on a first or on any subsequent entry into office until after signing in the minute book of the Executive Committee a declaration of acceptance and of willingness to act in the trusts of the Charity.
A member of the Executive Committee shall cease to hold office if he or she:
(1) Is disqualified from acting as a member of the Executive Committee by virtue of section 72 of the Charities Act 1993 (or any statutory re-enactment or modification of that provision);
(2) Becomes incapable by reason of mental disorder, illness or injury of managing and administering his or her own affairs;
(3) Is absent without the permission of the Executive Committee from all their meetings held within a period of one year and the Executive Committee resolve that his or her office be vacated; or
(4) Notifies to the Executive Committee a wish to resign (but only if at least two members of the Executive Committee will remain in office when the notice or resignation is to take effect).
No member of the Executive Committee shall acquire any interest in property belonging to the Charity (otherwise than as a trustee for the Charity) or receive remuneration or be interested (otherwise than as a member of the Executive Committee) in any contract entered into by the Executive Committee.
(1) The Executive Committee shall hold at least two ordinary meetings each year. A special meeting may be called at any time by any two members of the Executive Committee upon not less than 4 days’ notice being given to the other members of the Executive Committee of the matters to be discussed but if the matters include an appointment of a co-opted member then not less than 21 days’ notice must be given.
(2) Meetings and other proceedings may be conducted over the telephone or by other electronic means as long as two-thirds of the Executive Committee are in agreement.
(3) The chairman or chairwoman shall act as chair at meetings of the Executive Committee and the members of the Executive Committee present shall choose one of their number to chair the meeting before any other business is transacted.
(4) There shall be a quorum when at least two thirds of the number of members of the Executive Committee for the time being or two members of the Executive Committee, whichever is the greater, are present at the meeting.
(5) Every matter shall be determined by a majority of votes of the members of the Executive Committee present and voting on the question but in the case of equality of votes the chairman or chairwoman of the meeting shall have a second or casting vote.
(6) The Executive Committee shall keep minutes of the proceedings at meetings of the Executive Committee and any sub-committee.
(7) The Executive Committee may from time to time make and alter the rules for the conduct of their business, the summoning and conduct of their meetings and the custody of documents. No rule may be made which is inconsistent with this constitution.
(8) The Executive Committee may appoint one or more sub-committees consisting of three or more members of the Executive Committee for the purpose of making an inquiry or supervising or performing any function or duty which in the opinion of the Executive Committee would be more conveniently undertaken or carried out by a sub-committee; provided that all acts and proceedings of any such sub-committee shall be fully and promptly reported to the Executive Committee.
(1) The funds of the Charity, including all donations, contributions and bequests shall be paid into an account operated by the Executive Committee in the name of the Charity at such bank as the Executive Committee shall from time to time decide. All cheques drawn on the account must be signed by a member of the Executive Committee.
(2) The funds belonging to the Charity shall be applied only in furthering the objects.
(1) Subject to the provisions of sub-clause (2) of this clause, the Executive Committee shall cause the title to:
(a) all land held by or in trust for the Charity which is not vested in the Official Custodian for Charities; and
(b) all investments held by or on behalf of the Charity;
to be vested either in a corporation entitled to act as custodian trustee or in not less than three individuals appointed by them as holding trustees. Holding trustees may be removed by the Executive Committee at their pleasure and shall act in accordance with the lawful directions of the Executive Committee. Provided they act only in accordance with the lawful directions of the Executive Committee, the holding trustees shall not be liable for the acts and defaults of its members.
(2) If a corporation entitled to act as custodian trustee has not been appointed to hold the property of the charity, the Executive Committee may permit any investments held by or in trust for the Charity to be held in the name of a clearing bank, trust corporation or any stockbroking company which is a member of the International Stock Exchange (or any subsidiary of any such stockbroking company) as nominee for the Executive Committee and may pay such a nominee reasonable and proper remuneration for acting as such.
The Executive Committee shall comply with their obligations under the Charities Act 1993 (or any statutory re-enactment or modification of that Act) with regard to:
(1) the keeping of accounting records for the Charity;
(2) the preparation of annual statements of account for the Charity;
(3) the auditing or independent examination of the statements of account of the Charity; and
(4) the transmission of the statements of account of the Charity to the Commission.
The Executive Committee shall comply with their obligations under the Charities Act 1993 (or any statutory re-enactment or modification of that Act) with regard to the preparation of annual report and its transmission to the Commission.
The Executive Committee shall comply with their obligations under the Charities Act 1993 (or any statutory re-enactment or modification of that Act) with regard to the preparation of an annual return and its transmission to the Commission.
(1) There shall be an annual general meeting of the Charity which shall be held on the last Saturday in the month of January or the first Saturday in the month of February in each year or as soon as practicable thereafter; meetings may be conducted over the telephone or by other electronic means.
(2) Every annual general meeting shall be called by the Executive Committee with at least 21 days’ notice of the annual general meeting given to all members of the Executive Committee.
(3) The Executive Committee shall present to each annual general meeting the report and accounts of the Charity for the preceding year.
The Executive Committee may call a special general meeting of the Charity at any time. One Director shall call such a meeting stating the business to be considered. At least 21 days’ notice must be given. The notice must state the business to be discussed.
(1) The secretary or other person specially appointed by the Executive Committee should keep a full record of proceedings at every general meeting of the Charity.
(2) Meetings may be conducted over the telephone or by other electronic means as long as two-thirds of the Executive Committee are in agreement.
Any notice required to be served on any member of the Charity shall be in writing and shall be served by the secretary or the Executive Committee on any member either personally or by sending it through the post in a prepaid letter addressed to such member at his or her last known address, and any letter so sent shall be deemed to have been received within 12 days of posting.
(1) Subject to the following provisions of this clause the Constitution may be altered by a resolution passed by not less than two thirds of the members present and voting at a general meeting. The notice of the general meeting must include notice of the resolution, setting out the terms of the alteration proposed.
(2) No amendment may be made to clause A (the name of the charity clause), clause C (the objects clause), clause I (Executive Committee members not to be personally interested clause), clause U (the dissolution clause) or this clause without prior consent in writing of the Commissioners.
(3) No amendment may be made which would have the effect of making the Charity cease to be a charity at law.
(4) The Executive Committee should promptly send to the Commission a copy of any amendment made under this clause.
If the Executive Committee decides that it is necessary or advisable to dissolve the Charity it shall call a meeting of all members of the Charity, of which not less than 21 days’ notice (stating the terms of the resolution to be proposed) shall be given. If the proposal is confirmed by a two third majority of those present and voting the Executive Committee shall have the power to realise any assets held by or on behalf of the Charity. Any assets remaining after the satisfaction of any proper debts and liabilities shall be given and transferred to such other charitable institution or institutions having objects similar to the objects of the Charity as the members of the Charity may determine or failing that shall be applied for some other charitable purpose. A copy of the statement of accounts, or account and statement, for the final accounting period of the Charity must be sent to the Commission.
This constitution was adopted on the date mentioned below by the persons whose signatures appear at the bottom of this document.
Edward Mendelson Date
Katherine Bucknell Date
Nicholas Jenkins Date
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