This is the latest version of the Wheathampstead Businesses constitution. It is currently a draft document pending formal acceptance at the 2024 AGM.
Constitution (v8.0 updated 2023)
D R A F T
1. For the purpose of this Constitution Wheathampstead is defined as the area falling within Wheathampstead civil parish and/or Wheathampstead postal district.
2. The aim of Wheathampstead Businesses is promote, protect and support local businesses, thereby enhancing and securing the long-term future of Wheathampstead as a dynamic trading area for the benefit of the whole community, by means of the following:
( a ) promoting business both in the central High Street area and throughout Wheathampstead, the object being to enhance local employment prospects and encourage local economic and trading self sufficiency
( b ) continuous and comprehensive support for the development of Wheathampstead as a superior village community for residents, businesses and visitors.
3. Wheathampstead Businesses is a non-political body.
4. Membership is open to
( a ) businesses trading in Wheathampstead
( b ) businesses whose proprietor lives in Wheathampstead
( c ) any residents of Wheathampstead
( d ) people and businesses who do not live or work in Wheathampstead, but their applications to join Wheathampstead Businesses will be subject to ratification by members of the Turntable committee.
5. Business members of Wheathampstead Businesses are categorised as follows.
( a ) Premium and Standard members, who pay the required membership fee in return for specific benefits
( b ) WOW members, who do not pay a membership fee.
6. All business members are listed in Wheathampstead Businesses’ business directory which is published on Wheathampstead Businesses’ website and in the booklet ‘Window on Wheathampstead’.
7. For the purpose of this Constitution the term ‘full member’ means
( a ) a Premium of Standard business member or
( b ) a resident of Wheathampstead who attends Wheathampstead Businesses meetings in his or her private capacity.
8. Businesses that are full members must pay the required annual membership fee to remain a full member, and the membership fee will be reviewed and set at the Annual General Meeting.
9. One representative of each full member (company, family or individual) present at meetings shall be entitled to vote on any matter put to a vote. Matters to be put to a vote will be decided by a majority vote except where otherwise stated in this document. In the event of equality of votes the Chairman/woman shall have a second or casting vote.
10. Wheathampstead Businesses shall cease to exist if at least two thirds of full members present at an Annual or Special General Meeting vote in favour of dissolution. In the event of dissolution, any remaining funds in Wheathampstead Businesses shall be donated to a Wheathampstead charity.
11. Wheathampstead Businesses will appoint a Chairman/woman, a Secretary, a Treasurer (Office Bearers) and optionally a Membership Secretary and an Events Coordinator all of whom will be members of Wheathampstead Businesses.
12. Office bearers will be elected every year at the Annual General Meeting by a vote of at least two thirds of the full members of Wheathampstead Businesses who are present.
13. Full members of Wheathampstead Businesses may be co-opted to vacant posts by a vote of at least two thirds of the full members present at a Turntable meeting. The co-opted members may be officially recruited to the posts at the following Annual General Meeting, and in the meantime they must used the term “co-opted” on any correspondence.
14. The appointees listed in paragraph 11 and any persons co-opted in accordance with paragraph 13 will commit to remaining in post for a minimum of one year and will give three months’ notice if they wish to resign. This however shall not prevent Office Bearers from being replaced by a vote at an Annual General Meeting.
15. Wheathampstead Businesses shall be entitled to appoint sub-committees consisting of one or more people who shall report to the Wheathampstead Businesses membership. The Chairman/woman shall be an honorary member of all sub-committees. Wheathampstead Businesses will agree appropriate terms of reference with all sub-committees.
16. An Annual General Meeting shall be held once in each calendar year usually in April.
17. Special General Meetings may be called by the decision of full members of Wheathampstead Businesses or upon a signed application by not less than five full members or ten percent of the total full membership, which ever shall be the greater.
18. Notice of an Annual or Special General Meetings of Wheathampstead Businesses shall be sent to all full members with 21 days’ notice. Resolutions to be proposed at such meetings shall be circulated with the notice of the meeting.
19. A change in the rules of Wheathampstead Businesses shall require a two-thirds majority vote of full members present and voting at a Special or Annual General Meeting.
20. Annual and Special General Meetings shall require twenty-one days’ notice.
21. Accounts shall be produced annually and made available at the Annual General Meeting.
22. At least three full members of Wheathampstead Businesses shall be signatories on the online bank account held by Wheathampstead Businesses and the maximum amount that any one person can spend is £500.
D R A F T