Plymouth Caving Group – Consitiution
1. THE NAME
That the name of the club be the PLYMOUTH CAVING GROUP hereinafter referred to as “the
2. THE AIMS OF THE CLUB
The aims of the club shall be the sports of caving, potholing, mining exploration, the
furthering of scientific knowledge in connection therewith and the furthering of cave
3. THE COMMITTEE
a) The honorary offices of the club shall be Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer.
b) The remainder of the committee shall consist of up to seven members. These may fill the
posts of Tackle Warden, Librarian and Recorder, Editor, Meet Secretary, Membership
Secretary or any other post, which maybe appointed by an Annual General Meeting, or by
c) The committee shall retire annually, but the members shall be eligible for re-election.
d) All members of the committee, on being elected, shall be a member and have been so for
at least three months previously.
e) In the event of a vacancy arising, the committee shall have the power to co-opt a club
member to fill it.
f) The full committee may be deemed quorate when four of its members are present.
g) The committee shall have the power to convene advisory sub-committees for specific
4. SHORT COMMITTEE
a) In the event of insufficient demand for a full committee, a short committee may be
elected from the candidates available at an Annual General Meeting.
b) A short committee shall be deemed quorate when the Chairman and half its members
c) A short committee shall have the equivalent powers to that of a full committee.
5. THE PRESIDENT
a) The post of President shall be held by a member who has a keen and active interest in
b) The President may carry out the job of one of the ordinary committee posts, without
being on the committee.
c) The President may not carry out the job of one of the honorary offices.
d) The President shall not be entitled to vote.
e) The President is entitled to one vote in any referendum held within the club.
f) The President can, if requested, take the chair at any committee meeting or A.G.M. or
E.G.M. but is NOT entitled to vote.
g) The President has the power to veto*
h) The post of President shall be elected annually at an A.G.M.
* (Veto is the constitutional right of the President to reject legislative enactment, suspending
but not necessary preventing completion of that measure.)
6. COMMITTEE MEETINGS
a) Committee meetings shall be held at least once every Fifteen weeks at a time, date and
place to be declared by the committee.
b) Only committee members may vote at a committee meeting.
c) Committee decisions shall be made by a simple majority vote.
d) Should the voting on any subject be indecisive then the chairman shall have the casting
e) In the absence of the pre-elected chairman, the members may elect a temporary
chairman from amongst themselves.
f) Committee members shall receive seven days notice in writing, for committee meetings.
g) Ordinary members may attend but may only speak with the permission of the chair.
h) Should the committee deem it necessary, the committee may hold a closed meeting.
7. ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
a) An Annual General Meeting, for the transaction of club business and the election of
officers shall be held before the end of February of each year, at a time, date and place to be
declared by the committee.
b) The date of the following AGM will be set during the AGM and published in the Minutes.
c) All club members shall receive at least 28 days notice of the meeting together with, in
writing, a copy of the agenda.
d) A copy of the balance sheet of the club’s monies will be presented at the start of the
e) Any members wishing any motion to be brought forward at the A.G.M. shall send the text
of the motion together with the names of a proposer and seconder to the secretary six
weeks before the date of the A.G.M, so that it may be included in the agenda.
f) Voting at an A.G.M. shall be by paid up members who shall have been so for at least 3
g) The honorary committee members shall be elected by a majority show of hands, each
candidate being named for a specific post.
h) The ordinary committee members shall be elected by a simple vote, each member
having a majority vote.
i) A record shall be kept of who proposed and seconded, each candidate, and the number
of votes each receives.
8. EXTRAORDINARY GENERAL MEETING
a) The Hon. Secretary shall arrange an Extraordinary general meeting of the club within
thirty days of receiving a written demand to do so.
b) Such a demand will be signed by ten club members and shall contain resolutions to be
put forward, together with the names of proposers and seconders.
c) The Hon. Secretary shall give club member’s Twenty Eight days notice of such a meeting
together with an agenda.
9. MEMBERSHIP AND SUBSCRIPTIONS
a) Probationary period – All club members join as a provisional member for a period of 6
months, with at least three trips being attended within the 6 months. The purpose of this
is to assess a provisional member's attitude and suitability for caving with the club. The
committee reserves the right to refuse membership to any individuals, without giving
reason, who they feel do not have due regard to safety and The Caving Code.
b) There shall be four classes of membership.
1) Full membership for those aged 16 or over.
2) Subsidised membership for those attending full-time education at a school, college or
university, or on low income at the committee’s discretion.
3) Family membership.
4) Temporary membership for no longer than 30 days at a cost that
covers administrative charges only. The only benefit of temporary membership is Public
Liability Insurance and Equipment rental.
c) Subscriptions become due at the end of the clubs financial year, December 31st (except
d) Membership fees for each financial year will be set provisionally by a committee meeting
prior to the start of each financial year and will be confirmed by the Annual General
e) New members i.e. those not re-joining, pay their subs to the nearest quarter of the year in
which they join.
10. THE CLUB’S CODE OF CONDUCT
a) All members (all four categories, as described above) are subject to and must abide by the
club’s Code of Conduct. Please see the ‘Plymouth Caving Group Code of Conduct’ document.
11. DISCIPLINARY PROCEDURE
a) The committee shall have the right to discipline any club member guilty of conduct, which
the committee considers detrimental to the club and its aims. After hearing all the evidence
warranting such an action and providing that two thirds of the committee present agree by
a secret ballot to such a course, a decision will be announced.
a. On the first discipline, the individual will receive a formal recorded verbal warning.
b. On the second discipline, a formal written warning will be issued.
c. On receiving a third and final discipline, that member will be formally asked to leave the
d. If the member is found guilty of gross misconduct, then that member will be expelled
immediately from the club.
b) The member in question must have the opportunity of presenting his/her case for
continued membership, either in person or in writing, or by a representative. If the
committee decide that expulsion is warranted they should ask the member to resign before
taking such action.
12. FINANCE AND PROPERTY
a) The committee shall be responsible for the purchase, maintenance and control of club property. All club tackle should be checked at three monthly intervals. An Annual
examination under the direction of the Tackle Warden should be carried out in the presence
of the two other committee members and a written report presented to the committee.
b) The clubs financial year shall be from January 1st to December 31st.
c) The club monies shall be deposited with an agreed Building Society or Bank. The account
shall be jointly operated by the honorary committee officers. The signature of any two of
these should be sufficient to effect a withdrawal.
13. CLUB MEETS
a) At least four club meets are to be held each year. It is the responsibility of the committee
to promote the running of such meets and to ensure all members are notified of such
b) Visitor and Guest may attend club trips providing they are suitably covered by insurance,
either by the clubs temporary membership, or insurance by others.
c) Visitors and guests should be accompanied by full members.
a) Meet reports, exploration accounts etc. shall be the responsibility of the Librarian and
Recorder, who shall keep appropriate files for reference.
b) A record of individuals attending trips will be kept for insurance purposes.
c) Club members shall receive notification in writing, in the newsletter of all the clubs
d) To these ends the committee and especially the secretary, editor and librarian and
recorder shall hold themselves responsible to publish the club newsletter and journal
appropriately, at least at six monthly intervals.
e) The committee may reserve the right to distribute exchange copies of the clubs’
newsletter as it sees fit.
15. NOTICE OF MEETINGS
All notices of meetings and other circulation from club to members may be distributed in
electronic form, but the committee must ensure that such circulation is provided in writing
to those members unable or unwilling to receive it in electronic form.
16. CAVE RESCUE
a) The club will hold itself available for cave and mine rescue from any part of Devon and
b) The elected Rescue Warden’s, shall be available to be co-opted onto the committee of
Devon Cave Rescue Organisation or such other body as is responsible for cave rescue in
Devon and Cornwall. They will represent the club on such a body.
a) The ruling of the committee shall be final on any matter not provided for in the club
constitution and rules. The committee may create bylaws for the running of the club at
b) Neither the club nor its members, collectively or as individuals may be held responsible
for any injury, fatal or otherwise, to any person, member or non-members, on any club
meet. A disclaimer to this effect shall be signed by every member or non-member over
eighteen years of age, or by his or her legal guardian if the person is under eighteen years of
This is the 2023 version of the Plymouth Caving Group Constitution