Brenchley & Matfield Constitution

Brenchley & Matfield Horticultural Society Constitution


The name of the Society is Brenchley & Matfield Horticultural Society.  The Society was formed in 1877


The objectives of the Society are:

  • • to help its members to develop their interest in gardening by holding talks on horticultural topics and arranging visits to gardens of interest;
  • • to hold shows where members and non-members may exhibit flowers, fruit and vegetables, arts and crafts;
  • • to arrange social gatherings so that members can meet like-minded people;
  • • to assist members by making purchasing arrangements with suppliers at advantageous prices


Membership of the Society is open to anyone interested in gardening and/or gardens and living in Brenchley, Matfield and surrounding parishes.  Members pay an annual subscription; the normal payment date is 23rd June in each year.

The annual subscription for each year is determined by the Committee, who have regard to the views of the Members.


The officers of the Society are the President, Chairman, Treasurer and Secretary and such other officers as shall be deemed necessary; no one individual shall hold more than one office at a time.

Vice Presidents

The Committee may appoint those who have given outstanding service to the Society as Vice President.  In the event that the position of President becomes vacant, or the President is unable to act, the Committee may ask a Vice President to fulfill the President’s role on a temporary basis.


The affairs of the Society are conducted by a Committee comprising the Officers of the Society and up to 10 other members. This Committee may appoint one or more sub-committees comprising elected members of the Committee and/or other members of the Society to perform specific tasks.

The Committee may, as it sees fit, co-opt up to 4 members to serve on the Committee until the next Annual General Meeting, when the co-opted members may stand for election.


All subscriptions and other moneys received by the Society shall be passed to the Treasurer, who shall be responsible for all of the Society’s funds, for keeping accounting records and presenting the accounts for audit at the end of the financial year. All sums received by the Treasurer on the Society’s behalf shall be paid into the Society’s bank account and all cheques drawn on that account shall be signed by any two nominated officers. The funds of the Society shall be used solely to further the objectives of the Society and only in ways approved by the Committee.

An Auditor shall be elected at every Annual General Meeting to serve until the end of the next Annual General Meeting and shall be eligible for re-election. No Committee Member shall be eligible to act as Auditor.


Meetings of the Committee is chaired by the Chairman of the Society. In the event that the Chairman is absent at any meeting of the Committee, the Committee members present will elect one of their number to take the chair for that meeting.

An Annual General Meeting of the Society shall be held within six months of the financial year end for the purpose of:

  • • Approving the Committee’s Annual Report on the work of the Society during the preceding financial year.
  • • Electing officers for the forthcoming year and Committee Members to replace those who have retired.
  • • Approving financial statements signed by an Auditor.
  • • Electing an Auditor for the next year
  • • Considering any motion which has been notified to the Secretary of the Society at least 28 calendar days prior to the date of the AGM and which has been circulated to all Members.
  • • Noting any other matters for consideration by the Committee.

The Committee has the power to convene an Extraordinary General Meeting of the Society at any time and must do so within 28 calendar days of receiving a written request signed by 10 members. Notice in writing or by email must be sent to all members not fewer than 14 calendar days before such a meeting, informing them of the date, time, venue and purpose of the meeting. No business other than that detailed in the notice shall be transacted at an EGM.

The Chairman of the Society shall act as Chairman at any Annual or Extraordinary General meeting of the Society. In the event of the Chairman not being available the Committee members present shall elect one of their number to chair the meeting.  The President will take the chair in dealing with matters where the Chairman is conflicted.

Only members whose subscription is fully paid shall be entitled to vote at an Annual General Meeting, Extraordinary General Meeting or meeting of any Committee or Sub-Committee.  The quorum for a General Meeting is 10 members.

The Chairman of an Annual General Meeting, Extraordinary General Meeting or any meeting of the Committee may not participate in the initial voting at any meeting but, in the event of a tie, shall have a casting vote.


The Society will be dissolved if for any reason it ceases to function in accordance with the Constitution.   The Committee will give notice of dissolution to all Members by calling an Extraordinary General Meeting specifically to dissolve the Society. Upon agreement to dissolve the Society, the Committee will deal with all matters to settle debts and liabilities, close accounts and arrange the disposal of any assets and funds, subject to the wishes of that meeting.

Adopted 26 January 2017