Hobbits Hole Roleplaying Club Constitution

1. Name:

The name of the club is the Hobbits Hole Roleplaying Club.

2. Aims:

The aims of the Hobbits Hole Roleplaying Club are to:

  • Provide a fun safe environment for people to play roleplaying games.

  • Create a financially sustainable roleplaying club.

  • Celebrate and promote roleplaying by holding an annual public event.

3. Membership:

Membership is open to anyone with an interest in roleplaying games who is aged 18+, or 16+ (with a signed consent form by a parent or official guardian), or 10+ (if accompanied at all times by a parent or official guardian).

The maximum number of club members will be determined by the committee.

In order to join the club non-members must successfully complete a trial membership and then agree to the following membership requirements:

  • Provide their name and contact details to the committee.

  • Consent for the club to hold relevant data for the purposes of the Data Protection Act 2018.

  • Support the object(s) of the club and agree to be bound by this Constitution.

  • Agree to and abide by the club’s code of conduct.

  • Agree to pay membership fees.

Hobbits Hole Code of Conduct:

Members of the Hobbits Hole will:

  • Respect one another. Any offensive behaviour, including racist, sexist or inflammatory remarks, will not be permitted. Anyone behaving in an offensive way or breaking the equal opportunities policy will be asked to leave the club.

  • Not act unlawfully or exhibit anti-social behaviour.

  • Not act in a way that brings the club into disrepute.

  • Abide by the rules of the premises that games are being held in.

Members failing to comply with the code of conduct may be subject to an investigation by the committee. If the committee finds that a member is in breach of the code of conduct then they may be asked to leave the club.

Becoming a Member of the club:

In order to become a member, Non-Members must successfully complete a trial membership. Whilst undertaking a trial membership Non-Members must agree to abide by the club’s code of conduct, they also do not have any voting rights. Trial memberships are conducted as follows:

  • Non-Member attends four sessions within a twelve week period, (the fee is waived for the four sessions unless the Non-Member is an Ex-Member). For the first week of attendance the Non-Member is considered a Guest and they may elect to begin trial membership on their subsequent visit.

  • After 3 sessions of attendance, the Committee will canvas the opinion of members via email. Any concerns or observations that could prevent them becoming a member are to be raised to the Committee at this time who will then investigate and take appropriate action. Until such time as the investigation is complete, the Non Member will not be invited to attend the club.

  • If no concerns are raised, then after their fourth session. The Non-Member will be invited to become a member subject to them agreeing to the membership requirements.

Members

Members are expected to:

  • Pay their fees on time

  • Abide by the club’s constitution

  • Notify the Committee of any extended absences (eg. skipping a rotation)

Members have the right to:

  • Vote in the AGM/SGM

  • Put themselves forward as a member of the Committee

  • Run a game (GM/DM)

Guests:

A guest of the club:

  • Is a person that visits the club very infrequently.

  • Is anyone in their first week of becoming a Member.

  • Has no voting or membership rights.

  • Has to pay a fee unless they are in their trial membership phase.

Any attendance as a guest may be counted towards a trial membership.

Ceasing to be a member of the club:

Members will become Ex Members of the club if they:

  • Submit their resignation in writing (electronic or paper) to the committee.

  • Do not attend the club for 15 consecutive sessions with no contact despite reasonable attempts from the Committee to make contact.

  • Fail to attend the club for more than 25 sessions in one financial year.

  • Are asked to leave the club because of a breach of the code of conduct.

Extenuating circumstances for all of the above points will be considered by the committee.

Ex-Members cannot vote. An Ex-Member wishing to re-join the club must make a request in writing to the committee. The committee will take a vote at the next committee meeting if not before and if agreed then the Ex-Member can start trial membership. Trial membership must be successfully completed for the Ex-Member to become a Member again.

Games

Pitching Games

The GM/DM will put forward their idea for a game four sessions before the next rotation is due to start. This should include a brief synopsis of the game, and an image to use for the game for the website.

The club is predominantly a role playing club but other game options may be put to the Committee for consideration before pitching to the rest of the members

Players

Games are to consist of no more than 5 members (plus the GM/DM). The GM/DM will be expected to accommodate a 6th player if practicable should a guest or new member join the club mid rotation.

The GM/DM may at their discretion invite guests to join their game should they have any spaces and no members to fill them. A best effort basis will be made to ensure all members have a game prior to any guests joining.

The GM/DM may prohibit any club members from participating in a game, but must give a reason to the Committee. The GM/DM's decision is final.

Signing up for Games

Members may sign up via an online games schedule. Places will be available on a first come, first served basis.

The Rotations

The club will run games quarterly

  • April to June

  • July - September

  • October - December

  • January - March

1 week of the year will be allotted to hold the AGM.

4. Equal Opportunities

Hobbits Hole Roleplaying Club will not discriminate on any grounds including but not limited to sex, race (including colour, ethnic or national origin), sexual orientation, disability, gender reassignment, religious or political belief, pregnancy or maternity, marital status or age. An equalities diversity statement is appended to this constitution.

5. Officers and committee

The business of the club will be carried out by a Committee elected at the Annual General Meeting (AGM). The Committee will meet as necessary and not less than 3 times a year. The Committee will consist of 5 officers.

Examples of officer roles are as follows:

Officer: Chair
Responsible for:

  • Representing the club

  • Chairing meetings

  • Managing the performance of the committee

  • Making sure the club is run to the constitution

  • Signing off decisions made by the committee

Officer: Treasurer
Responsible for:

  • Responsible for the club’s finances

  • Monitoring the financial stability and viability of the club

  • Providing financial updates to members as necessary

  • Collecting payments from club members

Officer: Secretary
Responsible for:

  • Organising meetings and distributing agendas

  • Taking and distributing minutes of meetings

  • Taking and distribution of papers

  • Key management (if applicable)

  • Communication with venue as required

Officer: Online Presence
Responsible for:

  • Managing advertising streams that generate new members & income (i.e. Meet-up, Facebook, Website etc)

  • Making sure that there are enough games put forward for the number of players in advance of a new rotation

Officer: Membership
Responsible for:

  • First contact with potential new members

  • Organising games for new members to join

  • Managing membership process

  • Maintaining a list of all members to data protection requirements

In addition to all of the above, each Committee member can support other roles if required.

The process for selecting the committee is as follows:

  • Every January the committee will ask members if they would like to become / stay on as an officer of the committee.

  • Members must confirm in writing which position they would like to be considered for.

  • At the AGM in March all members will vote on who will fill the officer roles. If nobody has volunteered to take a particular role and the current officer has resigned then members can nominate themselves at the AGM.

  • Each officer will then be confirmed at the AGM and will serve for the next 12 months in that role on the committee.

The officer in the role of Chair may serve for no more than two consecutive years unless voted in at an AGM with a two thirds majority. Once a Chair leaves that post, they cannot serve as Chair again for the next 12 months. There are no restrictions on how long a member can serve in the other officer roles.

In the event of Members requesting a change of Committee member outside of an AGM, then a two thirds majority vote would be required at an SGM to remove them from the Committee.

In the event of an officer standing down or being voted out during the year a SGM will be required to discuss and elect somebody to the role.

6. How the club will make decisions:

Decisions will either be made by all members or by the Committee. Committee members are expected at all times to act in the best interests of the club.

Decisions that will be made by the committee:

  • Take decisions that affect the day to day running of the club.

  • Increase fees by no more than 10% annually to cover unforeseen expenditures while ensuring the increase is shared as equally as possible by all members.

  • Stop recruiting new members if the membership cap is reached.

  • Permit Ex-Members to re-join the club.

  • Creation of shortlist of potential funds spending (eg. equipment/events etc) and subsequent submission of proposals for members to vote on.

  • Negotiate with external parties as required

  • Remove members that are in breach of the clubs code of conduct.

  • Collate proposals from members for submission at AGM/SGM as required

For rules on how committee voting will be undertaken see section 7 committee meetings.

Decisions that will be made by all members:

All decisions that require a quorum of members can only be ratified at an AGM/SGM

  • Voting in the Committee members at the AGM or at SGM by exception.

  • Annual fee increases in excess of 10%

  • Voting on proposals raised by members or the Committee.

  • Voting on any changes to the Constitution.

For rules on how members votes will be undertaken see section 7 AGM & SGM.

How will members / the committee raise new proposals:

  • All proposals must be submitted to the committee in writing. (electronic or paper)

  • If a proposal needs amending, the committee will work with the proposer to do so.

  • The Committee will share the proposal with the rest of the club in writing and set a date for an SGM to vote on it no more than 4 sessions after sharing.

  • If the proposal is voted through then it will come into effect and any changes to the constitution will be made by the Secretary.

7. Meetings:

Annual General Meetings:

An Annual General Meeting (AGM) will be held within 15 months of the previous AGM.

All members will be provided with details of the AGM (i.e. date, time, location, papers, nominations for committee member roles, list of proposals that need voting on) in writing (electronic or paper) two weeks in advance of the meeting. The quorum for the AGM will be 60% of the members. For members that cannot attend votes can be taken by proxy.

At the AGM:

  • Committee will report on the club’s performance since the last AGM.

  • Committee will present the accounts for the previous financial year.

  • Officers and the committee for the next year will be elected.

  • Proposals may be discussed and voted on.

Special General Meetings:

The Secretary will call a Special General Meeting (SGM) at the request of the majority of the committee or at least 2 other members giving a written request to the Chair or Secretary stating the reason for their request. The meeting will take place no more than 4 sessions after the request. All members will be given as much notice as possible in writing of such a meeting, giving the venue, date, time and agenda. The quorum for the SGM will be 60% of the members. For members that cannot attend votes can be taken by proxy.

Committee Meetings:

Committee meetings may be called by the Chair or Secretary, and may be held in person or online. The quorum for Committee meetings is 60% of Committee members. For officers that cannot attend, votes can be taken by proxy. Minutes of committee meetings will be made available to club members.

All members will receive notice of meetings at least 7 days beforehand. Committee meetings will be open to any member of the club that wants to attend, who will be given the opportunity to speak but not vote.

8. Finances:

The club’s financial year runs from the 1st April to the 31st March. Membership fees will be set before the start of each financial year and will be based on all necessary expenditure for the year and building up a sinking fund for the club so that it has no more than one year’s worth of expenditure in reserve.

An account will be maintained on behalf of the club at a bank agreed by the committee.

Three cheque signatories will be nominated by the Committee (one to be the Treasurer). Signatories must not be related nor members of the same household.

All payments will be signed by two of the signatories.

  • For cheque payments, both will sign the cheque.

  • For online payments one will raise the payment the other will authorise it.

Should members incur costs on behalf of the club then these will be reimbursed once a receipt has been given to the treasurer.

Records of income and expenditure will be maintained by the Treasurer and a financial statement given as required.

All money raised by or on behalf of Hobbits Hole is only to be used to further the aims of the club, as specified in item 2 of this constitution.

9. Amendments to the Constitution:

Amendments to the constitution may only be made at the Annual General Meeting or a Special General Meeting. Any proposal to amend the constitution must be given to the Secretary in writing (electronic or paper). The proposal must then be circulated with the notice of meeting. Any proposal to amend the constitution will require a quorum of 60% of the members. For members that cannot attend votes can be taken by proxy.

10. Dissolution:

If it becomes necessary to vote on the dissolution of the club, this will be by a simple majority at an SGM. If the decision is to close down the club then the Committee is responsible for deciding the fair distribution of all remaining money and other assets, once outstanding debts have been paid. Should agreement not be possible on this then they will be donated to a local charitable organisation. The organisation will be agreed at the meeting which agrees the dissolution.

11. Date agreed:

This constitution was agreed at the Inaugural General Meeting of the Hobbits Hole Roleplaying Club on: 26th March 2021

Appendix 1: Equality diversity statement:

Hobbits Hole Roleplaying Club aims to comply with the Equalities Act 2010 and create an organisation which promotes equality and is free from discrimination and harassment, where all members can co-habit in an environment of fairness, dignity and respect. Hobbits Hole will not discriminate against members on any grounds. Some of the more commonplace ways that members can be discriminated against are on the grounds of Race/ethnicity; Nationality; Gender; Gender Reassignment; Sexual orientation; Pregnancy and Maternity status; Marital Status and Civil partnership status; Culture, Religion or Belief; Disability; Age; Ex-offenders.

Hobbits Hole Roleplaying Club will endeavor to ensure, as far as is practicable, that the locations where games are played are disability friendly to accommodate those with disabilities.

Hobbits Hole Roleplaying Club has a duty of care and is committed to providing a safe gaming environment free from all forms of bullying and harassment for all members.

It is the responsibility of the Committee of Hobbits Hole Roleplaying Club to communicate and implement this statement. Any complaints by members about discriminatory behaviour by any member of the club should be reported to the Committee who will then initiate an appropriate investigation.