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AGM 2007 Minutes

Minutes of the Annual General Meeting held at the Glen Lui Hotel on 11-08-2007 Prepared by Alistair Farquharson


The meeting was opened by the President, Andrew Farquharson, who extended a welcome to all and introduced the Chief Capt. Alwyne A.C. Farquharson of Invercauld.

1.1 The Chief also welcomed attendees and indicated how much both he and Mrs Farquharson looked forward to the Ballater meeting and that they had appreciated a fine day at the Games yesterday.

1.2 Reference was made to the sad loss of Beryl Hardy Nisbett in the past year and that a personal tribute and wreath had been sent. A new high commissioner to represent the Chief, Bruce Findlay, had been appointed.

1.3 The Chief commented on the wonderful support that had been given to the Culloden Stone appeal from home and overseas, particularly from the U.S.A.

1.4 The Chief referred to the original Clan Farquharson Society founded by James Farquharson, grandfather of Alistair, in Aberdeen in the 1940's, but which more or less died with him in 1957. Fortunately the organisation was resurrected by Alan Caig in 2000 AD to whom many thanks are due.

2. Apologies for Absence, had been received from:-
  • Angus and Alison Farquharson of Finzean, Past president Gordon, his wife Jane and daughter Hannah. Hannah was married last week, but will continue to edit ‘The Lion’s Face’., Sharon Farley, president of the clan in the US., Douglas and Jeanette F. of Welwyn Garden  City.
  • Those present include Capt. Farquharson  - Chief, Andrew Farquharson –President, Val F.- membership secretary, Alan Caig – Vice President, Geoffrey F. –Historian, Margaret Findlay – Merchandise and asst. Membership sec. together with about 25 other members.
3. The minutes of the AGM 2006 were agreed, proposed by Elizabeth Findlay seconded by Valerie F, and passed unanimously.  
4. The president, Andrew Farquharson, said it was encouraging to see so many at the meeting 4.2 The clan gathering went well, the new tent was a success and the sales of Geoffrey's book [7] were very encouraging. 4.3 The matter of the clan banner was still under consideration and would be discussed further under AOB. 4.5 The future of Braemar castle was similarly under consideration. Currently the Braemar Community have a lease of the building and are proceeding with renovation on a mainly voluntary basis. 4.6 A committee meeting had been held by telephone on 10-1-2007, and was considered to be successful. .  

5. Treasurer's Report.

5.1 The report , income and expenditure account, and balance sheet was presented by the president who was acting as treasurer for the gathering, as the treasurer, Gordon was unable to do so.

5.2 The annual balance at 31 December 2006 showed a credit of £3415.30. 5.3 Some costs such as postage and printing had been absorbed, but costs generally were expected to rise next year.

5.4 A motion that the accounts be accepted, proposed by Valerie Farquharson and seconded by Elaine Farquharson was carried unanimously


Discussion was opened by noting that payment by Standing  Order might lead to confusion, as the majority of the subscribers shared a common surname. On the other hand banks were not interested in operating Direct Debit schemes for small organisations. In view of the foregoing it was suggested that members be asked to complete Standing Order instructions when renewing or applying for membership. Such Standing Orders would be centrally tagged with a membership number for reference purposes.

A problem of the Standing Order system is that in the event of a change of subscription, members would be put to the trouble of changing the Order. Because of this it was proposed that the subscription be raised over the fixed period of the next TEN years as follows:-
Single membership be raised from the current £10 to £15.

Joint membership be raised from £15 to £20.

Considerable discussion followed, but a motion raising single membership to £15 for the next ten years  was proposed by Norah Farquharson, seconded by Roxanna Brown Vuskalus was carried unanimously.

That joint membership be raised to £25 for the next ten years was proposed by Maureen Farquharson, seconded by Jane Hill, was also carried without opposition.

As many members as possible were asked to contact Valerie after the meeting and complete the Standing Order form



6. Membership report.

Valerie Farquharson reported that there had been a rise in membership over the past year from 95 to 117. It was hoped that the S.O. system will help to secure membership, as at present many members fail by default, to renew their subscription. It was noted that overseas membership was more costly to subscribers th U.K. membership, but because of the complexity surrounding any change, it was decided to leave matters as they stand. The president especially welcomed to the meeting Roxanna from New York State, J.P.Wood and family from Alaska, and Ray and Muriel Leitch from Brisbane.


7. The Newsletter.

Thanks were expressed to Gordon and Hannah for all their hard work over the past year. An après-games publication will soon be circulated.

8. The Clan Website The President spoke to this subject. Much effort had gone into arranging the new contract and even more hard work in proof reading etc, but he thought it was all worthwhile. Two estimates for the provision of the new website were obtained, which differed by around £900. The lowest quote, £1100, was accepted, but probably involved a good deal more work for the President. However a show of hands indicated that only 4 had read the website and only 6 had 'glanced' at it! It appeared that some of the members do not have access to the internet and others do not use it. It was noted that free access to the internet was available, at least in Scotland, via the public library service.  

9. Election of Committee and  Officers 2007/08  

The proposal by Gordon Farquharson and seconded by Elaine Farquharson that all the committee and officers be re-elected en bloc was carried unanimously

9.1  President- Andrew Farquharson [Worthing]
      Vice President-Alan Caig
       Membership Secretary-Val Farquharson [ Worthing].
       Treasurer – Gordon Farquharson [Guildford]
       Newsletter Editor – Hannah Farquharson [Guildford]
        Officer  - website – Andrew Farquharson [Edinburgh]
        Officer – Margaret Finlay- [Biggin Hill]
        Officer – Alistair Farquharson- [Stonehaven]
        Officer – Clan History – Geoffrey Farquharson – [Peterculter]
        Honorary Vice Presidents – Angus and Alison Farquharson of Finzean


10. Paving stone at Culloden.

The response to Gordon Farquharson, the treasurer’s appeal was phenomenal, a total of about £1600 had been subscribed, almost half this sum coming from the USA via Sharon Farley.

The Chief remarked that the new visitor’s centre at Culloden was due to open very soon and that our stone should be in place within a few months.


11. Future Gatherings

11.1 The President announced that the Farquharson pipe band from Nova Scotia was planning to arrive in 2009. To take part in the celebration of the 250th anniversary of the birth of Rabbie Burns there was a planned gathering of the clans to mark this anniversary to be held in Edinburgh on 24-25th July 2009. The Chief had been contacted and had agreed to support the meeting. It had to be decided what should be done in 2009 - should we support the Edinburgh event as well as or instead of Ballater etc.

11.2 The Chief indicated that the format of the Edinburgh gathering would be that of traditional highland games and that he was committed to attend. 11.3 Much debate ensued, but the general view seemed to be that the Clan should continue to meet at the Ballater games, but as much support as possible be given to the Edinburgh event.


12. Any Other Business.

12.1 The issue of the Clan banner was discussed. Alan Caig said that the entire process of the Clan being granted a coat of arms was likely to cost around £2000. The matter was deferred for further deliberation.

12.2 The President had recently visited the site of the Carn-na cuihme, where he found there were problems with access ,the former meadow had been planted with oilseed rape and fenced off. Not only was there a fence to be crossed but there were potential parking problems. However the owner of a nearby cottage had given permission to park cars in his drive and there was a currently vacant property across the road which could be used.

12.3 Ballater 2008 Valerie Farquharson proposed that in future catering in the tent should be purchased locally at the rate of £5 per head, after discussion this suggestion seemed to meet with general approval.

12.4 The President announced that the visit to Braemar Castle that afternoon was scheduled for 3pm when we would be shown round by Alistair Colquhoun, chairman of the Braemar Community Association and owner of Lamont Sporrans in Braemar.

12.5 It was agreed that that the Clan should acknowledge with grateful thanks their visit to Angus and Alison Farquharson and all the family at Finzean.

12.6 There being no further business the meeting closed at 12.02pm


AGM minutes