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Discussion Forum - LDWA ideas forum - Membership fees


Author: Rebecca Lawrence
Posted: Tue 28th Feb 2006, 12:36
Joined: 2003
Local Group: Marches
ha ha. No need for the pigeon, all sorted now; thanks for your help Mike.
Author: Mike Buckley
Posted: Wed 22nd Feb 2006, 21:50
Joined: 1989
Local Group: Heart of England
Rebecca, I have copied your 'post' in an e mail to the Secretary and the Local Groups Secretary, both of whom are engaged in sorting out problems like this. If you want to get a message to the Membership Secretary try tying a note to a pigeon and throwing it in a generally westerly direction, just be careful it hasn't got avian flu.
Author: Rebecca Lawrence
Posted: Wed 22nd Feb 2006, 13:20
Joined: 2003
Local Group: Marches
I think the membership fee is good value, but I would happily pay more to have a more effective administative system. I joined the LDWA online on behalf of my partner on 3.12.05 and he has still not received a membership number despite several emails and telephone messages which have not been returned. I accept that the LDWA runs mainly with volunteers, but if we are to try and encourage new members, a more effective system is desperately needed to make a new member feel valued, 3 months is excessively long. What do you think?
Author: Norman C Corrin
Posted: Fri 17th Feb 2006, 16:19
Joined: 1981
Local Group: Beds, Bucks and Northants
Mark I'd agree with your last comment. £13 a year for what we get is quite reasonable. Also adding additional fees for different categories is going to make the membership administration more complicated. Keep it simple, we're all volunteers trying to administer this association.
Author: Mark Cottam
Posted: Thu 16th Feb 2006, 19:43
Joined: 2003
Local Group: Staffordshire
HI all just a quick note on the fee's issue, I believe the fee of £13 pounds is quite adequate for the info and news we all receive from being members and pleasure it brings meeting people out in the country on great events,a reduced fee for children may be ok But I disagree with subsidising students who always seem to find enough funds to go out boozing and clubbing why not a few quid paying their full fee's to the LDWA.
Author: Matthew Hand
Posted: Mon 23rd Jan 2006, 20:04
Joined: 2001
Local Group: Mid Wales
When the Mid Wales group started everyone joined for a nominal fee - this opened the bank account etc. It was a one off payment. Unfortunately, people joined over the years and were never seen again, but the secretary still had to post off minutes, walk and meeting details to all who had paid their 'one off' subscription. This was about 40 + members, of whom we knew about 10 were active. We failed to get a list of current paid up ldwa members in the Wales area ( still not sure if has come through to the secretary yet?) from the national group, so we couldn't strike anyone off our list. This was all causing unecessary work and expense for the secretary and group. We have now agreed on an annual membership fee - a token sum again - purely to ensure only those who are interested (and active) in the group receive details and paperwork from the secretary. For the first time we are on a good solvent financial footing, so that is not an issue, but there is no point in a small local group carrying "dead wood" so to speak. If the national group published an annual paid up membership list for all seperate local areas (and some members may not wish to be on a public list) I guess this would help. Though again, some members may want to stay with old groups after they have moved from the area. From our point of view, a small annual fee is beneficial to the running of the club. Matt.
Posted: Mon 23rd Jan 2006, 17:49
Joined: 1995
David, I still feel that you have missed the point. Nobody was "forced" and we each volunteered to throw £5 into the kitty because we care about the group and we are proud of it and want to see it continue. We all have principles but it does seem a shame to resign just because your friends care about a group that you ran for 9 years! Everyone, including you, are most welcome to join us on our social walks for the grand fee of £0. Thank you for all that you did for the group over the past 9 years. Ian
Posted: Sun 22nd Jan 2006, 21:56
Joined: 1982
Ian. I make no bones about the fact that I do not like added fees and this was well known both within the Cumbria group and at the National Groups reps meetings. When you open your mouth you some times you have to stand on a principal I have done that. At local and National level and as "Custer" probably said "Sod the arrows". I like your idea of a spell checker I do need it.
David H
Author: Tony Deall
Posted: Fri 20th Jan 2006, 21:02
Joined: 1985
Local Group: Cumbria
I hoped that my previous post would have been read in the spirit in which it was written i.e. fairly tongue in cheek. The 'obligation' to plan and lead walks is,of course, a moral one - how else could the Walks Secretary function?
Posted: Fri 20th Jan 2006, 17:18
Joined: 1995
Sorry David, I forgot to say in my above post, that folk should be aware that you were the Group Secretary when the £5 local fee was introduced at a time of need. This year, we have all simply volunteered to keep on paying to help to insure the future of our small group, so I for one was very disappointed (& rather confused!!) to hear that you have left our group over this. I hope that you reconsider.
Ian
Posted: Fri 20th Jan 2006, 14:56
Joined: 1995
As a member of the Cumbria Group (not on any committee), I should point out that nobody in our group was "forced" to pay any extra subs. Our group is only 13 members strong, and 12 of the 13 members VOLUNTEERED to give the group £5 per year. Personally, I was delighted to donate this tiny amount of money to help a group that I am proud to be a member of. David has made it public that he was the one person who did not agree with this but he fails to say that we were all OK with that. He did not have to pay and we would much rather that he had stayed in our group as it is stronger with him. Surely, if the group members VOLUNTEER to give our money to our local group - this is a matter for us as individuals, and not a reason to resign? I joined the LDWA to walk not argue, as life is just too short but this point did need to be made in the interests of accuracy and balance! David, I am sure that you would be welcomed back anytime.
Ian
Posted: Wed 18th Jan 2006, 23:23
Joined: 1982
I must have missed something for 9 years that I was Sec of the Cumbria Group, when was any one in that group under any "obligation" to lead or plan walks?. I know that some do avoid the local groups in case they get involved and others wait a long time before they come forward but this is normal in any organisation. Though I have never had any beef against the National sub, it is fair. Maybe it should also have a bit in it to cover the expences of local groups, it is also reasonable that each group should have a list of active members who want to be members of their local group and only members on that list should be able to vote at local group A G Ms but I do not belive that members should be charged an extra fee to belong to a group and if there is the need for a group fee that is not built in to the National sub that fee should be the same for all groups and set by the National A G M each year. David H
Posted: Wed 18th Jan 2006, 20:36
After reading the many reply’s to the original posting I made, I can see that there is a split of opinion over the increase on membership fees something that I feel strong about. Yes some young people could find the £1 a month, but others only just have enough left over each month to put a little a side for a rainy day. I find the comments that were made by one member who I’ll not name, about any intention of stereotyping all young people and their knowledge of younger people and their finances, wrong. And a little miss guided. At 26 years of age, and yes in a good job, still struggle to make rent and other bill payments, (student loans etc).
I will in doubt continue my membership to the LDWA if for nothing else to get away from the real stress of life.
Author: Julie Welch
Posted: Wed 18th Jan 2006, 16:23
Joined: 1996
Local Group: London
That was one of those doh! moments. I was responding to points made by John H and Chris P on the previous page.
Author: Julie Welch
Posted: Wed 18th Jan 2006, 13:22
Joined: 1996
Local Group: London
I couldn't agree more. I've just heard that I've won a place in the ballot for the Great North Run, and had barely started celebrating before I found out that the entry fee is a colossal £36. For a half-marathon! At least with the London Marathon you get 13.1 more miles for your money.
Author: Tony Deall
Posted: Mon 16th Jan 2006, 19:22
Joined: 1985
Local Group: Cumbria
I mentioned the reasons for our local group sub. in my last post. In reply to David I would agree that any LDWA member is entitled to walk with their local (or any group)without charge. We have a standard fee of £o.oo for anyone daft enough to walk with us.The sub.gives an entitlement to vote at our AGM, an obligation to plan and lead at least one social walk annually and the privilege of spending many unpaid hours helping at Challenge Walks and other activities.
Posted: Mon 16th Jan 2006, 13:34
Joined: 1984
Welcome John and Every Success with your goals and hope you'll remain a member long after 2007. You're right, membership is cheap (where else do you get a ticket with so much value?). Without wishing to sound like a "Bobblehat" the event prices are so low simply due to hefty subsidisation by an unstinting complement (though sadly declining in numbers) of volunteers. I think reciprocity is encouraged but not required. Any good Essex jokes to share here John (but be a bit careful with some of the Barrymore ones)? Despite a hefty percentage increase I too think £13 represents good value. My own view, by observation is that the desire or ability of a member to find £13 has nothing whatsoever to do with his age, and that the LDWA should leave well alone on this one. In any case, if former membership forms asked for the same info as current one, the Association does not have any stats on membership age, and hence couldn't fairly or sensibly (if pricing simply to cover costs) proceed anyway? Couldn't membership form seek a bit more info eg age, or age bracket, and access to computer,for starters?
Posted: Mon 16th Jan 2006, 13:11
Joined: 2000
I agree with John H. I think the LDWA membership and race entry fees are an absolute bargain and amazing value for money. Compared to other outdoor activities like running, mountain biking or adventure racing the sums we are talking about are peanuts.
Posted: Mon 16th Jan 2006, 9:01
Joined: 2005
I have just joined and think £13 is not a lot of money when you consider the entry price of a lot of races. I am in training for the 07 Marathon des sable and the main reason that I joined the LDWA is that the walks are a LOT cheaper then "normal" running events and they have not got food at the checkpoints!

BTW I joined in November 05 so do I have to pay my subs in 06?
Author: David Morgan
Posted: Sat 14th Jan 2006, 19:36
Joined: 1994
Local Group: South Wales
I cannot see any reason or justification to charge members to be members of a local group. By joining the national organisation you are entitled to walk with and join your local group. Any expenses that are incurred bu the group should be paid for by the national organisation. Is there any ruling in place about this? I would be very unhappy at the thoughht that I had to pay my local group to walk with them when I understood this to be a perk of joining the national organisation.

As for under 30's paying less, what a load of rubbish. I have no intention of sterotyping all young people, but from my knowledge of younger people and their finances, it really isn't difficult for them to find just over £1 per month to join our organisation. And I speak with knowledge of people in very poorly paid jobs finding enough money to pay for the little luxuries in life. If you want something badly enough, you save for it. £13 is hardly a burden in this day and age.
Author: Tony Willey
Posted: Tue 10th Jan 2006, 20:03
Joined: 1989
Local Group: Lakeland
OK, I'll try to avoid overuse of the "B" word, but my dictionary defines it as "excessively complicated administrative procedures", and I think it is the right word in this case. Per capita local group funding is a simple concept but it gets complicated in practice. Just a couple of issues are people who are members of several groups and funding of non-geographical groups (The Irregulars). LG secretaries would still need to maintain records of "real" members for newsletter distribution, help on events, etc, so it would not save them work and there might be an interesting debate on who needs to be sent notice of LG annual meetings. And where does this centrally derived funding come from? An increase in LDWA subscriptions, of course.
Author: Tony Deall
Posted: Mon 9th Jan 2006, 19:38
Joined: 1985
Local Group: Cumbria
The subscription for our group was maintained this year at £5 by an overwhelming majority at the AGM. I think it would be hard to argue that this is not a modest sum even in addition to the National sub. It is designed to reimburse the officers for their administrative expenses and will only bring in £60 pa at the present level of membership. As David points out most officers in the past have not claimed legitimate expenses for postage, paper, computer ink etc etc fully (or at all). The AGM felt that this was wrong and placed an unfair burden on the group's officers who should, in future, be strongly encouraged to reclaim these. In addition it was felt that a small local sub served the purpose of defining the group. Everyone then knows who the active and committed members are (very important when it comes to organising events etc) .
Posted: Mon 9th Jan 2006, 9:59
Joined: 1984
Message from Peter Dentten. David, had you just got back from the pub when you posted last night?
Posted: Sun 8th Jan 2006, 22:21
Joined: 1982
Peter you have the right method in your group and this is how things should be but some groups do have a subcription and this makes a two tier system. Tony it was a few years ago since you were National Treasurer. With our new computer system (though there has been the odd opps!)per capita should not be difficult to work out or deal with. If a group has X L D W A members in their area then they get X amount back from National subs per year. Then Peter can spend more on members comforts or bring down the price of entrys for challanges. The word BUREACAUCRACY seems to be the "F" word of the L D W A, used to scare people who do not know how to use it for the common good. As for "modest" fees add a sub to the R A and another to a local non L D W A walking / running group and maybe another out door group and the total is not so modest.
Yours
David H
Author: Tony Willey
Posted: Sat 7th Jan 2006, 17:39
Joined: 1989
Local Group: Lakeland
To answer David Hammond's point, I recall that we looked at the idea of per capita funding of local groups when I was National Treasurer a few years ago, but rejected the idea because it would have required a lot of administration and bureaucracy for little benefit. Local group subscriptions are generally very modest, and simply cover the costs of their newsletter and general administration
Author: Matthew Hand
Posted: Sat 7th Jan 2006, 17:25
Joined: 2001
Local Group: Mid Wales
o.k. I'll rephrase 'personal attacks' as 'constructive criticism', that is probably a better interpretation. I personally believe that a good airing of views, bring more ideas to the table and hopefully progression and improvement within the organisation. I may criticise something I believe is wrong, or the way someone is doing something, but I certainly don't have anything against them personally, or the hard work they are putting in. Matt.
Author: Julie Welch
Posted: Sat 7th Jan 2006, 14:44
Joined: 1996
Local Group: London
Well said, Chris. Sorry, Matt, but while personal attacks and flame wars may be entertaining to read, they are incredibly upsetting for the person who is the target. Anyway, what's not to like? Heaven help us if the only way we communicate is by moaning and making scapegoats.
Author: Chris Chorley
Posted: Sat 7th Jan 2006, 13:51
Joined: 1982
Local Group: Norfolk & Suffolk
Read the Acceptable Use Policy, "Personal attacks are not acceptable.". I didn't write it, but would agree. I joined the LDWA because I like walking, not arguments. If someone does something for the LDWA (such as providing a forum which did not previously exist) then be thankful. As to lower subs for (eg) younger people, I meant the same system used by the IEE (Institition of Electrical Engineers) and others. Students pay a lower rate. Retired members pay a lower rate. In between there is a rising scale which generally (ok, in IEE qualified type jobs) lines up with (probable) higher salaries. Unemployed also pay less. However, all that is a bit complicated for volunteers to manage, but (say) reduced fee for under 30s might make sense.
Author: Peter Haslam
Posted: Sat 7th Jan 2006, 11:16
Joined: 1992
Local Group: East Lancashire
What two tier system? If you are a member of the LDWA living in East Lancashire you are, as far as we are concerned, a member of East Lancs. The monies raised by running challenge events buys, equipment, flowers and cards for sick members, printing and postage as well as expenses for attending meetings.
Posted: Fri 6th Jan 2006, 23:26
Joined: 1982
I recently left my local group because I object strongly to being forced to pay two membership fees, one for the National L D W A and one for the local group. The National sub is fair enough and I have always been willing to put my hand in my pocket to help the local group when it is needed and like many have always kept the expence docket as low as possible (where it is claimed) but I am as some know a firm beliver in Per Capita which I regard as fairer than the present two tier system of fees that the L D W A operates.
Author: Matthew Hand
Posted: Fri 6th Jan 2006, 17:57
Joined: 2001
Local Group: Mid Wales
Please note that the views posted by my husband ( see above) are not necessarily the views held by the management in this household. Jane Hand
Author: Matthew Hand
Posted: Fri 6th Jan 2006, 17:01
Joined: 2001
Local Group: Mid Wales
I don't think the fee is too much, but certainly a cheaper 'first year fee' for students or those in full time education would not be a bad idea. Everything should be loked at to try and increase membership.

Personally I think this forum is an excellent place for personal attacks on other members or authority. If you can't voice your opinions here, there's not much point in being here. Anyone can fight their corner and put their point of view, it's how things move forward. As long as abusive or bad language etc. are moderated out, what's the problem? Matt.
Author: Ian Koszalinski
Posted: Fri 6th Jan 2006, 14:43
Joined: 2004
Local Group: High Peak
i was going to suggest that OAPs pay a lower fee but the LDWA would lose money (joke) by youngsters do you mean students? seeing that children would come under the family membership, i would go along with a student membership fee, this would hopefully recruit younger members, i know our local university has a walking club so there are younger walkers out there
Author: Chris Chorley
Posted: Wed 4th Jan 2006, 21:39
Joined: 1982
Local Group: Norfolk & Suffolk
I may be speaking out of turn, but the correct etiquette on this forum should exclude personal attacks. I know "remember we are all volunteers" doesn't go down well with everyone, but previous membership secretaries will know the work involved ;-) . I'm grateful for what Garfield has done so far. £13 ? Doesn't seem too much. I suppose there could be a reduced fee for younger members though. That applies to other organisations of which I'm a member.
Author: Janet Chapman
Posted: Tue 3rd Jan 2006, 22:10
Joined: 1984
Local Group: Surrey
How else can we pay for the new web-site and the shambles
caused by the Membership Secretary/Web Master?
Posted: Thu 15th Dec 2005, 15:09
Joined: 2005
£13 does not seem excessive to me (and I am under 30 as well). You get Strider - which is good value, reduced entry to races and obviously membership of the LDWA giving you a voice in how the association evolves. To give some random comparisons - the CTC is only £12, the BMC is £27.50.
Posted: Wed 14th Dec 2005, 20:11
Could some one explain to me why the LDWA feel that an increase in the Membership fee is justified? As a young person (under 30) it’s hard enough to find the money to do an event after everything else that needs to be paid for. The old fee of £10 was one thing that made me join in the first place, but now feel that I may not continue my membership. And can someone also tell me what I really get for my money.

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