Oxford Blues Metal Detecting Club
Constitution, Rules and Code of Conduct
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Each member shall be deemed to have given his/her consent to the rules, code of conduct and guidance contained in this document and agree to abide by the decisions of the committee by applying to become a club member.
The Club shall be called the Oxford Blues Metal Detecting Club (OBMDC). An elected committee will manage the club. In exceptional circumstances members may be co-opted on to the committee by a majority vote of existing committee members.
At the Annual General Meeting (AGM) or a Special General Meeting (SGM) called for the purpose, a majority of the members present shall have the power to decide or adjust the constitution and rules of the club at their discretion.
Upon receiving a requisition signed by 30 members or 20% of the membership, whichever is greater, the secretary shall call an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM). At least 28 days’ notice of request shall be given together with an agenda for the meeting. The committee may convene a SGM at any time. At least 7 days’ notice of such meetings shall be given together with an agenda.
The club may be disbanded at any time at an EGM or SGM called for the purpose. Two thirds of members present must be in agreement with the motion to disband. In the event of the club disbanding and having discharged it debts, the remaining monies will be donated to a charity decided on by those in attendance at the final General Meeting.
Membership shall be limited at the discretion of the committee in order to manage overall numbers on digs.
Guests are welcome up to a maximum of six guests on digs that aren not deemed to be 'restricted numbers' digs. Guests who show commitment to the club and our rules may be invited to join the club at the discretion of the committee. Guests introducing new land opportunities to the club will be looked on favourably when deciding whether to invite them into our membership.
Any member found guilty of bringing the club or hobby into disrepute may, at the discretion of the committee, have their membership revoked at any time.
3. MEMBERSHIP SUBSCRIPTIONS
The annual subscription will be set by the committee and approved at the AGM. Membership will run from the 1st of April until the of March each year. Currently membership is £15 per annum paid before 1st April. Membership to the club will cease if the annual subscription is not paid by 1st April.
Each member must hold Personal Liability Insurance via the National Council for Metal Detecting (NCMD).
5. DIG FEES AND PAYMENTS TO LANDOWNERS
The dig fee and dig payment to the landowners will be reviewed on a regular basis by the committee and may be varied according to club finances and subject to a majority decision of committee members.
The club may pay landowners who introduce the club to a new landowner who gives us permission to detect their land (and we have at least two visits to that land) an ‘introductory fee’ of £200 or a figure subsequently set by the committee depending on club finances.
6. OFFICERS OF THE COMMITTEE
The officers of the club shall consist of a Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson, Treasurer, Secretary, Sites Officer(s) and other committee members.
No officer will hold more than two positions. A minimum of three members of the committee shall constitute a quorum for transaction of business.
The club membership may elect Life Members at the AGM after recommendation of the committee.
7. ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
The AGM of the club shall be held in February/March of each year. At this meeting the following business shall be transacted provided 15 or more members are present:
- Receive an annual report from the chairperson, sites officer(s), secretary and treasurer and agree the Statement of Accounts provided.
- Election of committee officers
- Other business of which notice has been given to the chairperson.
All voting shall be by a show of hands unless a ballot is demanded by at least 15 members. Only current members are entitled to vote. The chairperson will hold the deciding vote.
The committee shall decide with which bank(s) or other financial institutions the funds of the club are lodged and shall approve all expenditure in excess of £300. Cheques are to be signed by two officers nominated by the committee. The financial year will be 1st January until 31st December.
9. COMPETITIONS, AWARDS AND TROPHIES
The club will run ‘Find of the Month', 'Find of the Year' and 'Finder of the Year' competitions with certificates awarded monthly and awards being made on an annual basis. The rules for these competitions are specified in the sections.
10. CODE OF CONDUCT
Please remember that as members and guests of the OBMDC we all have a responsibility to conduct ourselves both respectfully and professionally. The success of our club is built on our reputation so we should all take a little time now and again to refresh ourselves with the Code of Conduct.
These rules will apply in all situations including online such as Facebook.
- Be kind and courteous. We're all in this together to create a welcoming environment. Let's treat everyone with respect. Healthy debates are encouraged but but hate speech or bullying is not allowed. Degrading comments about topics such as, but not limited to, race, religion, culture, sexual orientation, gender, identity, appearance or perceived performance capability of their detecting equipment will not be tolerated.
- Members will not make threats or carry out any actions that could disrupt the smooth running or reputation of the club including, but not limited to, voting manipulation, discussing confidential club matters with outside organisations, viral attacks on club systems, or on committee members computer systems.
10.2 Detecting - general information
- Do not trespass. When on club digs obey the sites officers instructions with respect to areas on which we are permitted to dig.
- Respect the Country Code. Do not leave gates open. If it is necessary to climb over a gate do so next to the gate post on which the hinges are located. Do not damage crops or frighten animals.
- If you discover live ammunition or any lethal object such as an unexploded bomb or mine, do not disturb it. Mark the site carefully and report the find to the committee members and/or dig sites officer(s).
- Club members should familiarise themselves with the Portable Antiquities Scheme (PAS) and report appropriate finds whenever possible. Acquaint yourself with the definitions of Treasure contained in the latest version of The Treasure Act and the associated Code of Practice (which can be found on the PAS website, https://finds.org.uk/treasure), making sure you understand it and carry out your responsibilities.
- Club members are not allowed to obtain a personal permission to detect on land introduced to them via the club. When seeking new personal permissions members are requested to contact the sites officers or club data manager if unsure whether the club has an agreement with the landowner.
- Club members are not allowed to disclose details of club dig sites to third parties (except to their guests on a specific dig). The location of club dig sites can be disclosed for the purposes of recording finds through recognised bodies such as PAS, United Kingdom Detector Finds Database and the Early Medieval Corpus of Coins at the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge. Committee officials can also disclose dig sites to relevant third parties including landowners and archaeologists.
- Any approach to, or from, third parties regarding archaeological or historical investigations involving club members and/or land on which the club has a search agreement should be referred to the committee for discussion and consideration before approval to co-operate with such investigations is granted.
- Remember it is illegal for anyone to use a metal detector on a protected area (e.g. scheduled archaeological site, SSSI, or Ministry of Defence property) without permission from the appropriate authority.
- Remember that when you are out with your metal detector you are an ambassador for our hobby. Do nothing that might give it a bad name. Never miss an opportunity to explain your hobby to anyone who asks about it.
11. DIG RULES AND INFORMATION
All club digs start at 09:30 and finish at 16:00 in the winter and at 16:30 during British Summer Time, unless advised otherwise by the dig sites officer(s). Do not arrive before 09:00. Attendees are expected to clear the site by 30 minutes after the dig finishes.
Individual digs may also have their own specific extra rules which must be complied with and will be shown on the booking pages online or in other types of dig invitations/instructions.
All members and guests are required to book in advance on the club website www.obmdc.online and pay in advance using PayPal unless otherwise specified. Members arriving after the dig start time will need to find the sites officer(s) to register their attendance before they start to detect.
All members, if requested, must show their current membership card and a valid insurance card.
When guests are permitted, each member may make a request to the sites officer, preferably by email on the Thursday before a dig, to bring one guest with them to any club dig they attend. Approval will be given subject to confirmation of third-party insurance (NCMD only) and the club rule of a maximum of six guests on any one dig. Members of the public may also apply directly to the club to attend as guests, subject to the same rules and a club member to sponsor them will be identified. Guests will be given a username and password to log onto the club website for the dig and pay the guest fee by PayPal. Any member bringing or sponsoring a guest to a club dig is fully responsible for the actions of their guest.
All members/guests attending a dig must detect only on the allotted field/fields.
All members/guests attending a dig must obey the instructions given to them by any of the sites officers who can be identified by their hi-vis tops.
All members and guests are required to fill in holes neatly and remove all rubbish and not discard it.
All members and guests are required to wear a proper finds/rubbish pouch so that they are capable of, and seen to be capable of, carrying any unwanted rubbish away from its dig hole, for placing in the bins provided or taking home. They must also allow committee members to inspect their pouch.
ANY find is thought to fall within the remit of the Treasure Act must be immediately reported to a committee member, the FLO advised and the Treasure Act procedures followed.
Members and guests are expected and encouraged to show and share information in respect of their finds and to record items believed to be over 300 years old with the Portable Antiquities Scheme. All notable finds on club digs are to be declared to a committee member. Members and guests are required to allow such finds to be photographed or videoed by a committee member.
The sites officer(s) in charge have the authority to end a dig early in cases of extreme weather, unexploded bombs etc. This will normally be signalled by repeated sounding of a klaxon or whistle.
Members should be aware that failure to follow dig rules may result in disciplinary action.
Managing numbers on digs
Car parking is an increasing problem, especially during wet weather. Members are encouraged to car-share whenever possible and appropriate. For members wishing to share transport the secretary, sites officers and data manager can provide information on other members living nearby who might be willing to share.
Where there is a concern about parking space members will be informed and the number of places will be restricted. Such digs will be declared by the sites officer as 'no guest digs'.
12. OBMDC COMPETITION RULES AND AWARDS
12.1 Find of the Month rules
This competition is run monthly commencing at the December meeting each year and ending in November.
Entries must have been discovered by the entrant whilst metal detecting within the last two months. Entrants are required to enter an object description, their full name and the date of finding and whether found on a OBMDC dig, another clubs' dig or on the entrant’s permission on the relevant form on the finds table.
Any items placed on the finds table may be photographed and recorded.
There are two categories: (1) coins and (2) artefacts.
Members and guests may enter a maximum of three items in each category each month.
- Monetary tokens to be entered in the 'coins' category
- Jettons are to be entered in the 'artefacts' category.
- Non-metallic, man-made, eyes only finds are welcome and will be included and judged in the 'artefacts' category.
Where items found in the last two months are not available (e.g. handed in as potential Treasure) a photograph may be entered as a substitute. If requested a receipt for the item must be provided.
All attendees at the monthly club meeting are invited to vote for their top three items in each category.
Points are awarded as follows: 3 points for 1st, 2 points for 2nd and 1 for 3rd on each voting slip. These points are then added up to give an overall total. A point is also awarded for anybody entering finds in either category. Any points gained by guests will NOT count towards the end of year trophies or awards.
The winning entry in each category qualifies for a Club Certificate which will be presented at the next meeting.
12.2 Finder of the Year rules
The total of points awarded in the year from the 'Find of the Month' competitions for both coins &artefacts are added up after the November meeting to identify the members with the highest scores and identify the 'Finder of the Year' trophy winners.
In order for the total of monthly points to qualify for the 'Finder of the Year' trophy a member entering this competition must have attended a minimum of ten club digs in the corresponding twelve-month period.
Awards for 1st, 2nd and 3rd places for the year will be presented at the Christmas meeting. In addition to an award, the 1st place winner also receives a trophy with their name engraved on it to be retained for the next twelve months.
By receiving the 'Finder of the Year' engraved trophy the receiver agrees to refund the club for any loss, or repairs made to the trophy for damage, incurred whilst in the receivers' care. This trophy will be returned to the club before 1st November.
12.3 'Coin of the Year' and 'Artefact of the Year' rules
Two 'Find of the Year' competitions are now run annually at the Christmas meeting for club members only. One for coins (including tokens) and the other for artefacts (including jettons and man-made, eyes-only finds). Any item placed on the finds table may be photographed and recorded.
Each member can enter up to two coins and up to two artefacts in the relevant competitions, by bringing the actual object or an approved photo of an unavailable item to the event. All members, including junior members, are entitled to vote for their favourite item in each category. The points for coins and artefacts are totalled separately to determine the winners of the two competitions; the winners will each receive an award. There are no other prizes in this event.
12.4 Urwyn Walsh Silver Salver
This salver is awarded in the memory of Urwyn Welsh, a long-standing member of the club, by the committee for an outstanding contribution to the club during the preceding year and is engraved with the award winner’s name. This trophy will be returned to the club before 1st November.