Chairman's Report To The SCoM AGM October 5th 2012


Ian Harford introduced his report by referring to the strap-line, 'Great skiing, great company' on SCoM publicity. "We have done what we said we would do. The year has been a good one with much achieved."

The recent Olympics and Paralympics had given a boost not only for elite sports but also for sports for healthy active living across all sections of society. He was keen to see skiing taken up more widely and referred to the role that SCoM volunteers had been invited to play in supporting Beginners' Workplace courses, which Snow Sport England would be starting in the autumn.

Membership of the club had now reached over 300, with the majority very active and engaged in skiing and a range of other outside sports. The Chill Factore slope had become the focus for much of the club's year long activities and this was reflected in close links with Chill Factore management and staff, as well as in involvement with a Ski Fit boot camp in February and support for the recent Moguls training programme. The monthly ski training sessions for members had been well supported, with a maximum number of 42 on one occasion.

The club catered for a range of skiers from beginners to powder hounds. There was wide experience to draw on from ski reps, from the BASI qualified, from off piste skiers, from ski tourers and much else. Demand for ski holidays had remained high with well supported weeks in Flaine and Alpe d'Hueze; and during the year planning had been put in place for a ski clinic week in Val d'Isere in December and a main holiday in St Christoph, Austria in January 2013 for a record number of 70 skiers.

SCoM was innovating in a number of ways in order to improve its service to members and to communicate more effectively in the age of the web and emerging mobile technologies. A new electronic newsletter was now operational, backed up by a Newsflash system, which enabled the Committee to send email messages in seconds to all members.

With almost 50% of adults now owning smart phones, last minute decision making was on the increase and the Newsflash innovation had already shown its potential in increasing numbers for SCoM events.**

Other ways of improving communications had included the consolidation of the buddying system for all new members, holding a New Members' Social In July and sourcing clothing with SCoM logos for members to buy - and wear on the slopes.

A largely successful calendar of activities and social events was run, including a talks programme, end of season, BBQ and Christmas parties, and walks in Derbyshire, Lancashire, Cumbria and Manchester.

Additionally club members had enthusiastically supported the Disability Sports UK summer event to raise money for disabled skiers; and the club had run a Beginners' course for Trafford parents with young children, which had been subsidised by the charity Manchester Cares and Trafford.

The Committee had carried out a mapping exercise of the functions of all its members and was looking for ways of involving more members in SCoM work.

The chair concluded by thanking by name the officers and members of the Committee for their tireless work in keeping SCoM vibrant and outward looking, the auditors, the Buddying team and the event organisers. A presentation was made to Jane Fairclough, who was retiring as Vice Chair and from the Committee after over 30 years service in many posts, including Chair, Treasurer and Rossendale Events Organiser.

** Anyone interested in exploring the way mobile phones changed people's meeting and communicating habits should read Howard Rheingold's book 'Smart Mobs: The Next Social Revolution' (2002).