GACAP Constitution

Great Ayton Community Archaeology Project

The first Constitution was finally revised on 19 Oct 01 and formally adopted 24 Oct 01.
Second Constitution drafted on 15 Jan 04, revised 3 Feb 04 and formally adopted at the AGM on 4 Feb 04.

1 Aims

The aim of the Great Ayton Community Archaeology Project is to investigate, record and disseminate information on landscape features and local history in the parishes of Great Ayton and Little Ayton. The records produced will be available to the public and should be of use in selecting sites for further study and in the general areas of local and family history, conservation and tourism.

2 Formation

The Great Ayton Community Archaeology Project (GACAP) Group was conceived in September 2001 after meetings initiated by Mr D O’Sullivan (the author of the standard local history of Great Ayton) and sponsored by the then Yorkshire Museums Council. The GACAP Group consists of local volunteers who have committed themselves to a programme of weekly activity days in order to progress the aims of the project. The Group has not registered as a charity. The Group is autonomous, but operates under the auspices of the local museum (Captain Cook Schoolroom Museum, Registered Charity Number 1097490) and the guidance of the North Yorkshire County Council Heritage Unit, and the Yorkshire Museums Libraries and Archives Council (YMLAC).

3 Activities

Group members of GACAP will meet the aims of the project by engaging in research, visual surveys, data analysis and recording, presentations of findings, and similar activities. Where appropriate they will employ professional services, subject to the availability of suitable funding. The Group will not venture onto any land, apart from roads, rights of way and areas with public access, without permission of the landowner/tenant. A significant part of the Group’s activities will be the stimulation of local interest in heritage through publications, public presentations, etc.

4 Finance

The Group will operate on a not-for-profit basis. Funding will be sought from appropriate national, regional or local funding bodies. Active members may contribute towards running costs through a weekly donation (currently 50p) and will make in-kind contributions in the form of their time and travel expenses. There is no annual membership subscription. Other income may result from the sale of publications of the Group’s findings. All net income will go towards meeting GACAP’s aims.

A Treasurer will be appointed and will be part of the Committee. He/she will be responsible for managing the Group’s income and expenditure through the Group’s own dedicated Treasurer’s Bank Account. This account will only be accessed with the signature of the Treasurer and one other appointed Group member, generally one of the other Officers. If the Group builds up funds that are not expected to be required for the week-to week operations, a higher interest Savings Account may be opened. This would be governed by the same rules as the normal Treasurer’s Bank Account. Subsidiary bank account(s) may be used at the Committee’s discretion to keep some funds separate from the main funding stream (for example for publications).

In addition to the above duties the Treasurer will:
- Keep detailed records of all income and expenditure in addition to bank statements.
- An inventory of the Group’s property.
- Make all financial records available for inspection by active members at any time.
- Arrange appropriate insurance to cover third parties, members and Group property.
- Seek funding in support of the Group’s aims and objectives from appropriate sources.
- Report to all Funding Sources in accordance with their requirements.

The Group will adopt the calendar year as its accounting year April to March. Bank statements and details of income and expenditure will be available for review at all times. The Treasurer will report on the finances at the formal Annual General Meeting at the start of each calendar year, and the Chair, Secretary and Treasurer will sign to verify that the year’s accounts have been recorded accurately.

5 Dissolution

GACAP may be dissolved with the concurrence of two thirds of the then current active members at a Special Meeting called for that purpose (proxy votes accepted). Before this, the Treasurer must discuss the situation with all organisations providing on-going funding to the Group. In the event of winding up or dissolution the liquidator shall first, according to the law, use the assets of the Group to satisfy its debts and liabilities. Any balance of assets must not be distributed among members of the Group, but will be transferred to the Captain Cook Schoolroom Museum. In the event of this institution having ceased to exist, any balance of assets will be transferred to a not-for-profit institution with objectives compatible with GACAP, or failing that they will be given for charitable purposes within the local community. The institution receiving such residual assets will be subject to a condition that it will maintain public access to archive material, records and other data.

6 Group property

The Group will own some items of property such as IT equipment, surveying tools, maps, etc. The Treasurer will maintain an inventory of all items and will take out insurance to cover their loss. In the event of dissolution of the Group, any property not sold to cover debts and liabilities can be donated to the institutions prescribed in the above section.

7 Group Structure

Membership of the Group is open to anyone who has an interest in the activities of the group, agrees with this constitution, and is generally prepared to commit the required time to take part in the group’s activities. Individuals will be deemed to be active members if they attend at least four Wednesday sessions (morning, afternoon or both). Members will cease to be considered “active” if they have not attended any Wednesday session for four months and have not contacted the group.

Since the Group will normally meet once each week to progress its activities, matters will be discussed informally as they arise. There will be four officers: Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary, Treasurer. If necessary up to two of these functions may be carried out by the same person, subject to members’ agreement.

Should one of the officers resign, the rest of the Group will be informed and a new appointment made. All the above officers have signed below to give their assurance that the GACAP Group will endeavour to maintain a professional and trustworthy approach to all its activities.

8 Annual General Meeting

There will be one formal Annual General Meeting (AGM) of active members at the start of each calendar year and not later than the last day of March. This AGM will normally be before the start of a normal Wednesday meeting, and active members will be given advance notice of the date of the AGM at a Wednesday meeting prior to the date of the AGM. The AGM will agree officers, review accounts, approve a report on the group’s activities for the past year, and carry out any other relevant business. There is no fixed term of appointment for officers. There is no requirement to issue a formal agenda, unless a majority of active members request this. Active members are free to raise other relevant issues at the AGM without prior notice being given.

9 Group Membership Records

A register of active members will be maintained by the Secretary, and will be available for public inspection.

10 Intellectual property and ownership

Any discovery, research outcome, or similar made by an individual as a direct result of the Group’s activities will be the intellectual property of the Group. Although it is not the policy of the Group to collect items, any such items will become the property of the Group. In the case of any significant discovery, outcome, item, etc. advice on how to proceed will be taken from the Yorkshire Museums Council and other similar authorities.

11 Complaints and grievances

The Group will adopt high standards of ethics and good manners, especially in any dealings with landowners and tenants. If any complaint arises it should be directed to the Chair.

12 Changes to the Constitution

Changes to the Constitution can only be made after full discussion with GACAP Group members and a resolution passed by a majority of active members at a meeting, providing that at least half of the active members on the Secretary’s list vote (proxy voting permissible).

13 Signed by the officers Chair:
(Dan O’Sullivan)

Vice Chair: Secretary and Treasurer:
(David Taylor) (Ian Pearce)


Constitution prepared for and on behalf of the GACAP Group by Ian David Pearce.


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