MSWA Handbook - Revised January 2019


Members Handbook







Phil Williams


Table of Content


Mid-Staffs Woodturners Association



AWGB Affiliation

Management of Mid-Staffs Woodturners Association

Events and Demonstrations

Woodturning Competitions

Novice Competition Rules



Objectives, Constitution and Rules




1. Title

2. Aims

3. Membership

4. Club Committee

5. Voluntary Roles

6. Meetings

7. Attendance

8. Voting

9. Subscriptions

10. General

11. Health & Safety




























Welcome to the

Mid-Staffs Woodturners Association

As a new or existing member, we hope you find this booklet useful in providing information

relative to the Club's aims and activities.


The club was founded in 1990 by Ken Allen and Derek Pyatt who, having been members

of the South Cheshire and Staffs Club, wished to foster an interest in woodturning nearer

to the heart of the County. Ken is still active members of the club and was awarded honorary

lifetime membership in January 2018 in recognition of his contribution to the club.

AWGB Affiliation

The club is an Affiliated |Branch of the Association of Woodturners of Great Britain

(AWGB). Such membership gives branches and its members many advantages as summarised

below. For full details, please visit the AWGB website.

Each member receives the AWGB "REVOLUTIONS" magazine which is published


Each year, the branch can arrange a full day's demonstration by a registered professional

woodturner which is subsidised by a grant from the AWGB.

Public and product liability insurance is provided free to the club.

An international week-end seminar is held every second year in August. These

seminars give all members the opportunity to see many national and international


Development grants and other schemes are also available via the AWGB to encourage

members. These include FREE training courses, training grants and even

equipment grants to purchase lathes or other items for the workshop.

The AWGB also has its own Website which is very informative and well worth a

visit. There you will find pages of information about the association along with a

member’s forum where you can discuss all of your woodturning questions,

thoughts and ideas. Go to for further details.


Management of the Mid-Staffs Woodturners Association

The club is currently managed by an Executive Committee of existing club members who

are elected annually at the AGM. This committee generally comprises a Chairperson,

Secretary, Treasurer, Events Secretary, and Newsletter Editor. Other members are also

encouraged to attend the meetings should they wish to be more involved. The affairs of

the Association are managed in line with a written Constitution. A copy of the current

Constitution is printed in its entirety at the end of this booklet.

Currently, the club meets at 7:00pm on the first Friday of each month at Etchinghill Village

Hall. East Butts Road, Etching Hill, Rugeley, WS15 2LU. As a prospective new member,

you are entitled to visit the club on three evenings as a visitor, after which we hope

you will like the friendly atmosphere and camaraderie of like minded woodturners and

become a full member.

Being an affiliated branch of the AWGB, all club members are required to pay the AWGB

membership fee. Paying your annual subscription via the club will also gain you a discount

on the normal AWGB annual fee.

Our Annual General Meeting is held as soon as is practical in the New Year, usually in

January, at which time all subscription fees are due.

Any member joining the club in the second half of the year will only be required to pay a

half-yearly fee for that year, both to the MSWA and the AWGB.

In fostering a greater awareness of the Turner's Art and Craft we also endeavour to encourage

junior members and the subscription for anyone less than 18 years of age is currently

paid in full by the club.

As a full member of the club, you will be issued with a Membership badge. Please do

wear it at all club meetings so that we can all get to know you more quickly.

DVD Library: The club has purchased a number of good DVDs, which can be hired on a

monthly basis and will be available on club nights.

Events and Demonstrations

Throughout the year we try to offer a varied programme of events, demonstrations, lectures

and "hands on" experience for everyone. At all of our monthly meetings the club

lathe will be available either to be used by visiting demonstrators as required, or on other

occasions to be available to members for some "hands on" experience, tuition or

problem-solving with other club members.

At each of our monthly meetings there will be a display table for members to show their

latest creation or even a part finished piece of work. Members displaying their work may

remain anonymous if they so wish, but alternatively they may want to discuss aspects of

the exhibit and/or seek advice from other colleagues present. During the year, where

possible, we try to hold events away from the club room with a view to promoting a

greater awareness of woodturning. Such events would involve exhibiting members’ work

together with live demonstrations aimed at attracting the general public.


Woodturning Competitions

Competitions are regularly held and judged collectively by members. These give us all an

opportunity, not only to compete against our fellow woodturners, but also to, perhaps,

receive some constructive comments from the judges. After all we have joined because

of our love of woodturning and we can all learn something from others, be it relating to

methods, finishing or the more esoteric subjects of aesthetics and design.

There are three competition classes held within the club: Firstly, there is the Challenge

Cup, which is aimed at the more experienced turner, but is open to all club members to

enter. Then there is the Novice/Beginners Trophy to encourage new or the less experienced.

These take place on alternate months throughout the year, with points being accumulated

to decide the eventual overall winners. Finally, there is also the Premier Cup,

which is open to all members. This annual trophy is for a single specified piece of work,

and is normally held on the club’s AGM night. The rules for the Novice competition are

printed later in this booklet.

Many national competitions are held throughout the year and all members are encouraged

to "try their hand" in the "big time". To date the club has had a number of successful

members, which all adds to our status amongst affiliated branches.

The Novice Trophy

This beautiful trophy was

made by former club member

Gordon Fradley. Gordon

was a highly respected and

renowned Ornamental

Turner. This trophy is a wonderful

example of what can

be achieved by such a skilled

and accomplished craftsman.


Novice Competition Rules


The main aim of this competition is to encourage all of our members that have

little or no woodturning experience, and who consider themselves to be a beginner

or novice.

This will allow people to compete with their equals in a spirit of fun, encouragement

and involvement rather than serious competition.

All members who submit a piece of their work are automatically awarded at least

one point so that everyone has an opportunity to win a prize at the end of each



The competition is bi-monthly and alternates with the Challenge Cup on the following


February, April, June, August, October, and December

For each month a theme or title will be set by the committee and all novices are

invited to submit one entry per person.

All members are invited to judge the entries and vote for their favourite items.

Judging will be based on design, the quality of the turning, finishing, aesthetics

and the degree of skill shown.

The competition is run over a 12 month period with a trophy awarded at the Annual

General Meeting. Only advanced or more experienced turned are barred

from entering, or those who have previously won the Challenge Cup annual trophy.

No one piece of work may be entered more than once in the competition.

Points will be awarded every month on the following basis:

1 st Place = ¾ point

2 nd Place = 2 points

3 rd Place = 3 points

All other entries = 4 points

At the end of each competition year, the points will be added up, and the entrant

with the lowest number of accrued points will be declared the winner. The overall

winner shall also be awarded the Novice Trophy at the Annual General Meeting in

January. The trophy shall then be held by the winner for one year.

NB: Only one item per person per month!


Objectives, Constitution and Rules:


a. To foster a greater awareness of the turner’s craft.

b. To promote woodturning amongst woodturners and the general public.

c. To provide a forum for communication, exchange of views and information relevant

to woodturning.

d. To promote membership of the national body, the Association of Woodturners of

Great Britain (AWGB).


a. Membership of the MSWA is open to all and includes membership of the AWGB

upon payment of the subscription. Subscriptions are due annually at the AGM.

b. Members of the MSWA shall not use the names of the MSWA nor the AWGB for

trade or promotional purposes.




1.1. The Club shall be called "Mid Staffs Woodturners Association" or “MSWA” for


2.1. To operate as an Affiliated Branch of the Association of Woodturners of Great

Britain (AWGB) and to operate under their rules and guidelines.

2.2. To provide fellowship, regular meetings and other activities focused on the art

and craft of woodturning.

2.3. To promote the main aims and objectives of the AWGB as outlined in their

Articles of Association and Handbook, and to follow their current rules and guidelines.


3.1. Membership is open to any person regardless of age, gender, sexual orientation,

religion, nationality or ethnicity and shall not discriminate against any with

disabilities. All children under 18yrs old must be accompanied by a parent or



3.2. Membership runs on an annual basis starting January 1 st every year.

3.3. All members must complete an annual application form and provide emergency

contact details, postal address, phone numbers and a current Email address.

3.4. The committee may appoint an Honorary Member in recognition of their outstanding

contribution or service to the Club. Such positions will be nominated by

the Committee and be subject to approval by the membership. The club will then

pay their annual membership fees.

3.5. All paid up members shall have the opportunity to enter all activities at

MSWA, to attend the AGM, to elect committee members, to vote on constitutional

matters and to serve on the committee.

3.6. All club members must also be paid up members of the AWGB.


4.1. The club's affairs will be managed by a committee elected annually at the


4.2. The club’s Committee shall consist of Chairperson, Secretary, Treasurer and

one ordinary Members Representative.

4.3. The maximum term of office shall normally be three years.

4.4. The Club Committee will be elected annually at the AGM which is normally

held in January. The Chairman shall invite nominations in advance. These will then

be proposed and seconded by members at the AGM.

4.5. The Club Committee shall have the power to co-opt as necessary.

4.6. The Treasurer will manage the clubs Bank or Building Society account.

Cheques shall only be drawn on signatures of the Treasurer along with either the

Secretary or Chairperson.


5.1. Other voluntary roles include Events Secretary, Membership Secretary, Newsletter

Editor, Website Manager, Tea Break Co-ordinator, Camera Operator and

Equipment Supervisor.

5.2. All club members can volunteer for these posts without having to sit on the


5.3. One or more club member may share these roles.

5.4. Committee members may also cover these roles in addition to their elected



6.1. Ordinary Meetings shall normally be held on the First Friday of each month

from 19:00hrs till approximately 21:30hrs at Etching Hill Village Hall near Rugeley.

6.2. Any Committee Meetings shall be arranged by Chairperson as and when required.


6.3. The Annual General Meeting (A.G.M.), will normally be held on the second

Friday in January and in place of an ordinary club meeting.

6.4. Any Special or Emergency General Meetings shall be arranged by Chairperson

as and when required. All members must be given 21 days written notice with an


6.5. At the AGM the Treasurer shall present a set of Audited Accounts with a budget

for the forthcoming year. The close of the financial year is currently the 31 st October.

6.6. No sales activity shall be allowed at club meetings other than those where all

proceeds go to club funds. Special arrangements, agreed with the Chairperson at

the time, shall be made with visiting demonstrators etc. who wish to sell their own

items. Particular arrangements shall be made, agreed with the Chairperson at the

time, when the Club attends local shows, or gives demonstrations etc. It being

normal to donate a minimum of 10% to MSWA club funds.


7.1. Members are encouraged to attend every month and send their apologies if

they are unable to do so.

7.2. Visitors are also welcome to attend a maximum of 3 ordinary monthly

meetings. However, they must pay a visitors door fee and join the club if they wish

to attend any further meetings.

7.3. Only paid up club members are eligible to enter the monthly competitions,

club raffles or borrow Books or DVD’s from the clubs library.


8.1. The quorum of the Club Members is to be one-half of the current membership

and a proposal is carried by a simple majority (except for amendment to the rules.

See item 10. GENERAL below). The Chairperson does not have a vote except a

casting vote should there be no majority

8.2. The quorum of the Club Committee is three but the Chair of the meeting does

have a vote and, if necessary a casting vote.


9.1. The Members' subscription for each year shall be agreed in October, and shall

become due from the 1st November. Ideally all members will renew their membership

prior to the AGM.

9.2. Failure to pay by the AGM may, at the discretion of the Club Committee, result

in a loss of Membership.

9.3. As well as an annual membership fee, a monthly door fee shall also be

charged. This shall also be agreed in October and applied to the new club year.

9.4. There will be no charge for attending the AGM in January.



10.1. No amendment to these Rules shall be mode except at a Special General

Meeting or at the AGM.

10.2. Any amendment to these Rules shall require the approval of at least twothirds

of the Members present and voting at the meeting, subject to a quorum

being present, which is one-half of club members.

10.3. Notices may be given on behalf of the Committee to any member by sending

them to his postal or email address.


11.1. All club members are fully responsible for their own health and safety at all

club meetings and events.

11.2. The Chairperson shall have overall responsibility to ensure all club members

are made aware of the current Health & Safety Policy and guidelines published by

the AWGB.

11.3. The Chairperson should also ensure that regular risk assessments, equipment

checks and reviews are carried out and reviewed on an annual basis. These should

be fully documented along with records of any incidents or near misses. This is to

ensure that club equipment is safe for use and that meetings, demonstrations etc.

are conducted in a safe manner

11.4. The Committee cannot accept responsibility for members actions but they

must provide a duty of care and due diligence by advising members of any potential

risks, hazards etc.



Mid Staffs Woodturners Association meets on every first Friday

of the month between 7:00pm and 10:00 pm


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