2021 – September Report

Hayling Island Businessmen’s Club by Andy Lenaghan
At Last the Club has started having meetings again and very much looking forward to the future with optimism, although after the long break concerns have been raised as to the format our meetings take and also to our terms of membership. It bought home to us at the start of the pandemic that most of our members were in the at risk age bracket, so the club were unable to consider any form of continuation, as all our fund raising relies on attendance at events, which was out of the question. We did consider, and provisionally booked the date for the BBQ this year, but with the month long extension to lockdown that had to be knocked on the head. Much to our relief no advance payments were made.
For various reasons over the time of the pandemic membership has shrunk. This has been due to other commitments, ill health and even death of members, which has driven home to us the need to attract more members, as currently it would be difficult to run a BBQ in its present form. This is not to detract from the current set up, which has survived for 56 successful years raising thousands of pounds for local good causes, as well as running the Community Mini Bus for most of those years. We have a wonderful atmosphere at our meetings which are at lunch time, this being one of the main problems. Work and life styles have changed since we formed, making it difficult for men to get away from business or work for perhaps 90 minutes at lunchtime.
Next month in our article, which the Herald kindly publish we will be outlining the way we see the club going forward. We hope we can make membership less formal and move away from areas which are very much still the same as when we were formed in 1964. We also hope to move from lunchtime meetings to a mix of evening and lunchtime. It’s a bold move from us as many members love the tradition, but we need more support from the modern man who maybe doesn’t feel they have the time demanded currently, but would love to help the Community in which they live. The revisions being proposed will be voted on and hopefully carried forward to ensure we have a future.
A reminder, despite the Title of the club which is our traditional name since launch, we are open to any male who wishes to be involved. Please, if you have any thoughts and would like to be involved please drop an email to secretary@hibc.org.uk The alternative of a successful relaunch is a failure of the club to survive. Many local good causes would miss our contributions to their funds and the continued use of our mini bus.