ESSEX BRANCH enjoyed a successful programme of activity in the year 2021/22 in spite of the restrictions on actual meetings required during the period of the Covid Pandemic.
PROGRAMME OF TALKS
During the year, a full programme of talks was delivered. This included a live debate (via ZOOM) on the subject of Pearl Harbour. It is intended that the debate format will become a feature of future programmes and will significantly benefit from the inclusion of live audiences.
All talks were well received. In particular, the talk “Southend’s Saxon Prince” was of special interest to local audiences. The Committee of Essex Branch welcomes the views of branch members and visitors, concerning recent talks and ideas for future ones.
Numbers of attendance at monthly talks varied greatly. At the start of the COVID period attendance reached a high figure (possibly over 200 on one occasion) but in the latter part of the year when restrictions on meetings were becoming more relaxed the numbers decreased. It is difficult to fully understand the reasons for this and it is therefore important to get good feedback from visitors and members, in order to determine planning of talks for future programmes.
MAINTAINING CONTACT WITH MEMBERS
One particular challenge for the branch during the last year has been the maintenance of contact with members and visitors. Particular effort has been made to engage with visitors via ZOOM, after the monthly talk has finished. During this time visitors have been interested to learn not only about the branch, but also the activities of the national HA. In turn the branch has been able to establish contacts with other local history and non- history related organisations.
In order to maintain contact with branch members not internet connected, our Membership Secretary has contacted them by telephone. In addition they have been sent a copy of the HA news, along with information about current activity and plans for the future.
ESSEX BRANCH COMMITTEE
During the last year Essex Branch has benefitted from continuity of membership with all ten members from the previous year remaining in their roles during the current year. However, in order to maintain and develop activities (for example, visits to sites of historical interest) new volunteers are needed.
In spite of loss of income from fees of branch members and visitors, the branch has maintained a healthy financial position, thanks to the management of Honorary Treasurer (Andy Moir). The AGM will take place on Saturday 24th September 2022 @ 2.30.pm @ Trinity Methodist Church. It is hoped that in addition to the actual meeting the proceedings will also be available on Zoom.
Meeting ID: 89012164046