Some changes to our Committee structure

This article was published in 2011, in Newsletter 98.

This year’s AGM (see article in this Newsletter) will see some changes to the posts available on the Committee, i.e. the Trustees of the Charity. Please do consider standing at the AGM!

Some Committee members. From left to right: Robin Heydon, Monica Frisch, Bev Nicolson, Chris Dorling and Martin Lucas-Smith.
Image as described adjacent

Chair and Co-ordinator

At present the ‘lead’ position on the Committee is a large one that consists of both driving the Campaign’s strategy, as well as co-ordinating all the parts of the organisation to make sure things get done.

As the Campaign has grown, and as calls on our time have increased, the post has arguably become too large for a single individual to carry out as effectively as we would like. We have therefore decided that having such a large post is not in the Campaign’s long-term interests and creates the danger of our being unable to fill this at each AGM.

We are therefore splitting it into two posts:

  • Chair – the ‘figurehead’ of the Campaign, whose role is to drive forward our strategy, both in terms of campaigning and our structures. Working with the rest of the Committee, the Chair will make sure that the Campaign puts forward the best possible approach for improving cycling in Cambridge and ensure that we have the organisational capability to deliver this.
  • Co-ordinator – we’ve decided to stick with the name ‘Co-ordinator’ even though the role is different to the current one – a pro-active person who ensures that everything gets done on time. For instance, if a key planning application comes up that presents dangers for cyclists, the Co-ordinator will alert people to it, ensure that someone is willing to take the lead on it, get the right people involved, help facilitate the group working on it, ensure that our response is delivered in good time to the authorities, and ensure that press and other campaigning activity supports this work. This position will be helped considerably by
    the new campaigning toolkit which CycleStreets is working on.

Planning Co-ordinator

The Campaign is currently overloaded with looking at and responding to planning applications. Large developments are continually coming forward with inadequate cycle parking and with road layouts that marginalise rather than promote Dutch levels of cycling.

It is essential that we keep on top of these and, moreover, actively discuss our desires with developers.

Therefore we have created a new Committee post specifically to co-ordinate our activities on planning applications. We can give training to a suitable person for this important role.

Web and New Media Officer

The first ten years of the Campaign saw us leading the pack when it came to our web presence. Our website now has thousands of pages and a wealth of new material.

But things have moved on with the web. It is important that our website and ‘new media presence’ reflects the large amount of activity we undertake and presents a positive image of cycling that will project our messages. We also want to ensure that it is as easy as possible for the Committee to get material online.

We’re therefore seeking a talented member who can drive forward and implement our website strategy and ensure that related new media (Facebook and Twitter) are a part of this. This person will ideally have experience with website development so that they can undertake a significant amount of this work directly, and build a team of helpers.

Events (Rides/Stall) Officer

We’d like to reinvigorate our efforts to run a stall, as a means of attracting new members.

Much of our campaigning could be enhanced by having an on-street stall at the location concerned for a few hours. For instance, a stall near the railway station would draw attention to our efforts to press the railway companies to improve cycle parking there, would encourage people to sign up to these activities, and possibly also to join as members.

If you’d be interested to help organise our stall, and ideally some rides as well, do consider standing for this post.

Other posts

The other posts on the Committee remain, namely:

  • Treasurer
  • Membership Secretary
  • Liaison Officer
  • Newsletter Editor
  • Recruitment Officer
  • Press Officer
  • Up to four General Campaigner posts.

Martin Lucas-Smith