The PSPS Council of Management met by video conference on Saturday 27 March 2021; all trustees were present.
Conflicts of interest: It was noted that Deryk Docherty had been appointed as Chairman of WEL and Greg Beechcroft a Trustee of WSN.
It was noted with regret that John Anderson ceased to be Trustee from 13 March 2021 as he was now incapable of managing his own affairs. Council recorded its appreciation of John’s input over many years.
The Annual Report and Financial Statements were approved. The Risk Register was reviewed, with IT issues and lack of volunteers noted as the main risks. Council approved the appointment of Independent Examiners Ltd as independent examiners of the accounts. Council approved a proposal to the 2021 AGM that membership subscriptions be slightly raised. It was agreed the Maintenance Reserve within funds should remain at £500,000; maximum grant to any paddle steamers not owned by the society be £20,000.
Ships: Kingswear Castle recent boiler survey had been satisfactory. It was reported the intention was to rebuild her over three years, starting at the end of the 2021 season.
The challenges of crewing Waverley were noted; she needed a successful operating season or two to demonstrate that the company was an attractive proposition for permanent staff. There was no identified need for funds from PSPS for Waverley at the moment but the future was unknown.
John Beveridge reported that work on the carriage for the slipway for Maid of the Loch should be completed by early July. It was yet to be decided when she would be slipped. John Beveridge had resigned from the Board of LLSC and Council thanked him for his tireless efforts for MOTL over many years.
Medway Queen is planned to be at Ramsgate for slipping in July and the possibility of her being open to the public there is being investigated.
Format and date of the 2021 AGM are dependent on what restrictions remain and whether Waverley is in service on the Clyde the weekend of 15 October.
The online meetings had been a considerable success and the Chairman thanked all concerned. It was agreed that online meetings should continue even when face-to-face meetings are possible. It was agreed that John Megoran lead an online meeting in autumn 2021, to help raise fund’s for KC’s rebuild, with a Waverley update from Paul Semple in spring 2022.
It was noted that storage capacity at Chatham is likely to be an issue soon. Material posted on the website was appreciated; the Chairman said Roy Tait was to be thanked for his work on this.
Council meetings will be 26 June and 20 November 2021, and the AGM on 15 October, subject to Waverley sailing on the Clyde that weekend.