Every camera club has one, every camera club needs one. Without one, there is no camera club.
The Programme Secretary is at the heart of all camera clubs. The success and smooth running of the club rest squarely on the Programme Secretary's shoulders. He or she has to have the experience and resources to create club evenings to benefit all members
of the club, choosing a manageable balance of practical nights, tutorial nights, quality presentions, plus a little fun for everyone from time to time. Along with the tried and trusted speakers who ply their trade from club to club, the Programme Secretary has to keep coming up with new ideas, sometimes these will be new things that haven't been tried before. Some work, some don't. When they do, the Programme Secretary gets all the praise. When they don't, that very same Programme Secretary gets all the criticism.
A Programme Secretary has to always remember one thing... "You Can't Please All Of The People All Of The Time"
So, why did I step forward and offer my services two years ago, and why am I still here?
Well, I like to think that I am well organised. I like to plan things and check necessary details. Holidays and day trips always meant hours and hours reading up on locations, attractions, events etc. I hate going somewhere without knowing anything about it.
I also like to store information. Facts and figures, contact names and numbers, opening times, prices, postcodes, images. My pre-holiday 'homework' consists of many hours studying Google, Google Maps, Trip Adviser, AA Routefinder and websites of tourist attractions and local accommodation. Locating supermarkets at holiday destinations is a strange hobby of mine, according to the wife.
It's probably the attention to detail that makes me feel I'm suitable to be a camera club Programme Secretary.
When you prepare a programme of events for other members to take part in, and hopefully enjoy, you have to pay attention to detail. You have to know exactly what your programmed evening is going to consist of, and who is responsible for organising it before the night and managing it on the night.
You may already know that there is a dedicated programme group consisting of four club members. There is Steve Dyer, Jo Gilbert, Gerry Painter and of course, myself. So, why do we have a group and what do we do?
Well first and foremost, I wouldn't (and couldn't) do this job on my own. These three members help and support me, and have as much enthusiasm as me when it comes to organising the club's evenings. Gerry is the 'old head' in the group, Steve is the 'young head' and Jo is the 'female head'. This means we look at things from four different angles and perspectives.
Our first year has been reasonably successful. A few good guest speakers, a few good club speakers, the Wriggly Roadshow and plenty of nights where members got to use their cameras.
We still have our Summer Nights programme to look forward to. These take place outside of the club, and all members are encouraged to join in. Details are on the website.
There will be plenty of photo opportunities, that's for sure.
We hope to improve next year's programme by getting more members involved. If you have any suggestions or ideas, please come forward and speak to one of the Programme Group or a Committee member.
We can only give you what you want if we know what you want.
Reflex Camera Club