Draft Constitution

[Please note that the constitution below is still a draft. Full ratification is expected to take place soon.]

1. Name

The name of the group is ‘Transition Redhill’. The overall aims of Transition Redhill are as follows.

  • Raise awareness within Redhill of the challenges of Peak Oil and Climate Change and the consequent need for change
  • Work with others in Redhill to develop a low carbon, sustainable and resilient future for the town
  • Support people and organizations in their efforts to prepare for this future
  • Create and to help implement an Energy Descent Action Plan for Redhill – a 20 year plan to systematically reduce fossil fuel dependency.

Transition Redhill will follow the 12 Step Process described in the Transition Handbook to achieve these aims. This requires the formation of an Initiating Group that carries out the first five steps of this process. The remainder of this constitution gives the constitution of the Transition Redhill Initiating Group (TRIG). The TRIG is commonly referred to as the Core Group.

2. Aims and Principles

2.1 Underlying Beliefs

The members of the Transition Redhill Initiating Group (TRIG) share the following beliefs:

  • Climate Change and Peak Oil require urgent action
  • life with less energy is inevitable and it is better to plan for it than be taken by surprise
  • society has lost the resilience to be able to cope with energy shocks
  • we have to act together and we have to act now
  • if we plan and act early enough, and use our creativity and co-operation to harness and develop the skills within our local communities, then we can build a sustainable future that can be fulfilling and enriching.

2.2 Aims

The ultimate aim of the TRIG is to establish a Transition Initiative in Redhill in accordance with the 12 Step Process described in the Transition Handbook. The TRIG will carry out the following first five steps of this process;

1. Set up the initiating group and design its demise from the outset.

We intend that once a minimum of four working groups (see aim 5) have been formed, the Initiating Group will disband and be replaced by a new Transition Redhill Core Group. This will include representatives of each of the working groups.

2. Awareness raising

We will raise awareness in Redhill of the issues of peak oil and climate change by such means as: public meetings, articles in local papers, presentations to community groups and schools, establishing a Transition Redhill website.

3. Working with existing groups

We will network with existing groups and activists, and seek to work with all individuals and groups whose activities are compatible with our aims. (Note: This step is called ‘Lay the foundations’ in the Transition Handbook.)

4. Organise a Great Unleashing

When the TRIG judges that there is sufficient support and interest, it will organise a ‘Great Unleashing’ event. This will create a memorable milestone to mark the Transition Redhill’s “coming of age”, moves it right into the community at large, builds a momentum to propel Transition Redhill forward for its next period of its work, and celebrates Redhill’s desire to take action.

5. Form working groups

TRIG will encourage the formation of working groups to focus on specific aspects of the process and initiate appropriate actions. Possible subjects for working groups are local food production, home energy saving, local energy generation, handicraft skills, waste reduction and re-use.

2.3 Principles

The members of TRIG will comply with the following principles when working for TRIG:

  • we will not use TRIG to pursue party political or purely commercial objectives
  • we will be transparent in all our actions and in the circulation of information
  • all work will be on a voluntary non-for-profit basis
  • we will be practical and set credible achievable goals
  • we will act ethically and responsibly in our individual lives to preserve the trust that may be put into the transition initiative.

3. Members

Members of TRIG are people who:

  • share the underlying beliefs of TRIG given in section 2.1
  • support the aims of TRIG given in section 2.2
  • agree to comply with the TRIG principles in section 2.3
  • have attended two consecutive TRIG meetings and have been accepted as a member by a TRIG meeting.

In addition it is anticipated that a much larger number of Transition Redhill Supporters will be recruited. Supporters are people who share some or all of TRIG’s aims, want to be kept informed of TRIG’s activities, and may participate in some of its activities. For example Supporters will be needed to form working groups. The TRIG Secretary maintains a register of members and supporters.

4. Equal Opportunities

TRIG will not discriminate on the grounds of gender, race, colour, ethnic or national origin, sexuality, disability, religious or political belief, marital status or age.

5. Committee and Officers

TRIG has no committee. All members are responsible for the group’s affairs.

TRIG elects the following officers at any of its meetings when a vacancy arises:

  • Chair
  • Secretary
  • Treasurer.

TRIG may appoint additional officers if the need arises.

6. AGM and other meetings

It is anticipated that the aims of TRIG will have been completed within two years, when TRIG will dissolve. There is no AGM.

The secretary will issue a draft agenda to members at least three days before the date of each meeting and invite members to propose additions and changes. The final agenda will take account of the suggestions made.

Meetings will take place at whatever frequency the members decide is needed for TRIG to meet its aims and be effective.

The quorum for a meeting is three members.

7. Rules of procedure

TRIG will use simple majority voting to make decisions. The Chair does not have an additional casting vote. Voting is restricted to members attending a meeting.

TRIG may develop meeting rules in the light of its experience.

8. Finances

The TRIG Treasurer has the following responsibilities concerning the management of TRIG money:

  • set up and maintain a bank account
  • pay cheques and make other payments: a cheque for £50 or above requires two signatures
  • receive donations and other income
  • maintain records of income and expenditure
  • provide a brief financial report at each meeting

provide a full statement and supporting receipts if requested by any member.

9. Amendments to Constitution

Any meeting of TRIG may agree changes to this constitution.

10. Dissolution

TRIG will vote and agree to dissolve itself when it considers that its aims have been met. Money and any other assets of TRIG will be handed to the new Transition Redhill Core Group. If the TRIG fails in its aims and there is no new Transition Redhill Core Group, TRIG will hand its assets to the Transition Network.[or alternative – TRIG will revert to Sustainable Redhill and transfer its assets directly].

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