As accepted at an Annual General Meeting of May 9th, 2009
1. Name — 2. Objects — 3. Affiliation — 4. Membership — 5. Administration — 6. General Meetings — 7. Amendments to this Constitution — 8. Finance — 9. Trustees — 10. Data Protection Act, 1998 — 11. Availability of the Constitution — 12. Dissolution
The name of the Society shall be The Cambridge University Heraldic and Genealogical Society.
- The objects of the Society shall be:–
- To promote and encourage the study of heraldry, genealogy, and related
- To promote the preservation, security and accessibility of relevant
public and private archival and other material.
- To publish any appropriate research findings and other relevant
information in a Society Magazine or other appropriate publication.
- In furtherance of the above objects the Society may:–
- Organise meetings and lectures;
- Build up collections of books and other items in a place specified by the
- Preserve, transcribe and publish source material of interest to members;
- Collaborate with individuals and organisations, including Specialist
Societies and others concerned with the topics covered in 2.1 above;
- Support the activities of the Federation of Family History Societies in
its pursuit of these and similar objects.
This Society shall be a member of the Federation of Family History Societies
and have the power to associate with other organisations which have compatible
and mutually supportive objects.
- Membership of the Society shall be open to members of the University and
others, by invitation of the Executive committee, showing interest in the
- Honorary Life membership in the form of Vice-Presidency may be granted by
election at a General Meeting to persons distinguished in heraldry or
genealogy or who have rendered special noteworthy services to the
- Subscriptions shall be payable at a time and rate determined by the
Society’s Executive Committee subject to the approval of the Society’s
A.G.M. Subscriptions for the ensuing year shall become due on the first day
of the Michaelmas term.
- The Executive Committee may terminate the membership of any member whose
subscription remains unpaid at the division of the Michaelmas term.
- The Society’s Executive Committee may suspend anyone from membership whose
activities it thinks prejudicial to the interests of the Society. A person
so suspended shall have his or her case considered by the next A.G.M. or by
an E.G.M., which the Executive Committee shall call at the suspended
person’s request. A General Meeting shall either revoke the Committee’s
decision, determine the length of the suspension from membership, or expel
the suspended person. No person expelled by a General Meeting shall be
re-admitted to membership other than by a decision of a General Meeting. No
person suspended from membership shall continue to hold office or attend any
function of the Society while suspended, other than the General Meeting at
which his or her case is to be considered.
The Society shall be administered by an Executive Committee consisting of a
President, Secretary, Senior Treasurer (who shall be a member of the Senate),
Junior Treasurer and up to four other committee members who may be elected or
co-opted. Its duties shall include the drafting of working procedures to
facilitate the smooth running of the Society.
- A quorum shall be four members.
- A General Meeting shall have the power to remove any officer or committee
member from office and elect a replacement, if it so chooses, to serve until
the next A.G.M.
- The President shall act as Chairman. In his absence those present shall
elect a chairman for the meeting. In either case, the chairman shall have an
additional casting vote.
- The officers and other members of the Executive Committee shall be elected
annually at the A.G.M.
- Nominations shall be submitted to the Secretary not less than twenty-one
days before the meeting takes place.
- The Secretary shall notify the membership of a list of candidates for
election by posting on the website not less than seven days before the
meeting. If insufficient nominations have been received prior to the
meeting the Chairman may accept nominations at the meeting from the
floor. Only fully paid-up members of the Society may vote at a General
- The Executive Committee shall have the power to co-opt additional members to
fill casual vacancies or for some other purpose provided the maximum number
of committee members does not exceed ten.
- With the exception of the Senior Treasurer, no officer or member of the
committee shall serve for more than three consecutive years, without special
resolution at an A.G.M.
6. General Meetings
- An Annual General Meeting (A.G.M.) shall be held during the Easter Full Term when an account of the Society’s activities and finances shall be presented.
- Notice of the A.G.M. shall be issued at least fourteen days beforehand. Items for inclusion on the Agenda, save any other business, must be submitted to the Secretary twenty-eight days before the A.G.M.
- Together with the notice for the meeting, the Secretary shall send
- An agenda
- A summary of the accounts
- The business to be transacted shall be to
- In the absence of the President, elect a chairman of the meeting
- Receive apologies for absence
- Approve the minutes of the previous General Meeting
- Receive the President’s report
- Receive the Secretary’s report
- Receive a summary of the accounts of the previous year
- The A.G.M. shall elect
- A President
- A Senior Treasurer
- A Junior Treasurer
- A Secretary
- Up to four members of the Executive Committee
- An individual to scrutinise the Annual Accounts of the Society
- A quorum shall be fifteen members or 10% of the membership whichever is the smaller.
- Voting at General Meetings shall be by show of hands; the Chairman shall have an additional casting vote.
- An Extraordinary General Meeting (E.G.M.) may be convened at the request of the Executive Committee or fifteen members with prior written notice, stating the object of the meeting together with the terms of any resolution to be proposed at the meeting, issued at least twenty-eight days beforehand.
- A quorum at such a meeting shall be fifteen members or 10% of the membership whichever is the smaller.
7. Amendments to this Constitution
The Constitution may be amended only at an A.G.M. or an E.G.M. provided at
least 28 days' notice has been given. Amendments are only valid if supported by
two thirds majority of those present.
- The financial year of the Society shall terminate on 30th September.
Accounts shall be submitted to the Junior Proctor.
- All income and property of the Society shall be applied solely towards the
promotion and execution of the objects set out in Clause 2 above.
- Reasonable out-of pocket expenses incurred by officers and members, solely
on the Society’s behalf, will be refunded on production of receipts.
- The Executive Committee shall maintain proper account books recording all
sums of money received and expended by the Society.
- The Society shall keep its funds at a recognised high street bank and
appoint three authorised signatories, the signatures of any two being
required on cheques and other financial documents relating to sums in excess
- The Executive Committee may appoint up to three people to hold property in
trust for the Society.
- Safe custody shall be provided for the Letters Patent Granting Arms, the
Society’s Library and its Archives which shall be closed to public access
for 30 years.
10. Data Protection Act, 1998
Personal details relating to members of the Society, whether in manual or
computer form, shall be held or processed by the Society, or on its behalf,
only in accordance with the eight principles of the Data Protection Act, 1998.
In practice, personal data must be:–
- processed fairly and lawfully and only if certain conditions are met;
- obtained for specified and lawful purposes;
- adequate, relevant and not excessive;
- accurate and where necessary kept up-to-date;
- not kept for longer than necessary;
- processed in accordance with the subject’s rights;
- kept secure;
- not transferred abroad without adequate protection.
11. Availability of the Constitution
The Society shall publish its constitution on its web-site.
The Society may be dissolved only at an A.G.M. or an E.G.M., called for the
purpose, by a resolution supported by three quarters of those present including
postal votes. The resolution must specify the disposal of the Society’s
collections and other assets after debts and liabilities have been settled.
This may involve their transfer to an appropriate organisation or institution
within the University with objects compatible with those of the Society.