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bigjimmy
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We have a long term serving CC site warden stopping on site with us at the moment and whilst chatting about anything and everything to do with the CC etc. we discussed both this long term serving site wardens concerns about the very high ages of the representatives who sit on the CC committees.

 

Apparently the vast majority would appear to be not exactly in their first flush of youth, in fact most of them would appear to be of an age that they might well be getting ready to pack their collective bags and depart in the direction of the pearly gates !

 

I don't have any idea as to what the average age is of the membership of the CC but surely in this day and age, shouldn't a membership committee be reflective of the ages of the overall membership?

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I agree although make the point I am not a CC member, but from my investigations, the CCC is the same.

 

Russell

Online blog and travels, although sometimes there is a lack of travel due to work!

 

It's an uncharted sea, it's an unopened door but you've got to reach out and you've got to explore.

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I am sure it would be healthier if a committee of any club etc was "reflective of the ages of the overall membership" however in my experience there has been a generation of volunteers and now "we" are getting old.

 

For whatever reason the generation(s) that followed us simply have not picked up on helping and doing their bit, be it parish council, village hall management, cycling club, DA, or model engineering club as examples in my own field.

In all those its not some top down barrier, all would welcome some young input, it is just that offers to get involved are thin on the ground.

 

Others have suggested that younger people are now too busy to do voluntarily work than we were when younger but I don't buy that as all the committees I have served on have been comprised mainly of individuals with the busiest of lives. I think its much more a cultural thing but nevertheless a sad and unhealthy one.

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I think JTQ is correct in his assessment. I just wonder what percentage of the Club membership are actively involved the various Centres as that is usually the route by which people get to become members of the various committees. It could be that 95% of the Club membership just uses the Club as a means of using campsites and its services. I should add that just because people of a certain age are the main representatives that they can't make good decisions for the wider membership. Does you 'warden' have anything particularly in mind that needs changing which is not being done because of the age of committee members?

 

David

David - Milton Keynes

Bailey Alliance 66-2 Motorhome for holidays and a Kia Venga for home.

 

Caravan Travels

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I don't have any idea as to what the average age is of the membership of the CC but surely in this day and age, shouldn't a membership committee be reflective of the ages of the overall membership?

 

This gives the age and social breakdown of the CC membership (or the CC magazine readership which must roughly equate to the membership) It can be seen here:

 

http://www. caravancl. ..emographics. asp

 

demograph.gif

 

As can be seen the percentage of members who are 45-74 is higher than would be expected if the membership reflected the age make up of the general population. By my addition two thirds of CC members are over 55. Apparently 29% of CC members have taken early retirement so almost a third might be thought to have some time to devote to the club . ..

 

I suspect the problem is more to do with there being a self-perpetuating minority of committee members with club officials putting little effort into recruiting new blood that might want to question or change things or hold them too closely to account. ... Plus new blood may also require the 'retirement' of existing long serving members to whom other committee members and officials may feel some attachment to or feel it seems ungrateful to sack those who have made a worthy contribution.

Edited by lottie
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Lottie

 

Interesting stats. Be interesting to see the same for the C&CC.

 

David

David - Milton Keynes

Bailey Alliance 66-2 Motorhome for holidays and a Kia Venga for home.

 

Caravan Travels

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I don't agree that people should be 'cast aside' just because they reach a certain age. In every job I've had with large organisations, periodically there is a drive to encourage some of the longer serving staff to go whether through early retirement, redundancy etc and while some of the individuals may have welcomed this, some did not and from the point of view of the job, it is rarely a good thing when the experience and knowledge goes along with the staff - in my experience the industry / service is the worse for it.

 

As for needing the committee to be representative in terms of age, I again have to beg to differ in my view. I don't think it is necessary to be the same age as the people you are serving, let us not confuse youth with wisdom. ...I sometimes think that if only the energy of youth could be married to the wisdom of age. ...

 

Oh well, a controversial view, I daresay in these 'youth is god' times we seem to live in at the moment and before anyone asks, no I am not elderly, I am 39 not young, not old somewhere in between! :blink:

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I don't agree that people should be 'cast aside' just because they reach a certain age. In every job I've had with large organisations, periodically there is a drive to encourage some of the longer serving staff to go whether through early retirement, redundancy etc and while some of the individuals may have welcomed this, some did not and from the point of view of the job, it is rarely a good thing when the experience and knowledge goes along with the staff - in my experience the industry / service is the worse for it.

 

As for needing the committee to be representative in terms of age, I again have to beg to differ in my view. I don't think it is necessary to be the same age as the people you are serving, let us not confuse youth with wisdom. ...I sometimes think that if only the energy of youth could be married to the wisdom of age. ...

 

Oh well, a controversial view, I daresay in these 'youth is god' times we seem to live in at the moment and before anyone asks, no I am not elderly, I am 39 not young, not old somewhere in between! :blink:

 

 

In CC terms I think you count as young. About three quarters of CC members are probably older than you (though not necessarily wiser ).

 

The "youth is god" phenomenon has much to do with the desperate pursuit of younger customers, audiences etc to replace older ones. Many newspapers, for instance, fear - quite rightly - that their readership is dying off and not being replaced by new ones and broadcasters worry the young will turn to social networking etc instead of radio and TV. ..hence the efforts to appeal to younger audiences.

 

Will the CC face the same dilemma when its present members die off and have to increase its appeal to families etc and attract younger committee members to represent their interests? Or is caravanning of the kind provided by the CC by its nature more attractive to older people nearing or past retirement ? In which case more senior committee members will represent its majority membership?

 

Given the many conflicting interests and demands of members (dog-owners versus non doggers, big vans v small, those who want more mod cons on sites v those who want simplicity, those who want to book well in advance v those who want a more carefree system, families v childless etc) it is important I think that member committees are broadly representative and not too stuck in the "way things were always done".

 

I think a good organisation needs a mix of experience and new thinking. The staff who run the CC need to know they have the support and understanding of the committee members who oversee their work but they also need to be kept on their toes by them; to feel they are accountable to the membership through those representatives for meeting the needs of members and responding when those needs change. The CC has a largely captive membership - its not quite a monopoly but very close to being one - and it would be very easy for it to become complacent and self-serving rather member-serving.

Edited by lottie
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The CC has a largely captive membership - its not quite a monopoly but very close to being one - and it would be very easy for it to become complacent and self-serving rather member-serving.

 

I can see that this could be a danger but in every communication I have with the Club (and there have been quite a few!) I have always had a polite and comprehensive repy with a full explanation why something can or can't be done. One observation I make is that they are concerned that any decisions they make are acceptable to the majority of members and that in itself will tend to hold back 'Blue sky thinking'. We also need to recognise that the Club this run by a management team who will put changes/new ideas to the various committees and I suspect in the main the committees will follow their advice. With the setting up of member surveys they are getting more feedback from the membership than they did before and I expect both management and committees look at the results.

 

David

David - Milton Keynes

Bailey Alliance 66-2 Motorhome for holidays and a Kia Venga for home.

 

Caravan Travels

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I can see that this could be a danger but in every communication I have with the Club (and there have been quite a few!) I have always had a polite and comprehensive repy with a full explanation why something can or can't be done.

David

 

Yes that's my experience also.

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Lotties information on the age profile of club members doe's not surprise me, a casual "glance around" at any CC Site will confirm this.

However the age profile of the "committee" members is not a concern for me.

I have no issues whatsoever with the way the club is run and I would say quite categorically that the younger members in my opinion are being equally as well looked after as us over sixties!

A recent visit to the clubs Lakeside site bears this out, a very nice kiddies outdoor play area as well as a small indoor area with a pool table, games machines etc etc.

Some obviously yearn for bars, large entertainment areas etc etc, but as far as I am concerned the club get the "balance exactly right and leaves the large commercial sites to cater for their own market.

Never having run my own business I can still understand the old maxim about knowing your "market" and operating within it.

In my opinion the CC is "spot on" and runs a "shipshape and Bristol fashion" operation!

 

Dave

Edited by Davebelcanto
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I agree, Dave, they get more right than not, despite the age of the committee! (or is it because of?) ;)

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When considering the CC, as the largest club of its type in the World I strongly feel that it is about time people come to acknowledge that the CC is not a club per-say but a large non profit making business, however it does have in its commercial make up, a structure which relies on volunteers serving on various committees.

A very long ago, I can well recall a business friend who was the marketing director of one of the UK's largest fish product brands and whose company were going through a restructuring (redundancy programme) brought about by the dictate of the been counters saying to me, "it isn't the redundancies that I take exception to, but the calibre and merit of the people who are making these hard working and loyal people redundant".

With this mindset and when considering an organisation such as the CC; as it is such a very powerful organisation and in direct relationship to my OP, how do the CC go about selecting those representatives on the various committees : -

Do they go out to find independent people who have a wealth of knowledge and expertise that could be of use in whichever way possible ?

Or: -

Is a committee member a person who is a long term and time honoured member who goes to a lot of 'meets' and sits around the camp fire (so to speak) chewing the fat with his fellow members and generally tends to be of a very advanced age ?

From what I have seen and heard the latter of the above two questions would appear to be the case.

Edited by bigjimmy
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how do the CC go about selecting those representatives on the various committees : -

 

Do they go out to find independent people who have a wealth of knowledge and expertise that could be of use in whichever way possible ?

 

Or: -

 

Is a committee member a person who is a long term and time honoured member who goes to a lot of 'meets' and sits around the camp fire (so to speak) chewing the fat with his fellow members and generally tends to be of a very advanced age ?

 

From what I have seen and heard the latter of the above two questions would appear to be the case.

 

 

It is not entirely clear how the various committees are recruited or by whom. In most organisations this is done by a mixed process of selection and election (though the latter may be a formality).

 

The Executive committee seem to run the association and has a number of sub-committees dealing with various issues.

 

Three members are being "selected" at the Annual members Meeting on 22 Oct according to the agenda. How they were originally found and nominated is not clear but all three are already existing members of the Exec. One is a former MD and stockbroker who operated a touring caravan site in France (BigJimmy please note) for five years until 2006; has been a CC member for 21 years and drives a motorhome. Another was a graduate oil industry trainee who spent 30 years in the motor industry and retired as director of public affairs for Volvo Cars in 2006. He has been a CC member since 1985. The third is an electrical engineer who retired in 1994 and has been a member of the CC since 1990.

 

The larger CC Council is simply an advisory body and there are 10 regional councils which may provide a route by which new committee members are found.

 

The Club Council includes representatives from Regional Councils, members nominated by the Executive Committee and the Executive Committee itself.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Could be you have to work your way up the the various committIes, unless you know someone, this could take you 25-30 years, If you look at the age of people joining and add this to the time It would take to get to the top Is It suprising the age Is so high?

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I guess the age profile explains why the CC don't 'get' things like facebook, discussion forums and social networking

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I guess the age profile explains why the CC don't 'get' things like facebook, discussion forums and social networking

 

 

It may be an age and familiarity thing. I suspect its more an aversion to public expression of criticism and controversial opinions which you are likely to get on open forums. Comment in the CC seems very tightly controlled. How does this compare with the C&CC?

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I guess the age profile explains why the CC don't 'get' things like facebook, discussion forums and social networking

 

That could be a good thing!

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I went on the Committee of my local C&CC District Association when I was 30 and was by far the youngest member, the next in age being in his late 40s! I was later persuaded to stand (successfully) for election to the Regional Council. Being in a profession and having two youngsters, I found it quite difficult to find free time to attend meetings and to give the expected commitment to attend rallies. Needless to say, my involvement at these levels didn't last more than a few years! If you look at the make-up of committees of both clubs you will see that they comprise mostly retired folk.

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Picked this up on the beeb so whatever criticism you can level at the CC they're more poular than all the political parties put together

 

Political party membership appears to be in terminal decline in the UK - so can anything be done to reverse the trend? And does it matter?

It was once a source of cultural identity and pride for millions of British people.

But at just over 1% of the population - low by European standards - party membership is fast becoming a minority pursuit.

There are more members of the Caravan Club, or the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, than of all Britain's political parties put together.

Edited by basilfawlty
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Yes that's my experience also.

 

 

AS mine too. ......and one thing I do know, because that's how I first met him, is that the current CC Chairman is very much a caravanner and he, when possible, still rallies with his,and other,Centres. ......also Bob Black,before him,was a frequent visitor to Rowntree Park and I have been pegged behind him on a rally too.

 

Over the past year, since my final (of three)retirement I have dropped off three committees, 2 National & 1 Local. ...In every case the person that has replaced me has been 50 plus. ..perhaps it is still 'our generation' thats gives something back??

 

rgds

 

geoff

Kia Sorento KX-1 CRDI 4WD towing an Elddis Affinity 530

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