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As a National body it is extremely important that the British Koi Keepers Society provides support for the local Koi Clubs. We consider these Clubs are a vital part of the hobby and it should be our role to provide a central infrastructure to assist them wherever possible.
When the present Committee was elected in 2012 one of the biggest issues we needed to address was the relationship between the Society and affiliated Clubs, known as Sections. It was very clear that we needed to find a simpler way both to finance and manage the relationship to ensure we could provide the support needed both for existing Sections, and also to encourage the independent Clubs which aren’t currently a part of the BKKS.
Historically Sections were formed when a group of BKKS members formed a Koi Club, and it was a requirement that to be a member of the local Section, you were also required to be a BKKS member. Over the years this requirement has been modified to the point whereby a Section was required to only have 10 BKKS members. The way this was written into the Society Rules resulted in all sorts of problems and confusion and had no real reflection on how the relationship needed to work, to fulfil the needs of both the Sections and hobbyists in the modern age.
We therefore spent a lot of time engaging with members and Sections to try and understand the problems, the requirements of Clubs, and proposed solutions. The questionnaire we circulated last year, which was completed by both BKKS members and non-members, provided a lot of useful information, and this combined with many discussions allowed us to sit down and consider the best way forward.
It is worth noting the many things the BKKS is already setup to provide to Sections.
Twice a year the BKKS holds National Committee Meetings (NCM) where representatives from each Section have the opportunity to attend and discuss things as a group, along with the BKKS Committee. At the most recent meeting on 29th September 2013 the main agenda item was our proposal for change.
During the meeting it was great to receive many positive comments from the attendees about the way the Committee were handling such issues, and ignoring the politics of the past, and this was rounded off, as the meeting closed, with a very welcome and impromptu round of applause from all who attended.
We had already identified that the only logical way forward was to set a simple annual affiliation fee for Sections, which would reflect what was actually provided and the cost incurred, and this had already been agreed at the Annual General Meeting. Therefore the main purpose of the meeting was to agree the actual cost and the benefits, which would be provided in return. It was important to us that this took place in consultation with the Sections, rather than being dictated by the Society.
Having presented our costs to the attendees and after much discussion it was agreed by a resounding majority vote that as from 2014 the following simple system will apply for any Club wishing to be a BKKS Section:
As you will see below we are also actively looking at new initiatives to help Sections, and see this as an on-going process:
As part of our support to BKKS Sections, from the 1st March 2014 we will start a new initiative, which will offer Section members with a discounted BKKS membership fee. With every subscription fee there is a cost to the Society in processing the payment and also postage of the membership pack. Where Sections are willing to undertake some of this administration and collect the payments to be sent once a year, and receive the membership packs to distribute to members, this would allow us to reduce our costs and pass these savings on to the Section members. We have therefore agreed that Sections will be able to offer a reduced BKKS membership fee of £15 per year.
One problem Sections have identified is the difficulty in holding events such as their own shows. This is for a variety of reasons such as lack of manpower, ever increasing costs, and more recently licensing difficulties. Many Sections simply want to have a competition between their club members and we have therefore suggested that we could look into holding individual shows as a part of the BKKS National Koi Show. Obviously this will require a lot more thought to determine exactly how this would work and is something for 2015 and beyond.
Since the meeting we have been pleased to hear that the first Section has already presented our proposal to their members who have voted to accept this change. Hopefully this will signal the start of a new relationship between the BKKS and Sections, and ensure we can all work more closely together for the benefit of the hobby.
To this end, we are now welcoming Koi Clubs to apply to become BKKS Sections
To do this, we would ask you to apply via email to
If you wish your application to be considered at the next National Committee Meeting, then it needs to arrive no later than Monday 6th January 2014. We would then require a representative of your Club to attend the NCM on Sunday 12th January, where they will be asked to tell us a little bit about the Club, and why you want to be a Section. The Section representatives at the meeting will then vote on your Club becoming a Section, with a majority deciding the outcome.
Not long enough to consult with your members?
We appreciate that this timescale doesn't leave long for you to consult with your Club members, so applications can also be sent at any time, and we will ensure they are processed as soon as possible.
We sincerely hope that you can see from this, that the current BKKS Committee are working hard to move the Society forwards, and we hope that you and your members will choose to join us in this journey towards a bright and exciting future.