Home About Members  Galleries Exhibitions open studios Contact us  Newsletters Member Comments

Lincolnshire Open Studios


N e w s l e t t e r  Autumn 2015


1. AOTM Summer Exhibition – Event Report:

2. Edited Minutes AOTM SG Meeting And AOTM AGM:

3. Last Thoughts From Chairman, Membership Secretary & Treasurer:

4. A Final Word From Ed:

1. AOTM Summer Exhibition – Event Report:


17 members exhibited work at our summer show at Stamford giving a wide range of paintings,

assemblages from Graham and some lovely glass from Hazel and Sheila and colourful felt work

from Lyn, making an interesting, varied and lively show. The exhibition was open from 9.30 to 9

pm giving lots of time for the public to view the exhibition so footfall was high, although a

proportion of this was passing interest from viewers attending shows and events at the centre.

Many of the participating artists were able to spend time working in the gallery and meeting

visitors and reported generally that they enjoyed the experience.

Denise sold two paintings and a glass platter of Sheila’s and a piece of Hazel’s glass was also

sold. Lyn said she had gained a student for a course she was running as well, so, although not

an overwhelming financial success, at least some sales and a good show to promote AOTM.

There were many nice comments in the visitor’s book and lots of directories were taken so

perhaps this will result in future sales or visits to our last Open Studios event in November.

Many thanks to the hanging team – Graham, Ann and Stuart – and to Shelia and Lyn for

putting up their own work and to everyone involved with helping with transporting and collecting

each others work, and finally to Pam for the publicity. It was a team effort and I do hope the

mutual help and support from members remains in some form after the demise of AOTM.”

Helen Webber E: Johnhelen@ic24.net

2. Edited Minutes AOTM SG Meeting And AOTM AGM:

i) AOTM steering group meeting held at Forge Arts Gallery on Saturday 18th July 2015

Meeting commenced at 1.00 pm

Attendance: - Peter Skilton, Graham Perkins, Sheila Pearce, Helen Webber, Anne Wood, John Gray.

Minutes of previous meeting (online July 7th): - Minutes of meeting were accepted.

Reports: - Treasurer, Membership, Exhibitions.

The Chair: - Peter Skilton proposed and this was seconded, that the committee agreed every effort should be

made to continue the survival of AOTM.

Open Studios

There was much discussion about the usefulness of AOTM and in particular the benefits of the Open Studios

element. It was decided that “Open Studios” should be just that and that only members who were prepared to open

their studios on advertised specific dates should be allowed full membership and a leading place in the directory.

However, it was felt that this might further restrict the membership somewhat, and so those not opening their

studios could be represented as ‘associate members’ in a separate section at the end of the directory in smaller



There was more discussion on the possible format of the directory, whether to follow the folded version, as in the

Cornish open studios example, or to continue with the traditional leaflet. Providing that the membership was high

enough, there was, according to the treasurer’s report and recent quotes from a printer, sufficient funds to produce

a new directory.


Peter again expressed serious concern about the cost to AOTM of the Media Marmot website and that a simpler

and cheaper one more suitable to our membership should be found. Peter said he would peruse the possibilities.

We should finish with Media Marmot services as soon as possible.

Steering Group

Graham had been suggested as a possible webmaster for the new site, but said he would not be able to serve on

the Steering Group and AOTM for this coming year as he was undertaking a full-time Masters course and would

not have any available time. Ann Wood also stated that, reluctantly, she would be leaving the Steering Group and

AOTM. This left a Steering Group of four, but with Peter bearing the main work load. It was decided that, unless

other members came forward, it would be impossible to continue to run AOTM in 2016. There followed further

discussion about the continued lack of interest and lack of enthusiasm amongst the general membership to take

part in events and to contribute towards the running of the group – in particular the record of very poor attendance

at AGMs.

Helen suggested a simple tick box form be emailed to the membership asking them if they:

1. Would be continuing with their membership next year.

2. Would be attending the AGM.

3. Would be attending the buffet lunch.

This suggestion was made with a view that the AGM could take place before the take-down of the Stamford

exhibition, with a buffet lunch before the meeting. This was to capitalize on the potential for a large group of

members to be in one place at one time. Helen rang the Stamford Arts Centre bar caterers to arrange this, and the

Treasurer and SG members agreed to spend up to £100 on hosting a reception for the meeting and take-down.

This would be an attempt to encourage a better attendance at the AGM, as, with the resignation of current steering

group members and no replacements coming from the membership, it would be impossible to continue with the

AOTM group.

The meeting closed at 5.00 pm.

ii) AOTM Annual General Meeting held at St Mary's Art Centre Stamford Sunday 9th August 2015

Meeting commenced at 1.10 pm with Chairman Peter Skilton’s welcome.

Attendance: - Gillian Wing, John Gray, Anne Wood, Bob Armstrong, Helen Webber, Ian Harkess, Graham

Perkins, Denise Hawthorne.

Apologies: - Toni Watts, Sheila Pearce, Peter Montgomery, Bruce Duncan, Hazel Burnham, Peter Moss, Shirley

Rodger, Clive Redshaw, Roger Picket, Tina Robson, Jane Cowan, Steve Neal, Lyn Baker, Caroline Goodman,

Lind Anso.

1. No minutes of 2014 AGM available but all agreed to accept and sign later.

2. A copy of Chairman's report had been received and read by all present and agreed it was a reasonable report of

events and problems from the year.

3. A copy of the Treasurer's report (Peter Skilton) had been received and read by all present. Balance at bank as of

9th August 2015 was £1805.10. However there are creditors to be paid in respect of the current exhibition.

4. All agreed that the website was too expensive at £50 per month and should be closed down. Media Marmot has

offered to host a simple site for £70 per year. Peter Skilton had already done a preliminary design for a website

which could be used in 2016 should there be enough members to make the group viable. Anne Wood proposed the

existing website be closed. Bob Armstrong seconded the proposal. All agreed.

It was suggested, however, that the existing Website might be kept open until the end of the year as the simple site

was not yet finished as a substitute, and the work to complete it would be unacceptable in the face of the group

closure previously agreed... The chairman will contact Media Marmot as this proposal would cost us 4 x £50.

5. Steering committee meetings had been held over the internet with varying degree of success. However, this

arrangement has saved unnecessary petrol expenses which would normally be paid and would be continued.

6. Peter Skilton (Membership Secretary) went through the membership list indicating those artists who intended to

renew their membership. This totalled 17 and might be higher if some uncertain members were retained. A

membership charge of £50 from say 20 members would generate income of £1000. If AOTM were to continue, a

budget of £1000 should be targeted for 2016 to avoid depleting the reserves...

7. Election of Officers:

Chairman - Peter Skilton willing to continue until 2016

Vice Chairman - no nomination vacant position

Treasurer - no nomination vacant position

Secretary - no nomination vacant position

Committee members - no nominations 2 vacant positions

Helen Webber was willing to be a volunteer on a steering committee but not in an officer role but added that there

would have to be more active support from others in the group.

8. A lengthy discussion followed about the possible future of Open Studios and the future of AOTM. It was

generally felt that the group was only paying 'lip service' to the concept of Open Studios as several members did

not participate in this and the public did not seem to be so enthusiastic either. The group cannot function without

officers and a viable number of committee members so the meeting concluded that AOTM Lincolnshire Open

Studios cannot continue.

9. Proposition 1 on the agenda could not reasonably be voted on in these circumstances. This shut-down decision

also made the other proposals on the agenda irrelevant and inappropriate. Formal voting procedures on these

issues were therefore not proceeded with.

10. The Exhibition in the Cathedral Chapter House next July will still go ahead. Helen Webber and Denise

Hawthorne agreed to organize this. This show will be our final exhibition and existing members will be invited to

contribute work with a proviso that they commit to steward one or more half-a-day sessions. It was agreed that the

expenses for this Cathedral Exhibition would be met through the remaining funds already in the bank account.

11. John Gray proposed "In view of the closing of the organisation that no subscriptions be requested for 2016".

This was seconded by Graham Perkins. All agreed.

12. All outstanding creditors would be paid and advice on how to dispose of any residual funds would be sought. It

is believed that disposition of these funds is the sole responsibility of the steering group. Consultation with Peter

Montgomery on this matter had already been initiated by the Chairman.

The meeting closed at 2.50 pm.

Exhibiting AOTM Members who turned out for the AGM & Demolition Party: Helen, John, Gillian, Denise, Anne, Graham, Peter & Bob.

3. Last Thoughts From Chairman, Membership Secretary & Treasurer:

“At this time you will be aware that AOTM cannot continue without a Steering Group and

officials taking responsibility for the management of its business, events, etc. This sad state was

arrived at when no volunteers came forward to fill the committee vacancies at our Annual

General Meeting. It was unanimously agreed by those present that the group could not continue

and would be closed forthwith. I was recently given a copy of the AOTM constitution and, after

the AGM, I took time to check on the section titled ‘Dissolution’.

“I will repeat it here as it raises a number of issues:

14. Dissolution

14.1 A resolution to dissolve AOTM shall only be proposed at a SGM (Special General

Meeting) and shall be carried by a two thirds majority of members present.

14.2 The dissolution shall take effect from the date of the resolution and the members of the

Steering Group shall be responsible for the winding-up of the assets and liabilities of


14.3 Dispersal of any funds remaining after dissolution will be determined by the Steering


“Sounds straight forward enough? However...

1. The resolution to dissolve was taken at an AGM not a SGM and the decision was the result of

a failure to elect a Steering Group. Arguably we no longer have one.

2. AOTM still has a commitment to Open Studio event in November 2015 and an exhibition in

Lincoln Cathedral in July 2016.

“I think that these two issues are in conflict with the constitutional rules and in order to resolve

the conflict, I propose that we honour the arrangements under 2 above and call for an SGM

following the Cathedral exhibition.

“Denise Hawthorne and Helen Webber have undertaken to curate the Cathedral Exhibition with

the help of others and the financial support of the AOTM funds. The Steering Group would

reconvene for the SGM and the proposal to dissolve the group could be put forward again and

voted through according to the constitution.

“The Procedure for an SGM is also laid out in the constitution:

- 21 days notice must be given

- a quorum of one tenth the membership shall be present (i.e. 3 of us)

“It is hard to persuade members to participate in meetings and the business of the AOTM, but, if

I attend the meeting, only two others are needed!!! I will probably call for it to be in my own

studio/gallery so that a proper 'wake' may be held for our organisation's demise! Despite all

these formalities it is abundantly clear that we are moribund and the resolution to close down

remains the intent of the members attending AGM as does their intent not to call for renewal of

your subscriptions in this our terminal year.

“As for the November Open Studio dates please make it happen! Best regards, Peter.”

Peter Skilton E: ptrskltn@gmail.com

4. A Final Word From Ed:

“Dear All, it is not without a slight tinge of sadness that this issue will be my last Newsletter

mailout for AOTM. I took over the role of Newsletter Editor back in 2009 and a quick scan from

that November 2009 issue reveals that: “From the information received so far it shows that,

overall, it was another good AOTM Open Studios season this summer. Eleven studios did not

open, but 556 people visited 34 studios (so far), and the visitors spent a total of £3,662 - giving

an average of £108 per open studio so far this summer.” These figures were gathered from

feedback from less than half the membership at the time, so where did everybody go? Perhaps

the continued advance of those ironic words ‘Social Media’ like Youtube has meant that visitors

can visit any artist’s studio anywhere in the world within a few clicks and no longer need or want

the physicality of presence?

“Whatever the reason, we leave up for grabs the recognisable brand of ‘Art On The Map’ which

could one day be resurrected and reinvented by anyone as possibly an organisation for putting

on art exhibitions, an organisation for selling art, a consultancy for art projects or even an arts

removal firm! Someone, somewhere, will pick up this brand and make use of it.

“It is time for change and we must all embrace it. I will be starting a full-time Masters ‘MA in

Community Archaeology’ at Bishop Grot in the next couple of weeks so will be throwing all my

energy into that as well as continuing to learn to play a drum kit! As a final thought, I do hope

that the friendships and contacts that we have all made through AOTM continue to thrive, so I

think a big ‘thank you’ is in order to everyone for all of their contributions over the years, and

see you next year in the Chapter House! Best of luck to all for our final Open Studio – cheers!”

Graham Perkins E: graham@forgearts.co.uk

* * *