8 June 2019, IMCoS Annual General Meeting Chairman’s report

Like every year I have prepared a written statement, that I will read out to you to ensure that the website information will be synchronised with the information promulgated during the AGM.

The Executive Committee has held its customary four meetings in the UK, with multiple emails and telephone calls being exchanged amongst members in between meetings.

Our visit to Cambridge in April was organised by Valerie Newby, our Vice-chairperson and national representative for the United Kingdom. The only thing she got wrong was the weather, but I understand British weather does not come under the Vice-chair’s responsibilities and Brexit does not either, otherwise she would have fixed both.

Our yearly Malcolm Young Lecture in June was given by Alan Ereira on ‘The Nine Lives of John Ogilby’; the IMCoS/Helen Wallis Award landed in the familiar hands of our Past President Roger Baskes for his lifetime merits as a collector and his generous donations, in particular to the Newberry Library in Chicago, not to speak of his activities as a much appreciated President for IMCoS between 2002 and 2007.

Our yearly International Symposium was ably organised by our Representative Rudolf Lietz and his wife Elizabeth in Manila/Philippines and, being a double-headed Symposium, the Hong Kong part was in the hands of Richard Wesley Director of the Hong Kong Maritime Museum and his staff. Both events were very successful and IMCoS is grateful indeed to those who spent so much time, money and effort in the preparation of the 2018 Symposium for the benefit of our members.

The Executive Committee has performed smoothly; reports from our Treasurer and Journal Editor are separate agenda items, both positive, with a Journal going strong and a satisfactory and stable financial status for the Society’s affairs. Where other Executive Committee members may be operating out of the limelight, their contribution is crucial for IMCoS, nevertheless: David Dare as General Secretary; Peter Walker our Financial Administrator with membership and website responsibilities; Jenny Harvey who takes care of all aspects of our advertising and library; Mike Sweeting is fast becoming pivotal on PR matters and computer aspects; and Diana Webster who looks after our archiving and Scottish outings; whilst Katie Parker is good at map research and contacts with dealers.

The situation of our National Representatives is being investigated; our President Peter Barber has been asked for advice on this matter and it will come up later under Agenda item 8 as well, as the Committee seeks the advice of the AGM also on this matter before arriving at whatever decision in concert with Robert Clancy, our coordinator of the National Representatives.

This concludes the Chairman’s Annual Report for the year 2018; I am open to questions, assuming these would not better be asked under some of the upcoming agenda items, but then I would keep them until then, of course.

However, there is another matter I would like to address, although not really related to the calendar year 2018, and that is the Chairman’s position. In 2016 I announced that while accepting the renewed appointment as Chairman, I might not be available for the full term of four years. Meanwhile, the four years being almost done anyway, I would like to announce that I will step down no later than 31 December 2020, hopefully providing enough time to appoint a successor, any time before that. By then, I will have completed fifteen years as Chairman, which is enough in establishing a measure of continuity, but maybe too long to avoid complacency and probably barring new developments in the Society’s leadership. I feel that the Society should be led by a younger Chairman, one with more affinity with digital ways and newer ideas. We will be looking for a replacement, and any recommendations from the AGM, now or later, are welcome.