CONSTITUTION, RULES AND REGULATIONS 2016
C1.1 The name of the Association will be the Southern Skirmish Association.
C1.2 The Association will be historical in outlook and aims to advance the education of the public in the history of the American Civil War.
C1.3 The Association will have no political affiliations.
C1.4 In furtherance of the Association' objective, the Association will have the following powers to:
a. Promote living history displays, battles and other presentations depicting the period.
b. Give and exchange information and advice to promote all matters relating to the history of the American Civil war.
c. Engage and promote research in the American Civil War, and where possible publish the results.
d. Publish, produce, print and distribute information to the media.
e. Open and operate bank accounts and other banking facilities.
f. Raise funds(but not by means of taxable trading).
g. Invite or receive contributions, or grants and seek subscriptions.
h. Acquire,.buy, lease hire or sell otherwise dispose of property or assets (but only in accordance with the restrictions imposed by the Charities Act).
i. Set aside funds for special purposes or as reserves against future expenditure.
j. Enter into contracts to provide services to other organisations, charities and educational establishments
C1.5 In the event of the Association winding up,
a. The Executive Committee will remain in office and be responsible for the orderly winding up of the Association.
b. All assets will be transferred to a charitable institution or institutions having objectives similar to the Association.
c. A final report and statement of account will be sent to the Charities Commission
C1.6 No alterations shall be made to the Constitution without the prior approval of the Charity Commissioners, and no alterations shall be
made which would cause the Association to be a Charity at Law.
C1.7 The members of the Executive Committee will ensure that an Insurance Policy covering Professional Liability, Third Party Liability and any
other appropriate insurance against any foreseeable risk or to protect the Association is continuously in place.
C1.8 All Southern Skirmish Association publications are copyright, and no whole or part of them may be reproduced without the permission of the
C2.1 The Association's membership will be open to all people, regardless of race, colour, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status,
social/economic status, religious affiliation or disability.
C2.2 The Executive Committee may establish different classes of membership and set the amounts of the subscriptions.
C2.3 The Executive Committee must keep a secure register of current members and maintain it in accordance with appropriate Data Protection systems.
C2.4 Membership of the Association is not transferable.
C2.5 The Executive Committee may terminate the membership of any member on the grounds that in their reasonable opinion the member's
continued membership would be harmful to the Association. The Executive Committee may only pass such a resolution after notifying
the member in writing and considering the matter in the light of any written representations which the member puts forward.
C2.6 1. The final renewal date for membership is 31st January.
2. Notifications of renewal will be sent to all current members by the Membership Secretary at the beginning of November. Renewals for
the next season can be made any time between November and the final renewal date.
3. Any member who has not renewed by January 31st will be deemed to be a lapsed member.
4. A lapsed member may rejoin SoSkAn at any time on payment of the full yearly subscription. Such lapsed members will be entitled to
retain their existing events points total, but not their continuous service status, on rejoining.
5. A lapsed member may attend SoSkAn events as a guest member on payment of the appropriate guest fee.
6. Lapsed members will be removed from any official contact lists, such as newsletters, website forum and the Official SoSkAn Facebook page.
The Executive Committee
C3.1 The Executive committee will be the management and ruling body of the Association.
C3.2 The Executive Committee, like all members, shall obey the Rules and Regulations of the Association, and additionally the Rules and
Regulations set out for Executive Committee members.
C3.3 The Executive Committee shall keep the Association in good standing with all Civil Authorities.
C3.4 The Executive Committee will control all financial matters and conduct all dealings with any persons or organisations external to the Association.
C3.5 The Executive Committee will keep proper records of all proceedings
at meetings, reports and other documentation regarding the running of the Association.
C3.6 The Executive Committee will consist of members elected annually at the Annual General Meeting, by members of the association, by secret
ballot. Nominations for election will take place in September.
C3.7 The minimum age for a member of the Executive Committee is 18.
C3.8 All candidates for election must be present at the AGM, or have advised the Chair in advance of their absence and confirmed their willingness to stand. Candidates who fail to do this will forfeit their candidacy, and the count will be taken from the remaining candidates.
C3.9 The members of the Executive Committee will be equal in rank and consist of, Chairperson, Secretary, Treasurer, Editor, Membership Secretary, Projects Director, Publicity Officer and up to two Committee Officers as required. The meetings of the Executive Committee and the Association will be conducted by the Chairperson.
C3.10 In order to hold his/her position, each Executive Committee member must attend at least 75% of the Executive Committee meetings held during each year.
C3.11 If in the opinion of the balance of the Executive Committee, a Committee member is not performing his/her duties in a satisfactory manner, the said member can be asked to resign. Should a resignation not be forthcoming, then the matter shall be put before the members for their vote.
C3.12 An Executive Committee member must give at least 28 days notice in writing by Registered Mail to the Chairperson of intention to resign. If the Chairperson wishes to resign, he/she must give notice as above to the Secretary.
C3.13 A member may only serve on the Executive Committee for a maximum of five consecutive years, after which there should be at least one year before they can take office again.
C3.14 An Executive member's term of office will automatically terminate if he or she:
a. is disqualified under the Charities Act from acting as a Trustee.
b. is incapable, whether mentally or physically, of managing his or her own affairs.
c. ceases to be a member of the Association.
C3.15 The Executive Committee must be capable of producing in a full year, one journal, and as many newsletters as are required.
C3.16 Where there are no candidates for an elected post, the Executive Committee has the right to co-opt a member to that post. Any co-opted Executive Committee member shall have full voting right on the Executive Committee.
C3.17 No member of the Executive Committee may receive payment in either money or other material benefit except for:
a. Reimbursement of reasonable out of pocket expenses incurred in the administration of the Association.
b. Indemnity Insurance.
C4.1 An Executive Committee member is not entitled to vote at a General Meeting. The Chairperson holds the casting vote.
C4.2 The Executive Committee must give 28 days notice in writing of an Annual General Meeting, (November) or as required by English Law. Non-members may not attend the AGM without prior agreement of the Executive Committee .
C4.3 At an AGM members:
a. Receive the accounts for the previous financial year.
b. Receive the report of the Executive Committee on the Association's activities since the previous year.
c. Accept the retirement of Executive Committee members
d. Elect Executive Committee members for the coming year
e. Discuss any issues of policy or other business put before them.
f. Amendments to rules and regulations made at the AGM require a 75% majority approval of the total attending members at the AGM.
No amendments are considered valid if they would make a fundamental change to the objectives of the Association or destroy it’s charitable status.
g. Proposed amendments to the rules must be proposed and seconded by full members, and sent in writing to the Secretary at least 42 days before the date of the AGM.
C4.4 The Executive Committee must hold at least 4 meetings a year. The meetings may be held either in person, or by using suitable electronic means agreed by the Executive Committee members, in which
all participants may communicate with each other.
C4.5 At meetings of the Executive Committee, a motion will only be carried if at least two thirds of Executive Committee members agree.
C4.6 Calling an Emergency General Meeting (EGM): For an EGM to be called the following conditions must be met:
1. A written petition calling for an EGM must gain the names and signatures of a minimum of 20% of SoSkAn's Membership. Only those whose membership/renewal dates are within the current membership year, and are paid members at the time of the proposal of an EGM, are eligible to sign.
2. Once the necessary signatures have been verified by the Membership Secretary, who must complete such a task within 7 days of receipt of the petition, it is an absolute obligation of the Executive Committee that an EGM must be constituted within 28 days from the posting of written notification to the Membership of SoSkAn.
3. The written notification must include the motion(s) to be discussed and voted upon at said EGM.
4. Votes can only be cast by members attending the EGM.
C4.7 Proxy Voting.. It is an absolute rule of SoSkAn that there can be no voting by proxy on any occasion.
C5.l The Executive Committee must comply with the requirements of the Charities Act as to the keeping of financial records, the audit or independent examination of accounts, and the preparation and transmission of annual returns, annual reports and annual statement of accounts to the Charities Commission.
C5.2 A professionally scrutinised account will be prepared annually. after 3lst October, which will be presented at the AGM and published thereafter.
C5.3 Funds which are not required for immediate use must be placed on deposit or invested (where appropriate financial advice has been obtained).
C5.4 Any property or assets of the Association may be held either in the names of the Executive Committee or in the name of a nominated company acting under the control of the Executive Committee.
C5.5 Documents and physical assets may be deposited with a company registered or having a place of business in England or Wales, as custodian.
RULES AND REGULATIONS
R1.1 The Association will be open to both postal and active members.
R1.2 The Association will offer five types of membership consisting of the following:
Family: 2 Adults and up to 4 children under the age of 18.
Single Adult: 18+ years of age
Junior: 14 - 17 years of age (on condition that they have at least one adult member willing to supervise them)
Cadet: 10 -13 years of age (on condition that they have at least one adult member willing to supervise them)
R1.3 Members under 14 years of age cannot attend events without a supervisory adult, nor will they be allowed to participate in battle reenactments.
R1.4 All members between the ages of 14 and 18 must have a written parent or guardian's consent for participation in battle re-enactments.
R1.5 The Executive Committee reserves the right to refuse membership to any applicant.
R1.6 Only members aged 14 years and over will have the right to vote on annual issues and at the AGM.
R1.7 All members, irrespective of age, will be entitled to event points foreach event authorised by SOSKAN, which they attend and in which they
R1.8 Membership cards must be carried at all times on Association events. Any member without a valid card may, at the discretion of the Executive
Committee, be refused the right to participate.
RE1.1 With the exception of members' children under the age of ten, formally invited guests and current members of an invited Guest Society, no
non-member will be allowed to camp at an Association event.
RE1.2 Only SOSKAN registered Sutlers will be allowed to trade at SOSKAN events.
RE1.3 Attendance at non SoSkAn Events. Any persons attending any event organised by societies other than SoSkAn, may do so. However, such persons will not be covered by SoSkAn's insurance, nor be allowed to use any equipment or property of SoSkAn unless this is specifically agreed by the Committee. The use of the name SoSkAn will not be allowed at such non-SoSkAn events.
Executive Committee Membership
RE1.3 No two immediate family members may serve on the Executive Committee at the same time.
Conduct of Members
Conduct of Members Rules
R2.l Members will be expected to conduct themselves in a civil manner at all times and uphold the good name of the Association.
R2.2 Trespass on private property is prohibited, and will not be condoned, nor will the molesting of private citizens, or deliberate damage to property.
R2.3 No member may undertake any project, whether display or publicity. using the name of Southern Skirmish Association without the express
permission of the Executive Committee.
R2.3a Representing SoSkAn. Any persons attending any meeting, pre-event site meeting or promotional event on behalf of SoSkAn, must notify the Committee in advance for permission to do so. It is a requirement that such persons be fully paid up members of SoSkAn to (a) represent SoSkAn, and (b) be able to claim one way travel expenses for their visit, if applicable.
R2.3b Use of SoSkAn Equipment at non-SoSkAn Events. No property of the Southern Skirmish Association may be taken to, or utilised at, any event of another group/society/organisation without the written authority of the Executive Committee of SoSkAn (EC). If any member takes and/or utilises SoSkAn property without such pre-existing express written authority, it will amount to an act of gross misconduct and the EC is empowered
to expel the member from SoSkAn. If the EC fails to so act, the Membership is empowered to do so by a duly constituted EGM.
R2.4 Members who disregard any Rules and Regulations will be answerable to the Executive Committee who reserve the right to expel any offending member.
R2.5 On the day of any event, all members are required to wear costume or uniform of the period which conforms with the Association's Minimum Standards, in the authentic camps and whilst the display areas are open to the public. Members will be expected to change into costume as soon as is reasonably possible after their arrival, and be in full costume during the times that the event is open to the public.
R2.6 Officers and NCOs will be in control of their companies, and their guests, from the time of their arrival at the event, and for the duration of their stay whilst on site.
R2.7 At events, it is the duty of all NCOs to report any misbehaviour of members to the Officer in Charge. It will be at the Officer’s discretion to take action whilst a display is being performed. This should be brought to the attention of the Executive Committee after the display.
R2.8 Anyone acting in a manner likely to cause harm or damage to a person or property will be subject to disciplinary action.
Firearms and safety regulations
R3.1 Any member applying for a shotgun license, firearms certificate or a black powder license for use on Southern Skirmish Association functions must first apply to the Secretary for permission.
R3.2 All members and guests must ensure that weapons owned or used by them are in a safe and legal condition, and must carry all relevant and current licences and permits at events.
R3.3 Licences and permits must be produced for examination when requested, and when being issued with powder or cartridges.
R3.4 No guns will be discharged off the battlefield without the express permission of an Officer or NCO.
R3.5 No member or guest member shall be under the influence of alcohol or any mind altering substance during a public event or whilst in charge of a firearm or ammunition.
Firearms and safety regulations
RE3.1 No edged weapons will be used during close combat, except by prior agreement of both side's officers. Edged weapons with the exception of bayonets are only to be carried by Officers and NCOs unless by prior agreement of both side's officers and the Executive Committee.
RE3.2 Musket ramrods may be carried, but not used on the battlefield, with the exception of one per regiment, which is to be carried by a designated member of the regiment, for the sole purpose of clearing fouled musket barrels.
RE3.3 Only members who have attended a SoSkAn approved pyrotechnics training course and have obtained a certificate proving their competence will be permitted to handle pyrotechnics at Association events.
RE3.4 Company Commanders will ensure that members are not permitted to take part as a firer on the field until they have taken and passed SoSkAn’s musketry skills test.
RE3.5 Anyone having or wishing to use more than one gun, will only be allowed to use one of them on the field, except by prior agreement of both side's officers, and with Executive Committee permission.
RE3.6 All guns must be checked by a Safety Officer before each display, and must be found to be in a safe and clean condition. All ramrods are to be removed from the gun and individually checked for condition and security.
RE3.7 During battles, empty paper cartridges are not to be inserted into muzzle-loading barrels and fired with the charge.
RE3.8 Empty paper tubes may only be inserted into musket barrels, rammed and fired with the charge, when members are either practising for, or taking part in SoSkAn’s quick fire competition, or when demonstrating firing procedures to spectators, when the appropriate safety precautions are in place.
RE3.9 It is the duty of all members (unless otherwise directed) to remain on the field of battle until it has been officially declared clear of debris by the Officer in Charge.
Field Organisation Rules
R4.l Military rank will have no meaning in the Association except during events.
R4.2 No new Company may be formed without the consent of the Executive Committee.
R4.3 Any Company which has decided that it is prepared to galvanise must make this clear to any new recruit, also making certain that this fact is made clear in the Company's publicity and recruitment material.
R4.4 Each army will democratically elect and ratify the ranks of it’s own staff officers, in accordance with that army's voting procedure.
R4.5 The Executive Committee reserves the right to withdraw positions of rank should any one not meet the necessary requirements.
R4.6 The accepted Military Drill Manuals of the Association are the relevant period Drill Manuals for each branch of the Armies. All Officers and NCOs will be expected to know, and instruct their companies in this drill.
Field Organisation Regulations
RE4.1 Any proposed new fighting Company must consist of at least 12 active, fighting soldiers.
RE4.2 The following Drill Manuals, with modern safety adjustments have been agreed as the Official Manuals for the Association.
a) For the Confederate Infantry, Hardee's Infantry and Rifle Tactics, 1861.
b) For the Union infantry, Casey's Infantry Tactics, 1861.
c) For both Confederate and Union Cavalry, Cooke's Cavalry Tactics
d) For both Confederate and Union Artillery, Field Artillery Tactics 1861, French, Barry and Hunt.
RE4.3 Any Company which has decided that it is prepared to galvanise must make this clear to any new recruit, also making certain that this fact is
made clear in the Company’s publicity and recruitment material