Open Meetings Guidelines 

Open Meetings Guidelines

Any member of the Welsh Pony and Cob Society is welcome to attend and observe the open sessions of Council. Non-members will not be admitted without the prior permission of the Chairman. Individuals interested in attending a meeting of the Council must notify the Society by email, fax or letter of their interest stating the meeting they wish to observe.  

The number of seats for observers is limited and we try to accommodate as many people as possible, but are limited by the capacity of the venue. Observers are requested to advise us if they subsequently find that they cannot attend, so that their place can be given to someone else. 

The agenda will be separated into open items and confidential items. Wherever possible confidential items will be reserved for the latter part of the meeting and observers will be asked to leave for those items. 

Guidelines for Observers

  1. Intention to attend Open Meetings of Council must be sent to the Office, in writing, at least one month prior to the date of the meeting.

  2. Observers are asked to register on arrival at the meeting. Meetings will begin promptly and observers may be denied entry if the meeting has already begun. Individuals who have not pre-registered will not be allowed to observe.

  3. The meeting agenda and timetable for individual agenda items will be posted one week in advance of the meeting on the Society’s website. Agenda’s will only be posted to observers on request. Copies of the agenda will be available on the day.

  4. Observers are encouraged to check with the Society before the meeting for last minute changes. The society cannot accept any responsibility for losses or inconvenience caused by changes to timing or difficulties in accommodating members.

  5. Council papers will not be provided to observers.

  6. Observers do not have the right to speak, although the Chairman may invite an observer to speak in exceptional circumstances.

  7. Observers do not have the right to vote.

  8. Observers must not take photographs; operate mobile phones, video cameras or tape recorders in the meeting room. Those who fail to observe this guideline will be asked to leave immediately and will not be able to attend future meetings without the permission of the Chairman.

  9. If asked by the Chairman, either individually or collectively, observers must leave the meeting immediately.

  10. Observers must sit in the designated seating area and not enter the Council seating area.

  11. The Society is not able to invite observers to join the Council for lunch or refreshments. Observers are requested to make their own arrangements and not to bring food or drink into the meeting.

  12. Observers are not able to claim expenses for attending.

Guidelines for Council Members

  1. Council members are expected to support the guidelines for observers.

  2. Council papers must not be copied, distributed or shared with observers without the permission of the Chairman and noted in the minutes.

  3. The Chairman will acknowledge those present in an observer capacity and their attendance will be noted in the minutes of the meeting.

  4. Council members must refrain from discussion with observers while the meeting is in session.

  5. Council members must refrain from discussing Agenda items with Observers during breaks.

Guidelines for Meeting Administrator

  1. The meeting administrator is responsible for ensuring the following:

  2. Receive and log requests for observing the meeting

  3. Verify that observers are current Society members or that the Chairman has given permission for their attendance.

  4. Monitor the numbers wishing to observe and to administrate a waiting list system should the need arise.

  5. Ensure sufficient seating is provided for observers separate from the Council meeting table and that it is clearly and appropriately labelled

  6. Register observers on the day of the meeting and provide copies of the agenda if necessary

  7. To include the names of those with observer status in the Chairman’s agenda for acknowledgement by the Chairman at the start of the meeting.