BTS Constitution

The British Tarantula Society Constitution

1.         Name

As of 1984 the Society is known as The British Tarantula Society and hereinafter referred to in this document as the BTS.

2.         Offices
The BTS Head and Membership Offices shall be located in the United Kingdom of Great Britain.  The specific locations shall be defined in other BTS literature.

3.         Committee
The BTS shall be managed by a Committee of a maximum of fifteen (15) persons, all of whom shall be current members of the BTS.  Positions on the Committee shall include; Chairman, Vice-Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer, Membership Administrator, Journal Editor, Exhibition Organiser, Lectures Organiser, Business Manager, Librarian,  Webmaster,  and other ordinary members.  One or more persons may undertake one or more Committee positions.

The Committee shall meet a minimum of four (4) times annually.  Any Committee member absent from three consecutive meetings, without fair reason, shall be required to offer their resignation and have their position offered as a new appointment. The Committee shall have the power to decrease the number of members to a minimum of four (4) sitting at any time should it be deemed necessary.

The Committee shall be allowed to invite members onto the Committee. Such an invitation shall be the result of a two-thirds majority vote of the Committee. To serve as a Committee member the applicant must be a full subscribing member of the BTS. Any BTS member may apply for a position on the Committee if a position is available.

4.         The objectives of the BTS

4.1       To further the keeping, study and breeding of theraphosids, scorpions and associated fauna in a manner conducive to their safety and wellbeing.

4.2       To produce a Journal to help the Society fulfil its role as a platform for debate amongst amateur arachnologists and to provide an organ for publishing any relevant information submitted by a member or of interest to a member.

4.3       To encourage the participation in long-term captive breeding programmes, to both relieve the pressure on indigenous habitats and create a supply of specimens for amateur arachnologists.

4.4       Members have the right to market their captive bred spiders at shows via the BTS stand for which service a commission of 25% is charged. This service is open to all members providing prior agreement is sought and the prices charged for their spiders agreed with the Treasurer beforehand.  NOTE: This service may have to be restricted if large numbers of surplus spiderlings of a particular species become available.

4.5       To share and pool knowledge amongst members which will assist in keeping arachnids in general.

4.6       To encourage participation in the identification and classification of new and existing species and to promote the use of Scientific Names.

4.7       To educate and allay fears of individuals concerning common prejudices towards tarantulas and to encourage safety in the keeping of all arachnids, including the recommendation that tarantulas should not be handled.

4.8       To meet annually, in May, for an Exhibition with trade stands, lectures and awards for livestock, artwork and photography.

4.9       To meet annually, for an Annual General Meeting (AGM) with presentation of accounts for the year ended 31st March and for attending members to receive reports of BTS Committee undertakings for the year.

4.10     In order to acquire extra funds beyond members’ subscriptions the BTS shall market various goods deemed suitable by the Committee.

4.11     The Committee shall encourage members to set up local groups to promote social contact and support amongst members, including the use of new technologies where appropriate.

4.12     To encourage interaction between international members and other International Societies as far as possible.

4.13     To maintain and extend the BTS Reference Library which is available for members use upon application to the Librarian. Criteria for its use are available upon request from the Librarian.

4.14     To continuously monitor the activities of the BTS and to update The Constitution as necessary. The Constitution, or any part thereof, may be amended, suspended or repealed by a two thirds majority of those voting in a ballot at the AGM, provided that there is written notice of any proposed change.

5.         Membership

Membership shall be open to all persons of any nationality, interested in the objectives of the BTS and who make formal application and pay the prescribed subscription.

The BTS Membership Subscription Year shall run from 1st June to 31st May the following year (12 months in total).  All members wishing to renew their annual subscription must do so before 1st June each year in order to receive the next published journal issue (approximately June).  A member whose renewal subscription has not been paid shall forfeit their membership entitlements.

New members will receive a joining pack which will include as a minimum a welcome letter, membership card and all issues of the BTS Journal released so far during that current BTS Membership Subscription Year.

In the event that stock availability of issues in the current year is diminished toward the end of the BTS Membership Subscription Year, the BTS may offer new members early enrolment to the subsequent Subscription Year, with discretionary electronic or print copies as agreed between the Membership Office, Chairman and Vice-Chairman. Additional items may be included at the discretion of the Membership Office under approval of the key financial decision makers of the Society.

Annual membership subscription entitles the member to receive three (3) issues of the BTS Journal, to vote in the AGM where applicable, receive discounted entry to the BTS Exhibition and to participate in all activities and functions of the BTS.

Members are expected to behave in a manner that reflects the Constitution.  Members behaving in a way that brings the BTS into disrepute may, at the discretion of a two thirds majority vote by the Committee, have voting rights revoked or membership cancelled without refund depending on the severity of the member’s action.

5.1       Classes of Membership

A member (UK, European or Rest of World) shall be a person, persons or company that pays the prescribed subscription and receives the entitlements described in section 5.  The BTS Journal issues shall be provided in hard copy print format.

A digital member shall be a person, persons or company that pays the prescribed subscription and receives the entitlements described in section 5.  The BTS Journal issues shall be provided in electronic format only.

An honorary member  shall be a person, persons or company that is free of liability to pay subscriptions and shall have the same entitlements as an electronic only member.  An individual who has rendered valuable service to the BTS, or who has promoted its work, or the interests of Arachnology, may be elected at the AGM by proposal of the Committee.  Receipt of hard copy print format BTS Journals shall be at the discretion of the Committee.  Continued honorary membership and the type of BTS Journal format received shall be reviewed by the Committee and amendments made where appropriate.

6.         Annual General Meeting (AGM)
Member’s subscriptions shall be ratified by the Committee at the AGM. All members have the right to participate in the meeting.  All members in good standing have the right to vote.  All members in good standing have the right to hold office. 

Any member of good standing may propose, in writing to the Committee, a change to the Constitution. Such a proposal, if approved by the Committee, shall be submitted to be voted upon, with a recommendation to the members.

7.         Finances
All funds raised by the BTS from subscriptions, contributions, sales, donations or bequests shall be used, at the discretion of the Committee, for the administration and activities of the BTS and for the production of BTS publications.

The BTS accounts shall be published annually and presented for adoption at the AGM.

The BTS does not operate for the financial gain of individual members or the Committee.

8.         Dissolution
If on dissolution of the BTS, there are any assets remaining after the satisfaction of all debts and liabilities, these shall be disposed of  at the discretion of the Committee.