Constitution of the CRA

Download PDF version - 14th March 2019



1.1 The name of the association shall be Cambridgeshire Rowing Association (hereinafter called "the Association")


The promotion of community participation in healthy recreation, in particular by the provision of facilities for participants in the sport of rowing by assisting in the organisation of local affiliated rowing clubs in the county of Cambridgeshire and managing the interests of the local rowing community providing information and the organisation of events.


3.1 Any rowing or boat club situated in the County of Cambridgeshire (as at 1992), not belonging to Cambridge University and the Anglia Ruskin University may be affiliated, upon making application to the secretary and on being elected by a majority of two-thirds at a general meeting of the Association.

3.2 The members of any club affiliated to the Association shall be members of the Association.

3.3 Each affiliated club shall pay to the Association an annual affiliation fee, of an amount to be agreed at the annual general meeting, by 31st January following the meeting. In the event that an affiliated club does not pay its fee on time then it will not be able to attend any Association meetings or take part in any Association rowing events.

3.4 Any local rowing or boat club may be co-opted into the Association upon making application to the secretary.

3.5 Each co-opted club shall pay to the Association, before rowing in an event organised by the Association, a co-option fee of an amount to be agreed each year at the annual general meeting.

3.6 The Secretary of each affiliated and co-opted club shall send their own name and address, together with the names and addresses of the president and the two delegates of the club, to the secretary of the Association within one week of their election and annually thereafter.


4.1 The officers of the Association shall be a president, vice presidents, secretary, treasurer, boathouse management committee chairman and a secretary for each competitive event organised by the Association.

4.2 The Association shall be managed by a "delegates committee" comprising the officers of the Association, two delegates appointed by each affiliated club.

4.3 A finance committee, comprising the treasurer, one of the trustees and three elected members of the Association, shall, upon advice from the delegates committee, have control
over the funds of the Association, subject to resolutions passed at any general meeting of the Association

4.4 A boathouse management committee, comprising an elected chairman, the treasurer, the trustees and one member from each affiliated club using the boathouses, shall organise the day to day running of the boathouses. One member from each other affiliated club should also attend meetings. The committee shall appoint a secretary who shall keep minutes of all business.

4.5. A bumps committee comprising the bumps secretary and five elected members, with not more than one committee member from any club, shall run the bumping races in accordance with rules agreed by the delegates meeting. Any person belonging to more than one club will be treated for the purposes of this rule as representing all of those clubs.

4.6. The Trustees shall be no less than two in number and no more than four in number and shall be elected for a period of four years. Any retiring trustee may be re-elected by a resolution passed by the members of the Association at an annual general meeting. The Association shall give the Trustees full indemnity in respect of any liabilities attaching or arising in respect of any assets and their use. If any property shall be purchased by the Association the same shall be vested in the Trustees who shall only act with regard thereto upon a formal resolution of a general meeting of the association.

4.7 All committees shall have power to appoint Sub-committees and to co-opt members who shall be members of an affiliated club.

4.8 The delegates committee may appoint a successor for any office, other than that of president. The successor shall serve until the next annual general meeting.

4.9 The president shall be an ex-officio member of all the committees of the Association.


5.1 The financial year shall end on 30th September.

5.2 Banking accounts shall be opened in the name of the Association and all cheques above £1000 shall be signed by two persons from the following, namely the treasurer the President of the Association and two other authorised members.

5.3 The income and property of the Association shall be applied solely towards promoting the objects of the Association and no portion thereof shall be transferred either directly or indirectly to any member or members of the Association, except where clubs organise events on behalf of the Association under agreed financial arrangements.


6.1 General meetings of the Association shall be open to all members of affiliated clubs for discussion and voting. Members of co-opted clubs may attend but may not vote. The President shall take the chair at all meetings at which he is present. In his absence the senior vice-president present shall take the chair. The chairman's decision on points of order arising at the meeting shall be final. The chairman shall have a casting vote.

6.2 The quorum for general meetings of the Association shall be at least one third of the affiliated clubs represented. No club may cast more than 25% of the total votes cast.

6.3 Fourteen days’ notice of any general meeting, twenty one days in the case of the annual general meeting and an extraordinary general meeting shall be given by the secretary to the officers of the Association and the secretary and delegates of each affiliated club. 6.4 The decisions of general meetings of the Association shall stand unless and until the same shall be changed by a further decision of a general meeting of the Association.


7.1 The Association shall hold an annual general meeting for the election of officers, trustees (every four years) and members of the finance and bumps committee for the ensuing year, and for any other business. The retiring officers are eligible for re-election

7.2 All nominations for president, additional vice-presidents, trustees and members of the finance committee shall be approved by the delegates committee before their submission to the annual general meeting

7.3 Any member of the Association may propose a motion for discussion at the annual general meeting, provided that twenty-one days’ notice have been given to the secretary, who shall send a copy fourteen days before the meeting to each member entitled to notice of a general meeting

7.4 Reports shall be submitted to the annual general meeting by the secretary and at least one member of the finance, boathouse management and bumps committees.

7.5 Two auditors shall be appointed at the annual general meeting to examine and report upon the Association's annual accounts


8.1 A extraordinary general meeting may be asked for by the delegates of at least five affiliated clubs or by the president of the Association. At such meetings only the business specified in the notice shall be transacted


9.1 All meetings shall be called by the secretary, who shall give at least fourteen days’ notice to all those entitled to attend, with the exception of vice-presidents who have not attended for at least one year. The date and time of meetings shall be set in the CRA Diary. Any further changes to these shall be agreed at a preceding delegates meeting.

9.2 The president shall take the chair at all meetings at which he is present. In his absence the senior vice-president present shall take the chair. The chairman's decision on points of order arising at the meeting shall be final. The chairman shall have a casting vote.

9.3 Each delegate appointed by an affiliated club shall have one vote. An officer may only vote if acting as a delegate. A delegate who is unable to attend a meeting of the committee may appoint a deputy so that the club is represented.

9.4 The quorum for a delegates committee shall be eight voting members with at least one quarter of the affiliated clubs represented. If there is not a quorum present the meeting shall proceed, but only urgent matters may be discussed and no formal decisions taken.

9.5 A special delegates committee meeting may be summoned at 24 hours’ notice on a requisition signed by five members of the committee, or by the president of the Association. At such a meeting only the business specified shall be transacted.

9.6 The secretary of the Association shall keep a minute book recording the business at all meetings of the committee.


10.1 The delegates committee, who may appoint a sub-committee to run the event, shall determine the regulations, dates and entrance fees of all closed events.

10.2 The dates of all closed events shall be announced at least one month before the event.

10.3 All challenge trophies and any other properties of the Association shall be vested in the trustees for the time being.

10.4 When, for a special occasion, a trophy is taken by a club, a responsible member of that club shall accept, on behalf of the club, the responsibility for the safe custody of the trophy and guarantee the return thereof to its place of safekeeping within the time limits required by the Association's insurance company.

10.5 All competitors in all rowing events organised by the Association shall be amateurs as defined by the rules of British Rowing.

10.6 Members of "Head of the River" Bumps crews (past and present), shall be entitled to wear a cap composed of Pembroke blue with a half-inch light blue binding and the letters C.R.A. with crossed oars and the year of rowing in the same colour. They shall also be entitled to wear a tie or scarf of similar colour and design.


11.1 All clubs should conduct their rowing and sculling activities in accordance with the British Rowing Code of Practice on Water Safety. At all times in poor visibility (i.e. after sunset and early morning) rowing and sculling boats shall have a white light fixed to the bow and to the stern and visible through 360º. In addition, a non-flashing red light will be fitted in the stern. The use of high visibility clothing, particularly by bow is strongly recommended. NOTE: Lights should be fitted where indicated and not to riggers or head bands. They should be of such a brightness that they will not dazzle approaching crews.


12.1 The Association will support and encourage all affiliated clubs to have a Safety Advisor whose duty will be to understand the guidance of water safety issued by British Rowing (BR) through the BR initiative RowSafe The Association should encourage its prominent display, its observation and its implementation at all times. The Association will encourage all affiliated clubs to follow the Code of Practice and follow the advice given by their Safety Advisor.

12.2 The Association will encourage all affiliated clubs to make sure that all their members are able to swim and behave responsibly on and off the water.

12.3 No swimming is permitted from the Association boathouses.


13.1 The Association is fully committed to the principal of equality of opportunity and will encourage all affiliated clubs to accept their responsibility for ensuring that the talents and resources of all their members are utilised to the full and that no member, volunteer, employee or applicant received less favourable treatment on the grounds of age, gender, disability, race, ethnic origin, nationality, colour, parental or marital status, religious belief, social status, sexual orientation or political belief or is disadvantaged by conditions or requirements which cannot be shown to be relevant to performance.

13.2 The Association will comply with British Rowing’s policy for Transgender and Transsexual participation.


14.1 The Association shall adopt the Code of Conduct as set out by BR and will encourage all affiliated clubs to abide by this Code. This Code of Conduct shall be displayed on the notice board situated in clubs and Association boathouses. The Association may adopt revisions to this Code of Conduct as and when BR issues them. 


15.1 The Association should encourage all affiliated clubs to adopt the policy and procedures relating to Welfare, as set out by BR. This policy and procedure will be displayed on the notice board situated in the Association boathouses and affiliated premises.

15.2 For events and activities run by the CRA, the CRA’s welfare policy will be as set out by BR. All CRA events will have designated welfare officer who will be a welfare officer of a member club. Where a CRA club runs an event for the CRA the welfare officer will normally be that of the club running the event. Any welfare issue outside of events run by the CRA will be dealt with by the welfare officer(s) of the club(s) to which the individuals concerned belong.


16.1 This procedure is only applicable where a grievance is brought against an Association officer or a volunteer acting on behalf of the Association (‘the respondent’) on grounds of misconduct or other contravention of the Codes of Conduct adopted by the Association. In all other cases, clubs are expected to follow their own internal procedures and policies or to refer to the British Rowing Grievance and Disciplinary policies and procedures.

A complaint should be sent in writing to the President (or if the complaint is about the President, to two of the Association Trustees acting together) setting out all relevant information. On receipt of the complaint the President (or the two trustees) will, within a reasonable timescale, examine the evidence, make their own independent enquiries, and if they, in their absolute discretion consider it appropriate, will call a hearing to be attended by the complainant and the respondent. The President (or the two trustees) may also call on, vice presidents of the CRA and or other similar members of the Cambridgeshire rowing community to assist them in their enquiries and consideration if they think this to useful to the process.

Following this process, the President (or the two trustees) will submit their report to the complainant and respondent and their Club Chairs and, in their absolute discretion, will either:

Dismiss the grievance for reasons which may include but are not limited to:
• The grievance does not raise any serious or material issues
• The grievance is malicious or vexatious or otherwise without merit
• The grievance is not relevant to the Association or any of its volunteers acting on behalf of the Association

Acknowledge the grievance and take action which may include but is not limited to:
• Monitoring for a specified period the Respondent’s behaviour in office or as a volunteer acting on behalf of the Association
• Removing the Respondent from office • Refusing the Respondent entry to all Association competitions for a specified period

The Complainant and Respondent may appeal the decision by application to two Association trustees not previously involved in the procedure.


17.1 If the Delegates decide that it is necessary or advisable to dissolve the Association, it shall call an Extraordinary General Meeting of all affiliated clubs by giving 21 days’ notice and require a two-thirds majority of those present.

17.2 In the event of the winding-up of or dissolution of the Association any remaining assets, after liabilities have been discharged, shall not be paid or transferred to any member or members of the Association but shall be transferred, on a majority vote of those members present at the meeting, to an organisation whose objects are similar to those of the Association and whose rules preclude the distribution of income and assets among its members

17.3 A copy of the statement of accounts, or accountant's statement for the final accounting period of the Association must be notified to all members of the Association at the date of the resolution to terminate.


18.1 The constitution may be amended by a two thirds majority of the members present at an annual or extraordinary general meeting provided that fourteen days’ notice of the proposed amendment has been sent to all members entitled to receive such notice and provided that the amendment shall not affect the restriction with regard to the distribution of the funds of the Association.


Changes agreed at a CRA Extraordinary General Meeting held on 13th March 2019. Numbering of changes relates to original clause numbers

  • 4.1 deleted reference to open events chairman
  • 4.3 deleted – related to ‘open events’ which no longer exist
  • 4.6 clarification of club membership rules for Bumps Committee members
  • 4.7 deleted as already dealt with in Bumps Rules
  • 4.8 Provision for re-election of trustees added
  • 7.4 deleted reference to open events
  • 9.1 amendment to mechanism for agreeing meeting dates
  • 10.6 reference to Head of the River ‘Bumps’ crews added for clarification
  • 12 amendment clause moved more appropriately to the end of Constitution
  • 14.2 NEW clause re compliance with BR transgender and transsexual participation
  • 16 amended as welfare responsibility has broadened beyond child welfare. NEW detail on how the CRA will designate welfare officers and deal with welfare issues
  • 17 NEW Grievance policy and procedure
  • 17.2 added voting requirement re destination of CRA funds on termination
  • Paragraphs renumbered as appropriate

Changes agreed at CRA Extraordinary General Meeting held on 9th March 2016

  • Clause 2 - OBJECTS

Changes agreed at the Annual General Meeting held on 2nd December 2015

  • All paragraphs renumbered
  • amendments notes places at the bottom of the Constitution instead of at the top
  • Clause 3.1 - Add University of East Anglia
  • Clause 3.3 Add Non-payment of affiliation fee on time
  • Clause 4.8 - Add Indemnity of Trustees
  • Clause 5.2 - Increase the limit from £500 to £1000
  • Clause 8 - Change from Special to Extraordinary
  • Clause 13 - New, Safety
  • Clause 14 - New, Equal Opportunity Policy
  • Clause 15 - New, Code of Conduct
  • Clause 16 - New. Child Welfare
  • Clause 17 - Termination, move clause 22 and re-instate as Clause 17

Changes agreed at the Annual General Meeting held on 5th December 2012 

  • Clause 10, College co-opted representatives vote removed.
  • Clause 45, Lighting required after sunset and early morning modified.
  • British Rowing replaces Amateur Rowing Association 

Changes agreed at the Annual General Meeting held on 30th November 2011 Original clause 14 updated. 

  • 14a - Bumps committee increased from 4 to 5.
  • 14b – Notice required for Bumps Rules changes.

Amendment to rule 4.5 concerning rowing at night passed at a CRA EGM on 25th June 2003 with additional recommendation passed at a delegates meeting 13th October 2004. 


  • Amendments recommended by Barr Ellison on 5th December 1994 and adopted by the CRA Delegates at a meeting held on 9th February 1995

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