The club committee would like to take the opportunity to share with you where we are as a club financially in particular with regard to the issue of membership fees for 2021, while thanking you for all your support in what has been probably the most challenging year for our sport that any of us have known.
We all hope to see a return to regular training without any restrictions in the future, the full use of facilities and - perhaps most importantly - active competition. Unfortunately, this looks still to be several months away, and in the meantime we would like to put on record our appreciation for members and parents who have had to cope with the various closures and changes. Your active support is very much appreciated through all the permutations of lockdowns.
In view of the challenges of the past year, and the loss of many training and competition opportunities, we are planning to lower membership fees for 2021, but also to defer the collection of them until 1 April. While we still have a number of significant financial commitments which we have had to honour, and also lost our own race promotions (our major source of revenue) we were however fortunate to receive a welcome grant from Northumberland County Council, and have also of course not had many of our regular outgoings (for example, Track and Field matches, Northern and National Relays, North East Harrier League etc).
Accordingly, for those members who paid their subs in 2020, we propose a discounted membership rate as follows:
However, in view of the current ongoing uncertainties around the sport, we also propose to defer the collection of these subs until 1 April 2021. There are several reasons for doing so. By then, we should have a better idea of what kinds of competition will resume and of course, when. We will also hopefully have further clarification from England Athletics re 2021 registrations as regards dates due and amounts (these are normally renewable from 1 April each year but were valid until 31 August in 2020).
On a purely practical level for us as a club, it gives us more time to bring our membership records up-to-date following the untimely death of our membership secretary, with the opportunity also to identify those taking membership benefits without payment – sadly an annual source of frustration, even if this is only a small number of athletes.
For members who, for whatever reason, did not pay in 2020, subscriptions will also not be due until 1 April 2021. The subscription rates will be announced prior to that date, but will not, however, include the above discount. We will, of course, keep members informed of any changes and of the dates and means of payment.
It goes without saying that for Morpeth Harriers, as for any amateur sporting organisation, the prompt payment of membership fees is absolutely crucial to our continued effective functioning. Can we again repeat however that we will be collecting subs due for 2021 after 1 April.
We do hope we will see a return to normality of some kind in the next few months, but would look again to offer a pro rata discount in 2022 should be there significant further disruption.
Best wishes to all members and parents for the New Year despite all the continuing difficulties with hope for a better future, and continued thanks for your support.
Morpeth Harriers committee