The following Minutes relate to the first meeting of the new Branch held at the Royal British Legion Club on Monday 24th.September 1979.
President S/M JIM BOWLES
Chairman S/M KEN COFFEE
Secretary S/M ESME KETTERIDGE
Treasurer S/M BEN RICHES.
32 Members signed the book. Enrolment forms handed out for completion by new members.
S/M Coffee opened the meeting and thanked all present for attending. This meeting was a result of a meeting earlier in the year when the six founder members, under the guidance of S/Ms Povey and Riches, decided to endeavour to raise a Norwich Branch. After acceptance by Head Quarters arrangements were made for the Commissioning to take place on Thursday 18th. of October in the British Legion Hall, Aylsham Road. S/M Coffee had been a member for many years of the Dagenham Branch, and the aim in the beginning was to raise money by any means to get the Branch started.
S/M Riches told the meeting there had been an earlier Branch in Norwich after the 1914-18 War, but for various reasons the membership had fallen off, there was a breakaway Branch still functioning with about 13 members and it was hoped that they would join the new Branch.
Discussion then took place for arrangements for the Commissioning Service. Offers being given by many members to bring contributions for refreshments and prizes for the raffle. S/M Bowles suggested that we keep the speeches short and endeavour to get to know one another. Members from other Branches in No. 5 Arena were to be invited, and wives and families of members.
The question of obtaining a Branch Standard was raised, and it was agreed this should be purchased when funds permitted.
Mr Brighton, the Hall manager, joined the meeting and kindly donated two prizes for the raffle. He was very willing to help in every way to get the Branch on its feet. RNA members could become temporary members of the Club for 5p a month and join the British Legion at the beginning of their year.
Facilities of the Club would be available, Darts, Pool, Dances etc. For the Commissioning meeting the large room was booked with the kitchen facilities. Mr Brighton was willing to loan a record player etc. The Hall would be available until 11.30.
Questions were asked about the aims of the Association. This was to promote friendship amongst ex-Naval personnel; to help members who are in need and in any hardships; to assist widows and dependants by offering advice and help should the need arise.
The meeting ended with a collection from members present and £15.80 was raised. S/M Riches enrolled and collected new members subscriptions