The annual job of preparing the membership cards is great for reminding me that I have to do the year of end review.Just to let you know that all the cards are done for this year ahead.Again please keep them on you ready for inspection when on the club land ,and please make sure to inform me if you get or change any new machine or pinpointer.2017 has been a good year with great weather for detecting ,actually too good as all the crops were in at least a month early.Were so lucky we have our free club land to go to ,a big thank you to the landowner

.Also thanks goes out to Linda for keeping our free magazine going for another year .But do be warned she is thinking of reducing it to one publication from 2019 onwards .So no sticky fingers please and do keep passing the magazines around.Members will have a say In the decision  I have been informed !.

We also wish to thank other organisations who dispose safely all the hazardous materials such as sharps batteries  etc for us that we remove off public  and private lands in great quantities for us.

Its very nice to recieve positive feedback and I’d just like to let you all know that ive heard back from a charity to say that they raised £150 from the sale of old coins / keys  ,that we  helped contributed towards.Now a lot of people would say that’s not much  but you have to remember the sheer volume of coins and Keys that would have needed to be donated to achieve this  amount,and also religious attendance is at an all time low and the plate collections  are plummeting ,so these sort of  fundraising events will become more important going forward in the future.We in the association are very keen to ensure that charities which positively support our lovely hobby continue to recieve the help of detectorists all over Derbyshire

I also wish to thank the members who took part in the working group set up to see if a schools metal detecting scheme  was feasible for Derbyshire .I shall avoid the landlords of the various pubs  where you met as I heard they were disapointed in that you talked more than you drank.!

We also wish to thank other clubs and independent detectors for observing our 2017 solemn commeration and we wish to announce that the 2018 Commeration weekend will take place from the 22-24 th June all over Derbyshire We respectfully invite all other detectorists to observe this commeration when we  all take time out from our lovely hobby to remember  the victims many of whom were from Derbyshire .We do have to be a bit careful of how we advertise this commeration  this year .I can’t really say much but everyone knows what happened .

We would be so pleased and also I’m sure that the families of the victims and survivors would be so grateful if all detectorists observed this years commeration like they did last years one

Our free to use 25 ANNIVERSERY club machine fund is ever so slowly moving along.Its perhaps the most visible sign of brexit as people tighten their belts .The total has crept up to £645.95 .We do need to take action here as I’ve heard a lot of talk about metal detectors increasing in price after brexit by 10 -25 % .Likely excuses that will be put forward  by retailers and manafacturers for this will be tariffs ,import duties ….and the weakness of the pound!.I think we might need to borrow forward from some generous person and get our machine sorted before this happens .Urgent feedback from members needed on this one please .

And talking about our club machine ,thankfully at long last all members have submitted their choices .Praise be to the Lord !.In all 35 machine choices were submitted !.When I am giving everyone their membership cards I will include this list and asking them to whittle this down to five machine choices ,and not to take all year about it either!.I will be contacting Trade Union representatives in the areas for the various manafacturers to see what way the employees are being treated and about the manafacturing process and the environment.Please do not base your choices on online videos as sooo many posters have been nobbled by vested interests!

Detecting in Derbshire is holding its own compared to many other historical societies and traditional hobbies .I think one new club has been formed in the county ,and I’ve heard of one club  which I thought had ceased  but had actually went under the radar post p.a.s ,and  is still in existence.So at the moment there are 9 or 10 active clubs based in or come into Derbyshire to detect .We still feel in the association that our lovely hobby is heading in the wrong  direction.This year huge detecting rallies have been held in the uk  with much fanfare and  with “celebrity” detectorists ! .Traditional  detectorists clubs and asociations are finding it difficult in retaining /gaining permissions because of these rallies and the amounts of money involved .Where allowed we will work closely with HMRC and local government to ensure that large rallies don’t start occurring in Derbyshire .

One very good thing that did happen this year was the decision of the Home Secretery to tighten up the laws concerning online trolling.This was due to concerted public pressure by the public .Well done to all detectorists who signed and encouraged people to sign the  various petitions.Thanks to WordPress we have limited the damage that trolls can do to us and  now people involved in this unsavoury activity will face the consequences  for the first time if they are based inside or outside the UK.

This year wasn’t all about highlights,we’ve had some setbacks too.I was personally disapointed with the recommendations of the working group but I will respect their professional decision.It will have an impact on membership going forward but I do agree it gives us a more controllable result that is favourable to the association.

Late in the year I recieved reports from some members saying that they had encountered difficulties  practicing their lovely  hobby ,in an area that they had done so for years ,by local council staff.I can’t say any more until this matter is investigated fully but we in the association will do the best we can to help out our members  in difficulty.

There was also some criticism of the association  website  to the effect that “it was nowt more than a glorified notice board”We’re all entitled to our opinions and constructive criticism is always welcome.I personally would like our website to talk about issues concerning  our lovely hobby in Derbyshire and in the Uk.But we have to be so so careful and respectful to other people ,and their views and opinions.Yes there is room going forward to cover one or two topics of interest each year  to members ,but they will require considerable research ,and very careful presentation to members and the public.Whilst this is going on I will have to cut back on day to day announcements .Personally we also have to do a lot of work online on finding online avenues of  secure and unrestricted access to the public  as I and other members are seeing subtle signs of reluctance and hostility from some forum/site administrators.

So a good year but a lot of planning and work  to do going forward ,and a lot of it up against a tight schedule .Hoping we all get some time to meet up this year and thanks for all members for helping to Make Derbyshire Safer .

sincerely John Potts

association spokesperson