FORBURY TROTTING CLUB
AND AN APPOINTMENT. A special meeting of the Forbnry Park Trotting Club was held last evening at tho request of Messrs R. Rutherford, W. Crossan, A. D. Hudson, and 31 other members to consider a requisition calling on the stewards or executive members to show cause why "Mr H. Divers was not reappointed to the position of honorary clerk of the course. Allegations were made against the stewards, and Mr J. Morrison in particular. There was a large attendance of members.
The President (Mr G. Hodges) said that the meeting was called for the purpose of considering a petition, sent to the stewards of the club, and at his request tho secretary (Mr James) read the petition. The chairman then said that before calling on Mr Rutherford to address the meeting he would like to claim their attention on one or two clauses in the petition. Mr Divers: Do you intend to presido over this meeting? The Chairman : Certainly.
Mr Divers said he did not think that was a fair thing, seeing that the club refused to call the meeting. He thought that it was only a fair thing that th« meeting should appoint a chairman. (Hear, hear.) He felt that it would be necessary for him to raise a good many points to counteract certain statements, and he thought that the meeting should give him a fair deal. He asked for justice only, and of he had been in the wrong then he was prepared to stand by anything he had done.
The Chairman : Nothing of the kind. Mr Divers said he asked that the meeting should appoint a chairman who would not be an executive officer.
The Chairman : " I think you know mo perfectly in so much that I will be absolutely impartial. If I cannot hold the balance fairly between both parties then I shall be very much surprised." The chairman then quoted a rule of the club that at all meetings the president, or In his absence the vice-president, should take the chair. If neither was present the members should elect a chairman from those present. "That is the rule," said Mr Hodges, "and I am here to carry it out." Mr Divers : Well, I move that your ruling bo not sustained. I feel that you are biased in the matter of presiding at thit meeting. I have two important questions to put to you myself, and I think in the face of that you should vacate the chair. Mr Millier seconded, and said that Mr Divers had carried out his duties fairly, and the way he had been treated wai " rotten." If they could not give their own servants a fair go, then they could not give the owners a fair go. The Chairman: I think we had better proceed with the meeting, and if you find I am not impartial then I will vacate tlw chair.
Mr Divers: I have moved a motion that your ruling be not sustained. The- chairman then proceeded to read the requisition, and said ho would take clause 3—that Mr Divers was unjustly treated by .some of the members of committee.
Mr Divers: I protest. There is a. motion before the meeting. 'Die Chairman: "1 decline to take it." 11 ley wuuld ecu that Mr Divers was not, "unanimously" appointed this year. Atthe mating at which the appointment was made there were 10 committeemen present, and I hj.; voting was Bto 2. There had been .in incicife of stewards this v<-ar- of (our. At the meeting of 10 members of committee, five were not stewards when Mr Divers was elected the previous year. He could not s-eo how those mei could i.*» accused o! b.--:i„* prejudiced or having shout, a v.mi'l: of Justice to \lr Divers.' The voting was eight for Mr Carter and two for Mr- Divers Four committeemen were absent, and had all of them recorded their votes for Mr Divers it would still have loft eight for Mr Caiter and six for Mr Divers, so if would ba seen that the appoint inert that had been mad© would have been ran led even if they had had a full meeting. It should not be forgotten that five out of the ten were not stewards when Mr Divers was appointed the previous year. Thcro was one matter which he would like to refer to. In the requisition it -.".-,<j st tted : " Dnmg the past se:i«ou Mr Divers carried out his dutiee to the club with distinction. He was- well mounted (nt, his own cost), and was mof-1< assiduous in attending to the requir-ime-its of the position." The cost to the club to enable Air Divers to carry out his duties so satisfactorily was £9 7s 6d. He failed in see, under these circumstances, how Mr Divers could claim to have carried out his duties as his own cost.
The. Chairman then called upon either Mcssiis Rutherford, Crossa.i, or Hudson to ppoak in y pport of the petition. Mr U. 0. Hud Eon said that as one of the, petitioners he asked that Mr Divers should make an explanation. The, Chairman : Is it your wish, in the absence of Mr Rutherford and Mr Crossan —Mr Hud.-on is here, but evidently docK not want, to speak—that Mr Divers should ho heard?
Mr ("}nrr : Th-? requisition is asking this committee to explain, not Mr Divers.
Mr Duncan said he took it tliat the executive, wtro controlled by th© rules and regulations of the club, and if that ■uv-re so it became the duty of the executive 1-i cirry them out. They must stand by their executive. The executive had made th"ir appointment for 12 months, and it Tvas rlu- dn:v <»f members to support them. Mr Hrinsley explained that Mr Ruthori'dmJ would b.ive been present but for another impnitant meeting. Mi Divert proceeded to make an explanation. The position of honorary clerk ct the course cost him £9 4s, and there was ;i]>r» his subscription (£1 Is). Mr J. Mitchell said tliat if Mr Divers bnd a grievance against Mr Morrison or any other member he should thrash it out in the. Supreme, Court.
Mr R. G. Hudson wanted to know why Mv Divers was not reappointed. The Chairman : Because in the opinion of the majority of the stewards Mr Carter was the better man.
Mr Divers was prepared to proceed further, but the Chairman eventually intimated that a* no other member had anythin c to say that concluded! the business, and he was accorded a vote of thanks on the motion of Mr Mitchell.
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FORBURY TROTTING CLUB, Evening Star, Issue 15656, 21 November 1914