ASSOCIATION OF EUROPEAN  JOURNALISTS

UNITED KINGDOM SECTION

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Secretary's report for the UK Section's Annual General Meeting 2008

 

 

The section's officers during 2008 were William Horsley (chairman), Celia Hampton (secretary) and Mike Springate (treasurer). Membership rose to 43 from 41 the previous year. Those who wish to be kept informed of our lunchtime meetings now number 215. Attendance is usually in the 20-25 range – the ideal group for an informal roundtable.

The high spot of the section's year came on 30 October with the celebration of our 40th birthday jointly with the Foreign Press Assocition (see the Chairman's report). We greatly appreciate the FPA's friendliness and generosity, especially that of its director, Christopher Wyld, in sharing this party with us. The scale of the event and the grandeur of the setting could only be achieved through this collaboration.

Our programme of lunchtime meetings was the section's main activity, as always. I was greatly helped in this by David Lennon, who has been our Events Director since March. We are again indebted to the European Parliament's London office and its director, Dermot Scott, for being able to meet in such a very agreeable place.

We held just nine meetings this year. The number would have been more but for a couple of late cancellations and my own bouts of flu. The meetings were with:

Lord (Andrew) McIntosh 28 January

Dr Lilia Shevtsova 19 March

Christopher Walker, Director of Studies, Freedom House 1 May

Patrick Mercer MP 18 June

HE M Maurice Gourdault-Montagne, French Ambassador to the UK 7 July

The Rt Hon Mr David Lewis, Lord Mayor of the City of London 31 July

 

 

Michael Connarty MP, Chairman of the Commons European Scrutiny Committee 18 September

Jon Moulton, founder and Managing Partner of Alchemy Partners 13 November

HE Mrs Barbara Tuge-Erecińska, Polish Ambassador to the UK – 9 December

In November, seven UK members attended the AEJ's annual international congress in Linz where they enjoyed a very warm welcome from the Austrian section. The session on media freedom, organised and chaired by William, followed up the ground-breaking success of the Media Freedom Survey launched at the 2007 Dublin congress. The collected papers for 2008 are available on the Media Freedom page.

The AEJ's 2009 congress will be held in Maastricht on 19-22 November. The generosity of the Dutch section in organising what will undoubtedly be a memorable event is much appreciated.

All information about the section is now posted punctually on this website. We continue to appreciate Rick Thompson's monthly diary of events. As an indication of the site's popularity, the page on the Media Freedom Survey now comes 5th out of 23,900,000 if you enter the words, media freedom, on Google (or 4th out of 372,000 if you enclose the words in quotation marks). As you know, Google's ranking of search results takes account of traffic and how many links other websites make to a particular page.

I close by saying how grateful the section and the officers are – and I am personally – to all those who have supported it during the past year. Here's to a great 2009!

 

Celia Hampton, Secretary

London, 13 January 2009

 

 

Minutes of the Annual General Meeting

Chairman's report

Secretary's report on the UK Section's activities for the AEJ Congress

Meetings