Free Membership for 2018

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Train Spotter
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Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2014 2:33 pm

Free Membership for 2018

Post by Train Spotter » Wed Jun 20, 2018 2:34 pm

I read in some of the railway press that if you join the RCTS in 2018 you will get Free membership for the duration to celebrate its 90th year......

What about members who have been in the society for 50 or 60 years or even 5 or 10 years when are they going to get a free membership for a year???????

I cannot remember this been discussed or mentioned at the AGM in April

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Re: Free Membership for 2018

Post by prentonmember » Fri Jun 22, 2018 11:33 am

An interesting question here, but giving a freebie to existing members is just not possible.

Look at advertised cruise holidays for instance. You pay the full advertised amount if you book straight away but later on when there is still some availability the price for that cruise comes down. Similarly, if as a football club season ticket holder you pay for the whole season's home matches there is no recompense if the club then offers cheaper tickets for certain matches.

Many years ago when RCTS life membership was first offered those taking up the offer paid the subscription offered. The price of that subscription meant that after so many years those life members received, in effect, free membership for the rest of their lives.

The 90th anniversary promotion initiated by the Development Sub Committee is bringing in new members this year. It is now up to the society and its branches to ensure that those new members renew for 2019 and future years.

However, there is a question that many branches will now need to consider about any of their new members, and that is where they invite RCTS members to give voluntary donations when they attend meetings. Should those new members be approached to give such suggested donations - sometimes at ?3 a meeting?

Prenton Member

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Re: Free Membership for 2018

Post by windsor_lad » Fri Jun 22, 2018 2:56 pm

For the RCTS to have a long term future it is imperative that we recruit new members. The size of the membership is also important to individual members as the more members we have the better chance the Society has of maintaining membership rates at an affordable level, as our fixed costs remain the same regardless of membership numbers. Despite various initiatives taken in earlier years with new member offers the membership has continued to fall. As it is the Society's 90th year the decision was taken to have a major one-off promotion to try to gain new members and all branches were informed about this just prior to the AGM. It is appreciated that the offer is not available to existing members but as mentioned above, all members should benefit in the long term via lower membership rates than if the number of members continued its decline. It is planned that in the August RO there will be details of how existing members can be entered into a draw for free membership in 2019 if they sign up a new member before 31st October this year.

Posted on behalf of Paul Chancellor,
Development Committee Chair

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Re: Free Membership for 2018

Post by northroad » Sun Mar 10, 2019 4:26 pm

Sorry to say this but it would seem that the one off offer as mentioned above response has now turned into a two time offer. In the March issue of the Railway magazine on the back cover of the included supplement there is the 50% off for 2019 offer.
Whilst I agree that we need to continue recruiting new members into the society I would have thought that loyalty should also come into the equation.
I have been known over the last meetings of my local branch to bring in various items to be sold off to help society funds from my late fathers collection but it would appear that certain things and members are taken somewhat for granted.
Don?t be surprised that when it comes up for membership renewals at the end of the year that some might think twice about doing so if we continue into a third year of 50% off offers only for new members.

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Re: Free Membership for 2018

Post by GRALISTAIR » Mon Mar 11, 2019 3:00 am

I was once a member - 15308 was my membership number iirc

Ian Prince
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Re: Free Membership for 2018

Post by Ian Prince » Mon Mar 11, 2019 2:59 pm

I think the fact that it brought in new members last year effectively makes it successful. Life membership although initially expensive is a drain on resources and something that encourages membership at the opposite end of the age range.

Without new blood, the Society is going to evaporate. The age profile of many railway clubs is getting older, so to survive, it is going to need a significant boost at the lower end. The younger element below the age of forty need to be attracted to the Society. One or two other clubs have bucked the trend, as well as making themselves much more visible with regular railtours and other visits. Something the RCTS used to be noted for. (See the Waverley railtour review in the latest RO. with Deltic 9007 back in 1969).

The RCTS no longer do these sort of high profile events but they are possible otherwise others would not be able to achieve them. They are also attracting lots of new members, ones who might otherwise have joined the RCTS.

There is a risk in every initiative, but clearly it is necessary to do something!

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Re: Free Membership for 2018

Post by pdeaves » Mon Mar 11, 2019 5:27 pm

northroad wrote:Don?t be surprised that when it comes up for membership renewals at the end of the year that some might think twice about doing so if we continue into a third year of 50% off offers only for new members.
Whatever you chose to do is your business. However, I would urge you to keep in sight that the 50% offer is a one-time event per person. Each individual who joins only gets 50% off for their first year, after which they pay the same as you or me. (If it was 50% off renewals too for those who joined after a certain date then I would understand your concern better). As it is, to 'rope them in' it may be worth keeping the offer in perpetuity for first time joiners.

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