A meeting of the Executives Council was called by the General Secretary on Aug 19th 1922 in Birmingham, to formulate a new programme to place before the Admiralty; the falling off in membership gave the E. Council considerable anxiety, but it was considered that when drills were resumed R.F.R. men would meet together again and to encourage them to join or re-join it was decided to reduce the Substance Fee to 1/- instead of 2/- as hitherto.
A special deputation was decided upon to draw their Lordships attention to the unemployment of R.F.R. men and their admitted responsibility to find employment for them; also to deal with the matter of the increased retainer, although a new programme was drawn up & decided upon, these two questions were to be dealt with specially. It was with regret that the Executive Council learnt of the debt of over £70 to Mr James for wages, very little having been paid into General Funds; Mr James made an offer to wipe out the debt, as writing down his wages by £1 a week, this was agreed to, and he was permitted to find part time employment to help him along.
For some unknown reason the sociable side of the Branch began to fall away about March 1922 and although a social evening and also an outing was arranged, both falling through for want of support; it is hoped by the Committee it is only of a temporary nature, and consider it may be caused through the drop in wages which is taking place throughout the country, much good work lays ahead of those about to take over the Branch offices as Chairman, Secretary and Committeemen. When drills are resumed in April 1923 many R.F.R. men will have just grievances to recite, which if handled properly through the Association will result in a general benefit to R.F.R. men as a whole. It should always be borne in mind that whenever financial matters arise in requests to the Board of Admiralty; it is not always that Board who refuse these; that the Treasury who will not grant the money to finance the Board with to carry out their recommendations, it has always been from a Service point of view that a service man has no politics; this point is borne on R.F.R. men through their own Association being non-political; but it should be borne in mind that under past Conservative Reign or Government the Senior Service has always received most consideration. The future therefore is to all intents and purposes more hopeful for R.F.R. men getting greater consideration on the question of Retainer, LS & GC Medal Gratuity and a solution to unemployment questions, than in the past.
In concluding I must say I am sorry to leave the happy connection with Mr James General Secretary; who has always been willing to assist me whenever asked to do so, and who has visited the Branch on several occasions, it is impossible to expect him to be able to do the work of the Association when insufficient to pay his own wage are forthcoming to the General Funds from all Branches which has been the case lately. Although we have not always agreed our various things together, I can assure you no-one has the heart and soul of Fleet Reservemen more at heart than Mr James.
My chief desire is to see Mr J publish or otherwise print a quarterly letter and send out to every Branch, the object of this is to keep one Branch in touch with another, knowing the whole work of the Association and not only local work of each Branch.» Next Page