So farewell, then, Chairman Dave...

Fiona O'Cleirigh (left), Dave Rotchelle (right): photo © Matt Salusbury

Dave Rotchelle (right) hands over as Branch Chair to Fiona O'Cleirigh (left) at LFB's 2015 AGM

Dave Rotchelle at the House of CCommons: photo © Matt Salusbury

Dave Rotchelle chairs an LFB meeting at the House of Commons

Jerermy Dear, Tom Davies, Dave Rotchelle at the House of CCommons: photo © Matt Salusbury

(Left to right:) Former NUJ General Secretary Jeremy Dear, former LFB Secretary Tom Davies, Dave Rotchelle at the House of Commons

INCUMBENT London Freelance Branch Chair Dave Rotchelle made the surprise announcement at LFB's AGM in January that he would not put himself forward for re-election. Dave has "been sheriff around here quite a while... four terms in fact," and decided the time was right to hand over.

His time chairing by far the biggest Branch of the biggest Union of its kind had been, concluded Dave, "long and sometimes difficult but enjoyable." An "amazing Committee made my life much easier than it would have been," as had "support from Pam (NUJ Freelance Assistant Organiser Pamela Morton) and John (NUJ Freelance Organiser John Toner) at Freelance Office."

Dave pronounced himself "very happy to continue helping the Branch in any way that I'm asked to," as well as continuing to represent members on his London seat at the NUJ's Freelance Industrial Council. He accepted nomination as LFB Vice-Chair, and was duly elected to that post. Added Dave, "Thank you and goodbye... Every minute of it has been marvellous.".

Jerermy Dear, Tom Davies, Dave Rotchelle at the House of Commons: photo © Pete Jenkins

Dave Rotchelle taking notes at another House of Commons event, a lobby in 2009.

Jerermy Dear, Tom Davies, Dave Rotchelle at the House of Commons: photo ©Matt Salusbury

Who photographs the photographers? Dave Rotchelle snapping away at a 2012 LFB conference.

Fiona O'Cleirigh, LFB Vice-Chair and a member of the Union's National Executive Council (NEC) was elected as LFB's new Chair unopposed, and promptly took over the remaining AGM procedure of elections for Committee posts. Outgoing Chairman Dave said, " Give her [Fi] all the support you can, she's going to need it."

Dave Rotchelle (in apron) serving food;Tony Rizzo

Dave Rotchelle (in apron) serves biscuits at an LFB conference.

we welcome Alistair Dabbs, who stepped up as LFB's new Branch Secretary. Other new faces on the LFB Committee are Sonia Thomas and Safiullah Tazie (jobsharing the Equality Officer post) and Committee members without portfolio Annie Burns and Hina Pindya. (Members may recall Hina's presentation at LFB's New Ways to Make Journalism Pay conference.)

We welcome too the Committee's re-elected members (the updated LFB Committee contacts list is here). We bid adieu also to LFB Committee member and former Branch Secretary Tom Davies, also an LFB-nominated delegate to the Trades Union Congress. Tom, a longstanding casual sub-editor at the Guardian, took a permanent full-time Guardian staff job late last year. As a result of this he will no longer be a full-time freelance and will have to switch to another NUJ branch. We think Tom for all the hard work he's put in to the Branch.

Tom Davies;Sara Haq

Tom Davies pondering a random corporate freebie from our 2006 LFB Christmas swapshop.

  • The January AGM also voted to amend its Standing Orders (rules) so that members can be informed in advance of motions at the next meeting via the online Freelance, the LFB website and its monthly email alerts, rather than by dead tree format in the print edition Freelance sent by post, as was previously the case. Yet another reason to ensure we have your up-to-date email address.
Last modified: 24 Jan 2015 - © 2015 contributors
The Freelance editor is elected by London Freelance Branch and responsibility for content lies solely with the editor of the time
Send comments to the editor: editor@londonfreelance.org