The Sporting Irish Water Spaniel Club Constitution

(Ver 2.3.1 - 14/03/2016)

The name of the Club will be The Sporting Irish Water Spaniel Club. 

The objectives of the club are:

  • To promote and assist in the training of the Irish water Spaniel for work in the shooting field as an all-round, multi-purpose gundog, bearing in mind the breed's origin as a hunting, retrieving, wildfowling and water dog, whilst recognising its classification by the Kennel Club.
  • To organise classes, working tests and field trials, both breed confined and in conjunction with other breed clubs, societies and gundog clubs.
  • To provide Irish water Spaniel owners with practical help and organised events.
  • To promote breeding of the pure, sound, and healthy Irish water Spaniel, free from hereditary faults.
  • To maintain the description of the true type as approved by The Kennel Club and to urge breeders to adhere to the standard.



1.1 The number of members shall be unlimited, the classes of membership being Single, Joint, Family and Honorary.

1.2 Family membership shall consist of up to two adults and children under the age of 18 years.

1.3 Candidates for membership of the club must be proposed and seconded by two fully paid-up members of the club and the application must be presented with a completed application form and appropriate fee(s).

1.4 The applications will be presented to the committee for approval. The vote to accept or reject the application shall be decided by the majority of the committee.

1.5 The subscription is for a calendar year and shall be payable on 1st January each year

1.6 No member shall be allowed to vote or compete or enjoy any privileges of membership until his, her or their subscription and all outstanding debts due to the club have been paid. Members whose dues have not been paid by 31st January shall be deemed non-members and will have to re-apply for membership as a new member.

1.7 Membership details will be held on computer. Such details will be confined to member's names and contact details. No personal information will be divulged to any outside body other than The Kennel Club.

1.8 The secretary shall keep a register of the names and addresses of members and the register shall be open to the inspection of members at any general meeting or Committee meeting, or to The Kennel Club at any time.


2.1 This may be proposed by any two members and will be awarded and rescinded at the discretion of the club committee with regards to the following criteria:

2.1.1. Honorary membership – A member may be bestowed honorary membership having made a significant contribution to the club, as deemed by the committee. Honorary membership shall be for a term of five years but may be renewed at or before expiry by the committee without further proposal.

2.1.2. Honorary membership shall have all the rights, privileges and obligations of membership, save as further provided in these rules and regulations 9in particular 2.1.3.), but shall not be liable to any subscriptions.

2.1.3. As the entitlement to honorary membership is in the grace and favour of the Committee then upon the proposal of two members, the committee may revoke the grant of said membership for any of the reasons contained within the rules and regulations of the club without calling a special General Meeting.

2.1.4. The General Committee of the club may propose candidates for the positions of patron, president, and vice-president, each to serve a term of five years, to be voted on by the members at the AGM. The president and Vice-President and any Patron will be ex-officio members of the committee, shall be deemed to be honorary members of the club but shall not have voting rights.


3.1 All members will be expected and encouraged to co-operate and participate with The Sporting Irish water spaniel Club and its objectives.

3.2 All members will be encouraged to exhibit sportsmanlike conduct in all competitions and shall not display any derogatory manner or speech with regard to any competitor, their dogs, or to any official.

3.3 No member shall send or publish any statement of a defamatory nature about The Sporting Irish water spaniel Club, to its members or their dogs whether in writing, e-mail, on the internet, or in any other electronic format.

3.4 If the conduct of any member(s) has been or is, in the opinion of the committee of the Club, injurious or likely to be injurious to the character or interests of the Club, the Committee may, at a meeting, the notice convening which includes as an object the consideration of the conduct of a member, determine that a Special General meeting of the Club be called for the purpose of passing a resolution to expel him, her or them. Notice of the special general meeting shall be sent to the accused member, giving particulars of the complaint and advising the place, date and hour of the meeting that he/she may attend and offer an explanation. If at the meeting, a resolution to expel is passed by a two-thirds majority of the members present and voting, his/her name shall fore with be erased from the register and he/she shall thereupon cease for all purposes to be a member of the club except he/she may, within two calendar months from the date of such a meeting, appeal to The kennel Club upon and subject to such conditions as the kennel club may impose.

3.5 Any member found to be aiding and abetting with any other member to breach the Club's objectives, Rules & Regulations would beheld equally responsible with the offender.

3.6 If the club expels any member for discreditable conduct in connection with dogs, field trails or Comptitions, the Club must report the matter in writing within seven days and supply any particulars required to the kennel club.

3.7 The kennel club shall be recognised as the final court of appeal in all matters of dispute concerning the Club and its members.

3.8 Any member who shall be suspended or disqualified under kennel Club rules shall ipso facto cease to be a member of the Club for the duration of the suspension or disqualification.


4.1 The annual subscription shall be such sum as shall be determined from time to time by the Committee of the Club. This will be payable on application for Club membership and thereafter on 31st January to the honorary Treasurer, for both single membership, Joint membership and family membership.

4.2 Subscription and fees may be necessarily be subject to a review at any Committee meeting or AGM following agreement by the Committee of the Club, the outcome of which shall be notified to The Kennel Club and membership.

4.3 No member whose subscription is unpaid is entitled to any of the privileges of membership and if members' outstanding subscriptions are not received by 31st January, then his/her/their name(s) shall be automatically erased from the register, pending payment. Acceptance back onto the register will be depending upon upon payment of the appropriate fee(s) being received within the membership year in question. The member shall not be entitled to any voting rights during the membership year in which a late payment is received.


5.1 The entire management of the affairs of the Club shall be vested in the committee.

5.2 The committee shall consist of Chairperson, Honorary Secretary, Honorary treasurer (hereafter referred to as officers) and eight members

5.3 Only fully paid-up members are eligible to stand for election to the committee and in addition must have been members for a minimum of one year immediately prior to the intended term.

5.4 The chairperson, honorary Secretary and honorary treasurer shall serve for a period of three years, one retiring each year in rotation, such rotation to run historically from the previous incumbent of said office. All the other Committee members shall retire annually.

5.5 The committee shall have the power to co-opt members onto the committee in the event of a position becoming vacant between Annual General Meetings, but those co-opted shall only hold office until the next Annual general meeting of the club at which an election of officers and Committee takes place.

5.6 Committee meetings shall be held as deemed necessary by the Chairperson and Secretary, but at least one Committee meeting shall be held in each six-monthly period each year.

5.7 The quorum at a committee meeting shall consist of more than half the general committee.

5.8 The officers and Committee shall have full voting rights and in the event of a spilt decision the Chairperson shall have the casting vote in addition to their member's vote.

5.9 The Committee shall have the power to co-opt members for special purposes. Co-opted members will be ex-officio members of the Committee, but shall not have voting rights.

5.10 The Committee shall have the power to appoint Sub-Committees.

5.11 Minutes of Committee meetings will remain private and confidential to Committee members, but reports on Committee business may be made available to the membership on receipt of a written request and a stamped addressed envelope.

5.12 No person whilst an un-discharged bankrupt may serve on the Committee of, or hold any other office or appointment within this Club.


6.1 The chairperson shall take the chair at all meetings. If the chairperson is unable to attend then the meeting shall elect a Chairperson for the duration of the meeting. The chairperson shall normally, but not necessarily, solely be responsible for the calling of the meetings.

6.2 The Honorary secretary shall normally, but not necessarily, solely be responsible to summon all meetings, take minutes and be responsible for the general administration of the Club. If the honorary secretary is unavailable to attend a meeting than a person must be nominated to take minutes.

6.3 The Honorary Treasurer shall receive all the monies for the Club and shall prepare an annual report for the annual general meeting. The Honorary Treasurer must maintain a register of fully paid-up members.

6.4 If due to resignation, inability, death or refusal by any officer to carry out the duties referred to in Rules 6.1, 6.2, 6.3 then the said duties may be carried out by any other Committee member agreed by at least half of the General Committee.


7.1 with the exception of the election of Officers and Committee (rule 8.5), when membership is called to vote the following shall apply :

7.1.1 each member shall be entitled to one vote, with the exception of children under the age of18 years who form part of a family membership who shall not be entitled to any voting rights.

7.1.2 Postal /proxy votes are not allowed.

7.1.3 Voting shall be by show of hands, save that if three members or more request it then a secret ballot may be held.

7.1.4 Voting shall be as decided by the majority of the meeting.

7.1.5 Only paid-up members and Honorary members may vote at The Annual General meeting and Special General meetings.


8.1 THE Club's Annual general Meeting (AGM) shall be held prior to 31st March.

8.2 Eight weeks' notice shall be given to all members of the agreed date of the AGM.

8.3 The AGM shall contain the Chairperson's, Honorary Secretary's and Honorary Treasurer's reports, minutes of previous AGM/SGM, election of Officers and Committee as applicable, any proposals as in 8.4, and any other business (AOB). The AGM agenda will include an item for the adoption of the Club's accounts.

8.4 Any proposals and nominations for the election of Officers and Committee must be received by the Honorary secretary in writing, duly proposed and seconded, five weeks prior to the AGM. Election nominees shall signify in writing their willingness to accept office. Existing Committee members shall be eligible for re-election and must notify the Hononary secretary in writing five weeks prior to the AGM. They are not required to be proposed or seconded.

8.5 Elections for Officers and Committee members shall be by postal ballot only of all members. The honorary secretary will send the agenda and ballot papers out 4 weeks prior to the meeting.

8.6 Returned ballot papers must be received at least one week prior to the meeting. Any papers received after the deadline will be deemed null and void.

8.7 A returning officer shall be elected by those present at the current AGM and shall be responsible for counting the votes and announcing the results. The returning officer shall not be a committee member nor may he/she stand for election. At least one other club member must be present as observer when the envelopes containing votes are opened. The decision of the returning officer as to the number of votes cast, whether ballots have been spoiled, and who has been elected shall be final.

8.8 Ties shall be decided by the toss of a coin by The Returning officer.

8.9 No business shall be conducted at the AGM unless notice thereof appears on the Agenda, with the exception of routine matters (AOB) or those which, in the opinion of the chairperson are urgent.

8.10 Any proposals voted on at the AGM shall be carried by a simple majority of yeas over nays.


9.1 A special General meeting (SGM) shall be summoned by the Honorary secretary of the Club if requested to do so in writing by not less than 12 signing members accompanied by a sum of one hundred and twenty pounds (£120.00) as a contribution to administration costs, stating the subject to be discussed and requesting an SGM to do so. To be held within 4 weeks of receipt of request. The Honorary secretary shall immediately inform the entire Committee of the meeting.

9.2 The Committee of the Club is empowered to call a SGM if it deems it necessary but without payment of any fee.

9.3 Any resolution passed either at the AGM or at a SGM can only be altered or rescinded at a subsequent General meeting due notice having being given to members.

9.4 Twelve shall form a quorum for each of an AGM and SGM to include two club officers.


10.1 All formal proposals, notices, requests and resignations sent by members to the Club shall be signed by the member or members sending the same and may only be sent by post or hand delivered to the address of the Honorary secretary.

10.2 Transmission of any of the items mentioned in rule 10.1 by any other means shall render the same null and void.

10.3 Rules 10.1 and 10.2 shall not apply to any notices, reports, newsletters or other documentation sent by the Committee or the Officers to any member or members.


11.1 Cups and trophies, which are given as outright gifts to the club, will become the property of the Club.

11.2 The property of the Club shall be vested in the committee and said Committee shall have the power to deal at its absolute discretion with the funds and property of the Club.

11.3 In the event of the Club ceasing to exist, a General Meeting shall be called to decide on the disposal of the club's assets and the outcome of the meeting notified to the Kennel Club.

11.4 A final statement of accounts with record of disposal of the property of the Club shall be forwarded to The Kennel Club within six months and the persons named as Officers and Committee of the Club on the last return furnished to The Kennel Club will be held responsible by The kennel Club for the proper winding up of the club.

11.5 If the club maintains a website then it shall hold and maintain the title to the URL (Uniform resource Locator) and any e-mail address related thereto and shall retain the copyright and intellectual property rights to any written material or graphics thereon, providing title to the same vests within the club.

11.6 The club shall retain the copyright and intellectual property rights to any written material or graphics contained within any newsletter, providing title to the same vests with the club.


12.1 The financial year of the Club shall be from 1st January until 31st December.

12.2 Bank or building society accounts shall be held in the name of the Club into which all revenues of the Club shall be paid and from which withdrawals shall only be made on the signature of two of the following: Chairperson, honorary treasurer, Honorary secretary.

12.3 A qualified Accountant or two lay-people with accounting experience will be appointed by the Committee to verify the accounts annually.

12.4 The balance sheet shall be presented to the club members at the AGM for their approval and shall be included in the accounts.


13.1 The Club's Officers acknowledge that during the month of January each year, Maintenance of the Title Fee will be forwarded to The kennel Club by the Honorary Secretary of the Club for the continuance of registration.

13.2 The Club's officer s acknowledge that other returns, as stipulated in The Kennel Club Regulations for the Registration and maintenance of Title of registered societies and breed Councils and the affiliation of Agricultural Societies and Municipal Authorities must be forwarded to The kennel Club by the date as notified.

13.3 If returns cannot be forwarded by the due date as notified by The kennel Club, the Officers acknowledge their duty to inform the Kennel Club accordingly.

13.4 The officers of the Club also acknowledge their duty to inform The Kennel Club of any changes of secretary of the Club which may occur during the course of the year.


14.1 The Club shall not join any Federation of society or clubs.


15.1 The Club shall not under any circumstances hold a dog show, nor will it do so in conjunction with others.


16.1 The rules of the Club may only be altered at an AGM/SGM, the alteration(s) being detailed on the notice of such meetings, and such alteration(s) may not be brought into effect until The Kennel Club has been advised and approved the alteration(s).

16.2 New rules or amendments introduced specifically to meet The Kennel Club requirements shall be adopted immediately and shall be included in the club's constitution, Rules & Regulations with effect from the Club's AGM.

Download the Sporting Irish Water Spaniel Club Constitution

The Sporting Irish Water Spaniel Club Constitution_2.3.1 (pdf)