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BVSF reports on its AGM

Coombe Abbey
BVSF's annual general meeting and seminar programme was recently held at Coombe Abbey Hotel
The BVSF AGM and Seminar was held this year at the Coombe Abbey Hotel near Coventry. An excellent turn out of both members, strategic partners and indeed various guests gathered on a beautiful spring morning - General Secretary, Roger West reports here on the event.

The AGM held no surprises and all delegates present seemed very happy with the way in which the Federation was conducting itself and its current financial stability.

A number of questions were raised in AoB concerning the recent “draft” Salvage Code of Practice and it was confirmed that the BVSF were very unhappy with the draft, in particular its evident lack of “teeth” (still) and the fact that the 4 categories were proposed to be reduced to 3 with an all encompassing and potentially disastrous suggestion that the heading “Structurally damaged” should be used. With the Insurance industry completing “Structural Repairs” every day of the year and not necessarily at PAS125 body shops, why treat repairable vehicle salvage differently. Don’t get me wrong, I am all for safe vehicle repair and will support this wholeheartedly but if we are going to have to have this description then it should apply to ALL structural repairs not just Salvage ones. Why not, for example use the heading “Technical Damage”, this, at least would provide the Salvage Vehicle with a chance of re-sale! There are a number of further issues that I could mention but this article would run to many pages, suffice to say that the BVSF will fight tooth and nail for its members to get a reasonable code that can be adhered to safely.

The Seminar, held in the afternoon began with a presentation from John Dwyer, Police Commissioner for Cheshire and this conjured up a great deal of questions and comments from the floor, again relating to many aspects of the proposed draft code and indeed the prospect of removing ANY possibility of a Cat A or B vehicle, or indeed any other vehicle of this description masquerading as a Cat C or D from ever appearing on the UK roads again. Simply stopping the DVLA from issuing V5’s in these cases will go a long way to help but will not resolve it completely.

The second speaker was Duncan Price from the Department of Transport and, as to a degree expected, this produced a considerable question time, again on the subject of the draft code of practice. It can be confirmed that a letter has now been received from Mr Price confirming that “I have appreciated the comments you have given in writing on the draft salvage code and the comments made at the meeting. I can assure you we will consider them.”

Our third speaker was Alastair McPheat of Zein Marketing who provided an excellent insight into the reasons behind the shift from hard copy advertising to electronic advertising although he went to great lengths to confirm that there was very much still a place for hard copy magazines in our society.

Finally, and by no means least important was an excellent presentation from Chris James of CoTC/WAMITAB explaining that certain funding was now available to BVSF members for training and qualification purposes and it was considered that amongst other things this was a huge benefit of membership.

During the evening was a themed meal (murder mystery), rather unsurprisingly won by John Dwyer (The Police Commissioner) who disagreed with the rest of his Table who were completely wrong and paid the price of failure.

Two Combellack awards were made this year, both were total surprises for the recipients. Chris Morgan from ASM received his from last years winner, Jason Cross, at the end of the evening and I was given a second Combellack award by the Management Committee which I shall treasure for the rest of my days.

All in all it was a most excellent day with a number of delegates saying it was the “best yet”, how do I follow that in 2016 ? Well for that privileged information, you need to be a member ! If you would like a application form, please contact me (Roger West) on 01303 814325 or email me here and I will send you one by return. The cost is the same as a pack of sandwiches a day….so BLT or BVSF, one is a lot healthier and far more cost effective than the other!

May 2015

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