In the year of 1904 a group of bird fanciers decided to form a specialist Yorky club called the Southern Yorkshire Canary Club. And before you can stop to think about it, it has been in existence for a hundred years. I know it all sounds a bit silly, talking about it in this way, but to me, time seems to have flown by.
Stop and think about it. One hundred years sounds an awfully long time. What worries me though, is that I have been a member for about a third of that time, and I thought that compared to some of you, I am a new-boy. Looking back you all must have some fine memories of different incidents that have occurred: some serious, some humourous. All sort of things, at shows, when you've been out socialising, meetings and in each others birdrooms. I know I have heard many stories from fellow fanciers.
When you have been doing something for this long, it is difficult to remember things that have happened way back in those earlier years, and its not until you get together with others that your memories are jogged and everything just comes flooding back.
There have been some fine people in the SYCC who would have loved to have been around for this centenary year, especially those who dedicated such a large part of their life to the club. We've seen numerous changes in management teams, some lasting many years, some just briefly. My thanks go out to all of them, however long or short their time was. It was, and still is, appreciated.
In my time, who could forget: Frank Fitzpatrick, Cyril Cox, Jack Little and many others who spent so much of their lives managing affairs for the SYCC. I could put down a list of names past and present of valuable officers and assistants, but I would only be missing several out, so I will leave the statistics to others. I am sure dozens of names will crop up in this year’s handbook.
The present bunch in this centenary year of 2004, led by George Weeks and myself are looking for something special. A real big effort at making our show stand out from other years, while numbers have gradually been slipping down.
We are still doing all we can to produce a show and the best way any member can help is by bringing along their birds to make it all worthwhile.
Though compact, our latest venue at West Wickham can still cater for more exhibits than our last two shows, so if you read this in time, lets hope for a bulging entry for this year.
This year once again I must thank all the presiding officers for their first class performances and can say without doubt an excellent working team working well together producing a great show. Also thanks once again to the ladies who ran the canteen. Your assistance is most appreciated.
The special centenary show will involve a new competitive edge as an in show competition. This idea, thought up by Peter Rackley, will bring a new feature to our show. A regional contest will -I'm sure- get you into the spirit that is intended, especially with the rewards it will bring.
It always needs a special occasion for us to think of new enterprises. Well done Peter.
New ideas in our hobby usually end up with aggravations creeping in, as we have experienced over the last few years.
Good Luck for this centenary year to you all, and lets hope the luck will continue for many years to come.
Best Wishes Reg Reeve