The audited Accounts for the year are attached
Gift Aid is a scheme by which a charity can reclaim from the Inland Revenue the basic tax on money paid to it by way of subscriptions or gifts. In the 2006-07 year 163 members provided Gift Aid Declarations and the Inland Revenue credited a total of £514.97 to the Society's account in 2007-2008. In the current year the number of Declarations stands at 172, generating £599.36 for next year's accounts. At 81% of memberships this is a slight increase on last year's 78%. The scheme costs members nothing and all those who pay tax are invited to sign up. Declarations remain in force while membership of the Society is maintained or until the donor cancels the arrangement.
The Society is grateful to Down District Council for its continuing support of the Society's activities. In the financial year the Council provided one grant - £300 in support of the production of Lecale Review. A further grant of £100 for the St. Patrick's Festival Lecture should be paid in 2008-09.
During the year 24 new members joined the Society. However, 15 of the existing members did not renew their subscription. During the year, sadly, we lost two of our members, Frank Maxwell, former President and Life Member and Robert Smith, Newcastle. By the end of the year the number of memberships stood at 212 (84 family memberships, 121 individual members and 7 honorary members). This compares with 208 in the previous year and is the fifth year of continuing membership growth. Membership subscription income increased from £2446 in 2006-07 to £2549 in 2007-08.
Federation for Ulster Local Studies Limited
When the Community Relations Council grant aid to the Federation was terminated at the end of March 2007, resulting in the redundancy of its sole employee, it was proposed that the Federation be wound up. A number of Societies, led by the Strabane and Lecale Societies decided to mount a rescue effort. Part of the strategy adopted was the creation of a parallel Federation, the Federation of Ulster Local Societies, comprised of the same membership, to continue the Public Liability Insurance Scheme, appoint a new Executive Committee and recreate FULS Limited as a going-concern to be run on a purely voluntary basis. To secure the position until the temporary Federation could set up its own bank account, the Executive Committee of the Lecale Society agreed that its bank account could used to process its early income and expenditure. Without this it would not have been possible to renew the insurance policy so valued by the member societies. The Federation's transactions were recorded as a separate category in the Society's accounts and appear as single aggregate amounts of income and expenditure on the balance sheet. When the new bank account was set up the funds in the Society's account were transferred to this. The rescue effort was successful and FULS Limited is fully operational again. The temporary Federation has been wound up and its remaining assets transferred to FULS Limited.
Journal The cost of 500 copies of the Lecale Review was £2495 compared with £2287 in 2007. Each of the 212 members was supplied with a copy of the journal.
Included in the in the £1,789 income from Publications is £420 from sales of the Lecale Miscellany CD.