Two offers of mediation were made to the four regions that have objected to some of the decisions, actions and proposals made by the NCMD. The first offer was withdrawn after the resignation of Kevin Gorman and Catherine Lange, which, it was claimed, was due to the level of personal abuse directed at them. The second offer, made by Alastair Hacket, has now been withdrawn.
Both offers were withdrawn by the NCMD because they said the representatives chosen by the four regions were unacceptable. The representatives, (Sydney Hallam, David Rees, John Wells and Clive Sinclair) were said to be unacceptable as “irreconcilable differences” existed between them and the NCMD.
The four had already been removed from their executive positions of the NCMD. As if that wasn’t bad enough, they have now had their membership of the NCMD rescinded.
It would seem that both offers of mediation were conditional on the chosen representatives of the four regions not being allowed to be involved in the process. In other words, the NCMD did not wish their fiercest critics to be involved. An attempt to find new people to represent the four regions came to nothing, which suggests that the Yorkshire, Southern, Western and Midland regions are content with the men removed from office by the NCMD.
Let’s examine the points highlighted above. Kevin Gorman Catherine Lange are said to have resigned due to the high level of personal abuse aimed at them. There is no excuse for personal abuse and no-one should have to put up with it. However, whatever abuse they received did not come from the representatives of the four regions; therefore, no blame lies with them. They have asked what might be construed as awkward questions, they have queried some of the amounts of money spent. They wanted to see copies of the accounts for the last five years, and raised other points. The new regime at the NCMD might not have welcomed all these queries but asking questions and seeking answers is not abuse. Neither, I would point out, is legitimate and constructive criticism.
In a mediation process one side cannot pick and choose who repents the other. Someone recently said to me this would be like the captain of a cricket team picking the side he is going to play. The representatives from the Yorkshire, Southern, Western and Midland regions were ready and willing to go through mediation, without any pre-conditions, but both offers were withdrawn.
That an offer was said to have been withdrawn due to irreconcilable differences is ridiculous. Few things are irreconcilable, least of all the present dispute between the NCMD and four of its regions. Indeed, to bring parties together who believe their differences are irreconcilable is exactly what mediation is for. It has successfully brought armed conflicts to an end.
Four long serving officers of the NCMD were first removed from their executive positions and then had their membership rescinded. I’m a detectorist, they are detectorists and we are all involved in a hobby we love. The four, who in the past have always had the best interests of our hobby at the forefront of their minds, have been unceremoniously thrown out of the national body that is meant to protect them and their interests. I’m disgusted by this. But I’m only one of 25,000 to 30,000 detectorists. What are your feelings about this? Please, let’s start a dialogue.
Questions, queries, thoughts, ideas and constructive criticism are welcomed. Abuse of any kind is not allowed. The NCMD Facebook site gives only one side of the story. I will feature both sides on this website. Hopefully, if enough detectorists put up posts we could eventually arrive at a majority opinion on some of the more important points.
I know that the average detectorist just wants to get out detecting. However, things are happening (or not happening) that are important to all of us, so do take a few minutes to join in the debate.