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Yorkshire Ridings Branch Newsletter Feb '14

14 February 2014

York Theatre Royal Artistic Director to Speak at Next Meeting

At our February Branch Meeting we are pleased to welcome Damian Cruden to speak on “The New Relationship between Theatre and Community”. Damian has been York Theatre Royal’s Artistic Director since 1997 and has presided over the opening of the Studio Theatre and the acquisition of the De Grey Rooms. Winner of a Visit York Tourism Award in 2013, he is currently directing ‘Brassed Off’. Damian is a keen supporter of public investment in the Arts and the ‘My Theatre Matters’ campaign as well as an advocate for better drama training. Please come along on:

Saturday 22 February


Studio Theatre, York Theatre Royal
St. Leonard's Place, York, YO1 7HD

At the February Meeting, we will also decide on our Branch’s Motion to Equity’s 2014 National Conference. Please see below for more information.

For travel and parking information:


Your Chance to Shape Equity’s National Policies

Every Equity Branch has the right to submit one Motion to Equity’s Annual Representative Conference (ARC). For 2014, the Branch needs to decide on its resolution at the Branch Meeting on Saturday 22 February. If you wish to propose a motion, please would you e-mail it to before the meeting. Equity nationally has produced a document about writing motions and a copy of this can be downloaded from

It is VITAL that at least 10 Branch members attend this meeting, or the Branch will not be able to submit an ARC Motion.       

The Branch is also entitled to submit one Amendment to one other ARC Motion. The Branch needs to decide on any amendment at the Branch Meeting to be held in April. Again, there needs to be at least 10 Branch members at this meeting, otherwise the Branch will not be able to submit an amendment. A copy of the Motions that have been submitted to the ARC will be available at the April meeting and we will link to these on the Branch Web Site when they become available. Please check for updates.


Better Way Demonstration in York Sat 8 March

The Better Way demonstration  is called by Yorkshire and the Humber TUC to coincide with the Lib Dem Spring Conference on 8th March in York. Protesters are encouraged to adopt a colour for the day (on a placard, banner or clothing) to highlight the many different reasons why we are protesting: Jobs and pay (blue), Tax justice (green), Industrial growth (black), Health, public services and social security (red), Young people and investing in the future (yellow).

The demonstration assembles 11am outside Clifford’s Tower, Tower Street, York, YO1 9SA. Your Branch Committee has decided to support this demonstration and will be taking the Equity Yorkshire Area Banner. We hope that lots of Equity members will join us on the march. A static protest for people with disabilities will also be arranged – e-mail y& for more information. Facebook:; Web:; Demo twitter address: @yorkprotest8mar


Nottinghamshire Theatre Cuts

Nottinghamshire County Council proposes cutting Nottingham Playhouse’s funding by 100% (£94,000) from next year. The Playhouse fear that this will impact on the volume, scale and reach of their work and Equity is working with local members and MPs to assist the Playhouse.

Please sign the online petition about this at:


Creative Coalition Campaign

Equity is a member of the Creative Coalition Campaign (CCC), which campaigns to support the rights of creators and workers in the creative industries. Equity’s General Secretary, Christine Payne, is Chair of the campaign.

Copyright plays a key role in driving the success of the creative industries by allowing creators of content to make a return on their investment, allowing them to re-invest in new content.

Tackling online copyright infringement successfully requires a combination of different tactics such as using enforcement action to make it harder for sites offering infringing content to operate and educating consumers about the harm caused by online infringement and the availability of legal content services.

Above all, it is vital that the government and parliamentarians understand the importance of this issue and are supportive of all the necessary tactics to solve it. This is where you can make a difference by making your voice heard via the CCC’s campaign.

Please sign the petition at: calling on all political parties to address online infringement in their 2015 general election manifestos.


Can You Help us to Raise Some Money?

Your Equity Branch holds a Raffle to raise money for branch funds at each meeting and we need prizes! Can you donate a prize for a future raffle? It would be a good opportunity to recycle something you no longer want for a good cause! If you can spare a raffle prize, please bring it to any Branch meeting.

Your Branch also needs help with Fund Raising. At the moment, the Branch has insufficient funds to pay all officers’ expenses. While these will be reimbursed by Equity nationally, the Branch Committee would like to be able to pay all expenses promptly. If you have ideas, or can help with raising money for the Branch, please e-mail


Legal Advice from Morrish Solicitors

Morrish Solicitors carry out Equity’s Personal Injury Legal work and have sponsored Yorkshire Ridings Branch. In a new feature in the Branch E-Newsletter, they will be contributing a Legal Advice column. This month:

Why should I make a will?

If you don’t, your property might end up with people whom you don’t wish to benefit. A Will is the only way of ensuring that your loved ones inherit what you want them to have.

A Will is advisable for many reasons:-

Avoid Intestacy

If you die without a Will, rules known as the ‘Intestacy Rules” apply to distribute your assets when you die. These rules in general pass assets on to your closest family but this may not be what you want, particularly if you have been married more than once, you are cohabiting or you have children from different relationships. Under the “Intestacy Rules” a spouse does not automatically inherit everything on death.

Appoint Guardians / Executors

In a Will it is possible to appoint Guardians to bring up your minor children after your death, and to appoint Executors to deal with the administration of your affairs after you have died. These can be family or close friends. If your affairs are complex, you might wish to appoint a solicitor to be an Executor either on his own or together with a friend or family member. If a child is left money in a Will, an Executor is often a trustee of that money until the child reaches the age mentioned in the Will.

Avoid / Mitigate Tax

Inheritance Tax applies to the value of your estate on death. Currently everything given to a spouse or charity is exempt but otherwise the balance of your estate above the Nil Rate Sum (£325,000 for deaths on or after 6 April 2009) is taxed at 40%. It is also possible to use up any unused Nil Rate Sum from a deceased spouse’s estate in addition. Remember, your estate includes your house. There are many ways to reduce the effects of Inheritance Tax both in a Will and by lifetime gifts. If Inheritance Tax might be a problem, there is no substitute for obtaining professional legal advice on a regular basis to keep up to date with changes in tax legislation.


A Will enables you to leave a gift to your favourite charity. This can be either a fixed amount or a share of your estate. Charities are usually pleased to discuss this with you.

Peace of Mind

You can be satisfied that your financial affairs are in order making it easier for relatives to cope. A properly drafted Will should reduce the chance of argument about your estate after death. Remember to tell your family where the original signed Will (not a draft or copy) is kept.

Morrish Solicitors offer all Equity members a simple Will at a discounted rate of £72.00 (including VAT).  Wills for members’ spouses or partners are prepared at a charge of £48.00 (including VAT).  Hence if two Wills are prepared then the cost is £120.00. Equity members also receive a 10% discount for all other elderly client services, such as probate, powers of attorney, etc.

For further information about making a will, or other elderly client services, please call Morrish Solicitors on 033 3344 9600 and ask for the Wills and Probate team.


Dates for Future Branch Meetings

Saturday 22 February 1.30pm - Branch Meeting at York Theatre Royal with Damian Cruden speaking + Annual Representative Conference Motions.

March and April Branch Meetings in Leeds - to be arranged

Monday 12 May 2pm Meeting at Hull Truck Theatre. 


Branch Contacts

Branch Secretary: Pete Keal, tel/fax 01422 885211; e-mail

Contact information for other Branch Officers


Branch Resources:

The Standard Agenda for Branch Meetings can be read at A copy of the Standard Agenda can be downloaded at

To download the minutes of past Branch Meetings, go to and click on Documents. Minutes of Branch Meetings since Nov 2012 are now available. You will need to log in to the Equity Web site with your membership number and your password before the Minutes can be downloaded. Notes of the December 2013 Branch meeting will be available soon.

Branch Web Site
Link to our RSS News feed:

Facebook page (shared with
South Yorkshire Variety Branch)


 If you have something you would like included in the Branch Newsletter, please e-mail

A Large Print version of this Newsletter can be downloaded from the Branch Web Site

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