2001 AGM

The AGM was held in Newcastle-under-Lyme on Saturday June 2nd. After 12 years as chairman, Gerry Hanson resigned, and passed the baton of office (an envelope containing a Campaign For Courtesy pen and tie) to Simon Poole, who was elected the new chairman. Gerry spent a great deal of time and effort on the Campaign, appearing frequently on radio and television where his dulcet tones and sharp wit were put to good use. B

By clicking on the link below you can read the highlights of his speech. Gerry will remain taking an active interest in the Campaign, and will no doubt continue to appear in the media from time to time.

Ian Gregory’s speech was up to the usual witty and thought provoking standards that we’ve come to expect. He began by saying he finds that ‘life gets more fascinating if you relish each day as it comes along. Agatha Christie said the best husband a woman can have is an archeologist because the older she gets the more interested he becomes in her’.

Ian referred to an article in the German magazine Stern ‘which offered a rather gloomy picture of the sort of nation that we have become, with poverty and inefficiency the dominating features. The one word they suggest is decadent. As with every view, it depends where you are standing and what you want to see. William Blake invited us to see the world in a grain of sand and heaven in a wild flower.’

In summarising what the Campaign stands for, Ian said ‘We simply want to draw attention to the value of courtesy. That is, in three words, to be able to listen, to smile and to take time in our dealings with each other. The benefits of these simple things in terms of health, success and personal fulfilment cannot be overstated’.

He also went on to say ‘There is a yearning in millions of hearts for something better in our national direction: people who see the way things are and say NO, this is NOT how life ought to be in a civilised land in the 21st century. This is space age: we live in a world dominated by brilliant science and technology and yet in terms of human behaviour and relationships we seem much of the time to be Neanderthal’.