There is no magic formula for making branch meetings a success, according to Devon Chair Caryl Gibson, FICB. And she should know as she is the current ‘Branch Chair of the Year,’ and Devon (Exeter) also walked off with the Ken Bell Award for Branch of the Year at the last Luca Awards.

Caryl recently told the National Branch Chair Meeting in London that she honestly feels that she simply runs meetings the way she would want meetings to be run. She took over the branch when numbers were low, and on the very first meeting the current incumbent explained they were looking to step down. She got home and worried if she didn’t step forward the branch could disappear, but at the same time didn’t want to be presumptuous. But she decided to give it a go, and rest as they say is history. The branch has gone from strength to strength and now has its own WhatsApp Group.

Meanwhile, the City of London Branch’s Ameet Sedha MICB chaired his first meeting with great aplomb. Julie Branham FICB was on hand to provide a January Update that covered everything from rule changes, taxation, and must-have dates in the diary for this year. Top of her list was the Fifth Money Laundering Directive amendments. She said: “while reviewing procedures for 5MLD why not check you're still up-to-date with other ICB regulations, such as CPD.”


ICB's Branch Chairs are pictured at the National Branch Chair Meeting in London's Strand Palace Hotel

(L-R from the top row): Clare Mannall (Surrey), Kirsty St John (Cambridgeshire), Michael Johnson (Avon), Victor Brownlow (N.Ireland), Keith Elliot (Aberdeenshire)
Second Row: Elaine Botfield (West Midlands [Dudley]), Susan Proctor (Aberdeenshire), Carol Webb(Oxfordshire), Nicola Payne (South Glamorgan [Cardiff]), Lucy Brown (Lincolnshire), 
Third Row: Susan Lang (Tyne & Wear), Beatrix Szasz (Gloucestershire), Joanna Querelle (Warwickshire), Caryl Gibson (Devon [Exeter]), Rasa D'Alton (Essex), June Carter (ICB)
Fourth Row: Victoria Longmore (Devon [Exeter]), Kerry Agnew (ICB), Ameet Sedha (City of London), Hazel Marshall (South Glamorgan [Cardiff]), Jacqueline Tetley (Enfield), Garry Carter (ICB)