SIG Guidance Notes

Specialist Interest Groups within the Horndean Camera Club


The Horndean Camera Club was founded in 1956 to further the enjoyment of its members’ photography and to disseminate photographic knowledge and skills amongst its members. It is run on less formal grounds than many whilst still being a member of the Southern Counties Photographic Federation.

Within the club there are several Special Interest Groups for the fun and the sharing of knowledge and skills within their group and led by a more knowledgeable club member. Membership is limited to enable efficient transfer of knowledge within the group and to facilitate meetings to take place in a group member’s home. Their activities include field trips, evaluation of one another’s work and informal training. They communicate through closed Facebook groups, emails and meetings.

External trips always contain an element of risk to members of the group and to the general public. These can result in injuries from falls or from trip hazard from tripods, camera bags etc. During 2018 there were several injuries sustained by club members both during group organised trips as well as non-club trips.

In our increasingly litigious society, it was considered prudent that the club should investigate the extent that these groups were covered by the club’s Public Liability Insurance. This highlighted the fact that, because of the informality of the conduct of these groups and their method of communication, their operation was largely hidden from the remainder of the camera club and could be construed as operating outside of the club’s jurisdiction and hence may not be covered by the club’s Public Liability Insurance.


The objective of this document is to introduce a control and communication structure and operating instructions that will make clear to any third party that the club’s current and any future Specialist Interest Groups are clearly operating as part of the Horndean Camera Club.

To ensure compliance, these actions and responsibilities will be the minimum that can sensibly be applied and are to be managed with a “light touch” approach.

In order to clearly demonstrate this, a formal control, Accountability and Communication structure, together with a minimum set of responsibilities and actions, are detailed below.

Organisation Reporting, Control and Accountability Structure


Responsibilities and Accountabilities

  • Training Officer
    • Oversee the running of the Special Interest Groups and accountable to the club chairman
  • Specialist Interest Group Administrator
    • Maintain a list of Specialist Interest Groups and their leaders
    • Liaise with the club’s website administrator to ensure the club’s Specialist Interest Group information is current
    • Keep a waiting list of club members who would like to join a Specialist Interest Group
    • Facilitate the creation of new groups and is accountable to the Training Officer
  • Specialist Interest Group Leaders
    • Be the single point of contact relating to all their group’s activities
    • Conduct Informal Risk Reviews and give a safety briefing at the start of field trips
    • Keep the Specialist Interest Groups Administrator informed of any vacancies that may occur
    • Ensure that at least one other group member can take over leadership in an emergency.
    • Accountable to the Training Officer

Information to be held

  • Specialist Interest Group Administrator
    • List of active Specialist Interest Groups and for each:
      • Name of Specialist Interest Group and its leader
      • Maximum membership and a Waiting list of prospective members
  • Specialist Interest Group Leader
    • Group members’ and their Next of Kin contact details
    • Record of attendance, especially for field trips. (Emails containing this information is acceptable)


  • A list of all current Specialist Interest Groups. This is to include:
    • The name of the group and a short description of its purpose
    • The number of vacancies
    • A downloadable Guide for Specialist Interest Group Leaders
    • Contact details of the Training Officer and Special Interest Group Administrator

  • Action in the event of an incident
    • A brief report containing details of the incident, including any injuries sustained and by whom, events leading up to the incident and actions taken following the incident.
      (A short email to the club’s chairman and Training Officer containing the above details is enough to satisfy this requirement)