A very happy new year! I wish you a healthy, peaceful and joyful 2019.
In my year end message I said that we were about to launch a new website - and I'm delighted to advise you that it went live yesterday.
This is available on your computer, tablet or mobile device at the same web address: www.smmc.org.uk
We are very keen to promote the Club to potential new members so a lot of the information about what we do is available to anyone... but there is also a secure online members' area accessible by a unique login and password.
Our virtual Clubhouse is the main hub of activity in the secure area and is available to all current members of the Club. It has information and content which is available exclusively to Club members to view or download, as well as news feeds with updates from many different areas of motorsport.
In time, you will also be able to access the special offers and discount codes that form our member benefits package that I mentioned in my year end message. These are not all available yet so expect more details of these great savings throughout the year.
There are also a number of members-only forums where you can start discussions with other like-minded folk. Essentially, the forums are meeting places for discussion. You can converse through posting and replying to messages. You have the ability to create topics for discussion, ask questions or put forward a point of view to which others can respond - safe in the knowledge that only Club members can read and reply.
We are changing the way we send out emails too - these will now be sent through the website. You can change whether or not to receive communications by email. Click here to find out more about how to do this. Whether or not you want to receive communications by email, the content will always be on the website so you can refer back to it.
In your profile area, you can also amend your details, change your photograph and add more information about you.
We hope you will play an active part in our Members’ area. Having an online community for SMMC means that members who live a great distance from each other still have the opportunity to interact and network with other members, not only locally but also from all over Scotland, UK and globally (Kia Ora to those in New Zealand). The very nature of our volunteering in the sport that we all love means that we don't all know everyone, and even when we do, we often don't see friends and colleagues for weeks and months at a time because they are marshalling at different events or times to us. Being part of a 'virtual' community can, for some, have just as many benefits as a 'real life' community.
The Members’ area exists to provide a safe and friendly place for members to learn, share and socialise. We encourage freedom of speech, but we expect our members to treat others with respect and courtesy. As with all similar facilities, there has to be a degree of moderation and the Committee has the right to edit or delete any messages as they deem necessary. Given that this is a closed group, only available to you, our Members, we do see this being very much an exception to the rule but necessary to mention all the same. We have developed a Community Code of Conduct which sets out what we think is a reasonable and responsible approach.
The Members’ area is a work in progress. It is, and is meant to be, continually evolving. It will become more valuable as more and more people start using it and sharing resources.
Our new website has been a long time coming. We think it's been worth the wait. We hope you do too.
If you have any feedback once you had had a look at the site please either add it as a topic on the discussion forum or, if you prefer, send it direct to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll make sure it is taken forward.