There are numerous clubs with the local area (see our "Other Clubs" section) so you should be able to find one that suits yourself and your primary interests.
With c. 30 members we are one of the smaller groups. Whilst a few more members would assist in the annual budgeting, we have no desire to get to a size where the membership have little idea who each other are and have little say in how the club is run.
Whereas some clubs prefer to segment their membership into groups based on ability we do not do so, we feel that the self-professed newbies have more chance of learning if included within the main group which includes semi-pros. You will find all members happy to offer guidance where needed.
Our as-inclusive-as-viable approach means that we perhaps don't win as many inter-club competitions as we might otherwise, but we would likely do well in "club most inclusive of it's members and most welcoming to new potential members whilst retaining an element of not deliberately offensive sarcasm" awards. We would also likely do well in an Enville Ale consumption competition but that is probably not overly relevant.
Each and every club member has the same right, and is encouraged, to voice an opinion and potentially influence the club's direction and diary. As such, the club evolves alongside / due to the requirements of it's membership in an attempt to remain relevant.
You do not have to be a great photographer, or have the best photography kit to join HCC. We do like members to embrace the team-spirit that should surely be the basis of all clubs and we also like members to help out with 'stuff' after a few weeks of getting to know us / settling in.
The club evenings run on a weekly basis from mid January through to early December (the all important sociable Enville evening) - so a bit of a break for the Christmas period - but otherwise a full club year. There will however be the occasional week where we do not meet - being based in a Church Hall means for instance that we do not meet during Holy Week. Don't worry about the venue, we are not a religious cult masquerading as a camera club and we welcome members and visitors of whatever age, gender, creed, colour, denomination (if any) etc.
One or two fairly new members have expressed their relief at coming along and previous fears of "being out of their depth" being completely dispelled. We really are not that sort of club. We do not ask for a minimum attendance (although I will occasionally 'prod' folk to try and encourage involvement in outings and events) - we understand that (some) folk do have lives/families etc beyond the club.
Will Hagley be the club for you? Well, there's only really one way to find out - come along and 'check us out', most members do not bite (due to denture issues) ;-)
You will see that the website does not have a members only section as we are deliberately open to all, and even non-members are welcome to see what we do and perhaps gain some knowledge from what we share here.
Our "meeting styles
" page will hopefully offer an insight into what to expect at HCC - and as above, if you feel that we do not cater to a specific interest or need then let us know and if at all practical we shall attempt to add to the diary!
Throughout the summer season we have a number of "outdoor evenings" - outings to relatively local attractions, in an attempt to practice our photography whilst being sociable.
Other trips outside of the 'normal diary' have included The Peak District, Wales (scenery), Wales GB Rally, The Cotswolds, Leicestershire Deer Rut as well as more localised ones for Horse Racing, Dog Racing, Severn Valley events etc.
Outings of a more 'specialist' interest, specifically nature and wildlife photography, are generally organised by myself as our wildlife enthusiast. This has included trips to see and photograph Wolves, Big Cats, as well as the more widely covered Raptors, with Barn Owls being a very popular photographic subject.
WHAT DOES HCC EXPECT OF IT'S MEMBERS?
To be honest, remarkably little. Once comfortable within the group, and assuming that you are able-bodied, then generally helping out with setting of the meeting room and reversing such at the end of the evening is appreciated - many hands and all that.
Members are members for all manner of reasons, some stay for years (and years) and some attend 1/2 dozen times and decide that they have nothing more to learn, shortly thereafter changing their middle name to "pro" or such.
Obviously it is appreciated if general meetings and group events etc are supported as this of course makes them more viable for everyone. Furthermore making images from outings and events available for club promotion is appreciated - the more good material we have to "exhibit" the better.
Please feel free to take a look at the club-names
with which members have been christened.