NEXT Monday, Somerset County Cricket Club (SCCC) holds its AGM.

This is undoubtedly one of the most crucial of AGMs in the recent history of the club and I would urge all members to make every effort to attend and call to account those responsible for the enormous increase in membership subscriptions for 2018. 

Lee Cooper, CEO, and Charles Clark, chairman elect, have stressed repeatedly for the need of increases in order to safeguard the financial integrity and security of the club. 

READ MORE: Cricket club chief responds to complaints over rise in membership prices

Simultaneously, both stress that we are ‘members’. We are not. Membership implies certain privileges not granted to non members. This is true at one level but absent, or at best not stressed nor identified, at another.

Fundamental changes, e.g. increases in subscriptions should be put forward, discussed and voted upon by members PRIOR to their proposed implementation.

This has not occurred. This is not membership as most people would understand it to imply. 

I am a member of another club, in addition to Somerset, that informs members of all major changes and members listen to proposals. There is open discussion and if necessary, a vote takes place.

This has NOT been afforded to the many loyal Somerset members. Procedures do exist but are not given to members and consequently, members have no say. 

Increases in membership fees should be debated, voted upon and if not carried, the club would need to rethink the wisdom of such high increases.

Personally, should I renew my membership on a like-for-like basis to 2017 I would pay an increase of £100, i.e. 50 per cent. I am not alone. 

We were not consulted, but TOLD - no meeting to discuss the issues, no vote. For members read, season ticket holder. Shame on the club officials.

READ MORE: LETTER: 'Membership price boost could change cricket-watching lives of many'

Mr Cooper is a successful businessman. He has founded a business that bears his name. The company is the major sponsor of SCCC. The ground carries the name of his company, as will the players, given that Cooper Associates will be emblazoned on all their kit. 

Clearly there is a conflict of interest here between the CEO of Somerset and his position within the club’s principal sponsor. I invite members to consider this. 

Moreover the appointment, again not endorsed by members, of Charles Clark as chairman is contentious. 

Unfortunately for him, guilty by association of financial irregularities committed by a very well known estate agent, for which they were heavily fined and of which he is a partner.

Fowler Street