The annual online renewal process is scheduled to start next week. Subscription rates have not changed for 2016 and remain at their 2015 (and 2014) levels, which I trust will be welcomed by all members.

You will as usual receive a personalised email inviting you to renew. Please read it carefully because the process is quite different to previous years, partly because we’re using a web site provided by Warner Group Publications as part of their management of subscriptions, and partly because this makes new functionality available to members. We are using Warners standard infrastructure, so those who renew a subscription online to a Warners managed magazine may be familiar with some of what I outline.

This site is designed for renewals and for new member subscriptions. You will be asked to select the Renewal option, after which you’ll need to validate with the site. The data needed to do this will be provided in the email which you receive. You may find it easiest to copy and paste the three data items concerned from the email to the web site when you validate.

This site will allow you to manage your subscription and, in the future, elements of your membership data, both on a secure basis. You will therefore need to create a unique user ID and password for the site. The email address stored in your membership record will be pre-filled as your user ID. The site will validate the password you enter and advise you as to how strong it is. You should record your user ID and password securely for future use. If you forget your password then a reset facility exists elsewhere on the site.

Once you have registered, you will need to select the Subscription Offer you wish to renew. This will enable you to change subscription if necessary, e.g. from Junior to UK – Full if you were a Junior member and are no longer in full time education. You can also change from one class of membership to another if you have moved countries, by changing your Delivery Options. Both of these situations affect a number of members each year. Selecting the subscription adds it to your shopping cart, at which time you view it and check out.

You will be given the opportunity to review the delivery address for your magazines. Clicking Set to billing address to use the address currently held on file, or amend it if needed. Again, some members notify me of address changes during the renewal process – now this can be handled securely online as part of the renewal.

The remaining steps of the renewal process follow a standard online check out process. Payment is collected via SagePay, a worldwide market leader in secure online payment collection. After you’ve made your payment, you’ll receive an email acknowledging this. Your subscription will then be renewed for a further year and you can ignore any renewal notice that you receive with February’s issue of ’16mm Today’. Your current membership card does not carry an expiry date and will remain valid if your annual subscription has been paid.

If you don’t wish to renew online, you can renew over the phone by calling 01778 392016 (outside the UK call 00 44 1778 392016). Telephone lines are open 8 am – 6pm Monday to Friday and 9am – 5pm on Saturdays and Bank Holidays, excluding Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Years Day. Alternatively, you can wait until you receive the printed renewal notice with the February issue of ’16mm Today’ and make your payment by cheque or money order.

I am sure that some members will contrast the number of clicks they need to make with this process with the fewer clicks needed with the prior process, particularly for members who had a PayPal account. This process applies your renewal to your membership record as it is made and sends you an email within moments of the renewal. The prior process required me to download and review PayPal payments each morning, load them to the Association database, verify that the subscription had been updated and finally send an email to each person who had renewed to confirm renewal. The new process avoids all of that, so please view the additional clicks on your part in that light.

I will make a further announcement and will post a document with screen shots to help members as the renewal process opens.

Alan Regan, Chairman & Membership Secretary