I am pleased to report that membership grew for the fifth consecutive year, from 123,000 at the start of the year to 141,000 at the end of December. Recruitment of new members was up by 40% compared with 2016, with our membership recruitment team delivering a very pleasing 45% of this growth.
During the year, we began the process of developing a new vision for CSSC to support our strategic plan, and to unite the organisation around a common purpose and set of values for the future.
In 2015, CSSC’s focus continued to be led by the 2013-15 Strategic Plan, which was successfully completed in October. CSSC’s total membership grew during the year from 116,180 at the end of 2014 to 119,245 at the end of 2015.
2014 was a positive year for CSSC despite being under threat from cuts in public spending and a civil service wide review of special leave with pay for sports events. I am particularly pleased to report that the CSSC Group achieved an operational surplus in both 2013 and 2014, something that had not been achieved for many years.
The UK economic climate continued to challenge us during 2013 and will undoubtedly do so this year. However, as our accounts illustrate later in this report, CSSC Ltd remained in relatively good financial health,with our income and expenditure showing an operating deficit of £95k, which compares favourably with a deficit of £413k at the end of 2012.
In June last year we were delighted to welcome our new Chairman, Robert Devereux, to his first Annual Conference at The Celtic Manor, and it was clear that he made an immediate impact in the way that he chaired our AGM. It is vitally important that we continue to have support for CSSC at the highest levels of Government and we very much value Robert’s leadership during this time of change at CSSC.
Traditionally this is a time when we look back over the past year and forward to the year ahead. For me personally, though, it is a time of reflection over the past fifteen years that I have spent as Chief Executive of CSSC. During that time I have been fortunate to have been supported by five Chairmen who have all been true ambassadors for CSSC; support for what we do at the highest levels in Government is vital for our continued success.