Naturists Campaigning for Naturism

British Naturism

Be naked for a comedy play at Oxford

The narrow boat Tyseley. Photo courtesy of Jon Gascoyne.

Sandra Ballard has negotiated a performance, for a naturist-only audience, on Friday 9 August 2019 in Oxford, of the play Redcoatsby the well-known travelling Mikron Theatre. 

“Mikron’s radiant Redcoats will guide you through 80 years of Butlins splendour with their trademark mix of fun, pathos and songs. Join us as we delve into holiday huts, bonny babies and knobbly knees with guest appearances from Marlene Dietrich, Gracie Fields and Laurel and Hardy.”

This special performance will be at Toad Oxford Artisan Distillery, Old Depot, South Park, Cheney Lane, Oxford OX3 7QJ. Don’t forget to bring a towel to sit on!

Arrive on Friday 9 August at 6.30pm for tasting a gin or two, before the play starts at 7.30pm. Tickets for the play are £15.50 each and can be purchased from the BN website. Book early to avoid disappointment!

MIKRON is an award-winning Yorkshire-based national arts charity now in their 48thyear. Travelling on-board their historic narrowboat, Tyseley, Mikron is a professional theatre company that travels the country by inland waterways to give performances at non-theatrical venues by canal or river in the summer months. They also travel by van in spring and autumn.

“I have seen many performances by Mikron over the past 40 years, they are always good fun.” They commission two new plays each year, and the companion to Redcoats during the 2019 season is All Hands-on Deck; the story of two WRENS during World War 2, the polar opposites to each other. 

MIKRON perform in repertory and tour between April and October. Further details of their 2019 tour can be found on Mikron’s website.

John Paine
April 2019

But what about the children!

Not entirely sure how it came out on Yahoo! Movies but Good Morning Britain’s Lottie Day and comedian Kate Smurthwaite discussed on Friday, if children should attend BN’s Sandcastle Waterpark event.

Afterwards, there was a debate on twitter with views expressed for and against. A voxpop question in the article, asked: how healthy is Britain’s relationship with nudity? And 60% said it was unhealthy.

Isn’t it time we put this to bed, once and for all?

Article: Should kids be allowed to go to naturist events?

Autumn Meeting 2018

Last October, the members of the Management Collective (ManCol for short) met in Worcestershire to discuss progress. Our friends in London have made excellent progress following the guidance published by the College of Policing on public nudity. We also discussed an advanced version of the proposed Survey of UK Naturism, which will be launched later this year.

By all means read the minutes in full.

Reg Barlow

Naturism and the Police

The College of Policing have just published a briefing note to help frontline police officers with incidents involving public nudity and naturism.

The Public Nudity Advice and Decision-making Aid from the College of Policing has come some years after the CPS published its own guidance: Nudity in Public, guidance on handling cases of naturism, even so NAG’s Treasurer Duncan Heenan said: ‘It is a welcome addition and should greatly help with educating frontline police officers.’

In the briefing note, officers are told that naturism is ‘a philosophical belief’ and ‘naturists have a right to freedom of expression, which only engages [the] criminal law if they commit sexual offences or use disorderly behaviour’ and they ‘should consider every situation according to its own circumstances’.

While it explained the wide

The Digital Economy and Naturism

For someone of my generation or older, the digital economy is a mystery with countless purchases being made online, around the world, every hour let alone day. Yet, it is the times we live in and all of us must learn to adapt.

The advancement of technology is so fast, Governments are always playing ‘catch up’ when it comes to legislation designed to place limits or safeguards on the digital economy, so it should be no surprise that the UK Government has already replaced the Act it introduced in 2010 with The Digital Economy Act 2017. This latest version introduces methods to ensure that minors (those under 18) cannot access pornographic material, among other things.

From the outset, naturism has been greatly affected by online pornography, with naturists reluctant to share images, either still or moving, of themselves and others enjoying the simple delights of non-sexual social nudity, fearful that they would end up on a porn website for the purpose of sexual arousal. The truth is, so many images are uploaded to the internet, the chances that a pornographer will find your picture or video are slim, but we cannot deny, it does happen. Yet, research carried out by NAG has found that pornography has abused the naturist lifestyle from much earlier on in history. We discovered a porn film from the 1930s titled Nudist Barsupposedly set in France. It’s short, less than six minutes, but it gives the consumer from whatever age the impression that because naturists are nude together, we are

Naturist Interaction Survey

A final year student at Bournemouth University is writing his (her) dissertation for their undergraduate honours degree course in Events and Leisure Marketing.

The dissertation is looking at participation and interaction at naturist events. It will take between 5 and 10 minutes to complete and is fully compliant with the university’s procedures for research involving human subjects.

Like all such surveys, participation in the Naturist Interaction survey is voluntary and by doing so, you are confirming you are at least 18. Other than passing on the link, NAG has no involvement with this piece of academic work.


Nothing Changes

The INF’s Central Committee met in Costa de Caprica, Portugal in early November 2017 and we have seen the minutes. As a consequence, we think there are items worthy of your attention and to British Naturism members in particular, who contribute substantially to the INF coffers.

After the debacle of the 2016 World Congress in New Zealand, Gregers Mollers, (Thailand) has now been asked to re-established contact with member federations and repair the INF’s relationships with them. In a letter to all federations, Mollers asked: What do you want of the INF-FNI? The minutes quotes from three replies received from member federations, while naming just two: The Australian Naturist Federation was unequivocal, “Get rid of the people running it already.” Meanwhile the Canadian Naturists said: “The INF-FNI exists for the federations; it is not a governing body and has no authority over the federations.” These quotes imply the named federations believe that the INF requires a regime change and that it is the member federations that are in charge. Mollers actually read the letter from the Canadian federation in full, suggesting its contents had more relevance to the matter in hand than just the sound bite featured. While we can understand why it was not included in the text, it could have been attached as an annex.

Mollers said the source of the third quote wanted to remain anonymous but it is so innocuous it has raised our suspicions. It said: “The Wellington election was damaging for naturism; top priority should be to work together for INF-FNI.” NAG has no proof of course, but we cannot help wondering if this came straight from the mouth of Sieglinde Ivo, whose election as INF President proved so controversial. Why ask to be anonymous, otherwise? So, is this an oblique warning to those federations who expressed their concerns about the Presidential vote not to misbehave in the future? If so, what would the punishment be; excommunication? British Naturism has already held a vote on its INF membership. True, it was defeated by a substantial margin but with so few members voting the actual winner was apathy, which is what INF and federation management appear to rely on.

The minutes also revealed the cost of the incompetently managed election re-run for INF President. By getting delegates to travel to Vienna after a delay of more than six months, it cost the INF €17,000 (£15,200 or US$20,300 at the time of writing). This was a complete waste of money when a simple email from the federation’s chairperson or president confirming what their vote had been would have sufficed.

Perhaps of more interest to BN members is the news that ex-President Angela Russell is still involved with naturist affairs, having been nominated by her new federation, the Irish Naturist Federation, as EuNat sports’ officer. The minutes show that thisnomination was accepted by the INF and now it just needs to be confirmed by the next EuNat meeting. This is the second time that members of the NAG’s management collective have noticed a BN EC member leaving under a cloud of suspicion, only to find a Europeanstage for their talents by joining another federation. You may disagree of course, but simply by the expedient of resigning from one federation and joining another any alleged inappropriate behaviour appears to be rewarded rather than punished. Perhaps the INF’s working party might like to look at that while they’re at it?

Lastly, the minutes stated that following Nick Caunt’s elevation from International Director to BN President, Huub Giesen said that he, Nick, was too busy to oversee the scientific research that was kicked off by a presentation to the British Psychological Society. However, the minutes do not state how Giesen knows this. Our concern now, is that money allocated by the INF for academic research will languish in the accounts unused, especially as NO UK university has been told that funding is available for suitable post-graduate studies. Hard as it is to write this, there is now doubt that this project will ever achieve its goal.

Taken together, these points make us even more convinced that naturism will be best served by a change in management and purpose of the INF. It might be the ‘working party’ referred to will achieve that, but its scope is not clear and NAG is less confident that ANYONE on the top table is man or woman enough to sacrifice their personal ambitions for the good of naturism, preferring to hold on to the gravy train instead.

Motion to leave INF defeated

British Naturism is staying in the INF after an AGM motion’s defeat, hoping to effect change from the inside.

In a vote, taken on 8 October 2017, 91 BN members voted for a motion to leave the international organisation compared with the 253 members who followed the EC’s recommendation and voted to stay. Before the AGM, BN released figures that showed the membership stood at 8,351; in total 344 members voted or just four (4) per cent of the membership.

The motion was brought forward by Duncan Heenan, a past Treasurer to BN, who told those in attendance: ‘BN became a member of [the] INF because of a worthwhile vision, 64 years ago. That vision has long been lost within a self-seeking and self-perpetuating bureaucracy. In practice INF achieves nothing for naturism, and yet costs a lot to do so. Despite BN’s best efforts, this has not changed for decades.’ In 2011, Heenan brought a similar motion to the AGM. He continued: ‘The vote was to stay, and all the arguments for doing so amounted to giving INF another chance to reform. Here we are, six years later, considering the same thing. INF has not changed, INF does not get the message, and yet the EC are still asking for yet another chance for some miracle to come along. I say that INF has had too many chances already, and to give it more chances merely helps it [to convince itself that change is unnecessary].’

Naturally, NAG has no problem BN’s vote to stay, but perhaps they can explain a couple of things for the benefit of its members:

With the promotion of Nick Caunt to BN President and with no replacement for his former role of International Director, how will change in the INF be brought about?

What changes to the INF does BN want to make?

How many years will BN give to achieve this goal?

We are certain that Sieglinde Ivo will reward BN for its loyalty — then again perhaps not.

INF, Vienna, 22 July 2017

International Naturist Federation has issued the minutes for the reconvened World Congress in Vienna, held on 22 July and it has answered two questions that we raised shortly afterwards.

The first question we asked was about the votes distributed among the delegates. The delegate from Hungary informed the meeting that he (or she) had been held up in traffic and this led to a reduction of votes from 197 to 193. Before the vote for President however, the Hungarian delegate arrived and thereby restored the number of votes to 197. Unfortunately this was missed when we viewed the information sent to us, following the debacle. Stones and glass houses spring to mind, but we are several thousand mistakes behind Leslie Rabuchin, president for the general assembly, who could not even get the original count right.

The other question we had related to the election of Legal Council members in 2012 and 2014, and the length of the term of office. Was it two years, or four? The term of office has already been answered, but the minutes revealed Hervé Bégeot was elected to see out the last two years of German Lawyer Thomann’s term of office when he retired in 2012. Bégeot was then elected in his own right in 2014 for the full term of four years but a mistake in the minutes published suggested it was for only two. Why Rabuchin or Bégeot could not have said that, instead of throwing a tantrum like a spoilt two-year-old, one will never know? Why were the minutes released without being proofread or fact checked? Why didn’t any of the other member federations bother to check the minutes and highlight the mistake before Vienna?

The minutes also confirm the chaotic voting arrangements for the new President and their gerrymandering nature, described by Rabuchin (LFN) on page 8. Delegates could only vote for Ivo or abstain, they had no right under these arrangements to vote against Ivo’s re-election. This followed a meeting to decide if those wishing to stand for President met the selection criteria, which also happen to include one of those self-same candidates, Ivo, among its number. If that isn’t a conflict of interest, we don’t know what is? We are not sure what profession Rabuchin claims to be a part of, but we suspect he isn’t very good at it if this is an example of his work.

This is the essence of our objection to these elections and why we believe there has to be a clean sweep of the whole top table, with reform of the INF’s terms of reference at its centre.

In a statement, Duncan Heenan, member of the NAG’s Management Collective and BN member, said: ‘The toxic mix of incompetence, corruption, childishness and arrogance is breath taking — and this follows a similar debacle in New Zealand. And don’t forget, BN members (and other Federations) are paying for all this!’ A motion, launched by Heenan, about BN’s future membership of the INF will be discussed at the next AGM, in October. What stance BN’s Board of Directors will take is not known at the time of writing, but will no doubt reflect the considered feelings of Nick Caunt, the International Officer. These might be gauged from his statement in Vienna, post election (see page 10 under NCT).

We can only highlight parts of the minutes, and although the document is 12 pages long, we think it is worth reading in full and invite you to do so.

Minutes for the INF re-convened World Congress, Vienna, 22 July 2017.

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