SWSS, the South Wales Swiss Society was created in Swansea in 1997 by three Swiss after meeting by chance. In order to reach other Swiss in Wales they placed an advert in The Swiss Review. Thereafter more Swiss in Wales made contact with the new group. The newly formed society initially met once, then twice a year in Swansea and in Tenby, Pembrokeshire.
Since the opening of the first Swiss Consulate in Cardiff in 2006, other Swiss in Wales became aware of SWSS and made contact via the new Consulate. As a result, regional Swiss Clubs were created: the Cardiff Swiss Club (covering South East Wales) and the Pembrokeshire Swiss Club (covering South West Wales ) The Swansea Swiss, the founders of the South Wales Swiss Society now called their own regional group: the Swansea Swiss Club. During a visit to Wales in 2008 by Eduard Krall, the Consul General at the Swiss Embassy in London, the newly created Cardiff and Pembrokeshire Swiss Clubs were launched.
After members of all South Wales Clubs ( Swansea, Cardiff & Pembrokeshire) met together for the first time in 2007, members agreed to make SWSS their umbrella organisation, set up a constitution in order to be able to open a bank account and apply for a grant for voluntary organisations start ups by the National Lottery. With the help of this grant they were then able to set up a website. This proved to be a useful tool to publicise their Swiss events in South Wales and attract more members. The website also hosts the address and information of the Honorary Consulate in Cardiff.
All Swiss Clubs in Wales have no formal officers and no annual membership fee. They are independent and are not affiliated to any other organisation other than SWSS. The emphasis of all Swiss Clubs in Wales is on informality with a loose structure, determined by their members. All event fees are shared amongst participating members.
The South Wales Swiss Society (SWSS) role:
SWSS has a more formal, representative and administrative role than any of the small regional clubs, which are all very informally organised.
SWSS holds a constitution for itself and and on behalf of all South Wales Clubs.
- SWSS holds a bank account for itself and and on behalf of all South Wales clubs.
- SWSS is responsible for organising larger events together with a regional South Wales clubs.
- SWSS supports events organised by the Honorary Consul and the Embassy.
- SWSS sends a representative to events when required.
- SWSS organises a meeting once a year for all regional clubs in South Wales, to discuss the agenda of events for the year and AOB.
Present SWSS officers
President, Vice President & treasurer
President: Rainer Arnold (Rainer belongs to the Cardiff Swiss)
Vice President & Treasurer: Rolf Brown (Rolf belongs to the Swansea Swiss
Gerry Allin, Swansea, 2007-2012
Ruth Thomas, Swansea, 1997 - 2007
Past SWSS Secretaries
Michele Pettifor, Swansea 2001- 2011
Pascale Aeschlimann, Cardiff, 2007 - 2009
Claire Sansom, Cardiff, 2007 - 2011