A vacancy for BBRC membership will arise on 1st April 1997. We have already requested nominations to be sent to me, with names and addresses of two supporters, by 31st October 1996 (Brit. Birds 89: 176). The Committee itself does not propose to nominate anyone, in order to encourage nominations without a perceived fear of 'losing' to the 'official candidate'. Candidates should have a proven ability in the field and a wide experience of a substantial proportion of the species on the Committee's list; experience of record assessment, with an objective and fair-minded approach to the subject; knowledge of the national rarity scene; an ability to deal with paperwork in an organised fashion; and time to spend assessing reports, which will require several hours per week in most months of the year for several years. In November 1996, a list of candidates will be sent to county/regional recorders and bird-observatory wardens, with a voting slip. In widening the electorate, the BBRC decided that the greater contact with more observers normally experienced at a county level should be reflected in a higher number of votes available to counties than to observatories. Many observatory wardens and some of their committees have regular contact with observers, but most birders who visit observatories no longer stay there, nor in many cases even enter the buildings or speak to the staff. We propose, therefore, that each observatory may cast two votes, while each county or regional recorder shall have five votes.