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Minutes of Core Group Meeting
12th April 2007

Present: Martin Calvert (Chair), Mervyn & Joan Clayton, Ellis Charlton, Adam & Carol Bull, Adrian Coltman, Mike Betteridge, Kath Morgan, Alan Wilkinson, Brenda Lancaster.

  1. Apologies for Absence
  2. Minutes of the Meeting Held 8th March 2007
  3. Matters Arising
  4. Correspondence
  5. Grants Sub-Committee
  6. Action Mornings
  1. 106 Grant Update
  2. Information Boards
  3. FunDay 2007
  4. AOB
  5. Dates of Next Meetings

1. Apologies for Absence

Peter Foulston, Sian Dodderidge, Paul Ellis, James Mudd.

2. Minutes of the Meeting Held 8th March 2007

Agreed as a true record.

3. Matters Arising

  • New Planting
    Martin has e-mailed Donald Purves to ask for his opinion on what type of plants to put in the woods.
  • Library Talk
    Mike has agreed to do a talk on the woods and the work the Group does at the library two weeks prior to the Annual FunDay.

4. Correspondence

The Group received the following correspondence:

  • Gledhow Valley Conservation Area Group has sent the minutes for the first two of their meetings. Mike attended the second meeting and gave a brief overview to the Group. Mike explained that although both Groups worked in the same area they were coming at it from two different angles. The Gledhow Valley Conservation Area Group specialise in property rather than the woodland so he did not think it was necessary for a member of FGVW to attend future meetings. However, it would be useful to receive the minutes. The minutes explained that Mr R Heaton had died suddenly. Mr Heaton owned Gledhow House and had recently had planning permission rejected for building some flats. Mr Heaton intended to appeal. The Group will continue to be vigilant. The Gledhow Valley Conservation Area Group would also like a stall at the FunDay to publicise what they do.
  • The Group has received information and leaflets from Leeds City Council on the Leeds Country Way Challenge. These show planned walks around Leeds in manageable chunks.
  • The Group has received this month's minutes of the Leeds Voice environmental forum.

5. Grants Sub-Committee

Adrian attended a funding meeting on 11th April. He has some forms which he is going to discuss with Peter Traynor.

No other news on the outstanding grant applications.

The Group has received £200 MICE money from Brenda Lancaster for the FunDay.

Elaine has applied to the Floral Fund on the Group's behalf for grants to cover the marquee, chairs and toilets for the FunDay.

6. Action Mornings

The next Action Morning is on Sunday 15th April. The meeting place will be where Allerton Grange Way meets Gledhow Valley Road. The Group plan to install Gabions in Gledhow Beck near Allerton Grange Way. Four tons of stone has been ordered and Adrian has agreed to be there for the delivery at 7.30am on Saturday. Mervyn agreed to bring some wire and cutters. Steve will bring 2 wheelbarrows.

The next Action Morning is on Saturday 19th May. Martin is going to consult with the experts to see if it is a suitable time for planting bog plants. If it is, then the Action Morning will consist of planting bog plants and wildflowers. The meeting point will be at the bench near the boggy area opposite the horses' field. The Group may need to come up with another plan if it is not a suitable time of year to plant.

Next Action Mornings

  • Sunday 15th April 2007
  • Saturday 19th May
  • Sunday 22nd July 2007
  • Sunday 2nd September 2007
  • Saturday 6th October 2007
  • Sunday 11th November 2007
  • Saturday 8th December 2007

Adrian has also re-registered the Gipton Spa Bath House for the Heritage Open Days in September 2007 so an additional day may be added later to clean the Bath House.

7. 106 Grant Update

Martin had a site meeting with Fred Duff on Tuesday 13th March. Fred agreed to our proposals but was concerned that we wanted to use outside contractors to do some of the work. He wants us to use council workers to "get value for money". However, the Group had already received two sets of quotes and one of these was much cheaper than the Council's estimates. The Council quotes are for £11,500 for the pathwork, compared to our quote from a (Council approved) contractor of £4,700. The Council quote for clearing the island was over £4,000 compared to £1,700 plus VAT for our contractors. The Group raised their concerns that we would not get value for money by using the Council and they believed it could take a lot longer to complete the work. However, the land does belong to the Council and the Group would like to remain on favourable terms with them. Martin has e-mailed Fred Duff and Chris Bolam to voice the Group's concerns and is awaiting a reply.

Fred Duff also mentioned that the path work already completed was not (allegedly) in line with the Disability Discrimination Act. However, the path was built with Council representation, and the guidelines have never been mentioned before. Also, the Group's recent path work has been tested by a wheelchair user who found it perfectly adequate. The Group has therefore asked the Council for the specific guidelines to which future path work should adhere.

Adam speculated that if the council is in some way compelled to ensure woodland paths meet certain DDA requirements, that they be doing the work anyway and not using up the 106 grant money.

Adrian suggested asking Chris Bolam for permission to use some contractors who are Council approved to try and speed up the process.

Mervyn raised the point that the Council has recently brought in outside contractors to cut down some trees in the woods.

Brenda Lancaster has become involved and has arranged to set up a meeting between the Council and members of the Group to discuss a way forward. She has suggested several dates - 14th May (am), 15th May (pm), 18th May. The Group agreed to discuss and agree a date which would be most convenient for key members to attend.

All other proposals such as planting and buying tools, which would account for around £7,000 of the grant money, have been agreed and can be actioned.

8. Information Boards

Adam showed the Group examples of similar boards done by the Friends of Hob Moor in York to get an idea of what information might be presented and how it might be laid out.

Adam agreed to make progress on the design, and to meet with Martin on Monday 16th April to discuss specifics.

9. FunDay 2007

  • LCC Permission - Andrew Sykes has received e-mail.
  • Elaine Hill - Attending. Agreed to provide 30 tables and 60 chairs, a marquee and some toilets.
  • John Casey - Informed. Martin to liaise re grass cutting and fire extinguishers.
  • Risk Assessments - Martin to liaise with Elaine.
  • Grants - £200 MICE money received so far.
  • Posters - Adam to send file to Adrian for printing 40xA4. Martin to sort out A3 copies.
  • Programme - Adam, Peter and Adrian to design. 400 needed.
  • Flyers - 5000 needed. Photocopying is being organised by Joan, distribution would be through local schools and libraries, guillotine. Phil?
  • Chapel Allerton Magazine - Advert required. Adrian to investigate.
  • Refreshments - Martin has written to local supermarkets for support*. Need as much home baking as possible. Please encourage all supporters.
  • Gazebos - 6 or 7 large FGVW and 5 small FGVW. Graeme? Phil's Scout tent? Paul's tent, Heather's gazebo, Elaine's marquee.
  • PA System - Peter to provide.
  • St Johns Ambulance - Application approved.
  • Turns - Daftasadrum confirmed; East Steelers still only a possibility and Urban Circus agreed subject to final confirmation. Adrian also has a jazz band lined up, however they need a generator
  • LCC Forestry & Dale the Chainsaw Man - Agreed to attend.
  • Raffle - Adam to scrounge prizes and organise.
  • Hunt the Duck - Adam to organise.
  • FGVW Display - Adam and Adrian to provide.
  • Local History/Genealogy - Robin Dove invited.
  • Parachute Games - John Farley invited. Adrian and Paul have parachutes if needed.
  • T-Shirt Design - Plenty of t -shirts in stock from last year. Martin to check if we need to purchase any more.
  • Firefighters - Mervyn and Joan have invited James who has agreed to attend
  • Police/PCSO's - Adrian to contact Inspector Briggs at Stainbeck Police Station.
  • Wooden Tree - Donna confirmed.
  • Owl Man - Confirmed.
  • Beekeeper - David attending.
  • Hedgehogs, etc. - Jenny Beecher and Pennie Keech both unavailable. Sue Charlton has agreed to come, and may have some hedgehogs for releasing.
  • Tadpoles/Frogs - Doubtful due to timing of the event.
  • Wildlife Quiz - Rodley Nature Reserve, Joan is in contact with them.
  • Bug Hunt - Subject to manpower Steve Clavering attending.
  • Bird Boxes - Mervyn. Wood has been ordered.
  • Plants - Gladys. Due to last year's poor response to `Plant Your Own Meadows' the Group has decided just to sell plants instead.
  • Clay Modelling - Woodcraft folk will do this.
  • Woodcraft Folk - Attending
  • Face Painters - 2 confirmed.
  • Turns/Timetable - Peter.
  • Roping Off - Peter.
  • Setting Up - From 7.30am sharp please.
  • Vegan Society - Request turned down
  • Herbal Medicine Stall - Donald Purves confirmed.
  • Morris Men - Joan to investigate.
  • Ferrets/Skunk Person - Joan to forward details on to Martin.
  • Storyteller - Suggested by Steve
  • Wishing Tree - Lynn confirmed.
  • Conservation Area Committee - Have requested a stall, approved by Group.
  • Animal Protection Stall - Agreed.
  • Radish Stall - Agreed. Adam to liase with Radish.
  • Ferret Rescue - Possibility. Joan in contact.

*Sainsbury's has donated a £5 voucher. Martin also wrote to the local Tesco store. He explained how the Group frequently rescues and returns their trolleys from the woods, and about the work that we do. They sent back a standard response, showing that they had not even read the letter, together with a £10 voucher. The Group had been contacted by Tesco's Corporate Affairs Manager a few months ago as they valued the Group's thoughts concerning the expansion of the local store. He had stressed how keen Tesco was to support local communities. Martin therefore wrote an excellent letter to the Corporate Affairs Manager on the Group's behalf stating how disappointed he was with their letter and lack of support… he also returned the £10 voucher.

Rodley Nature Reserve has offered to put some of the Group's leaflets in with their own displays to promote our work.

10. AOB

  • Deer Spotted Again
    It was noted that almost everyone in Leeds has now seen deer in the woods, apart from Mike!

  • Trees for Cities
    Kath asked the Group if there was a Trees for Cities type initiative in Leeds. She had been involved in this in Sidcup. Brenda agreed to look into it.

  • Challenge Group Money
    Joan had been approached by someone who used to be involved in the Challenge Group. The Group campaigned against building in the old hospital grounds some years ago. The Group was dissolved, however some money remains. Joan agreed to accept the money on behalf of the Group and to use it for a bench and (possibly) a possible plaque. Joan to liase with the Challenge Group member.

  • Springwatch/Breathing Spaces Event
    Martin has heard that this will be on June 9th this year however it is not clear if the Group will be involved.

  • Lake Draining
    The lake was emptied again last Friday by a local resident. Joe Smallman has expressed disappointment that the police haven't become more involved as it is a criminal damage case. Some nesting birds have been disturbed. Duffy's has done some repair work and the lake is filling up again. Beth from Radish has expressed concern and is willing to help the Group gather evidence if needed. Martin agreed to ask Joe Smallman for an update and to possibly contact the police again.

  • Rodley Nature Reserve
    Rodley Nature Reserve have been in contact with Joan and requested telephone numbers for some of the people who appear at the FunDay (specifically those who provide small animals, hedgehogs and chainsaw demonstrations). Martin agreed to send them.

  • Rat Problem
    Some members of the Group expressed concern over the increasing number of brown rats in the woods. Kath and Alan agreed to contact the rat catcher as they knew where the runs were.

  • Fish in Gledhow Lake
    Martin mentioned that he had seen 50 or so fish in the lake.

  • Herbalist Walk
    Donald Purves, local Herbalist, will be leading walks from Gipton Spa Bath House on Gledhow Valley Road, on Sunday 20th May at 2pm and Tuesday 22nd May at 6:30pm to coincide with Traditional Western Herbal Medicine Awareness Week 18-25 May 2007. Adam has listed the events on the web site and mentioned them in the Group's regular e-mail update.

11. Dates of Next Meetings

  • Action Morning - Sun 15th April 2007
  • Core Group Meeting - Thu 17th May 2007, 8pm at the Police Club, Gledhow Lane
  • Action Morning - Sat 19th May 2007
  • Family FunDay - Sat 16th June 2007

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