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Minutes of Annual General Meeting
30th Jan 2009
Present: Martin Calvert (Chair), Adrian Coltman, Joan & Mervyn Clayton, Adam & Carol Bull, Paul Ellis, Dorothy Carter, Steven Johns, Peter Trainer.
1. Apologies for Absence
Mike Betteridge, Peter Foulston, Adam Wilkes, Sian Dodderidge.
2. Minutes of the last AGM 01-02-2008
Agreed as a true record.
3. Matters Arising
- Notice Boards
The Group plan to put up the notice boards this year subject to approval from everyone including Parks and Countryside.
- Tree Lopping
There has been no further tree lopping over 2008.
4. Chair's Report 2008 (Martin Calvert)
- Action Mornings
We held 12 Action Mornings during 2008 including our first ever Action Day. The Action Day with lunchtime BBQ went very well and we installed 6 gabions to form a new jetty complete with fencing and an approach path. We moved 20 tonnes of gabion stone that day into the baskets. There were a couple of un-announced Action Mornings on the following Monday and Tuesday to complete the approach path and jetty. Other Action Morning work involved planting the island with shrubs and trees, spreading wildflower seed, planting about 700 wild flower plugs in the meadow area, rhododendron clearing, path and boardwalk construction, repairing paths and keeping them clear, litter picking, cleaning the Bath House, planting bulbs and installing benches. Attendances have been excellent as Joan will confirm and the results of our efforts are most gratifying.
Thanks to all the Action Morning attendees.
- Core Group Meetings
We held 14 Core Group meetings and numerous site meetings.
Thanks to the Core Group members for their efforts. Particular thanks to two Core Group members without official portfolio who provide much of the ideas and direction for the group - our Chief Engineer Mervyn and Chief Executive Joan.
- FunDay 2008
The 2008 FunDay was a success with an excellent attendance. We clarified the permission aspect for the 2008 event and thus this year's FunDay, our 10th, will be on June 13th 2009 under the same agreement as last year with Emma Trickett as our Leeds City Council adviser. Thanks to the army of FunDay helpers without whom we could not run the event which is also a plea for help for this year. Thanks also to the Area Committee for their £500 grant.
Thanks to Adam Bull for the continuing success and income from our merchandise ventures. Adam Bull will shortly give his report. The new Christmas cards have been a particular success.
We received the balance of the fund from the Chapel Allerton Hospital Development Campaign which was wound up, and we installed a bench on their behalf which needs a plaque attaching. We also received a grant from my employer Northern Rail, towards the development of the Meadow, having received a donation from Carol's employer Norwich Union (soon to be Aviva) late in 2007. We also received individual donations from grateful local residents.
- The Meadow
Approximately 700 wild flower plugs were planted in 2008 along with a lot of seed spread and we are/were hopeful for a lot of flowers this year. However our hard work was undone unwittingly by Duffy's, a Leeds City Council contractor, doing work on the end of the lake. We lost about 30 wild flower squares by an optimistic digger driver trying to drive across the boggiest part of the meadow. Duffy's have agreed to put right their mistake and so far have created a replacement area for wild flower planting. We have yet to agree on the funding of replacement flowers.
- Environmental Crime
After much work securing the various drain covers and silt traps, we are cautiously optimistic that the lake levels will be dependent on nature as opposed to someone who enjoys tampering with water levels.
One other recent piece of vandalism was the attempted burning of a bench near Gledhow Lane.
- Heritage Open Days
Following on from the success of 3 previous years, we opened the Bath House for one day this year from 12.00-4.00. It was exceedingly busy and enabled us to attract a wider audience to the Group and sell lots of Christmas cards. We had some publicity from Radio Leeds which was a big help.
Members of the group attended the St Mathew's Church Summer Fair, and the Chapel Allerton Allotments Show, and we were kindly invited to be the guest community group at the Oakwood Farmers Market in July.
- Greenspace Section 106 Funding
After announcing the news re the Section 106 Greenspace Funding at the 2007 AGM to improve access and habitat in Gledhow Valley Woods, we have just about completed the spending of it in 2008. The money was Greenspace Section 106 funding and was provided by the developer of Southlands on Harrogate Road. Developers are obliged to contribute towards greenspace projects in a development or in the community area. This applies to developments of 10 dwellings or more.
We managed to get the council team to return and put edging on the path in various places and the missing stone on the bridge is finally, after many years, no longer missing.
Reaction to the results of the 106 spending is nearly all positive, having been decidedly mixed reaction at this time last year. The remainder of the grant, approximately £700 will go towards some further beech pollarding work and indeed we are hopeful that a rolling programme to continue to improve the woodland habitat can be maintained.
We have some Area Committee funding still to spend on path work so we have a site meeting with Fred Duff in February to discuss some further large scale path work on the top path from Gledhow Lane towards Ridgeway.
- FGVW Talks
Michael Betteridge has again given talks on FGVW to local groups and led a party of Brownies on a guided walk which was very well received. This is an aspect in which Michael excels and we are very grateful to him and the resulting donations.
- Thank You
FGVW has many supporters and helpers. The rangers from the council are always supportive. Thank you to Emma Steve and Dan for their support.
John Casey and his team from Potternewton Park continue to support the Group in many ways.
Chris Bolam, senior Planner from Leeds City Council has been very helpful guiding us through the Section 106 process.
As ever, we are grateful to our local councillors for their advice and support.
We look forward to another busy year and our 10th Annual FunDay. Thank you all.
5. Treasurer's Report 2008 (Paul Ellis)
Balance at 31.12.2008 = £2,180.05
Balance at 31.12.2007 = £13,500.64
Balance at 31.12.2008 = £8,517.84
Balance at 31.12.2007 = £768.45
Some of the money has been transferred from the Current Account to the Reserve Account as suggested at last year's AGM.
Paul confirmed that the Group are in a healthy financial position.
The Group discussed registering as a Charity again. Paul agreed it was a good idea and that he would complete the forms ready for March/April meeting.
6. Merchandise Sales & Web Site Report 2008 (Adam Bull)
Web Site Report for 2008
In 2007 the site was regularly receiving 5,000-6,000 visitors per month, and peaked at over 8,000 in July. During 2008 the site received a slightly smaller 4,500-5,500 visitors per month, peaking at just under 6,000 in March. However, the number of pages viewed increased during 2008 meaning that although less people visited, those that did stayed longer and looked at more pages.
The total number of visits since the site began until the end of December 2008 is 326,867.
This year the site managed to achieve levels of nearly 18,000 page views per month and averaged around the 13,000 mark, which is about 1,500 per month more than during 2007.
The total number of page views since the site began until the end of December 2008 is 646,322.
Web Site Statistics
Total number of pages in the web site (HTML) = 282
Total number of images used (JPEG & GIF) = 1,228
Total number of 360 degree QuickTime panoramas (MOV) = 16
Total number of audio files (MP3) = 2
Total number of miscellaneous files = 5
Total number of files = 1,533
Total file size (MB) = 60
E-Mail Mailing List
Number of people on the e-mail mailing list = 256 (Up 49 from last year's 207).
Merchandise Report for 2008
Total income during 2008 = £742.00
Total income to date = £2,687.10
Total development costs to date = £52.93
Total production costs to date = £2,104.75
Total profit to date = £529.42
All development and production costs have now been covered, which means that takings from the sale of all remaining stock represent 100% profit.
7. Election of Officers
No new nominations were received so the Group agreed to waive the 3 year restriction on length of time in the role.
- Chair - Martin Calvert
- Vice Chair - Adrian Coltman
- Treasurer - Paul Ellis
- Secretary - Carol Bull
Joan provided a report on the record numbers of volunteers we had over the year. The highest number recorded on an Action Morning was 44. Sunday was the most popular day averaging 28 volunteers. Joan suggested that the Group think up more than one activity to cover at the Action Mornings so people aren't waiting, and that we need more activities for children. She also suggested that we have senior leaders to oversee tasks and that members need to start clearing up earlier.
- Health & Safety
Joan suggested that we look at our Health & Safety leaflet again to check it is adequate. The Group suggested showing it to the Council since the volunteers are working on their land.
- Name Badges
Joan provided badge samples and information. Paul agreed to order some badges for the Core Group members and volunteers at the FunDay.
Mervyn volunteered to look at the tools to see what needed sharpening. Steve volunteered to store some of the gazebos currently in Mervyn's garage so that he could free up some space to store the tools.
- Chapel Allerton Allotment Show
The Group has been invited to the Allotment Show in April. Adrian and Adam volunteered again.
- Grant Application
Adrian has applied for a large grant with Leeds City Council.
- Site Meeting
Martin is attending a site meeting with Fred Duff on the 10th February.
- Action Morning Leaders
Steve and Peter volunteered to be Senior Leaders at some of the Action Mornings.
- St Matthew's Church Summer Fair
Dorothy invited the Group to attend the St Matthew's Church Summer Fair on 4th July.
- FunDay Barbeque
Paul invited the Group to a Barbeque after the FunDay.
- Man with a Chainsaw
Martin read out an e-mail he had received from Leeds City Council regarding a man using a chainsaw in the woods. The man had been granted permission from the Council to use some of the wood for personal use, provided it was also non-profit making. The Group were concerned over the safety of people using the woods due to the use of a chainsaw.
- Photos of the Woods
Martin had also received an e-mail from a local woman who had taken photos in the wood and wanted to display them in public places. The Group were concerned that the photos highlighted bad aspects of the woods rather than anything good and would ideally prefer to see a balance, however they did not object to the photos being shown.
- University Volunteers
Martin had been contacted by the university to ask if 15 volunteer students could come and help in the woods. Martin and Mervyn agreed to look to see what work they could do and order materials.
10. Dates of Next Meetings
- Core Group Meeting - Thu 5 Feb 2009 (Gledhow Sports & Social Club)
- Action Morning - Sun 8 Feb 2009
- Action Morning - Sat 7 Mar 2009
- Action Morning - Sun 5 Apr 2009
- FunDay - Sat 13 Jun 2009