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Minutes of Annual General Meeting
24th Jan 2014
Present: Martin Calvert (Chair), Adrian Coltman, Joan & Mervyn Clayton, Adam & Carol Bull, Paul & Hazel Ellis, Dorothy Carter, Mike & Penny Betteridge, Peter Foulston, Claire Standage, Trevor & Diane Kitto, Naomi Watts-Kitto, Steven Johns, Neil & Kay McDowell, Hannah Hunt, Alex King, Liz Flackett, Robert Jones, Jenny Page.
1. Apologies for Absence
2. Minutes of the last AGM 15-Feb-2013
Agreed as a true record.
3. Matters Arising
- The Woodcutter's House
The old woodcutter's house has been renovated and the residents are due to move in soon.
- Meadow Near the Lake
The Group has been trying throughout 2013 to make progress on the meadow near the lake. The Council require 3 quotes and there have been difficulties in obtaining these. Progress has been slow but we have now received 2 of the quotes.
- Action Morning Donuts
The heated debate regarding jam or custard donuts at the Action Mornings rages on!
4. Chair's Report 2013 (Martin Calvert)
- 25 volunteers work on the path near the Bath House draining and repairing it.
- The FunDay discussions start.
- 4 benches delivered.
- Received a grant of £2500 from Leeds Community Foundation following our investigations into Hilda Kitson's will.
- Received a grant of £242 from the proceeds of crime.
- 24 volunteers attend the Action Morning.
- The final stretch of the Lord Mayor's path is finished and drainage by the litter bin is improved.
- 25 volunteers continue work on what was to become the "M62" path.
- A well attended Action Morning sees more work creating the path towards the M62 bench, and a bench installed.
- 16 tonnes of stone delivered for the M62 path. This was moved by council digger onto the wood frame of the path. A couple of extra work parties finish off this section of path.
- At the Action Morning, the M62 bench was created. Then, later in the month, 22 Lloyds Bank volunteers crack on with Hilda's path by moving 8 tonnes of stone and also finish off the M62 path by moving 4 tonnes more.
- Steve Clavering leaves LCC employment to move to Spain. Thank you to Steve for all his assistance over the years. Not seen a ranger at an Action Morning since then.
- Short listed for the Skipton Building Society Grassroots Giving scheme.
- FunDay June 14th, lovely weather, no damaged pop-up gazebos, a great community day success. Thank you to the army of helpers.
- Voting for the Skipton Building Society grant scheme starts.
- 20 volunteers work on Hilda's path with 4 more tonnes of sandstone. 2 more benches installed.
- Audrey died 8th July.
- 10 Lloyds Bank volunteers work on Hilda's path in torrential rain. 8 more tonnes of stone moved a long way from Brackenwood Drive to Gledhow Lane.
- The female swan is returned to the lake, fully recuperated after lead poisoning. A lovely sight to see the pair greet each other.
- Annual FGVW BBQ at Paul and Hazel's. A lovely event, thank you to our hosts.
- The Bath House is cleaned ready for the Heritage Open Day. The Group learns lots of new words as the padlock on the gate to the Bath House turns out to have seized-up and takes 40 minutes to remove. Thanks to Avril for her electricity and water, used in cleaning the Bath House.
- 20 volunteers move 4 tonnes of stone, the furthest we have ever moved any stone, to complete Hilda's path. 100 metres of path is finished costing £3000.
- The Christmas card photos are chosen at a Core Group meeting.
- The Bath House receives 124 visitors and we receive £288 in takings. Many thanks to all the helpers.
- FGVW receives £230 from the Proceeds of Crime fund.
- A very wet Action Morning. 29 volunteers, bulb planting, meadow cutting and wasps stinging. 6 bags of bulbs are planted.
- FGVW Christmas card selling season starts with events at Oakwood, St Matthews, Roundhay School and the Three Hulats. Thank you to all the volunteer sellers.
- Adrian secures a grant from Leeds North East Homes and we are successful in the Skipton Building Society Grassroots Giving Scheme with a grant for £500. Thanks to all for voting for FGVW. Northern Rail give a grant of £250 to replace squirrel damaged nest boxes with "woodcrete" ones.
- The Lord Mayor's path repairs continue with 4 more tonnes of stone and 20m of extra strong wire for the board walks.
- FGVW Christmas card sales in full swing.
- Risk Assessments reviewed and ready for Council approval.
- 4 more tonnes of stone for the Lord Mayor's path repairs, and damaged wood replaced as we continue westwards along the path.
5. Treasurer's Report 2013 (Paul Ellis)
Paul produced a breakdown of the payments made and any income received by the Group over the year. The main points included:
- Total cash available is £12,066.
- The Group received £5,030 in grants and £2,549 in donations.
- Payments totalled £10,991.
Paul raised concerns about the amount of money being raised by the Group on a year on year basis as this takes us over the threshold for registration for charitable status. It has now become necessary for the Group to become a registered charity. Paul agreed to investigate any tax issues and the advantages and disadvantages of the move so that the Group could take action. This will be discussed at future Core Group meetings.
6. Merchandise Sales & Web Site Report 2013 (Adam Bull)
Adam provided a breakdown of merchandise sales and website statistics. The main points covered:
- £1,166 has been raised by selling merchandise. This excludes coasters and nest boxes.
- The Group have reduced their Christmas card stocks enough to be able to order more this year. Adam would be interested in receiving any winter scene photographs taken by members for the new cards.
- There have been 7,000 visits to the website over the year.
- Almost a third of people are now looking at the website on mobile devices such as tablets and mobile phones, mostly iPhones and iPads.
- The e-mail mailing list has increased by 6 to 361.
Joan reported that the number of volunteers were similar to last year. We had 213 volunteers during 2013. The average number for Saturdays was 19, and 23 on Sundays. Once again the number of children attending has reduced. Carol suggested that the Group have an Action Morning aimed purely at children with activities aimed specifically at them. It was stressed that all children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian at all times on Action Mornings.
Joan also stressed that volunteers should not work alone in the woods. If there is no alternative then they should carry a mobile phone and let another member know where they will be working.
Joan's comments have also taken up on this years risk assessments which Martin is currently working with the Council to get agreed.
Joan thanked various members of the Group and all the volunteers for their hard work and dedication throughout the year. She stressed how important they were to the Group and it didn't matter if they just came and did 30 minutes work or came to help every month, the Group were very grateful. She also thanked all the volunteers who continue to collect litter and care for the woods outside of the action mornings.
8. Election of Officers
No new nominations were received.
The following officers were re-elected:
- Chair - Martin Calvert
- Vice Chair - Adrian Coltman
- Treasurer - Paul Ellis
- Secretary - Carol Bull
Martin suggested that the Group may wish to think about introducing new members who may look at new ways of running the Group however the Group thought that as it was currently working well to keep it as it is for now.
- Memorial Plaque
A Group member, Cathy, sadly died recently and her family has asked for a plaque to be placed on one of the benches. The Group agreed.
- Council Matters
The Parks & Countryside Department has replaced the logs below the lake but have made a mess of the grass verges. Martin to discuss with the Council at the next site meeting. Also the wall on Gledhow Lane has been knocked down by a car. The stone is now disappearing. Martin has already contacted the Council regarding this issue. Trevor has also e-mailed Jane Dowson regarding the drains and gutters needing to be cleaned.
- FGVW Calendar
Peter wanted to gauge the Group's appetite for producing a calendar of the woods. This has been discussed at several Core Group meetings. The Group is happy to do this provided that there are sponsors to support the calendar and that a volunteer from the Group takes this on as a project as it is time consuming obtaining photos and sponsors.
- Handrail Repair
Mervyn reported that half of the handrail has fallen down on the steps. The Group will look at this at an Action Morning.
- Annual FGVW BBQ
The annual FGVW BBQ will take place on 5 July 2014.
- Gledhow Lane
Some residents in Gledhow Lane have received a Wellbeing Grant from the Council of £6,000 to work on the land behind the flats. They also want to fell the trees in the area. Other residents have complained about this to the Council. Although the Group has not been involved in this decision they are concerned about the lack of consultation with the Group and local residents on this community space project. The Group has also received e-mails from concerned residents. The Group feel that local residents should have been consulted on how best to use the woods and surrounding area.
The matters raised in any other business will be discussed at future Core Group meetings.
10. Dates of Next Meetings
- Core Group Meeting - Mon 10 Feb 2014 (Gledhow Sports & Social Club)
- Action Morning - Sun 16 Feb 2014
- Action Morning - Sat 15 Mar 2014
- Action Morning - Sun 13 Apr 2014
- Action Morning - Sun 4 May 2014
- FunDay - Sat 14 Jun 2014