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Stanwix Community Association Committee Meeting

Minutes of the General Meeting

Stanwix Community Association
Committee Meeting 7.30 pm 16th March 2009

Present: – Mike James – Association Chair, Emma Walton – Association Secretary, Julie Royle – SCA & Playgroup, David Smith – Stanwix Pages, Chris Reid – SCA, Rob Westgarth – SCA, Ray Cassidy – SCA, Pam McCall – Chair, Playgroup, Jane Humphries – Neighbourhood Forum, Linda McGlasson, Extended Services Coordinator

Apologies: Councillor Jacquelyne Geddes – City Council, Tam Bowman – Chair, Allsorts

1. Update on lease – Emma W confirmed that she had sent Kenny Ling ( solicitor) the information requested to begin the preparation for moving to a company limited by guarantee, she would check progress with Kenny this week and update everyone. Jane advised that the County Council are content with the progress being made and appreciate the depth of the discussion from SCA to ensure the ongoing security of the Association. Jane also advised that there are currently discussions within the Council regarding how SCA should be invoiced for the lease. A decision had not yet been made as to whether we receive a reduced invoice, i.e. the Council would apply the reduction prior to our invoice or if we would be invoiced for the full amount and would also receive a cheque in respect of the ‘funding/assistance’ we are receiving from the Council in terms of the rent. Action – Emma W to contact Kenny for an update.

2. Update on new build – Emma advised that a meeting was being arranged between SCA reps, Jane Humphries and Children’s Services to discuss the possibility of funding for a new build. Jane stressed that she did not know the full details of this meeting but was aware that there would be several conditions that would have to be met. Linda advised that she knew there was the possibility of two separate funding budgets, however it was unclear if this meeting is as a direct result of the building audit completed last year by Children’s Services.
Action – Emma/Mike/Jane to liaise & arrange meeting & update SCA with outcome

3. Gas, Fire & Electrical checks – Emma advised that Julie liaised with the Council to complete the yearly fire checks, this was satisfactory but one fire extinguisher would need replaced next year. Emma also confirmed that she had been able to arrange for a plumber to complete the gas safety checks on 6th April. The charge for the landlord certificate would be £50 per hut. The plumber had also confirmed he would check the heaters to advise if a service was needed. Emma advised that she would be arranging these with the plumber if appropriate. Chris advised that he was waiting for the inventory for the Educational Hut before completing the electrical checks.

Action – Emma to complete gas checks, Julie & Pam to complete inventory & pass to Chris, Chris to arrange completion of electrical tests.

4. Asbestos Report – It was agreed that this is needed before either any improvement work is completed on the huts or before they are (hopefully) demolished to allow for a new build.

Action – Mike to investigate costs

5. Energy Audit – Mike has been successful in obtaining some of the quotes required for this. It was recognised that the issues with the lease had meant very little work has been done on this, and both Emma & Mike expressed their concern at completing the application form, which is not straightforward and submitting it before the end of March.

Action – Emma & Mike to meet & complete form

6. Grant Applications – Mike confirmed that he was awaiting to hear if the Awards for All application for the Stanwix Run had been successful in respect of the Stanwix Run. He also confirmed that another application for the Run had been submitted to Cumbria Community Foundation, as they had invited people to apply to a 10th Anniversary Fund in respect of community events. Emma advised that she had prepared a draft application for the Neighbourhood Forum grant in respect of new chairs. Ray is currently obtaining quotes for a new carpet for the Community Hut & this will be added onto the application if possible. A second quote had also been obtained for the security lighting, meaning an application for funding could be submitted to the City Council.

Action – Emma to submit applications to Neighbourhood Forum & City Council

7. Insurance – Following a recommendation from our solicitor a new quote for our insurance was being obtained. This had initially been lower that our current insurance, but they had then come in with a lower quote. Bob had been liaising on this, so confirmation is need on the final decision made.

Action – Mike to discuss with Bob

8. Update on Stanwix Run – Mike has been extremely busy preparing everything. The fliers and posters are ready to be distributed and have already been handed to the School and Playgroup. Mike has been in contact with various bodies and individuals, including the Art College and Police regarding the arrangements. Ray and Mike have also worked together regarding the internet links which are now up and running. He confirmed he has numerous plans to continue to raise the profile of the Run and is preparing a targeted campaign for mid April as a final push for entrants. One idea that was taken forward is to obtain donated prizes and for all entrants to be automatically entered into a prize draw. Pam highlighted a campaign that Playgroup did last year, in which they had successfully obtained many donations from local businesses. Pam agreed to speak to the Playgroup Committee member who had prepared this to see if they would help in sending the various letters to local businesses. Mike also advised that at the next committee meeting he would need as many people as possible to be available on the Run day to help with the event, he will prepare the details to allocate duties at the next meeting.

Action – Pam to liaise with Mike re donation of prizes.

9. Update on H&S checklist – Ray advised that this is still being worked on

Action – Ray to continue working on

10. Update on Glebelands/Agreement with School – Chris & Rob confirmed the state of the pitch was still an issue, especially the length of the grass which affected the many young players that use the pitch. Mike is still awaiting confirmation from Bill Johnston regarding a more formal agreement between the School & SCA regarding the Schools agreement to maintain the Glebe, as the previous agreement does not stipulate the exact requirements needed. Bill had also previously advised Mike that he would obtain advice regarding the H&S checks required on the trees. It was suggested that one possible option would be for SCA to arrange and manage the maintenance but the School to continue the agreement of funding the maintenance. This would allow SCA to ensure everything is maintained in accordance with our lease and to a standard required by all our users, in particular a regular timescale for cutting the grass and a closed period to allow the pitch to recover.
Chris also advised that Stanwix Football Club wanted to book the field for their Gala day on the 16th May. The fee was agreed at £50, as per last years fee, however payment would be required upfront as last years was still outstanding. Emma advised that she was still awaiting confirmation from the club as to when it would be used by the teams. Chris confirmed the season is from 1st September – 1st April. Rob advised he would chase the outstanding payment

Action – Mike to discuss with Bill Johnston the new agreement, Emma to invoice Stanwix Football Club and copy to Rob, Rob to chase payment.

11. Finance Update – A full update would be at the next meeting when Bob is available. However Emma advised that we had now received the cheque from Cumbria Community Foundation following our successful grant application. She also advised that the only outstanding invoices are from Stanwix Football Club and the Youth Club.

Action – Mike to contact Paul re the outstanding Youth Club invoice

12. Regular users update – Emma advised that the new Buddhist Mediation Group had booked again for the month of March and were hoping for this to continue as a regular booking. New booking forms had been sent to all users to confirm for the next financial year, all of these had been returned except the Youth Club. A request had been made by a potential new user for a regular Friday night booking, but they had been advised that this was already potentially booked and Emma would confirm if it became available in the future. It was recognised that the Youth Club may be having difficulties in recruiting new volunteers to assist in the running of the Club. Everyone agreed that SCA should do everything possible to support the continuation of the Club. Mike advised that in the past he had set up youth facilities and had been able to recruit various volunteers for a small fee, which could assist. It was also discussed how we could help all users, in terms of advertising and promoting the individual groups, which in turn would also raise an awareness in the community of the buildings and facilities on offer. David confirmed that he always includes an article on the SCA in the Stanwix Pages, it was agreed that SCA would also pay to publish a timetable of all activities, pending agreement from the users. Ray confirmed that this could also be put onto the Stanwix website.

Action – Mike to contact Paul to discuss possible assistance for the Youth Club, Emma to contact all regular users re advertising their group, and to circulate details of confirmed bookings for next financial year

13. Outstanding Actions
a) Circulate Financial timetable and provide figures for the business plan
Action – Bob to update at the next meeting

b) Agree a rent rebate for regular users – As we had been successful in obtaining both a grant application and a rent reduction a potential rent rebate needed to be agreed, as all regular users had been advised of this when the rent increased. Pam and Julie advised that Playgroup would possible be prepared to donate their rent rebate to a new build fund, it was suggested that other users might also like to be offered this possibility! However it was agreed that no decision could be made until possible figures had been investigated. Pam also advised that Playgroup had approximately £400 that had been donated to them towards a new build fund. Pam confirmed that she had sent a letter to the individual thanking them on behalf of Playgroup & SCA. It was agreed that a separate account should now be set up purely for fundraising for a new build.
Action – Bob to set up a new separate account and look at figures for a potential rent rebate.

c)Secretary Job Description – Emma had completed a list of all the duties she completed within her role. It was agreed that due to the continual increase in the workload it was no longer practical for all of the duties to be completed on a voluntary basis, as it would become increasingly difficult for a volunteer to juggle the role successfully along with other commitments. Consequently it was agreed that SCA should look at employing someone along the roles of a Centre Manager. The discussion again turned to the many other community centres within the city which are supported by the City Council, thus allowing funding for a manager. SCA would formally approach the Council to request assistance. It was also felt that funding options should also be explored, as it was agreed that having the commitment of a paid employer would ultimately allow the profile of SCA to be raised, which in turn should increase revenue. Pam advised that Playgroup employ an Administrator who may be interested in a few extra hours work. It could be possible for them to take on the role of Bookings Secretary which would enable committee members to continue to focus on other issues.
Action – Pam to discuss with Playgroup Administrator and advise, Mike to contact Dave Trussler re City Council assistance, Paul to advise of any possible funding options via CVS

13. AOB – Emma advised that the Youth Club TV was still in the Community Hut, despite the fact that it was no longer licensed as agreed with Youth Club, which was ac concern as Youth Club would be liable for any fine.
Action – Mike W to discuss with Paul.
Allsorts had advised that the grill on the heater vent at the back of the hut was loose & needed fixed.
Action – Ray to look at
Neighbourhood Forum Meeting – The next meeting is on 25th March, a SCA representative should attend if possible.
Action – Ray confirmed he would be attending


Date of next meeting – 7.30pm, Monday 27th April – Playgroup/Allsorts Hut