LANGHAM COMMUNITY COUNCIL
Minutes of a Trustee Meeting
held on 6th October 2016 at 7.30 pm.
Alan Cadman (Chairman), Liz Winter (Secretary), Liz Schofield, Ann Cairns, Andrew Craig, Marlena Lipski, Maureen Shouksmith, James Puxley, Mark Kleingeld, Bob Schofield, Sue Armstrong (Marketing Manager).
Apologies for Absence
Cheryl Collins, Denise Hobday, Michaela Ward. Michaela had found that she was too busy to fulfil her role as Trustee and had resigned on 3rd October. Unfortunately the Pre-School is unable to supply a replacement at present.
Minutes of previous Trustee Meeting held 21st July 2016
Andrew Craig proposed and Marlena Lipski seconded that the Minutes be accepted as a true record. Carried unanimously. Alan signed the Minutes.
1. Ray had not yet managed to complete the final installation of the security camera system as he had suffered an injury. However, he expected to be fit again shortly.
2. No evidence had been found regarding the limitation of late licences when Liz S and Liz W had trawled through the paperwork stored at Foxash. Sue had an e-mail from CBC dated 4.3.16 which confirmed that there was no limit as far as they were concerned.
3. Regarding staff pensions, Marion from Asset had confirmed that pensions were not yet relevant since neither Cheryl nor Sue earned more than £10,000 per annum.
As well as his usual responsibilities, Alan had spent most of his time since the last meeting sorting out banking arrangements and liaising with Roger Newnham and Rose contractors.
Following Cliff’s resignation as Treasurer, Alan had had great difficulty in accessing the LCC’s bank account at Barclays. Liz Winter had replaced Cliff as a second signatory on cheques but at present Alan was the only one registered for online banking. Under the constitution we needed a second person. Also, Sue Armstrong needed access to the account to know which hirers had paid in, which bills had been paid out and to prepare the statistical information she provides to the Trustees. It was agreed that Liz W would make the required arrangements so that (a) she could use the online system, (b) Sue could access the account on a read-only basis and (c) Andrew Craig could be a third signatory on cheques as well as having online access. EW
Liz W had received last year’s accounts back from John Jones with his Independent Examiner’s Report and would file them online as soon as she had time to get David to help her scan them in. John had some useful comments to make, which would feed into next year’s accounting process. Liz would write and thank him on behalf of the Trustees. EW
She confirmed that Heather Strowger felt unable to take on the Treasurer’s role at the present time and all other attempts to find a replacement had failed. Sue Trimnell’s laptop had broken, so she had been unable to help after all.
Alan suggested that the LCC should purchase a laptop computer which would hold our accounts. Sue Sheppard had provided a link to the RCCE’s suggested format for village hall accounts, which we could follow. We also need to draw up a list of assets of the LCC, at the top of which would be the building itself. The Land Registry had confirmed to Liz W that the Community Centre was not registered and Liz S stated that the sum of £26,000 held in NS&I Bonds was in the name of the Parish Council, with the interest being payable to us.
Liz Schofield proposed purchase of the laptop, seconded Maureen Shouksmith.
Sue and Cheryl would normally have had their salaries reviewed in June but, with the absence of a Treasurer, this had not yet been carried out. It was agreed that Alan, Liz S and Liz W would meet as soon as possible to discuss this on the basis of calculations provided by Cliff based on the RPI. Any increase would be backdated. AC/ES/EW
Marketing Manager’s Report
Sue had circulated a very full report prior to the meeting. She thanked those who had helped at various events and with moving items because of the refurbishment of the hall. She and Cheryl had been extremely busy and she confessed that neither would want to work under such pressure again.
Because of this, she asked for someone to take over chasing up unpaid 100 Club subs. Liz S and Maureen volunteered. Sue had circulated a 100 Club constitution (downloaded from the RCCE) for which the Trustees gave their approval, after suggesting that the amount of prize money should be included. Sue would add this. SA
Sue confirmed that £127 had been taken the previous Sunday morning selling bacon rolls, teas and coffees at the SRP Toys event. She asked for volunteers to run a similar morning on 4th December. Marlena Lipski, Bob Schofield, Maureen Shouksmith and Liz W came forward.
On 20th October the next volunteer bar for the Vintage Car Club would be run by James and Bob. It was felt that, as the profit from these bars is small and they entail spending the whole evening waiting around from 7-10pm, we should cease to run them. If the Car Club choose to go elsewhere, it will not have a huge effect as they only come once a month and not at all during the summer.
Sue had reviewed the hire charges for the hall, having compared other halls’ rates, and made increases in line with suggestions from the former Treasurer. The new tariffs had been circulated to the Trustees and Liz Schofield proposed their adoption, seconded by Mark Kleingeld and agreed unanimously. Sue also provided a breakdown of room usage at the Centre as suggested by John Jones. There was a vast increase in use of the Committee room during the year 2014-15 after completion of the kitchenette and installation of air conditioning.
University students were booked to paint the Clubroom and Committee room on 19th October. Sue asked for someone to let them in and be around if needed. Bob and James are both in the Community Shop that day and would help. Liz W would be available if needed. Sue would organise clearing the walls, providing materials and dust sheets, etc. It was agreed that the stage flats would not be painted at this time. SA
Marking out the disabled space for Mark near the tennis courts was mentioned but he said he usually managed to gain access to the path.
While the refurbishment had been progressing Cheryl had worked tremendously hard to empty cupboards, clean and restock. Sue ran through the items under general maintenance which had been completed, mainly by Terry. The air conditioning had been serviced and the PAT testing for the Hall and Pre-school (and the shop at a later visit) carried out. Andrew Craig proposed a vote of thanks to Sue and Cheryl for all their hard work during the weeks of upheaval, which was wholeheartedly supported by all the Trustees.
Unfortunately the work was not completed by the end of August as had been planned. Rose, the contractors, have been given a snagging list which includes repair to one of the velux windows in the main hall, final adjustment of the kitchen shutter and decoration of the kitchen, application of a safety surface and edging on the fire escape steps at the rear, addition of electrically operated blinds to the velux windows and fitting a changing room sensor light. (The Trustees went to look at the kitchen hatch.) These items should be completed during the week ending 14th October.
Sue showed the meeting the remote control for the velux windows but said it was not yet fully programmed. She confirmed that two external electric sockets have been fitted on the balcony and two on the rear of the kitchen wall.
No final bill had been received from Rose but it was expected that Roger Newnham, who had been managing the project so capably, would have it soon. A vote of thanks was proposed to Roger and to Rob Clark for all their input. Liz W would write to them both and invite them to be guests of honour at the official opening. EW
Official opening of the refurbished Centre
There being only two free Saturday mornings at the hall before the end of 2016, Sue had set aside 12th November for the opening. It would take place at 10.30am and Liz W and Liz S had drawn up a list of invitees, which includes our grant providers. Essex Community Foundation’s Andrew Clarke had already confirmed his attendance. All Parish councillors had been invited, our three Borough councillors, County councillor, MP Bernard Jenkin, Rob and Roger. All Trustees would hopefully be present (Marlena sadly has a prior engagement.) and Liz W will invite Sue Sheppard. EW
It was agreed that the two Lizs should meet to organise further details of the opening. It was felt that offering tea, coffee and biscuits and providing a ribbon to cut would be sufficient. Notices had gone on the Langham website, to the Essex County Standard community column and in the Parish Magazine for November. Some help with publicity might be forthcoming from Cory’s PR firm. EW/ES
The meeting with Sue Sheppard had taken place on 7th September.
Alan had checked the amount of Trustee Liability cover in our ANSVAR insurance document and was assured it was £500,000 per Trustee. This policy is due for renewal at the end of November, after which a copy of the relevant section will be sent to Trustees.
There was a brief discussion about the merits of becoming a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (which would provide full indemnity for the Trustees but cost thousands of pounds and entail extra paperwork) or updating our current constitution. Andrew proposed staying as we are and updating, which was seconded by Liz S and supported by all present.
We can obtain a model constitution from the RCCE website. EW
Bob agreed to look at the paperwork with the plans for building the Community Centre to try to discover who has legal title to the land and who has the beneficial ownership of the bricks and mortar. BS
After the meeting is was agreed that Maureen, Alan, Liz W and Andrew would meet as a sub-committee on 9th November at 10am at Alan’s (4 St. Margaret’s Cross).
Any Other Business
1. The Trustees were asked to confirm that the Langham Community Centre would like to continue to engage Alan Cadman in a self-employed capacity to provide bar services on our behalf. This would be on the basis of no cost accruing to us and our receiving a voluntary donation from Alan should the bar be a financial success. Alan was asked to leave the room. Proposer: Andrew Craig; seconded: Liz Schofield. Carried unanimously. Alan agreed to continue.
2. The Trustees authorised Maureen Shouksmith, Alan Cadman and Liz Winter to sign any Gambling Act forms from Colchester Borough Council such as were required for raffles and the 100 Club. Unanimous.
3. Sue asked how the Trustees felt about the Centre running at almost maximum capacity. There was some discussion about the strain on Sue and Cheryl of keeping the cleaning and maintenance programme running, whilst dealing with hirers and any problems that arise. It was felt that, provided we continue to make a profit after all expenses have been paid, there could be some easing of the push to attract new hirers for the time being. The Trustees were aware of how hard Sue had worked to make the Centre so successful but they did not want her workload to become too onerous.
Date of next meeting
The next Trustee Meeting will be held on Thursday 24th November at 7.30 pm in the clubroom.
There being no further business, the meeting closed at 10.15 pm.