FRIENDS OF ROXBOURNE PARK
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
Thursday 15th February 2018
Chairman Gerry Bloomfield
Data and Membership/Events Co-Ordinator Nigel Reid
Treasurer/Events Co-Ordinator Carole Reid
The Rough Warden Peter McLoughlin
Secretary Janice Haslam
Councillor/Committee member John Hinkley
Councillor/Committee member Jean Lammiman
Over 30 members attended.
Gerry opened the meeting and welcomed everyone and introduced Dave Corby Head of Service Community Engagement Harrow Council.
1. To Receive a financial report on the previous year
Carole has put all the financial information together. Details are on the balance sheet attached to these minutes. We are quite healthy and thank you for your support.
FORP shows a £3000.00. balance – this money is dedicated towards other activities.
It was noted that there is a difference in the profit balance received from the Funday held in September 2017 compared to 2016. This is due to the larger outlay for the event, e.g. a stage was hired, and we bought fence stakes for the dog show etc. Many of our purchases can be reused. Jean commented that the money is a surplus not profit as we are a non-profit organisation. Our surplus funds will be redistributed to the Park and events.
Events: Nigel mentioned the medieval banquet to be held on the 23rd March 2018.
Gerry commented on spending earmarked for 2018: The storage container to be shared with the Middlesex Tamils. £1000.00. A Bollard and plaque in memory of Dave Bolton, in the Nature Reserve, £500.
Gerry commented on the inability to give full year financial figures, due to our Financial Year being April-March and he said the Committee will be proposing a change of our Financial Year. January to December. With AGM the following February. Gerry responded with an explanation from the floor – February is a quieter month for FORP and January leaves time for all collation of years activities.
A motion was made to the members concerning our activities and events “shall we carry on as we are?” Floor responded Yes. John then proposed adoption of accounts.
2. Election of officers and committee members.
Two of our Committee members moved away to Wales during 2017. We would like expand our Committee members to include a Fund Raiser, Project Manager and active Park Wardens. All of the current Committee members were willing to continue and Celia and Pratap Banarse had volunteered to stand. There were no other nominations from the floor. All nominees were elected unanimously.
3. Proposals for changes to the constitution.
There were 4 amendments proposed by the committee, as shown in red on the attached revised constitution. Our constitution was drafted with help from the Council, agreed at the first Public meeting held on 11th November 2015 and signed off 17th January 2016. Since then, the Harrow Parks Forum has been set up by the Council and now has an Executive Committee which is independent of the Council – speaks for all parks and open spaces.
Clause 1.3. has been added to our constitution to keep FORP in the forefront of the Borough's overview of the parks and open spaces.
Clause 2.1. (5th bullet point) and 3.2.5. have been added to make sure that the parks biodiversity is kept in mind in all of our plans and discussions.
Clause 7.9. changes the Financial Year to January – December.
John proposed to adopt the amendments, seconded, carried unanimously.
4. Questions from the floor.
In discussion on bio-diversity and park uses, Jean said that someone was putting down poison – to be vigilant on protection.
A debate from the floor followed regarding urban foxes. Cllr Chris Noyce pointed out that they were territorial animals therefore eliminating an overun of these animals in any area.
A debate from the floor was raised concerning the professional dog walkers with their large numbers of dogs mentioning the dogs are not kept on leads, also amateur dog walkers. Dogs not kept under control and how in a large number they create a pack. This will be off putting and possibly frightening to other users of the park. From the floor, restrict the number of dogs under one persons control.
Dave Corby responded that there was provision for a Public Space Protection Order, (PSPO) which included such diverse issues as smoking in the childrens's play area leaving litter on streets and park, including not picking up dog poo. The PSPO allows for a designated Officer to issue a fixed penalty notice to a person breaking the by-law.
Gerry had drafted a Code of Conduct for dog walkers. Dave Corby suggested we send it through to him for Council approval and adoption.
From the floor who is responsible for the cleaning of the Play area?. Reply Harrow Council. Gerry then mentioned the “Litter Pick” sponsored by Keep Britain Tidy. All equipment provided by Harrow Council date Saturday 3rd March 2018
Fun Day music – how to stop musicians and their equipment getting wet.?
We have plans to build a permanent stage – a bandstand. Hopefully in time for our Music Festival 15th July 2018. To include an electric supply and a cover. There was a suggestion from the floor for it to be slightly canted to avoid flooding. This was made from his own experience.
Due to the success of Friends of Roxbourne Park it would be good to have an extension to the existing Pavilion. Dave Corby suggested we sit down to discuss and funding. Put in this years plan. Meanwhile the meeting was informed of our intention of blocking in the end panel of the vestibule to create a more useable, warmer space.
There was a plea for ideas needed for funding of projects.
Peter would like Dave's Pande to be used for educational use. Part of Green Grid programme.
Gerry introduced Laurence Mathias to the attendees – he is a local artist who had experience of painting large artworks. The Committee had discussed the idea of getting school children to contribute to a mural on the end of the wall of the Pavilion. Local school children to paint pictures related to the park. Laurence would be on hand to guide and help them. An overall cost of around £1000.00. was expected, which might be funded from grants. Some of Laurence's ideas were circulated as samples.
The question of graffiti was raised. Discussion took place, generally not a problem. Can be cleaned off. If it did occur then Laurence would paint it out. Further discussion took place with a vote. Conclusion to re look at idea, start small and add in view of cost, and other projects.
A request was made from attendees for a sign at Cannon Lane pointing to Roxbourne Park. Dave Corby to check criteria. Peter asked who would be responsible for funding - FORP or outside..
Reply was to list estimated cost of all projects and report. Agreed we need to find a Fund Raiser/Project Manager. Meanwhile apply for more grants.
Jean then mentioned FORP's wish to make the park a great place for people to come to and suggested that lighting and repair of the path were needed. Idea was approved. Cost not agreed.
The mural on the wall was not considered a priority over Health and Safety . Look at finances where can we fund.
How to finance our projects ?
Celia (attendee) then pointed out how dangerous the pathway is and how dark due to no lighting.
An evaluation score on the footpath to be carried out.
Dave mentioned that in fact lighting in the Park can be dangerous due to the fact that the only safe area is the lit one so undesirable persons can see you but you cannot see them. He mentioned a few instances. He thought that a street light costs about £1000.00. to install and another £1000.00. to connect up to Electricity. Gerry raised the possibility of a solar light and a switch we could control.
Question from the floor - is there money available from the Council.?
FORP Committee to revisit our 5 year plan and prioritise our projects, then estimate all costs on this plan and discuss with the Council what are their responsibilities and what are FORP's. Investigate grants, sponsorships etc. Gerry asked again for any help from the floor.
Jean proposed a vote of thanks Dave/Desiree and Mark Richardson together with all Park staff.
Meeting closed 20.30.