Oldhamstocks Community Association Annual General Meeting 2015 –
held in the Village Hall on Tuesday 10th November at 7.30pm.
Present: Michael Veitch (Chair), Lizanne Longmuir, Margaret Feeney, Dan Feeney, Donna Conroy, Sharon Simpson, Nathan Simpson, Gordon Simpson, Lauryn Simpson, Kaleena Hanvidge, Fiona Gray, Winky Potgiesser, Gillie Baird, Douglas McCreath, Neil Richerby, Barbara Richerby, Marie-Florence MacDonald, Angus MacDonald, Sheila Ainslie, David Legge, Mary Legge, Chris Bruce, Jacquie Riddell, Marlyn Foster, Janice Hanvidge, John Hanvidge, Billy Christison, Dave Philip, Jackie Philip, Andrew McKendry, Natalie Welsh, Jonathan Ellis, Alex Ainslie, Olivia Reynolds.
Welcome: the first part of the meeting was chaired by Cllr. Michael Veitch who made introductions, welcomed everyone warmly, explained the format for the evening, and thanked the Community Association for the invitation to assist.
Minutes of the meeting held on June 9th 2015, circulated in August, were accepted, with no comments - approved by J Riddell, seconded by G Simpson.
Future of the Village Hall – open discussion
Mr Veitch asked for an update on the work and status of the sub-group (action from June): C Bruce reported that at a meeting held in early August, attended by 15 (including folk who at the June meeting had volunteered to join a sub-group), the idea of forming a sub-group had been discussed and rejected in favour of everyone acting together. This was news to some present. G Baird queried the balance of the working group, and was assured that 8 were existing members of the Community Association and 7 were new volunteers. G Baird also queried the co-option procedure – dealt with more formally later in the AGM part of tonight's meeting.
a) Structural survey from Richard Amos – copies made available. Comments were invited. S Ainslie asked if R Amos had been asked to provide costs – G Simpson said he was not. R Amos had been asked for 'financial implications' which were, in his opinion, that the Hall structure is currently not economically viable. Concerning urgent repairs (the list includes the skylight, windows, overflow pipes, plumbing to drinking water, compliance with fire regulations) S Ainslie asked what the Community Association proposed to doin the short-term, and G Baird queried the matters of public liability and insurance in relation to fire regs. S Ainslie asked for a fire risk assessment leading to an action plan; G Baird stressed agreement, saying we cannot ignore this issue, irrespective of costs. G Simspon replied that Chubb had carried out an inspection earlier this year and new fire extinguishers had been installed. This action is in accordance with the practice of previous years. C Bruce noted that significantly more money might need to be raised in order to comply with results of a fire risk assessment, and/or possibly even closure of the Hall might be made necessary for a period. N Richerby queried the point of spending significant money if we go down the 'new build' route. Mr Veitch moved discussion on to
b) Funding opportunities – C Bruce reported that a conservative estimate, based on community benefits from local windfarms made to East Lammermuir Community Council (shared between the 4 villages), would imply that some £38K p a is available to Oldhamstocks over the next 25 years – total £950K. The figure may rise. This amount would obviously not be available immediately, and the in-flow of benefits has to be managed by the Community Council.
Various comments were made:
D Legge commented on the difficulty of considering the amount spent on urgent repairs, and the need to make sure the building is safe while open: the report is new, we are now aware of faults, but have not yet had the proper opportunity to discuss them. This clearly bears out the comment that the Hall, as it stands, is not fit for purpose.
A McKendry suggested that if the Hall had to be closed temporarily, the community could probably make the best of managing without.
S Ainslie remarked that, following some research, although fire laws are enforceable, it seems unlikely that closure of the Hall would been forced; surely, however, it would be better to have an action plan in place. G Simpson and J Hanvidge responded saying that the Chubb inspections had been past practice, that G Simpson is qualified to carry out fire risk assessments; there was some agreement that deficiencies point towards the need to consider more major action.
Again M Veitch moved us on to
The Process from here – M Veitch proposed that a Final Options Paper be prepared, making maximum information available to all prior to reaching a decision. This should include a design (or more than one design) for a newbuild, plans for refurbishment, and also a 'do nothing' option i.e. all options. Exactly how the Community Association determines the decision can come later. He suggested that tonight there should be a show of hands simply on “does the local community agree that we should work towards producing designs for replacing the Hall?” If there is a clear 'yes' view, then we should proceed to recording tonight our views on a new hall specification, at our 5 tables.
Various comments were made:
G Baird wished to clarify that different architects can be chosen – J Hanvidge confirmed that there has been no plan to restrict choice.
C Bruce said that although it may seem ideal for everyone to be able to discuss all details, this is impractical; that some decisions will indeed be for all of us but that subsequently some will be for the committee. Tonight's table-discussions give a chance for all present to express views which the committee will use in the preparation of the Final Options Paper, and C Bruce further commented that it would certainly be good to have on the committee at least one person who favoured refurbishment.
G Baird expressed the hope that the working group would be able to take into account all views, from both ends of the spectrum of preferred options, and able to successfully liaise between committee and community.
D McCreath volunteered to join the working group/committee.
B Christison stressed the importance of maintaining respectat all times.
Show of hands – produced a clear Yes.
Some further comments on costs:
it would be easy to get an estimated cost of refurbishment from R Amos;
architects' fees will be significant;
windfarm benefits are available for refurbishment as long as this is a professionally recommended procedure;
a newbuild project could attract additional funding opportunities not available for refurbishment plans.
M Veitch left at this point, as we moved to Table discussions. Views from each table are recorded separately and attached. To facilitate discussion, previously suggested features for any replacement hall were provided as follows:
1. Slightly larger main hall space
2. Separate smaller meeting room
3. Storage space to ensure no external sheds are required
4. Level access throughout
5. Improved kitchen and toilet provision, including full disabled WC
7. Excellent energy efficiency
8. Much improved ease of maintenance
9. Any others?
We then proceeded to formal AGM business. Some people left at this point.
Present: Jacquie Riddell (Chair), Janice Hanvidge, Marlyn Foster, John Hanvidge, Kaleena Hanvidge, Gordon Simpson, Chris Bruce, David Legge, Mary Legge, Neil Richerby, Barbara Richerby, Angus MacDonald, Marie-Florence MacDonald, Douglas McCreath, Alex Ainslie, Fiona Gray, Jonathan Ellis, Sharon Simpson, Nathan Simpson, Lauryn Simpson, Donna Conroy, Lizanne Longmuir; Sheila Ainslie and Gillie Baird for only part of this meeting.
Welcome: Jacquie Riddell welcomed those in attendance and thanked everyone for their support over the last year. She commented on successful events in recent months – the Ceilidh evening, Curry Night, opening of the new bridge – and also on repairs to the back door and garage roof. After serving as Chair (now a peri-Chair position) since part-way through the year, Jacquie advised that she would now be standing down as Chair but would be happy to remain on the committee.
Minutes of the previous AGM: those present were given some minutes to read over Minutes of the previous AGM, which were then approved by Janice Hanvidge and seconded by John Hanvidge.
Treasurer's Report: Gordon Simpson circulated copies of the accounts to 30/9/15, prepared and presented in the same format as in previous years. He made comment on various aspects of the accounts and it was noted there was an overall surplus for the year of £515.11. £4800 of the Civic Pride Grant is carried forward, as is £7247.53 unspent from the Bridge project (at present restricted, but possibly this may change). A £50 donation has been received from an anonymous donor to go towards a new Hall – a letter of thanks has been sent. Some £3800 is at present available, unrestricted. The closing balance is £15958.10. Payment for the Structural survey of the Hall falls into the 2015-16 accounting year. Jacquie thanked Gordon for his work as Treasurer.
Election of Office-bearers and Committee members - Sheila Ainslie pointed out that, according to the Community Association's constitution, Committee members should be elected first, and then office-bearers (Chair, Secretary and Treasurer) should be appointed by the Committee from within their number. We proceeded on this basis. Chris Bruce stressed the need for plenty of folk to come forward (Sheila Ainslie suggested a committee of 12, and then adding co-opted members) as there is a lot of work to be done, and his encouragement to work together was strongly echoed by Janice Hanvidge. The following committee was formed (*denotes co-opted members):
John Hanvidge *
Jacquie Riddell *
Chris Bruce *
Janice Hanvidge *
David Legge *
Chair – Neil Richerby
Treasurer – Gordon Simpson
Secretary – Barbara Richerby
Next Committee meeting: Thursday 26th November at 7.30pm.
AOB: the following events were intimated -
22 November: 1 – 4pm Spott Village Hall Grand Opening following refurbishment.
27 November: 7 for 7.30pm Quiz Night at Abbey St Bathans (£8 per table).
5 December: 9.30-11 Co'path First Responder training – contact Kate Tulloch.
Thanks: Donna Conroy thanked the out-going committee and office-bearers for all their work.
Date of next AGM: to be advised.