Minutes July 2008
KIRKBY STEPHEN TOWN FORUM
Minutes Of the Meeting held on Monday 14 July 2008
Present: Jacqui Semple, Mike Walker, Ann Sandell, Joan Johnstone, Derek Thompson, Andrea Hines, John Thompson, Jackie Scarr, Tom Woof, Glenys Lumley, Liz Hall, Fiona Poole, Rowan Sandell
1. Chairman’s welcome.
Jackie welcomed all participants and thanked them for sparing the time to take part in the Forum
2. Apologies for absence:
Lynn Wade, Tim Stoddard, Mark & Lisa Earnshaw, Alex Birtles, Debbie Hylton, Alex Chalmers, Charles Hurst, Lorain Rockminster, Howard Long, Sue Fell
3. Minutes of the meeting on 19 May 2008: These were accepted as a true record of the meeting.
4. Matters Arising (not otherwise included in the agenda):
Estimates for replacing the flags have been obtained but no action has yet been taken on obtaining a grant. The action remains. Action: Mike & Joan
The formal Annual Report has not yet been completed, but will be done in the next month. Action: Mike
The reprinted Kirkby Stephen leaflet is the next project to be carried out, but has been delayed by research for the Penrith leaflet, and economies being enforced at EDC.
Mike was delighted to report that Glenys Lumley had agreed to be a Trustee of the proposed Upper Eden Alliance. Appleby were trying to find new trustees and it is expected that this will be resolved at a meeting on 1 September. There is still a need to establish a formal procedure and criteria for trustees, and this action remains. Action: Ann & Mike
A leaflet on tunnels has been produced and is available in the TIC. Arrangements for photographing the tunnels have been made, and the possibility of an article in Cumbria or Cumbria Life will be explored. Action: Mike
No response has been received from Forum members on ideas for Townscape Heritage grants.
The “Where to eat” update response had been disappointing, with only two businesses responding. This pamphlet has been a useful piece of information for the TIC as they are not allowed to recommend places to eat. It was appreciated that with many businesses closed or on the market, timing may be difficult, but the Forum supported the need to provide this sort of information to visitors. Mike was asked to progress the update through personal contact, telephone calls etc. over the summer.
Andrea has established that EDC have a video projector available for short-term loan, and it can be made available when required.
Contacts have been made with the various Councils and the Highways Agency regarding brown tourist signs for Kirkby Stephen. The position is difficult, as Kirkby Stephen is not considered as a destination. Efforts will continue to bring our town to the attention of the travelling public.
Mike had advised the Town Council of the Forum view on updated CCTV cameras.
Ann & Mike had promoted the Forum on the Market square during the recent Volunteer Day in June, with limited interest.
There has been no further progress with the Film locations but Sebastian Lyte, the director of the recent film made in Market Square, has agreed to further our cause when he is free.
Andrea has yet to make enquiries regarding the availability of storage furniture in the EDC store. Action: Andrea
No progress has been made on the accommodation provider newsletter, and it will be deferred to the next meeting. Action: Jackie & Debbie
An “Awards for All” bid has been made for £1650 for establishing a Community Cinema in conjunction with the Grammar School and Age Concern. The bid is stalled pending provision of Equal Opportunities and Child Protection policies, discussed later in the meeting.
Mike has still to follow up the Cumbria Science Festival involvement.
Mike had advised the Westgarth group that then Forum could not support their scheme financially.
The damaged grass opposite the Co-op was mentioned to the Kirkby Stephen in Bloom coordinators.
Ann has produced two short walk leaflets available in the TIC for 30p each to cover photocopying costs.
Mike had approached Andy Sayer regarding participation in Healthcare initiatives, but has had no response.
4. Treasurer’s Report:
Joan presented the audited accounts for the financial year ending 31st March, and reported that the current balance is £2749. (See attached) This includes some monies for Kirkby Stephen in Bloom. Andrea was thanked for finding funds for the TIC flowers. It was agreed that the need to change bank signatories could wait until the following year, as Charles Hurst, the ex-Chairman, is still available to sign cheques.
The Town Council still have funding for Charter fairs, and it was felt that rather than moving this to the Forum account, it would be better used directly to fund Charter fair activities.
5. Kirkby Stephen in Bloom:
The Cumbria in Bloom judging had taken place on Friday 11 July, and we believed that the judge was suitably impressed, particularly by the peripheral areas such as Jubilee and Stenkrith parks, and Franks Bridge. Pressure must be kept up on watering, weeding and litter picking for the Britain in Bloom judging on 14 August. The coordinators thanked the businesses for the splendid efforts to make the town look good.
6. Upper Eden Community Plan:
The Upper Eden Community Plan Group have highlighted three projects where rapid outcomes can be gained, and businesses in Kirkby Stephen and Brough have been circulated with details. The three are Shop Locally, No Car days, and Walking buses, with a logo “Walk/Bike/Shop Local”. The Forum was generally supportive of this initiative and proposed the week of 22 September for a promotion of these themes. It is understood that the primary school may already have equipment for a Walking Bus, and Out of Eden will share its policy for No-Car days. Shopping locally could be encouraged by late-night opening, loyalty cards, free draws for local shoppers etc. A coordinating group would be set up by Tom and Jackie Semple, and Debbie Hylton and Charles Hurst would be invited to join.
Action: Tom & Jackie
7. Action for Market Towns Convention:
The AMT convention this year will be held in Skipton on 1/2 October. Early bookings will obtain a significant discount at a cost of £175. It was agreed that the Forum should send a delegate who could also report back to the Town Council. Ann Sandell was proposed and Mike will ensure that the booking is made before the deadline.
8. Equal Opportunities and Child Protection Policies:
Grant bids have been delayed due to our lack of official policies on these two topics. Ann and Mike had drafted two policies based on those used by others, and they were circulated for comment. The drafts were agreed and Mike will arrange to make final copies for signature by the Chairman and Secretary for use in grant applications. Copies would be provided to each Forum member, and new members would be provided with copies on joining the group. Action: Mike & Jackie
9. Heritage Open Days:
Ann outlined progress with the activities planned for 13/14 September. (See attached summary.) She stressed that further volunteers would be very welcome.
10. Calor Cumbria Village of the Year Competition.
Mike put together an entry into this competition regarding the People, Environment, Business and Communication aspects of Rural Life. A copy of the entry will be provided for the Community and Council Office. Three pupils from the Grammar School contributed to the “What makes my village special category”. It was agreed that prizes should be given to these, £10 to the first, and £5 each to the other two. The form of prize was debated and it was agreed that a Kirkby Stephen Voucher should be produce, which could be used in any shop in the town, and redeemable by the business through the Community Office. Action: Mike
11. Awards for All funding:
a. New market stalls:
Enquiries made to Made in Cumbria and Orton Farmers’ Market did not provide any information regarding suppliers of their stalls, but heavy-duty aluminium gazebos of the type used by Made in Cumbria have been found on the Internet. A 3x3 meter stall with sidewalls, weighted feet and a wheeled bag would cost ca. £700 plus tables at around £150. We would be looking at a bid for around £4000. It was agreed that this should be followed up. Action: Mike
Crosby Ravensworth market had used a marquee, which Forum members felt was a useful asset. It was agreed that this could not easily replace the market stalls, but could be a useful town asset in its own right. Costs would be established.
b. Christmas Lights:
It was understood that funding for 2008 Christmas lights was already assured, so we would be thinking about 2009. Charles had obtained quotes for LED drapes, which could be obtained at around £100 per set. If each business in town was provided with one set we could be looking at an outlay of £5000. Further information will be pursued, and the issue followed up for 2009. Action: Mike & Charles
c. Charter Market Costumes:
Ann has had some quotes of around £50 for costumes suitable for both market charter periods. There were some concerns about storage, cleaning etc. and the Forum agreed that this should take a lower priority than the other items. Action: Mike & Ann
12. Forum Social Event:
It had been agreed to consider further promotion of the Town Forum through a social evening. The Forum suggested an event in January, and reinstatement of the Cracker Ball would be considered. This will be discussed further at the September meeting.
13. Charter Market:
It is expected that Amber Markets were still willing to come to Kirkby Stephen on 25 October but this needs confirmation. It is envisaged that a craft market would also be held. The declaration of the Market Charter will go ahead as usual, and a procession held if we can get the band to assist.
It is understood that the Stainmore Railway will have Santa at the East station on two Saturdays in December. It was suggested that this year the Forum organise a low-key Christmas event, concentrating on switching on the lights, and presenting window competition prizes. It was suggested that carols, hot-chestnuts and mulled wine around the Market Square on a Thursday evening, with shops encouraged to open late would provide a good atmosphere. There was general support for this idea and details would be discussed at the next meeting.
15. Any Other Business:
a. Ann reported on the Stainmore Railway Company picnic area bid. Mike advised the Forum that he had already written a letter of support on behalf of the Forum for this bid.
b. Glenys Lumley mentioned the Swaledale Trust, whose bid for funding a museum in Kirkby Stephen was unsuccessful. The business plan and enthusiasm is believed to still exist, and it was suggested that the Townscape Heritage Trust funding might be approached for building refurbishment to accommodate this museum.
c. Rowan Sandell informed the Forum that the Eastside Project will take on the role to provide a Youth Council for the Town, and they will use the Pavilion to house this. It is expected to be launched in September 2008. The Forum agreed to give assistance to this if required.
16. Date of Next Meeting: Because the Chairman is not available on the 8 September, it was agreed to hold the next meeting at 19.00 on 15 September, in the room above the TIC, unless advised otherwise because of access problems.