Minutes March 2011
KIRKBY STEPHEN TOWN FORUM
Minutes of the Meeting held on Monday 7 March 2011
Present: Mike Walker, Ann Sandell, Joan Johnstone, Derek Thompson, Shiela Haughey, Andrea Hines, Libby Bateman, Raynor Shaw, Jacqui Scarr, Kevin Robinson, Lynn Hopwood
1. Appointment of Chairman:
Shiela Haughey agreed to take the Chair for this meeting. New members were welcomed and introductions made.
2. Apologies for absence:
John Thompson, Jacqui Semple, Andrew Griffiths, Glenys Lumley, Alex Chalmers, Debbie Hylton, Leanne Harbage
3. Minutes of the meeting on 10 January 2011:
The minutes of the previous meeting were accepted as a true record.
4. Matters Arising (not otherwise included in the agenda):
a. Various comments have been made on the revised town map. It was suggested that publication is deferred until the Community Office is relocated. A decision will be made at the next meeting.
b. The insurance payment direct debit from AMT still needs to be transferred to the Forum account. Action: Mike Walker
c. It had been agreed not to progress with the Food & Drink Festival in order to avoid direct competition with businesses in town.
d. The secretary had not written a letter of support regarding the TIC, but the Forum is involved in discussion regarding its future.
5. Treasurer’s Report:
Joan Johnstone informed the meeting that there was little change in our position. The More Than a Handful players have sent a contribution towards the Masonic Hall costs.
Andrea Hines asked the Forum to invoice EDC for £500 for general support in the financial year beginning 1 April 2011. The meeting thanked Andrea for this support.
6. Christmas Lights:
A meeting of the lights team was held in January to review the position and plan for 2011.
Agreement was made to use old harness and incandescent bulbs around the market square, while we still have stocks, and use new harness and LED bulbs along the streets. This would minimise the power use and costs, as support from EDC has been withdrawn.
The team will investigate the possibility of extension south towards the traffic lights, but recognised that lighting across the road may not be possible due to the width and height needed for traffic clearance. They would look at the possibility of rigging lights along the buildings in this case.
An inventory of current equipment will be made in April and orders placed as necessary. Although money has been budgeted by the Town Council for running costs next year it will not cover renewed harness etc. New equipment will be paid for from the Calor prize funds held by the Forum.
There was a problem regarding disposal of the Christmas tree at the tip, which was repeated when John Popple tried to dispose of the business trees. Adam Hoyle agreed to recycle these, and offered to provide a centrally located skip for recycling all Christmas trees in January 2012. Siting and publicity needs to be agreed nearer the time.
Action: Mike Walker/ Shiela Haughey
The team had suggested that the Switch-on be a bigger event, with a local person performing the ceremony. The Forum agreed to consider this for 2011.
Joan Johnstone noted that we had not made any contribution to the Silver Band for playing that evening, and the meeting agreed that a donation of £25 be made.
Action: Joan Johnstone
7. Shop Advertising Boards:
Peter Foskett has produced some designs for metal panels with replaceable business panels. Joan Johnstone will discuss these ideas with the Town Council and ask the Clerk to establish how big these can be without the need for planning permission. The numbers of panels needs to be assessed and the exercise costed. The intention is to provide the board painted green, and ask businesses to pay for their own panel, printed in their own choice of colours and logos.
8. Use of New Technology:
Mike has progressed the Bluetooth / WiFi audio-visual trail for the Poetry Path, and now has a draft version with an introduction and directions recorded by Mike, interspersed with poems read by Meg Peacocke. Mike has photographed each stone, and will continue throughout the year to build up photographs of the stones in the relevant month for the poetry. The overall cost of the unit would be around £1200 plus VAT.
The meeting supported this project and agreed that it should be put to the Calor Committee for funding from the prize monies held by the Town Council. Action: Mike Walker
It is understood that the equipment has the capacity for other audio trails and a guide to the Church, and possibly the Stainmore railway would also be explored.
9. Future of Kirkby Stephen TIC:
EDC asked for expression of interest in running a TIC service in Kirkby Stephen, and one has been submitted by a consortium of community organisations including the Town Forum. We have been informed that a second expression of interest has been received by EDC from a company interested in working with the local community, and a meeting will be set up to explore a joint bid. Preparation of a business plan is under way.
EDC have deferred the closure until after Winter 2011/2012 to allow more time to evaluate proposals.
10. Action for Market Towns Convention Venue for 2012
Kirkby Stephen has declared an interest in hosting the Action for Market Towns convention in 2012. The Grammar School has been advised that we might consider it as the major meeting venue, but detailed negotiations will be needed later.
Accommodation providers will be alerted in the next Newsletter from “Walkers are Welcome”. It was agreed that it would be useful to quantify the accommodation available within a 10 mile radius. Action: Ann Sandell
Further details about possible dates will be explored with AMT.
Action: Mike Walker
11. Kirkby Stephen Guide:
Ann Sandell showed the meeting a number of guidebooks, some historic, and some modern, suggesting that we might consider printing a new one for Kirkby Stephen. Costs had been obtained for 2000 copies of a 36 page paperback in black & white, with a coloured insert, of £2285. It was suggested that production costs be covered by advertising, with the guides being sold at £4.50 per copy. The meeting were unsure whether we should produce a publication concerning the history of Kirkby Stephen and the surrounding area, or a guide to attractions which might go out-of-date fairly quickly. It was suggested that the Forum thought about this and discuss it at the next meeting.
12. 2011 Events – Royal Wedding:
The meeting agreed that it did not wish to organise a major event to recognise the Royal Wedding on 29 April 2011, but would encourage local neighbourhood events and parties.
13. Role of the Forum in co-ordinating events:
Mike Walker pointed out that the Forum has not planned any large events for 2011, but there were other activities going on in the town. He wondered whether the Forum should have a role to co-ordinate activities of others. The meeting felt that it should be up to individual groups to organise activities of their choice, and that clashes of dates could be avoided by use of the events listing noticeboard in the Community Office. The Forum felt that there was no need for action on this.
14. Insurance – Notification of Events:
No activities are planned which require notifications to the insurer.
15. Any Other Business:
Eden District Council is running their Local Heroes Awards again in 2011. It was agreed that the Forum should make nominations to ensure representation of Kirkby Stephen. A number of suggestions were made and Mike agreed to make the nominations on behalf of the Forum and ensure we get permission of candidates that we put forward.
Action: Mike Walker
Kirkby Stephen in Bloom are holding a flower arranging demonstration at 1900 on 8 April at the Kirkby Stephen Sports and Social Club, with tickets costing £6.50.
The secretary has copies of the necessary forms for Road Closures.
The 2011 Census is to be taken on 27 March. It was thought that there might be a need for assistance in completing the form by some residents in the area, and perhaps help might be provided. It was agreed that this would be put to the Community Office via the Town Council. Action: Joan Johnstone.
Ann Sandell suggested that those interested in family history might wish to make a copy of the 2011 Census form for the benefit of their descendants.
The Local Links Centre is progressing and opening is anticipated in May 2011.
16. Date of next meeting:
It was agreed that the next meeting would be held on Monday 9 May 2011 at 1900.
This will be the Annual General Meeting, and nominations for Chairman, Treasurer, Secretary and Publicity Officer were requested.