Posts Tagged ‘AGM’

2018 AGM Minutes

Tuesday, June 25th, 2019

Minutes of Annual General Meeting held on Monday, 13th August 2018 at 7.00pm in Ardgay Hall

Approved 10/06/2019


Present: Elected members: Betty Wright, Chair (BW), Marion Turner, Treasurer (MT), Andy Wright (AW), Rob Pope (RP)

Also present: Highland Councillor Kirsteen Currie (KC), David and Patricia Hannah (DH/PH)

Invited guest: Martin Thomsen, Community Engagement Officer

Minutes Secretary: Mary Goulder (MG)

Apologies: Vice Chair Silvia Muras (SM), Buster Crabb (BC)

Items 1/2.  Welcome/Apologies (see above) The Chair opened the meeting and welcomed all present, particularly DH and PH.

Item 3. Minutes of last AGM. The Minutes of the last AGM held on Monday 12th June 2017 were accepted as a true and accurate record.  Proposed: Marion Turner; seconded: Betty Wright.

Item 4. Chairperson’s report. (BW) The report is copied here:

I’d like to give a short summary of the work of the community council during the past year.  It is often a valuable task to take a step back & review what has been achieved, what is still a work in progress & identify those things that seem to turn into an oft- recurring theme.  Although with our excellent newsletter, we do have a good record of our undertakings.

But first, a few thank–yous: to my fellow councillors for all their voluntary efforts, attending meetings, delivering newsletters, and generally being concerned about  & wanting to give something back to their community;  to our treasurer/ secretary Marion who does a great job looking after our money & Leslie who was our secretary until she had to stand down for health reasons,;  to Linda one of our ward Highland councillors who puts in a lot of hours to attend our meetings – often driving through some pretty bad weather; to Silvia for producing our excellent newsletter; to Phil Olson who manages our website; and of course Mary, our marvellous minutes secretary.  This cc really would not function without her.  Also, thanks to members of our community who have raised various issues with us – that is why we are here!

But it’s not all thank-yous.  I must express my personal disappointment with the way all community councils have been treated by The Highland Council.  I feel their actions in cutting our budget by 50% is nothing short of an attack on the most local level of democracy.   Our grant this year from THC is not sufficient to run our cc.  I can only think that THC acted upon a poor understanding of the funds held by various ccs – the bottom line looks very healthy, but the vast majority of the funds we have in our bank a/c are restricted funds that have come from Windfarm community benefits, not to be spent on subsidising THC statutory functions.  We will discuss actual amounts later & also a proposal to reduce the number of times we meet to 6pa – the minimum required under the Highland Council Scheme of Establishment for ccs.  We can only hope that by the time we run out of Admin funds, THC will have realised our dilemma & re-instated our budget for next year.

So, what changes have we seen over the last 12 months?  There has been a huge impact on the centre of Ardgay with the completion of works on the Barn & stage 1 of Drovers square.  Not only has this greatly improved the appearance of the village, but several businesses are housed in the Barn providing much needed job opportunities.  Thanks to KoSDT for all their work on taking this & so many other projects forward on behalf of the local community.

Last summer saw the opening of The Hub which is now providing a variety of activities for children & families, including soft play area, café, youth clubs, gym, yoga classes.  This is an example of a project which brings together the 2 communities of Ardgay & Bonar Bridge.  The 2 villages are separated by a very fast stretch of road.  We were approached by a customer at the Community Food stop (several of the regulars come from Ardgay) asking about the possibility of providing a seat or two by the side of the pavement to make the walk less challenging for those with health or mobility problems.  I am happy to say that we now have permission from THC to install 2 benches & have the money from Beinn Tharsuinn Wind farm community benefit & look forward to their installation over the summer.  We are also pursuing the possibility of a speed restriction along the straight as this would greatly improve the walking experience & help bring the 2 communities closer.

We have addressed several issues around the village.  We are once again organising the caretaking of the toilets in Ardgay – thanks to Silvia & Marion for this & Sheena Shaw for her hard work; the flower tubs were watered by a small number of volunteers last summer – tubs have been removed for renovation & replanting by Jean Richardson & Steve Wilkinson.  The polling station was temporarily moved to Gledfield school, but we are confident that it will be back to Ardgay Hall for the next election.  There are now 2 defibrillators in our area – 1 outside the Hall in Ardgay & the other in the old telephone kiosk in Culrain.  We again had a Xmas tree on the green & arranged for the lights to be on during the day.  A lack of volunteers meant that there were no lights on lampposts as per previous years, but we are hopeful that these will reappear next winter.  The road up Kincardine Hill has been resurfaced & has new extended passing places to make it up to standard for timber extraction lorries – although whether this standard is high enough remains under discussion – I think it highlights the problems we have with our roads & ever-increasing size of lorries.

We continue to communicate with ScotRail & HITRANS about our rail service re timetabling & possible provision of electronic signs at Ardgay & Culrain stations.

Windfarms & Community Benefit:  There has been an amount of activity over the last year.  Braemore WF obtained consent from Scottish government whilst Caplich – with whom we had signed an MOU re shared ownership – was refused.  There is a proposal going to planning from Meall Buidhe renewables for a WF on Croick Estate.  At present, A&DCC administers application to funds from BnO (£2,500 p.a.), Beinn Tharsuinn (£14,500 pa).  We also have 2 reps on SSE Achany & EON Rosehall panel (£130k between 3 ccs = £43k)

As part of our regular meeting, we often invite others to speak on issues of particular concern.  This year we welcomed: Helen Houston, updating us on the many projects of KoSDT; Reps from Muirden Energy re proposed WF at Meall Buidhe; Jason Gardiner from SF&RS – who is also a member of Sutherland Community Partnership.

Although we have not been involved directly in this, there is something we have talked about at every meeting – Broadband.  BT have delivered superfast broadband to Ardgay exchange & KoSDT are now working with a local provider on a scheme to provide wireless broadband to properties who do not benefit from BT’s provision by virtue of being too remote from a green cabinet.

This is a brief summary of some of the issues dealt with by your community councillors over the last 12 months.  There are full accounts of all our projects reported in our quarterly newsletter.  I would once again like to thank Silvia for the excellent job she does; together with all our contributors & those who deliver to all houses in our area.

Item 5. Treasurer’s report (MT). This report is copied here:

The 2017-2018 accounts show that the CC has a balance of £18,202.93 of which £17,892.93 are restricted funds.

Each year the CC is given two grants from THC.

  1. Toilet Caretaking Grant
    This HC grant is given to pay for caretaking the toilet.  A&D CC has been for some years organising the caretaking of the toilet in Ardgay.  In financial year 17-18 THC reduced the grant amount by £100. The balance in the Toilet account is £29.76. Discussions will be sought with THC regarding future arrangements.
  2. Admin Grant
    This grant is intended to cover the costs of running the CC.  In year 17-18, the CC received £896.16 from THC. This was fully spent.

Next year the Admin grant will be halved to £485.03.  The CC is conscious of how tight this budget is and has already reduced meetings to 8 per year.  Next year serious consideration will have to be given as to how the CC can fulfil the requirements of the Highland Council Scheme of Establishment within this severely reduced budget.

The balance in the Admin account is £310.88 which is what remains of windfarm community benefit funding drawn down in previous years and carried forward. The admin of the Beinn Tharsuinn and the Beinn nan Oighrean wind farm funds is paid for from this sum. In future to provide more clarity this will be shown separately as Windfarm admin. This will result in the CC Admin account starting the financial year 18-19 with a nil balance.

The balance of restricted funds is £17,892.05. The bulk of these restricted funds arise from the Beinn nan Oighrean windfarm benefit which is held by the CC for the community and is disbursed to community groups through the CC’s Small Grants Applications.  The balance in the Beinn nan Oighrean account is £11,810.73 The accounts show that in 2017-2018 four BNO awards were made totalling £891.47.  These are reported separately.

Other restricted funds: Toilet Caretaking, £29.76

Beinn Tharsuinn Community Projects Fund, £3178.15

Newsletter EON award + newsletter income, £2,203.01

EON Path fund, £670.40.

Item 6. Report re Beinn Tharsuinn community benefit fund. (RP) Unfortunately due to computer issues there was no printed report available for tonight.

& Beinn nan Oighrean community benefit fund. (MT) Beinn nan Oighrean community benefit is worth £2500 annually. It is disbursed to community groups through the CC’s Small Grants Applications. The maximum award from this fund is £250. Details of the fund and how to apply can be found on the A&D CC website and in the Ardgay & District Community Council Newsletter.

During the year 2017-1018 four awards were made totalling £891.47 The balance in this account is £11810.73

BNO awards made 2017-2018

  • The Hub – Staff development – £250
  • Ardgay Public Hall – Gents toilet refurbishment – £250
  • Invershin Hall – Balance bikes activity for children – £191.47
  • A&D CC – Newsletter art competition – £200

Item 7. Report from Newsletter Editor. (SM) This report is copied here:

This year we have continued growing. We have passed from 32 pages to 36 on the last three editions. We have welcomed new contributors, advertisers and, for the first time, we have subscribers who pay a yearly fee to receive the newsletter on the post. Also, we have consolidated our sale points (Ardgay Store & Cafe and Bonar Bridge Post Office).

In March this year we held our 2nd “Ardgay Newsletter Children’s Art Competition”, with 200 entries. Almost all children from the local Primary Schools participating in the contest and coming along to the exhibition. Thank you to Kirsten Macneil, Lisa Mackenzie, Marion Turner, Vicky Whittock, Doreen Bruce, and everyone else who helped or came to the event.

A very warm thank you to our volunteer distributors: David Hannah, Vicky Whittock, Jeannie Sparling, Anna Sutherland, Iain Worthy, David Ross, David Knight, Rhonwen Copley, Brigitte Geddes, Bob Sendall, Teresa Langley, Marion Turner and Betty Wright. A special thanks to Alan Lawrence, who has now moved South. His route on Strath Oykel is now covered by David Mackay, with assistance from Graham Charge. Thank you both for coming forward as volunteers to distribute our newsletter.

The funding awarded in April 2016 (Beinn Tharsuinn) and December 2016 (E.ON Rosehall) is now into its 3rd year. A new funding application is being put forward to cover these last months of our 3-year project. The revenue from donations, sales and advertisings has been slightly bigger than predicted, which means the grants have gone a longer way. I hope this will encourage our funders to renew their support.

Thank you all for your continued support to the newsletter.

Item 8.  Election of Office Bearers 2017-2018. All members of the Community Council stood down and Councillor Currie took the chair for the purpose of electing the Chair.  KC said how pleased she was to be attending Ardgay CC and chairing the election

Betty Wright was proposed to continue as Chair; proposed: Marion Turner; seconded: Andy Wright.

Silvia Muras was proposed to continue as Vice Chair; proposed: Betty Wright; seconded: Marion Turner.

Marion Turner was proposed to continue as Treasurer; proposed: Andy Wright; seconded: Rob Pope.

Marion Turner was proposed to continue as Secretary; proposed: Andy Wright; seconded: Betty Wright.

Sylvia Muras was proposed to continue as Newsletter Editor; proposed by Betty Wright; agreed by all.

Mary Goulder was proposed to continue as Minutes Secretary; proposed: Betty Wright and agreed.

Two representatives to the SSE/E.ON Achany Panel will be Silvia Muras and Rob Pope.

One representative to KOSDT will be Andy Wright.

One representative to Beinn Tharsuinn Windfarm Company will be Rob Pope. He indicated that he will be unable to attend the next meeting of the company on 18th September.

Item 9. Dates of meetings for 2018-19. Following the THC budget cuts, A&DCC will reduce the number of meetings held to the minimum requirement of six per year, meeting therefore every other month on the second Monday. The next meeting will be in October, followed by December, February, April and June, which will be the AGM. Owing to these date changes the new deadlines for applications to Beinn Tharsuinn and Beinn nan Oighrean windfarm funds will be clearly indicated in future editions of the newsletter. (SM Action)

Item 10. Any other competent business. DH and PH expressed thanks to the CC on behalf of the community for the ongoing work with a special mention for the excellent newsletter which is now being circulated as widely as the USA, New Zealand and Kurdistan.

Item 10. Date and time of next AGM. This will be on 10th June 2019.

Meeting closed at 7.37pm.

2017 AGM Minutes

Wednesday, July 19th, 2017

Minutes of AGM held on Monday 12 June 2017 at 7:00 pm in Ardgay Public Hall

Minutes approved 13/08/2018

Present: Elected members: Betty Wright, Chair (BW), Silvia Muras, Vice Chair (SM), Marion Turner, Treasurer (MT), Leslie Pope, Secretary (LP), Andy Wright (AW), Rob Pope (RP)

Also present: Highland Councillor Linda Munro (LM), PCs Angus Morrison (AM) and Steve MacKenzie (SMK)

Minutes Secretary: Mary Goulder (MG)

Apologies: Sheila Lall (SL), Buster Crabb (BC)

Items 1/2.  Welcome/Apologies (see above) The Chair opened the meeting and welcomed all present. The police representatives arrived at the start of the meeting and their report was taken ahead of the AGM after which the officers left. The minutes of this appear in those of the main monthly meeting.

Item 3. Minutes of last AGM. The Minutes of the last AGM held on Monday 13th June 2016 were accepted as a true and accurate record.  Proposed: Marion Turner; seconded: Silvia Muras.

Item 4. Chairperson’s report. (BW) This has been another busy year for A&DCC, with a mix of ongoing issues, some reaching a conclusion & others beginning; some addressing local problems and others Highland wide.

I would like to thank those who have given freely of their time to CC business – my fellow councillors, our wonderful minutes secretary, members of the public who have attended our meetings or communicated their opinion via the Newsletter or our website, our Highland councillors, particularly George Farlow who attended the majority of our meetings despite the distances involved,.  George did not stand for re-election to the council & will be missed at our meetings.  We look forward to working with our new & returning representatives in the future. Thanks are due to Phil Olson for continuing to administer our website. Thanks to our editor Silvia, the newsletter continues to be of a very high standard – Silvia will say more about this later, but I would like to add thanks to those who deliver the newsletter to every house in our area.

There have been a couple of changes to CC personnel – in Dec 2016 we welcomed Buster Crabb.  Sheila Lall has intimated she will stand down from the CC at this meeting due to pressure of other commitments.  I would like to thank Sheila for her input & hope she will return in future.

Some of the issues we have addressed this year:

Broadband:  Some good news here!  BT installed a 3rd cabinet on the Ardgay exchange, adjacent to the toilet building in Ardgay, which went live in Feb this year.  This brought ‘superfast’ broadband within the reach of subscribers in the village.  However at distances of greater than about 1.5km, the speed drops off quickly & these customers will have to wait for the situation to be remedied by other means.  How this will be done is not yet clear – there is currently a review of households who do not benefit from BT rollout so far & hopefully this will result in progress in late 2017.

Timber Extraction at Garvary Woodland:  Several residents attended Dec meeting to express their concern about the felling of the forest at Badvoon, which would result in lorries using the very narrow road up Kincardine Hill to extract the timber, work which would extend over several years.  The CC invited representatives from Fountains Forestry & THC roads dept to our Feb meeting to address these issues.  It was agreed that the THC will carry out a full survey of the road to establish what upgrading is required and no extraction will commence before the improvements are done and an agreed traffic management plan is in place.

Windfarms & Community Benefit:  As part of our meeting each month we consider applications to Beinn Tharsuinn & Beinn nan Oighrean community Benefit funds – these support many local organisations with grants of up to £2000, and fund such projects as the Xmas lights & flower tubs.  There are 2 CC reps on the Eon Rosehall/ SSE Achany CB panel, which awards grants bi-annually up to £20,000, funding such projects as our development officer, A&DCC newsletter & and make valuable match funding awards to such projects as Falls of Shin visitor Centre, Ardgay regeneration Project & The Family Hub.  These CB funds are making a huge difference to our local area – in one edition of our newsletter I counted 14 different projects that had been supported.

Construction has begun on the Coire na Cloiche WF; the decision on Braemore following the Public Local Inquiry (PLI) is still with the Scottish Government; a PLI into the application for Caplich Windfarm begins 19th June and there is a scoping exercise for a proposed WF at Braelangwell.  The Scottish Government is greatly encouraging shared ownership in new WF schemes, which has the potential for bringing more financial benefit to the area.  The CC will continue to monitor this possibility on your behalf.

Ardgay issues:  The CC have co-ordinated several projects around the village, for which I would like to thank a few people:  Jeannie Sparling, who stood down from her role as caretaker of the toilets.  The CC once again secured funding from THC & Sheena Shaw has taken on the job for this season; Paul Whittock who for once again put up our Xmas lights; Marion Turner for organising new tree lights & together with Phil Olson & Andy erecting the tree; Jean Richardson for co-ordinating members of the Growing Group to plant & water the flower tubs; Rhonwen Copley & the hall committee for continuing to refurbish the hall & arrange wi-fi connection, which has proved very useful for our meetings; and all of you who encourage others to clean up after their dogs!

Kyle of Sutherland Development Trust:  The Trust continues to run a number of projects in the local area.  The Falls of Shin visitor Centre opened in May & is proving very popular; work has started on the Ardgay Regeneration project which will see a business barn in operation next year & the construction of 4 houses in what is now Drovers Square; Bonar Post Office now has a new permanent postmistress, the CHESS project, which exposed unexpectedly high numbers of households living in fuel poverty has now finished but funding was secured for the staff members to continue as East Sutherland Energy Advice Service; Keep Active Together runs numerous activities in local village halls, and as such is an important revenue stream for them.  In 2016 the trust drew in an amazing £3.3million to our area.  There is info about all their projects on their website.

The Highland Council:  The priorities that we asked our highland councillors to focus on are, as reported in the newsletter, 1. Communications – broadband & mobile reception; 2. Retaining all current local services; 3. Transport; 4. Supporting local businesses & social enterprises.  Another concern that is raised at every meeting during spring & summer is the cutting of roadside verges to maintain sight lines, particularly along our many single track roads.

We will endeavour to pursue these issues on your behalf & any others which may arrive throughout the coming year.

Item 5. Treasurer’s report (MT). The audited accounts were approved and will now be submitted to THC to trigger the annual grant payment. MT Action. Report below:

The 2016-2017 accounts show that the CC has a balance of £16868.52 of which £16444.61  are restricted funds.
Each year the CC is given two grants from THC.

  1. Toilet Caretaking Grant
    This grant covers the cost of caretaking the toilet.  Delays in receiving the grant resulted in a later opening during Spring/Summer 2016. The balance in the Toilet account is £29.76.
  2. Admin Grant
    This grant is intended to cover the costs of running the CC. In year 16-17, admin costs exceeded the grant amount.  The CC is conscious of how tight this budget is and has already reduced meetings to 8 per year. The CC will discuss what further can be done to keep these costs in budget. The balance in the Admin account is 423.91.

By far the biggest component of the funds held by the CC arises from the BNO windfarm benefit which is disbursed to community groups through the CC’s Small Grants Applications.  The balance in this account is £10202.20. The accounts show that in 2016-2017 eight awards were made totalling £1572.80.  These are reported separately.

The overall balance also includes grants and awards which the CC has applied for on its own behalf for particular purposes. During financial year 16-17 the CC applied for and was successful in being awarded £2000 from Beinn Tharsuinn and £5000 from EON Rosehall Community Benefit Fund to secure the production of the A&D CC Newsletter for the next 3 years. The current Newsletter balance is £5267.50

Item 6. Report re Beinn Tharsuinn & Beinn nan Oighrean community benefit funds. (RP) Beinn Tharsuinn:

17/5/16               Kyle of Sutherland Anglers Association                  Boat Upgrade                    1375.00

17/5/16                Ardgay Public Hall Committee                                    Broadband Installation    496.00

17/5/16                Kyle of Sutherland Gala Week Committee            Gala Week                              87.50

17/5/16                Kyle of Sutherland Development Trust                  Enterprise Assistant        2000.00

10/6/16                Kyle of Sutherland Development Trust                  Falls of Shin                        2000.00

01/7/16                Invercharron Games                                                      Highland Games                 872.00

09/8/16                Kyle of Sutherland Development Trust                  Upgrade of Post Office  2000.00

13/9/16                Kyle of Sutherland Gala Committee                         Santa’s Magical Forest     622.00

21/10/16              Ardgay Public Hall Committee                                    Room insulation               1700.00

04/3/17                Kyle of Sutherland Development Trust                  Falls of Shin paths            2000.00

13152.50

(MT) Beinn nan Oighrean Community Benefit Annual Report 2016-2017:

Beinn nan Oighrean community benefit is worth £2500 annually. It is disbursed to community groups  through the CC’s Small Grants Applications. The maximum award from this fund is £250. Details of the fund and how to apply can be found on the A&D CC website.

During the year 2016-1017 eight awards were made totalling £1572.80. The balance in this account is £10202.20.

BNO awards made 2016-2017

  • Gledfield Parent Council – Eden Court Creative Sessions – movement, voice, drama -£250
  • Ardgay Public Hall  – seating care and repair – £240
  • Kyle of Sutherland Gala – contribution towards marquee hire for Gala Fete – £50
  • A&D CC – projector & screen – £198
  • Gearrchoille Community Wood Ardgay – community activities in the wood – £250
  • Bradbury Centre – contribution towards social activity for elderly clients – £250
  • Ardgay Badminton Club – purchase of new racquets and hold-all -£150
  • Kyle of Sutherland Cinema Club – contribution towards hall hire – £185

Item 7. Report from Newsletter editor. (SM) This year has been a year of growth. The newsletter has now more pages, we have passed from 24 pages three years ago, to 32 in this Summer edition. We have more of everything and some new features.

We can now gather donations online, thanks to the Paypal button added to the website and email. A big

thank you to Phil Olson for his help setting this up, and especially for updating the newsletter page.

Thanks to our funders E.oN Rosehall Community Fund, who renewed their support to the project last

December awarding £5,000 to produce the newsletter for another 3 years. The revenue from donations,

sales and advertising is slowly but steadily increasing, helping the newsletter become a bit more sustainable.

I would like to give an especially warm thank you to our volunteer distributors: David Hannah, Vicky Whittock,

Jeannie Sparling, Anna Sutherland, Iain Worthy, David Ross, David Knight, Rhonwen Copley, Brigitte

Geddes, Alan Lawrence, Bob Sendall, Teresa Langley, Marion Turner and Betty Wright. Your continued

commitment makes everything else possible.

Thanks to Holly and Abigail, from Ardgay Stores and Bonar Bridge Post Office, who are now selling spare

copies. A few months ago we were assigned an ISSN that allows us to create a barcode. Now the hard copies

will be easier to sell in any outlet.

Thanks to our contributors, whose number is increasing steadily. In this Summer issue #36 we had 25

contributors from 22 different groups and organisations.

Thanks also to Marion Turner for proof reading the newsletter, for being so patient with all the extra work

that I give to her, and for keeping track of the newsletter’s accounts so well.

Thanks to all who gave donations, feedback or simply help spread the word and I hope you will enjoy the

next issue.

Item 8.  Election of Office Bearers 2017-2018. All members of the Community Council stood down and Councillor Munro took the chair for the purpose of electing the Chair.  LM said how pleased she was to be attending Ardgay CC and chairing the election

Betty Wright was proposed to continue as Chair; proposed: Leslie Pope; seconded: Marion Turner.

Silvia Muras was proposed to continue as Vice Chair; proposed: Andy Wright; seconded: Rob Pope.

Marion Turner was proposed to continue as Treasurer; proposed: Andy Wright; seconded: Leslie Pope.

Leslie Pope was proposed to continue as Secretary; proposed: Betty Wright; seconded Silvia Muras.

Phil Olson agreed to continue to maintain the CC website and was warmly thanked for his work on it.

Sylvia Muras was proposed to continue as Newsletter Editor; proposed by Betty Wright; agreed by all.

Sheila Lall had submitted her wish to stand down from the CC. In her absence thanks were expressed to her for her work on the CC and the hope expressed that she may feel willing to return at a future date.

Mary Goulder was proposed to continue as Minutes Secretary; proposed: Betty Wright and agreed.

Any other responsibilities within the CC will continue as before, by unanimous agreement.

Item 9. Any other competent business. Two vacancies exist within the CC. During the summer recess all members are encouraged to try to find interested parties, especially seeking younger and locally active people. LM stated there is great concern that the 18-30 age group is not engaging with the local community and efforts must be made to reach out to them. This will be an agenda item at the August meeting. Agenda item.

Item 10. Date and time of next AGM. This will be on 11th June 2018

Meeting closed at 7.38pm.

Minutes AGM 13 June 2016

Tuesday, June 14th, 2016

Ardgay & District Community Council

Approved Minutes of AGM held on Monday, 13th June 2016 at 7.00pm in Ardgay Hall

Present: Elected members: Betty Wright, Chair (BW), Silvia Muras, Vice Chair (SM), Marion Turner, Treasurer (MT), Sheila Lall (SL), Andy Wright (AW)

Also present: Highland Councillor George Farlow (GF), Phil Olson (PO)

Minutes Secretary: Mary Goulder (MG)

Apologies: Leslie Pope, Secretary (LP), Rob Pope (RP)

Items 1/2.  Welcome/Apologies/(see above) The Chair opened the meeting and welcomed all present.

Item 3. Minutes of last AGM. The Minutes of the last AGM held on Monday 8th June 2015 were accepted as a true and accurate record.  Proposed: Marion Turner; seconded: Betty Wright.

Item 4. Chairperson’s report. (BW) I have been chairperson of the cc since first meeting of the newly convened council in March.  The previous cc was dissolved at end of Nov 2015 following elections earlier in the month when not enough people came forward as candidates, so the cc remained in abeyance until another election was called early in 2016 when there were sufficient numbers to form a new council following an uncontested election.  Our first meeting of the new council comprising Betty Wright, Silvia Muras, Marion Turner, Sheila Lall, Rob Pope & Andy Wright was held in March, when we welcomed Leslie Pope as an associate member and Mary Goulder agreed to continue as our invaluable minutes secretary.  Mary also keeps us up to date with minutes of Creich & Lairg ccs, who also receive minutes from this cc.

I would like to thank the members of the previous cc – Alan Lawrence, Phil Olson, Bob Sendall, Theresa Langley & David Hannah – who for many years served as chairperson & represented the community on a number of local organisations.  The current community council has not been able to send representatives to all of these groups, so we hope that others attending will be able to report back on items of note which should be shared with our community.  We do continue to have reps on the E.ON Rosehall/ SSE Achany windfarm community benefit panel, the Kyle of Sutherland Development Trust and the Beinn Tharsuinn community benefit.

The current cc is a good balance of previous members, who give a sense of continuity & new members who bring a fresh perspective.  It is good to have representatives from a wide area of our patch – indeed the only area not represented is the village of Ardgay!  As the cc is not up to its full complement, the opportunity is still open for others to join us.

Communication is key to the functioning of the cc. I see the community council as a vehicle with which local residents can raise issues which affect our community which can then be raised with the relevant public bodies, primarily the Highland Council.  To that end I would like to thank our 3 local councillors, Linda, Hugh & George – particularly the latter who attends most of our meetings & raises issues with & answers questions about THC.  We communicate info to residents via newsletter – Silvia Muras continues as editor; Facebook – recently set up by Leslie Pope; website –thanks to Phil Olson who has agreed to continue with this meanwhile – we welcome dialogue via newly organised Saturday chats in Ardgay café, & of course our regular meetings.  It would be grand to see an increased attendance at these events.

There have been no new windfarm projects consented in our area over the last year – indeed THC has raised objections to several.  This cc maintains a neutral stance regarding these planning applications – reflecting the varied opinions of our residents, but it cannot be denied that the community benefit funds have had a large positive impact to our area & I personally can’t help thinking that the move towards shared ownership being offered by the latest projects would have had an even greater impact.

The development officer post at the KoSDT is currently funded by ‘windfarm’ money and Helen Houston has made very effective use of community benefit grants from EON, SSE & Beinn Tharsuinn to leverage in many times the amounts in inward grants to fund several large ongoing projects e.g. Shin Falls & Ardgay Regeneration Project.  These already have made an impact by providing local employment & both will continue to do so for many years.  KoSDT also has other projects running – Greening Kyle (now finished), Cosy Homes ES, KAT as well as taking forward the community broadband initiative that should help broadband reach the parts that BT can’t get to and organising other local events – including this weekend’s Queens birthday celebration street party.

Numerous other projects also benefit from funding including our local community wood – the Gearrchoille – refurbishment of village halls, supporting Gala Week.

The cc continues to ensure the village flower tubs are maintained – the Growing Group has taken on the task this year; and the Xmas lights will be discussed at our next meeting. The toilets in Ardgay remain open & looked after by Jeannie Sparling – a big thank you to her for this.  We also will be involved in addressing opportunities offered by the NC500 route, helping to ensure that local attractions are not ignored.

We look forward to the challenges of the coming year when we will all endeavour to serve our local community.

Non- community project – Carbisdale – fell through – local people doing it for themselves – NC500 opportunities.

Item 5. Treasurer’s report (MT). The audited accounts were approved and will now be submitted to THC to trigger the annual grant payment. MT Action. Report below:

Following CC elections in February 2016 there was a change of Treasurer.  I would like to record my thanks to Alan Lawrence who was Treasurer for two previous councils including the greater part of the past financial year. He handed on the accounts restructured, up to date and well organised which made the job of taking over the Treasurership and preparing the annual accounts so much easier.

Last year the CC altered the way it reports its accounts coming into line with the preferred HC format. One advantage of this is that it is now much easier to see how the CC balance is made up.

The accounts show that the CC has a balance of £12354.84 of which £11731.32 are restricted funds.

By far the biggest component of the balance is the money held by the CC which comes from the BNO windfarm benefit which is there to be disbursed to community groups through the CC’s Small Grants Applications.  The accounts show that five awards were made totalling £950.

Each year the CC is given two grants from THC. One is to carry out the running of the CC and the other pays for the caretaking of the Ardgay Toilet. It is important that the level of these grants is maintained as any decrease would adversely affect the work of the CC and the level of service to the Toilets. The figures show that the CC stayed within its budget for administration – this was helped by the gap for elections – but a slight overspend on toilet caretaking was incurred.

The overall balance also includes grants and awards which the CC has applied for on its own behalf for particular purposes. Of the BTWF award £878.48 remains.

During financial year 15-16 the award from the EON windfarm fund for the production of the newsletter came to an end.  Because the CC considers it important that this newsletter is delivered free to every household in the A&D CC area the CC will now look to make applications to secure further funding to continue the production of the newsletter. It is gratifying to note however, that revenue from sales, donations and advertising is increasing year on year.

Item 6.  Election of Office Bearers 2016-17. All members of the Community Council stood down and Councillor Farlow took the chair for the purpose of electing the Chair.  He expressed his enjoyment in attending the CC meetings but stated that this would be his last time of chairing the AGM elections as he stands down from office next year.

Betty Wright was proposed to continue as Chair; proposed: Marion Turner; seconded: Sheila Lall.

Silvia Muras was proposed to continue as Vice Chair; proposed: Andy Wright; seconded: Marion Turner.

Marion Turner was proposed to continue as Treasurer; proposed: Sheila Lall; seconded: Betty Wright.

Leslie Pope was proposed to continue as Secretary; proposed: Marion Turner; seconded Sheila Lall.

Phil Olson agreed to continue to maintain the CC website and was warmly thanked for his work on it.

Sylvia Muras was proposed to continue as Newsletter Editor; proposed by Betty Wright; agreed by all.

Mary Goulder was proposed to continue as Minutes Secretary; proposed: Silvia Muras and agreed by all.

All proposed accepted the positions; LP had indicated her acceptance, should she be nominated, prior to the meeting. Any other responsibilities within the CC will continue as before, by unanimous agreement.

Item 7. Any other competent business. None raised.

Item 8. Date and time of next AGM. This will be on 12th June 2017.

Meeting closed at 7.25pm.

Minutes approved 12/06/2017

Minutes AGM 10 June 2013

Tuesday, June 11th, 2013

ARDGAY & DISTRICT COMMUNITY COUNCIL

Draft Minutes of Annual General Meeting held on Monday, 10th June 2013 at 7pm in Ardgay Hall (more…)