Minutes of the committee meeting held in The Mullions Hotel Breakfast Room.
Wednesday 22nd January 2020. The meeting started at 7.30 pm.
1. Welcome and apologies for absence
PRESENT: David Atkins (chairman) DA, Tom Winn (vice chairman) TW, Marina Richards (treasurer) MR, Jacqui Knight (secretary) JK, Peter Fry PF, Barbara Fry BF, Claire Axten Cl.A, Trevor Skinner TS, Francis Knight FK, Gabbie Butler GB, Catherine Atkins Ca.A, Paul Badman PB, Sally Wood SW and Viv Squire VS
APOLOGIES: Kay Strain and Sue Genge
2. Minutes of the meeting held on 27th November: DA checked that everyone had read the minutes from the previous meeting and signed them as a true record.
BF received feedback from the Diment family to say that Zoe has done very well in her German mock exam. They would like to thank everyone for giving her support and encouragement to speak German whilst in Isny.
3. Matters Arising not on Agenda: No matters arising
4. Chairman’s Report: DA showed the committee a newspaper clipping from Isny.
The photos were taken at the communal dinner in Isny. It shows the aprons, Christmas trees and bunting which were made by members and presented to the Isny committee. There is also a write up about the visit.
The meal at The Pipers Inn on Wed 15th January was a very enjoyable social event. It was lovely to have so many members attend.
DA showed the committee the Street Twinning card which can be sent as a thank you etc.
5. Secretary’s Report: JK reported that she has heard from Jenny, the Assistant to the Street Parish Council, about the request to have a road named after Isny. It may take some time for this to happen but the wheels are in motion.
6. Treasurer’s Report: Please see report at the end of the minutes.
Current account balance £6,810.31
Deposit account balance £8,051.56
£750 received in membership payments since Sept. JK will contact the last few members that have not yet paid.
£228 received in lottery payments so far. More paid in at the meeting.
Forms have been submitted to the bank to update signatures for cheques.
MR has drafted a receipt which will be forwarded to JK so as it can be emailed to members once payments have been received.
7. Membership & Member’s Welfare:
Membership: JK reported that we have 52 paid members and 6 under 18’s. There are 10 members who we are still expecting payments from which would bring our total twinning membership to 68.
A discussion followed, there has to be a benefit to paying membership. It was agreed by the committee that the following membership guide lines should be followed:
a) If a member does not pay membership then they are no longer a member of Street Twinning. If they would like to be kept in the loop as a supporter then JK will place them on the supporters emailing list and they will be sent information about fundraising and social events but not the agenda’s or minutes of meetings.
b) There may be opportunities for supporters to attend twinning dinners etc. but the cost to supporters will not include subsidies from the association which members may receive. The rate for supporters needs to be higher than membership as otherwise no benefit to being a member.
c) Anyone can attend the AGM but only members can vote.
We would like to welcome our new members who are all travelling to Gravenchon; Yvette Carver, Simon Richards, Susan Mackenzie and Pat Hollocombe. Shirley Gunter who twins with Isny is now also twinning with Gravenchon.
We have sadly lost a few long-term members for various reasons and we wish them all well. These include the Norton-Ashley family, Bill and Bobbie Lockyer, Yvonne and Denys Jones, Hazel and Ivor Russell, Grace Squire, Paul and Veronica Richards, Katrina Dumontroty and Mark Lisle.
Elizabeth and Jim Lidgate have been in touch. They have not been able to twin in recent times due to ill health but they are still very keen to keep in touch with twinning. Along with some of the others they have been added to the supporters emailing list.
Member’s Welfare: Sharon in France is going into hospital shortly and we wish her a speedy recovery DA will send a card to wish her well. SW reported that Reg is recovering well from his recent ill health and has gone back to the choir; we wish him a continued good recovery.
Contacting schools in a bid to find new members and promoting twinning. DA is happy to work on this but not on his own. What other groups or associations would be good to approach? U3A had been a good source of new members in recent times.
Discover your community event will take place on Sat 29th Feb. Street Twinning has a pitch and it will be from 10am – 2pm in Crispin Hall. JK and FK volunteered to lead the stall and will be organising a rota very soon. SW and BF volunteered.
8. Visit to Gravenchon 2020: Wed 15th – Sun 19th April. The coach will be booked tomorrow by DA. Bakers coaches are booking the ferry.
An email will be sent to everyone travelling to Gravenchon as soon as we have updated information. We will soon be able to inform people of times, where to park their cars and the cost of cabins for the people who have booked them. The balance for Gravenchon is due to be paid by the end of February.
There are 31 members travelling to Gravenchon including 4 members that are travelling independently. Due to the number of travellers going up there is no longer a shortfall as stated in last month’s minutes. This is great news.
Cl.A is happy to organise a sewing group, an email will be sent shortly asking for volunteers to help make aprons, bunting and bottle top Christmas trees which will be the gifts to Gravenchon.
Pre-visit get together: The committee discussed venues and were happy with the suggestion from VS about using the Methodist Church at £10 an hour for the get together. DA will contact VS with proposed dates.
9. Visit from Isny 2020: BF reported that there had been two dates proposed to Isny for this year’s exchange, Aug and Oct half term as both English and German children are on school holidays. Isny were not keen on Aug. The visit will take place during half term week at the end of Oct. Dates will be confirmed ASAP. If anyone would like to be involved with Isny please let us know as there maybe people in Isny that would like to visit that aren’t linked yet.
DA discussed a budget for the exchange. There is potential for transport costs to and from the airport which makes the costings different from Gravenchon. BF explained that it is very expensive to fly from Munich to Bristol which is why they fly into Heathrow. They are looking at flying from Basel to Bristol but will be a more expensive coach journey for them. It is expensive for them to collect us from Basel when we travel to them and so likewise we cover the cost of travelling to and from Heathrow. How long they are here will depend on flights. VS stated that she enjoyed doing lots of group activities whilst over in Germany and it would be nice to do this when they visit us. It was proposed by DA and agreed by the committee that the budget for the 2020 Isny exchange will be £55 per head plus any travel costs to/from airports. The budget won’t be rigid but something to work with.
10. Visit of Isny Town Band: Street Drum and Trumpet core are on side. There might be interest from the Wells City Band. They may come over for the last weekend of Sept or in Oct for 2 or 3 nights. Youth Hostels and the Premier Inn have been looked at for accommodation but the Street Youth Hostel is too small. Members could host but not a necessity. One combined concert in Street probably on a Saturday and will involve Street Twinning members in some way. Millfield are very keen to support the local community and there are two theatres on their grounds and there is also Crispin Hall as an option. DA will go back to them with his findings.
a) Christmas Cracker: Please see report from FK at the end of the minutes. Whilst preparing for the Cracker it was discovered that the large Street Twinning banner has been misplaced. The search is on! The smaller banner was used instead.
b) Bric a Brac market stall: Thurs 9th April Cl.A confirmed that the stall has been booked. To be discussed again at the Feb meeting.
c) Quiz: Sun 17th May TS stated that it was moved from the original date as Fri was fully booked. Provisionally booked at the Victoria Club.
d) Choir event: If the visit from the Isny band comes together this may be put back.
e) Pizza evening: SW had been to one before held by an operatic group and it had made a lot of money. It was a great evening and so SW will look into seeing if it is a possibility.
f) Baltonsborough Show: Aug 2020 Possible human fruit machine or play your cards right, MR will find out more about it and what kind of stalls are usually there. A decision will be made at the Feb meeting.
DA suggested a social event in the summer, not a fundraiser. Skittles, croquet or boules were suggested. To be discussed again.
12. Website & Facebook: PF asked if there could be anything else that could go on the website to update it. Any suggestions? Facebook all up to date.
13. Publicity: JK apologised for not putting a report in Basis, Local Reach or Mendip Times about the trip to Isny. It was agreed that it is not too late. It was also suggested to get in touch with Street Nub News which is on Facebook and the Internet. JK is happy to do this and will also send in a report about Gravenchon once we return.
DA spoke about Glastonbury FM and the idea of an interview on the community show; perhaps arrange an interview with one of the twinners from Isny and/or Gravenchon.
14. A Policy Document for the Association: The committee agreed to go ahead with the policy. TS, MR and BF/PF have volunteered to meet with DA to work on this.
Blue folder: DA brought this in for committee members to look through. It has some information in it but needs more. BF is happy to gather info about last year’s Isny exchange and JK will gather info about last year’s Gravenchon exchange.
Information to include in the blue folder: Contacts for events i.e. halls and caterers plus coach and entertainer contacts and a little report on if they were good or not plus financial summaries and reports.
The Twining Document still has its place for new members and will be updated.
15. Forward Planning of visits and activities: BF will approach members with reference to the 2021 visit and the time where holidays link with Isny. The School holiday spreadsheet shows when School holidays link with Isny and Gravenchon and this information was sent to all members by email on 19th Jan. French holidays are not the same time as ours during the usual exchange dates in 2021and this will need to be looked at further.
Association Reserves: Members of the committee stated that membership may decrease and travel costs may increase and the reserves safeguard the future of the association. There used to be more money in the reserves as we had more grants and spent less on exchanges. Ideas for the use of the reserves were subsidising children, family grants to help first timers to visit abroad. It has to be fair and not just for families i.e. members on pensions may struggle with hosting costs as well. Organising mini buses to ease the pressure for people with only one car or who don’t drive, also helping the local community i.e. local schools with their twinning. DA stated we need to arrive at a minimum figure that should be left in reserve and he will produce an idea for reserves, what the amount should be and what it is used for.
16. Lottery: It was decided that even though as it stands less people have joined the lottery there will still be 3 cash prizes.
1st no.52 David Mozley £20
2nd no.41 David Atkins £10
3rd no.3 Trevor Skinner £5
If anyone would like a lottery form please contact Tom Winn. You only pay for the months left in the year and so if you join now in time for the February draw you only need to pay £11 per number, 5 numbers maximum per person.
DA thanked TW for continuing to run the lottery.
17. AOB: DA thanked Viv for attending the meeting.
Meeting Closed at 9.35pm
Date of next meeting: Wednesday 26th February 2020 at 7.30 pm
at The Mullions Hotel breakfast room.