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  • Writer's pictureFVRA

FVRA Committee Minutes April 2024

Updated: Jun 7

Findon Valley Residents' Association

Protecting the interests of our community and the countryside around us

Tuesday 9th April: Findon Valley Free Church

Chair's Welcome:

Denise Edwards

In Attendance:

Lorraine Taylor (LT), Clive Sanders (CS), Paula Barnes (PB), Neil Worsfold (NW), Sean Philip (SP), Terry Field (TF).


Matthew Ward (MW), Chloe Paddock (CP).

Minutes of last meeting and Matters Arising

  • The Minutes of both the February meeting and the draft minutes of the AGM were agreed with no matters arising.

  • Lance Allen has now sent a copy of the AGM minutes to the Charity Commission which should then conclude the Constitution issues. A new Charity Commission administrator will then be required and CS offered to take on this role.



  • Market attendance remains good and the added attraction of an activity for families was well received and raised over £40 in donations. The next Market is Sunday 28th April when we will have a Where's Wally? Game, thanks to Paula for this. Any suggestions for future Markets welcome. I have approached High Salvington Mill to ask if they would like to bring along their outdoor games, this is going to their Board Meeting on 23/04/24.

  • I have added a bin and bin bags and a trolley to the Market set up kit, not sure the trolley is up to the job, but we need an alternative to carrying the heavy box round each time. For discussion.

Community Garden:

  • Matthew and Maggie hosted the first monthly Community Gardening hour on Tuesday and there were 6 of us. Better 6 working for one hour than 1 working for six hours!

  • The beds and troughs have been weeded and tidied and are looking ready for Spring.

  • The troughs will be re-painted at the next session on Tuesday 2 nd May, all welcome. New tools have been purchased from Grant funds.

  • Maggie will pursue a sponsorship deal with Findon Vale Garden Centre.


  • The Store remains tidy, thank you. Please check the left-hand side floor and let me know if there is any further leakage, the disabled cistern was repaired last month. Keyholders are now; me, Clive, Neil, Paula, Matthew and Maggie.

Offington Panel Meeting:

  • Last meeting of Offington, Broadwater, Charmandean and Findon Valley Residents Associations was held on 14 th March and was attended by Councillor Nigel Morgan. These meetings are held bi-monthly and give the groups the opportunity to discuss issues from their own areas and to get feedback from Councillors.

  • I raised the issues from our AGM; the planters on Kings Parade, cycling along Kings Parade, pot holes, the deteriorating road surface outside Cissbury Court and the possibility of a second textile hopper. As this in now election season there will be little progress!

  • Next meeting 16th May 10am if anyone has anything for me to bring up or if you would like to attend.

Cissbury Fields Working Group:

  • Next meeting April 18th via Zoom CS/MW/LT to attend.

Treasurer's Report

FVRA Accounts March 2024. Gross Total £13,261.66 Including £9,173.15 in Deposit Account

Membership Secretary

March was an excellent month for membership renewals, the AGM helped.

Current Membership: 360

Renewals via:












Card Payment






New members: 8

Schools liaison

  • Seed sowing of Wildflower patch on The Gallops - Tuesday 16th April at 1.45pm Emily will also attend the Gallops Litter Pick and Playground Tidy on Saturday 20th April 9:30-11:30am

  • Community garden sessions on the first Tuesday of the month are a good day for small groups of children to join so we can hopefully arrange a few more before July.

  • Sean is now admin on Facebook and the linking up with the website which will be amazing. Facebook is certainly something which can be developed in order to be more effective. Thank you Sean.

  • Community allotment - a resident appeared keen to set one up but I haven't heard back. I am chasing her.

Environment/Friends of Findon Valley

  • We treated the two bus shelters and cut back vegetation off the pavement south from Downside Avenue

  • Six children from the vale school came along to the community garden, activity was limited by the weather, but litter was picked and some weeding achieved

  • We have agreed with Maggie to help with the care of the planters on the verge opposite the library. Six people attended the first work group and weeded and tidied the planters and library bed.

  • A session will take place on the first Tuesday afternoon of the month to keep the garden tidy, next will be May 7th 2pm.

  • Next Saturday working party, on the 13th, will be at the community orchard when we will clear the bases of the remaining fruit trees and mulch them, meet at 10.


  • Two more electronic bus information signs are in progress; outside Cissbury Court and at the bottom of Maytree Ave.

Web Administrator

  • I'm confident that maintaining the existing website as it is is going to be relatively straightforward

  • I've updated the "About Us" page ( to reflect the latest members of the committee.

  • I've also updated the "Contact Us" page (

  • I have uploaded the minutes from the AGM here: These are currently marked as 'Draft' until we officially approve them at AGM in 2025

  • I would like to make a proposal to migrate at the next convenient opportunity to an alternative platform - Wix. Wix is a paid-for platform offering a discount to charities that equates to approximately £50/annum in charges and for that we get hosting of the website and the ability to retain our existing domain ( From my research so far I don't believe there will be any issues with retaining our email servers via Brixley.

  • This system is easier for non-technical users to add content versus the existing Wordpress setup, and also to future proof maintenance and the addition of new features.

  • Functionality ; 1. Intuitive "Blogging" capabilities , 2. Integration with social media , 3. Search functionality , 4. "Impact banner" , 5. Survey functionality , 6. Events functionality ,issue of tickets for events, provide seating plans, auto-email attendees, and even take payments.

  • Please provide honest feedback on these ideas direct to SP in the next 2 weeks.

  • The Committee agreed that Wix is the way forward. Thank you Sean.

FV History

  • Terry Field outlined the proposed Oral History Project we hope to undertake this year, capturing memories of old Findon Valley from some of our most well established residents. We have had an offer of help from local Historian Chris Hare who has undertaken similar projects.

  • Images of old FV are to be used to create a Then and Now exhibit for the May Market and SP will produce an interactive version for the website. Please take some 'now' pictures to pair with the old images already collected on the website. LT can laminate.

Events and Activities

  • Saturday 13th April 10am Community Orchard Mulching (MW)

  • Tuesday 16th April 13:45 Wildflower Seed Sowing Gallops with Vale School (PB/LT)

  • Thursday 18th April 09:30-11am Cissbury Fields Working Group Zoom (CS/MW/LT)

  • Saturday 20th April 09:30-11:30am Gallops Litter pick and Playground Tidy (CS/LT)

  • Next Market Sunday April 28th theme will be Where's Wally?

  • Tuesday 7th May 2-3pm Community Garden (MW/Maggie)

  • Thursday May 16th 10am Offington Panel Meeting (LT)

  • May Market Sunday May 26th theme Then and Now picture display


  • Let's get a Calendar of Events on the website asap, the items above would be a good start!

  • PCSO drop in session in the pipeline, just waiting on dates from Ed Mitchell and agreement from the library.

  • FV5K proposal to stage a Findon Valley 5K race and Fun Run in September. To be held on a non-market Sunday (8th or 15th) start and finish at the surgery car park. I am meeting with Foxy Ladies to discuss a route and any assistance / woman-power they can offer. Also approached Jacobs Steel for sponsorship and advertising and asked Tom at Limetree if they would also be involved. I would like to do this to raise funds for PcaSO, the prostate cancer charity that Lance continues to give so much of his time to, I think this would be a fitting thank you to him.

  • I have approached Wiston Winery to see if we could secure a group price for a winery tour and tasting and they have so far offered £400 for a group of 20 (a £5 per head reduction) however Sean has a contact so watch this space for a better offer!

  • I have also contacted a lady who opens her spectacular garden in Plantation Rise and she has offered £5 per head for a group of 10 to include refreshments, we just need to book a date before the end of August.

  • On a recent trip to Cissbury Barns I did a recce to see if a barn dance or similar event might be feasible to offer but the rental prices are high and all food/beverages are in house , so there would be a considerable cost and very limited financial benefit for FVRA . We can revisit this idea.

  • We must start planning for our Christmas Extravaganza soon! Date in the diary Thursday 12th December.

  • Membership structure. We will continue to discuss this over the coming months.

  • Registered address for FVRA. Clive has suggested we pay for a registered address to avoid having to change things every time there is a change of Chair and to avoid a home address having to be used. In principle everyone is in agreement but it was felt that a local address should be found. Clive will approach Henchleys.

Thank you everyone for a very productive first meeting for me as Chair, I'm really looking forward to continuing the great work of the FVRA with you all.


Date of next meeting Tuesday May 14th 7pm FVFC

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