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FVRA Committee Minutes March 2021

Findon Valley Residents' Association

Protecting the interests of our community and the countryside around us


Monday 10th March: Remote meeting via Zoom


In Attendance:

Lance Allen (LA), Paula Barns (PB), Lorraine Taylor (LT), Clive Sanders (CS). Also in attendance were Chloe Paddock (CP), and Matthew Ward (MW), who have separately expressed interest in joining the team. The meeting commenced at 7.30 pm.


Apologies

None, All were present.


Minutes of last meeting and Matters Arising

Minutes from 8 February were agreed as a true record, and will now be published on website and noticeboards. Matters arising are covered below.


Chair

AGM 2021, Thursday 22 April at 7.30pm via zoom. The meeting will need to approve the 2019 and 2020 report and accounts, as the last AGM was not quorate. Speakers will be for Cissbury Fields (Dan Humphreys), Developments at Lime Tree Surgery (Tom Micklewright) and Covid update (Tim Loughton MP).

To be publicised in Sussex Local, Worthing Herald, A6 card within membership distribution, noticeboards, eNewsletter and Vale School ParentMail. Possibly also Worthing Journal.

Vacancies, We still require Secretary, Membership Secretary, Highways Officer, and Communications & Technology Officer. CS is in contact with Mr Allan Gee, a certified accountant who has kindly offered to independently check the accounts.

Following tonight’s meeting LA will contact CP and MW separately regarding the vacant positions. A call for further volunteers will go in the March eNewsletter.

Winter Salt Bins, Cllr. Sparkes has suggested relocating the Coombe Rise grit bin to King’s Parade. This was supported by the meeting and LA will respond. One or more of the retailers will need to take responsibility for gritting on necessary days.


Vice Chair & Environment

Recycling, the site near the library needs a review to determine the exact positioning of the proposed recycling bins. The recycling of crisp packets, bottle tops etc for Worthing Boys’ Club, using cardboard containers, will be trialled at Farmers’ Markets. Cllr. Humphreys and WSCC Libraries’ Justin Burns are supportive.

Community Garden, Looking good with daffodils in bloom. LT has positioned posters appealing for donated plants. The two compost bins have useable content, and the two water butts are full. The planters at Kings Parade will need volunteers to tend and water them. Worthing Suzuki have previously consented to our use of their outside tap. Another ‘call for plants’ will go out to residents in our March eNewsletter.

The central bed in the Library garden is now tended by FVRA volunteers. LT will contact Justin Burns re potential Friendship benches. LT will also establish Lime Tree Surgery PPG’s garden plans.

Gallops, LT met new WBC Parks Warden Graeme Brooker on site for impromptu survey. Many diseased ash trees have been felled – also on Sheepcombe Hangar where some replanting has already commenced. Graeme is enthusiastic and has many ideas including nature walks etc. He will arrange repairs to the Gallops outside gym.

Volunteer Group, We already have support in principle from WBC (Cllr. Humphreys) and SDNPA (Craig Daters) for residents to undertake tasks such as scrub clearance on public paths. Findon Village already has a volunteer group, and MW indicated he could help create and lead a new group for the Valley. Other items such as minor repairs to the wooden bus shelters, would be included. LA will check FVRA’s insurance cover.


Secretary

(vacant role). N/a.


Treasurer

The monthly accounts for February were circulated by CS. Little activity in the month.

2020 Annual Accounts. Currently liaising with the auditor, then to be prepared for the AGM.

Direct Debits, The project is nearly complete and the new membership form is focussed on DD as the primary payment channel. CS will chase CAF regarding receipt of the first test payments into FVRA’s bank account. CP suggested Paypal as a settlement method. This can be considered in future although too late for the 2021 campaign.


Membership

Position Vacant, CS has done much work preparing the 2021 membership campaign. Folded A4 forms will be hand delivered to all homes in the Valley, enveloped with an A6 card promoting the AGM and Farmers’ Market. Labels will be used on the envelopes, personalised where the resident names are known. LA has liaised with our volunteer road distributors and half have responded positively. Due to Covid there will be no knocking on doors or collecting money.


Schools Liaison

The Vale is busy re-starting full lessons following Lockdown3. After Easter, Vale children may be designing anti-litter posters.

PB will liaise with Graeme Brooker re. Nature Trail identification cards and walks.

Pupil-designed anti-pollution ‘Cut your Engine’ posters are possible, if the posters can be permanent, weatherproof and have WSCC support. PB indicated that grant funding may be available, eg £600 for 12 posters. We will need to make the case via Cllr. Sparkes, also citing the “Cut your Engines’ signs at railway level crossings in Worthing.

PB will arrange for ParentMail to circulate details of the Farmers’ Market and the AGM.


Highways

Position Vacant, WSCC Highways have yet to resolve the flooding at the bottom of Bost Hill. The concerned resident has contacted Highways direct. It appears the matter is entirely subject to the timetable and priorities of the commercial contractors.There is no recent news on the proposed shared cycle path to Findon Village nor the A24 Corridor project. WSCC are looking to reduce the A24 speed limit between Bost Hill and the Black Horse from 50mph to 40mph. FVRA will support this, noting the number of awkward junctions – LA has responded to Cllr. Sparkes.


Communication

Position Vacant, The website Gallery pages for Love Hearts Trail and Spring Photos are showing as “Under Construction”. LA to alert Jim Booth.

CS has worked with Jim to set up the direct debit ‘widget’ and suitable text, using the development website at this stage.

LA has set up a mailchimp free account, but it is complex and not seen as user friendly. Some training/ familiarity is needed before we can use this to distribute emails. We still have the Reg123 facility but this is time-consuming for Jim B to publish in small batches.

April Sussex Local will include AGM, Farmers Market, Spring Photos and 2021 membership.

Zoom, LA has set up the subscription service for unlimited meeting time with up to 100 participants. The monthly cost of £14.39 inc. VAT will be reimbursed to LA by standing order in arrears.

Facebook, PB can issue the A6 Farmers’ Market & AGM flyer by Facebook, although we still need a bigger audience for this channel to be effective.


Events

Position Vacant, LT has progressed the Farmers’ Market planning, with first date set as Sunday 25 April, and hopefully monthly thereafter. Lime Tree Surgery are supportive and agreed for both staff and patient car parks to be used for stalls. Covid restrictions at the time of each market will be fully observed. FVRA volunteers will be needed as marshals, also for our own stall promoting FVRA membership. Possibly in shifts rather than right through the event. Other community groups such as the PPG and Friends of The Vale will be welcome. LT will discuss hot drinks vending with Coffee Camp. Great Little Farmers’ Markets’ own December risk assessment showed a named FVRA first aider. LT will establish if a first aider is formally required. LA will check FVRA’s insurance cover for the market (GLFM have their own public liability cover also).

Cissbury Fields, FVRA’s draft letter to Cllr. Humphreys with our initial suggestions (including concerns regarding traffic and parking volumes), had been circulated and was discussed. It was noted that the higher National Trust land was already a recognised important butterfly site. MW suggested that a wildlife survey of the 100 acre Cissbury Fields should be arranged by WBC. This will be added to the letter.

LT will attend a stakeholder site meeting on 31 March. Due to Covid restrictions a ‘gathering’ cannot have more than 6 people so only one FVRA representative can be present this time.


AOB

Library Drop-in, Still suspended due to Coronavirus.

Next zoom meeting – 7.30pm Monday 12th April.

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