ORCHARDS COMMUNITY FORUM
Minutes of Residents Meeting
AGM 26th October 2011
Cllr Y Gupta
Will Jackson (Secretary)
Mike Stone Chair
Andy Blakey Vice ,
Dave Lawrence Treasurer D
Cllr Cathy Kent
Ms opened the meeting at 7.05
Ms invited DL to give the treasures report.
DL Told the floor that the forum had £2,461 in the bank account including £350 admin money. He then answered a question from the floor explaining why there would be no money coming from the council as in previous years. A discussion followed regarding possible ways in which the Forum could receive monies in the future. DL then offered the report to the floor to be agreed. It was agreed by those present.
MS reported the following previous actions since the last meeting:
Sensory Garden, Tidy up by the Community Pay Back Team
Storm Drain, Removal of debris blocking drain in Manor Road as reported by a resident at the last Meeting.
New Rubbish Bin. MS explained to the floor why the bin was sited in the Broadway
Change to Constitution
MS explained to the floor that in order for the Committee to be Elected the constitution would have to be altered in the following way:
Minimum of 8 meetings per year to be changed to 6
Not less than 5 members on the committee instead of 8
MS asked the floor to agree to the changes. Those present agreed.
MS explained his position as Councillor in relation to being Chair after a question raised by a resident, saying that the Thurrock Council are aware of his involvement and have no objections at this time. He also said that he had no problem with standing down if a proposal for a new chair came forward to be elected. The Committee then stood down. WJ`s wish to stand down from the role of Secretary was relayed to the floor by MS and Julie Stone was put forward for the role. All other officers announced their intention to remain in their current roles, As did the current Committee Members. There were no objections from the floor and the committee was agreed
Winter Grit Bins
MS introduced a proposal put forward at a recent Council Meeting where it was suggested that Community Groups could grit minor routes in their respective areas from Grit Bins placed locally for this purpose. After a discussion where several Residents expressed their concerns at personal safety and liability issues, MS explained that it would be the intention of the Council to cover this with the Community Forums Public Liability Insurance. He explained that this insurance was paid for by Thurrock Council and not the Forum. After the discussion it was felt that those present did not want to agree to the proposals at this time.
MS told the Meeting that it was agreed that the Forum would spend £500 of Forum funds per year and that £200 had been spent so far. The requests for funding were as follows:
Thurrock Christian Fellowship requested £75 to help fund their Christmas Lights event
Thurrock Asian Society requested £50 to help fund their yearly Diwali Celebrations at the Thameside Theatre.
Purchase of a new Digital Voice Recorder from Admin Funds. £50-£70.
After a show of hands it was decided that the Forum would fund the TCF event after no objections. Voting on the TAS request was rejected. It was felt that as there was a charge to attend the event and that the event was not a local community event taking place in the Orchards area, the Forum should not help to fund it.
There were no objections to the funding of the voice recorder from Admin funds.
DL then asked the Committee to consider a request for approx £300 to produce Information Cards for distribution throughout the Orchards area. These would contain general information, Forum meeting dates and useful local information. He also said that maybe local Takeaways could be encouraged to advertise and this would generate money for the Forum. He then asked for ideas from those present as to other things that could be included.
Proposed amalgamation with Grays Central Forum
DL raised the possibility that Orchards, being a Forum with a small area, could benefit from such an amalgamation. After a discussion where all possibilities and possible problems were discussed it was decided that the majority of those present did not want to join forces with G.C.F,
MS introduced Cllr Cathy Kent who apologised for being late. She then explained the situation regarding the recent Phone scandal at the Council to a resident who asked about it. MS then brought her up to speed on the discussions, so far, regarding the Grit Bins. She added that this year the bins would be provided free but next year there may be a charge for them.
A representative from the Whitehall Lane Allotments said that they were pleased with the Councils renovation of the path in that area but said that the path further up the road was still damaged due to the heavy Lorries that were still using the road. He also suggested that double yellow lines should be put on one side of Whitehall Lane to ease the parking problems from the Day Nursery and John Stanley Care Agency. A Resident then pointed out that a new lamp in Kent Road had been erected but it was not working. He said that he had reported it to the Council 3 weeks ago but it still wasn’t working. He said that it was a lamp that served two roads and it was particularly dangerous at night. MS then said he would update the website re meeting dates and would try, weather permitting, to arrange another meeting before Christmas. He apologised for the absence of the police saying that they can only attend the meetings if their working responsibilities allowed it. A resident then said that he would like to see something done about the dumped rubbish in the area and dog fouling. Cllr CK said that if the person who was doing the dumping was known and it could be proved a call to the Be Smart number, offenders will be prosecuted. After some discussion she said that it would be possible to compose a letter reminding people not to dump their rubbish in the alleyways. Residents said that they clear their part of the Alleyways, mainly, to gain access. One Resident said that the Council need to support the Residents. MS said that he would organise the letters reminding Residents of their responsibilities in keeping their Alleyways clear of rubbish. Cllr CK suggested that the Community Payback Team to clear existing rubbish. A Resident said that neighbours could club together and get a skip. MS said that not everybody would support this. Cllr CK said that the Chief Executive of Thurrock Council will be doing a ward Walk on the 28th November and she would bring these problems to his attention. A discussion followed regarding areas that needed to be pointed out. MS then closed the meeting at 8.25pm.