Minutes of committee meeting held in Thorncombe Village Hall on Tuesday, 29 January 2013



President: Sheila Moreland; John Whitbread (Chair); Ruth Jacobson (Secretary); Lynn Kinsey (Treasurer); Mark Shelley; Rachael Whitbread


Minutes Clerk: Eve Higgs


1.   Apologies for absence


Not applicable.


2.   Minutes of meeting held on 4 December 2012.


Approved and signed by Chair.


3.      Democratic period for Trust members


No members present. JW to publicise democratic period at next members’ meeting and in parish magazine (JW)


4.   Matters arising


a)   Future Family Friendly Walks


It was agreed to defer projected walks until the spring when hopefully the weather will have improved. The possibility of a bluebell walk and a visit to Cuckoo Cottage to see Charlotte Bradley’s lambs was discussed, with an option for planning a short and longer route to fit people’s needs.


b)   Website relaunch


RW reported that the site has had 527 hits since the site was relaunched at the beginning of November. She also reported that she has circulated Thorncombe parish’s county, district and parish councillors with details but that only Cllr Brierly has acknowledged, albeit somewhat non-commitally.


c)   Sports Club December Quiz


It was agreed that the quiz had gone off very successfully and LK reported that it had raised £158. The committee agreed it is a very effective way of raising funds and the Trust should aim for another event in 2013. Although it may not be feasible to ensure that the  quiz master would relate the questions to the TVT ‘s website in ways to encourage more traffic on the website, MS undertook to approach the Club for another date and to raise this aspect  informally  (MS)


d)   Specific activities to encourage member participation


Willow structure in playground: RW reported that although the initial response from the Playground Committee had been positive, and that Amy Ralph is prepared to undertake the work, the Committee was now having second thoughts around maintenance issues. The need to plant willow in early spring means that the project might have to be shelved if an imminent decision is not forthcoming. It was agreed that while the Trust should not appear to be pressurising the Committee, RW could  keep a watching brief in case of any new developments (RW)


e)   Tree maintenance


JW reported that due to the recent weather, it had not been possible to undertake the planned maintenance work . However, he had been able to identify that a ‘Snowy Mespilus’ (Amelanchier) would be the most suitable tree for planting at the Sports Club to commemorate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. It was agreed that this should be ordered from Forde Abbey on the grounds that it is TVT policy to support local businesses.  


JW reported that he has been investigating the Tree Preservation Order process and has requested a list from WDDC. Any trees considered suitable can be brought to the attention of council officers who will evaluate and list as appropriate. Once trees are listed it is a criminal offence to damage or cut them down, with powers to take perpetrators to court and fine them up to £20k.Trees planted by the TVT are potential candidates for the listing process.(JW)


f)    Review of member’s January meeting ‘ Denhay Cheese’ talk


Attendance had been good: 37 in total, with 3 visitors and 2 new members. MS reported that the response slips had generated an overall positive audience response with 19 four stars, 9 three stars and only 1 two stars. The Committee agreed with some of the feedback comment that it would have been further benefited from some visual content eg Powerpoint but JW explained that the speaker had specifically stated that she would not be using this approach..  LK reported that the free wine served in the interval  to accompany the cheese samples had cost £26 and  JW reported that Thorncombe Village Stores  had given the TVT a 5% discount. JW to write and thank the speaker, Amanda Streatfeild . (JW)


g)   Update on programme for March


JW reported that, given the risk of continuing bad weather, he recommended another indoor event rather than an outdoor activity. At the suggestion of a TVT member, he had approached the founder of the South West Deer Rescue & Study Centre in Clapton to give a presentation on the Centre’s work. This could be followed up in due course with a visit.. JW to liaise with speaker regarding format and with LK regarding arrangements so LK can put an announcement in the Marshwood Vale Magazine. (JW/LK)


h)   Draft Parish Plan


MS reported that various further  amendments have been incorporated and that he has the artwork for the final version of the plan in hand. Illustrations have been provided by Thorncombe Photography Club.


5.   Village Hall Hedge Planting & Committee Rep


JW reported that the chain link fence in front of the village hall is to be replaced with a low hedge. He has been approached by Andrew Willoughby, Chair, Thorncombe Village Hall (TVH) Committee to ask whether the TVT would consider helping to fund the hedge and planting a tree by the gateway. The committee agreed in principle to make a contribution, the amount to be agreed once detailed costs are available but probably around £100.  As EH  already attends TVH committee meetings as Artsreach representative, she offered to combine this with representing the TVT and reporting back on any relevant developments; this was accepted with thanks.



6. Copy for the Parish Magazine


Following the discussion on encouraging members’ participation, it was agreed that KW will publicise the democratic half hour at committee meetings,  highlight new additions to the website and the trail the monthly family friendly walks scheduled to start take place in the spring.


7.   Finance Report


See Appendix 1


It was agreed to renew CPRE membership.


LK reported that she has sent her report showing the allocation of funds to JW who agreed to circulate to members -  see Appendix 2 (JW)


8.   Current Planning Applications


Magdalen Farm- change of use: JW reported that he and RW  had attended the Planning Committee Meeting in Dorchester as representing the TVT’s position on this. The  representations from other parish residents in relation to existing anti social behaviour of people making use of the current facilities were  further endorsed by a member of the committee who had personal experience of this. The parish council has also objected to the application. Despite an officer recommendation to approve, the planning committee deferred their decision and requested a business plan from the manager of the Magdalen Project. The committee  will also  be undertaking a site visit before reconsidering the application.


9.   Any other business


It was agreed that RJ will represent the TVT at the February parish council meeting (RJ).


10. Date & venue of next meeting


Tuesday, 26 February 2013, 7.30 pm, Thorncombe Village Hall