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Village Hall Trust meeting - March 16



Present: Trustees: Jo Alberti, Steven Oldfield, Joe Davis, Moira Suringar, Graham Anderson, Saima Afzal.      In attendance: Neil Beresford, Dot Benson, Steph Malik. 

  1. Apologies – Barbara Lowesmith, Anne Ireby.
  2. The minutes of the last ordinary meeting were accepted.
  3. There were no matters arising. 
  4. Bookings/General Admin – Steph Malik
  • At the moment hirers generally email back to confirm bookings and that they agree to the terms and conditions which Steph has sent them. In future a copy of the safeguarding policy will also be included. NB to work with Steph on keeping records.
  • Recently there have been several problems found after events – damage, mess etc. Usually a minimum deposit of £50 is required but can be anything up to £250 - Steph to decide depending on the nature of the event.
  • The exit door from the Coffee Bar to be kept permanently open for some events.
  •  There have been problems recently with doors not opening using the allocated cards. It may be better to put the envelopes containing the cards in the plastic holder on the wall and also to ask groups using the Hall on a regular basis to keep their cards. Also NB to discuss issue with door/software suppliers.
  • Steph to organize business cards to be available just inside the Hall and in the Coffee Shop with details about hiring the Hall such as email address and mobile phone number.
  • Steph and Sylvia are checking and cleaning up regularly after events and generally no major problems.
  • MS and BL to meet with Steph about marketing.
  • Recently there have been a few problems over the Coffee Shop answering the phone for bookings. JA to discuss the issue with the CIC and to make sure the mobile phone number is clearly available on the web-site.
  • Steph was thanked for doing a great job and particularly for keeping the bookings up.
  1. Child and Vulnerable Adults Safeguarding Policy. Joe Davis outlined the new updated and simplified policy. Essentially, ensuring that the Hall is a safe environment is the responsibility of the Trustees but the actual safeguarding of children and vulnerable adults during any activity is the responsibility of the hirers. Acceptance of the Village Hall's safeguarding policy is part of the agreed contract taken out on hiring the Hall. The new policy was accepted by the meeting and copies should be displayed on the Hall notice board and on the website as well as being sent out together with "terms and conditions" to prospective hirers.
  2. Treasurer's Report. Neil Beresford outlined the latest report which was for the first 5 months of the year. The trading account is close to budget. Hall hire income is almost on budget and well ahead of this time last year although may fall when we face a period of closure to replace the floor. One area of concern is increasing insurance costs but overall, with no major liabilities and a positive Trading position, the situation is satisfactory. The TAA has requested the purchase of new taller legs for the stage and is prepared to make a donation to the Trust to cover the cost. Despite the closure of the Keswick footpath, the Coffee Shop continues to trade satisfactorily. A copy of the report is attached.
  3. T.A.A. report. Moira Suringar reported that the T.A.A. was healthy financially. It is good at promoting activities such as live events and films. Village walks and talks as well as "have a go days" are possibilities for the future. The main problem is "volunteer fatigue" - needs more help and suggestions. Dot Benson recommended a country music group.
  4. T.Y.P. report. Saima Afzal reported that the Youth Club, run by Emma Moody, was well attended with over 30 youngsters. She thanked the Trustees for their financial support which helped pay for 2 newly appointed youth workers. A £400 grant was also received from the County. The group also has the help of 2 adult volunteers. Saima also reported that the clubs which she runs – Rainbows (15 youngsters) and Brownies (9 youngsters) were also doing well but more volunteers were needed. NB pointed out that some financial support could be available. The Action Ants club which ran last term was not so popular and as yet nothing has been planned for the future.
  5. Health and Safety. Steven Oldfield reported that a young child had trapped a finger in the self closing double doors between the Hall and the Coffee Shop. To prevent this happening again a safety feature such as a soft rubber strip can be fitted where the doors meet. SO to action. If successful similar features could be fitted to the other self closing doors – the 2 going into the toilets and the 2 single doors to the Hall. A record of the incident has been filed. SO agreed to be responsible for Health and Safety issues.
  6. Update on Hall flooring. Moira Suringar updated the meeting on the latest insurance (AVIVA) position. A quote from 4D which involved taking up the whole underfloor system, including the heating pipes, and putting in a new Boen floor was sent to the insurers who then gave the go ahead to order the new flooring but apparently didn't fully digest the info about taking the heating up. They have, however, already sent out a surveyor who thinks the floor substructure doesn't need to be taken up. The contractors don't agree and have stated that the Boen floor won't fit onto the present structure! MS needs to recheck whether the Boen floor has already been ordered and, if not, would Junkers give a guarantee without a new substructure?
  7. Hall hire costs. NB reported that the present costs were established in January 2014. The recommendation was to leave things as they are and review in the middle of the year.
  8. Smithy Cottage. Work started today and should take 3 days.
  9. Date of next meeting. Monday 30th May.
  10. A.O.B.
  • JA to coordinate emails where necessary – often rather excessive!
  • Sound system problems – GA to get sound engineer to check system.
  • Dot Benson agreed to become a Trustee.

                                                                                                                                                                                   The meeting closed at 9.30pm.




Threlkeld Village Hall Trust

Treasurer’s Report 21st March 2016


  • The accounts for the first 5 months of the year are shown above
  • The budget for the year, which we agreed, is shown, along with an approximation of a budget for the first 5 months.
  • Most of the numbers in the 5-month budget are pro-rata to the annual figures. However, in some instances where the amount occurs in distinct tranches I have used the appropriate value. These are:
    • Coffee shop Licence income (a quarterly payment)
    • Insurance (a one off annual payment)
    •  Professional Fees (the annual audit fee)
  • The Trading Account shows a deficit of £1,665 at the end of 5 months, and is close to budget.
  • Hall hire income at £4,556 is almost on budget and well ahead of this time last year (£3166). This is probably the most challenging part of the budget to meet, and may be difficult to achieve for the year if we face a period of closure to replace the floor.
  • Hire income, as with all our income and costs, is taken to account on a cash received/paid basis. In other words, the amount shown is the cash (excluding VAT) we have received in the period for Hall hire. Normally this is received in the month after the actual hire, but the amount may also include advanced deposits that the BAMS has requested from users.
  • Looking at the major variances against budget;
    • The main area for focus for the future is the Insurance cost, which has been impacted by recent claims, and may increase disproportionately in the future.
    • The Electricity cost and Feed in Tariff and Renewable Heating Incentive income are to some extent timing issues and should be in balance by the year end (electricity usage is highest in winter and RHI is paid 3 months in arrears as is FITS which is also dependent on sunshine!).
    • IT Software, Licences etc includes the payment of our share of the web site hosting costs, which we share with the Parish Council, and the work needed to give our BAMS remote access to the VH computer to allow her to work away from the office, to make bookings and monitor the automatic doors. Neither of these were budgeted, but are in my view essential.
  • The Revitalisation Project Account shows a deficit of £14,300 in this year as we cleared off the outstanding debt to the contractors, supported by the donation from the Coffee shop CIC as planned. The Project is now effectively closed and after this year this will become our Reserves (non-Trading) account.
  • This gives an overall deficit for the year to date of £15,965, but we should not be concerned by this and should focus on the Trading Account, which is going to plan.
  • Total cash is £11,768 at the end of February. With no major liabilities and a positive Trading position the situation is satisfactory.

Other Issues

  • The TAA has requested that the Trust considers the purchase of new, taller legs for the demountable stage at a cost of £1,350. This will improve the audience experience for all users. The TAA proposes to make a donation to the Trust to cover the cost of this equipment.
  • The Coffee Shop continues to trade satisfactorily, despite the closure of the Keswick footpath. Since the closure, sales have continued slightly ahead of the plan, although with somewhat fewer customers, but each spending slightly more than plan. In February the wage rates in the business were increased but the impact of this is yet to be seen. March will give a better feel for the overall situation. Will the footpath closure impact on the higher visitor numbers expected over Easter? Overall the business should make a respectable profit for the year ending 31st March.


Neil Beresford
21 Feb 2016

Hall Hire Income (Net of VAT)




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