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Chairperson’s AGM Report for the 24th March 2013

This is my first AGM report as acting Chair of the Tupsley Whitehouse Board. The reasons for today’s AGM is to comply with Article 32 P15, of the Articles of Association for a Charitable Company. This specifies that at the first annual meeting all directors must retire from office, all be it temporarily.

I am pleased to outline our achievements since registering as a Company, Limited by Guarantee, on the 13th April 2012 in England and Wales No. 08030291 and known as the ‘Tupsley Whitehouse Project.’

The Company has it own governing documents known as ‘Articles of Association.’ This type of structure was chosen, following advice from the Herefordshire voluntary organisations support service (hvoss), as the Company may grow into a large organisation; have employees, deliver charitable services, enter into commercial contracts and lease property.

The Articles of Association have been formulated by the Charity Commission for use in such circumstances. This Board will eventually occupy and run services for the Whitehouse Community Centre.

The company objectives, as defined in Article 4 are:-
“To establish a community resource centre for use of the inhabitants of Tupsley and the wider community.’ An expanded version will be made available on the web site.

At present the Board has 9 members:-
Dave Simms – Director (also PCC)
Wendy Luk – Treasurer
Carol Teasdale – Acting Chair – (also PCC)
Lin Rabbetts – Secretary
Ange Tyler – Board Member
Sue Davies – Board Member
Keith Davenport – Board Member
Adam Husselbee – Board Member
Alex Fraser – Board Member
Andrew Goode – Board Member
Mark Inglis Board Member (also PCC)
John Watson Board Member (also PCC)
Amanda Williams (PCC, has recently retired)

Board members come from a wide range of backgrounds and professions and bring with them an extensive range of skills in IT, housing, procurement, finance, management and so forth. I believe that all members here have kindly agree to continue in office.

In future, to continue in office subsequent AGM’s will require one third of the directors to retire and they may, if they wish continue for a further term of office. In the event of people retiring permanently, persons in the community will be approached to see if they will offer their services.

At this present time the company have no shares issued and the members of the company are its directors.

To provide some background information:
Following unsuccessful attempts to run the Whitehouse building as a pub, Punch Taverns decided to market the property on the open market, with an interim landlord who allowed the community to continue using the pub as a community facility. Sadly this arrangement was untenable and Punch Taverns closed the building and boarded it up.

Some members of the North Tupsley Community approached the church to see if it could help towards acquiring the Whitehouse, so that it could be used as a community centre full time. After much negotiation between legal departments of St Paul’s PCC, Punch Taverns and the County of Herefordshire District Council, the Whitehouse was purchased by the Council and was leased on the 29th May 2012 to St Paul’s PCC for a peppercorn rent of £275 per annum. A sub-committee has been made up to oversee the project which includes members of the Tupsley Whitehouse Project and 3 representatives from the PCC.

To re-clarify this, the Whitehouse is not owned by the Whitehouse Board or the PCC.

Whilst it appears that no work has commenced on the building, a substantial amount of work has been achieved, by way of engaging with various contractors to get us to this stage. We are in the process of locating the core funding to undertake the refurbishment of the building. The PCC is not able to enter into any contracted works until sufficient monies are secured for the proposed first phase of works. This is in the region of £236,000, this will enable the building to be used and thus generate further revenue for the other phases.

However, there are various funding bodies who have already reserved funds that will be made available to complete the specific area of the scheme that they have aligned themselves to.

Herefordshire Council: £75,000
Hereford City Council: £30,000
Cemex: £10,000
Veolia: £30,000
Welcome to Our Future: £6,000

On a positive note, we have been successful in securing over half the necessary funding for the project to date. Although it is not in hand. Further bids for funding are being considered.

To help the community stay up to date with our progress, a new website was launched on the 25th February, known as www.whitehousetupsley.co.uk. This provides details of how much we have raised, plans of the building, contact details and details of your Board members. As we progress with the project, and as we secure further funds, we will make this information available through the website. In time, a notice board will also to be erected outside the building with useful information for the community.

The PCC and the Board all have one goal and that is to turn the building into a much needed Community Centre, so that we can establish a community resource centre for the use of the inhabitants of Tupsley and the wider community. This will enable meetings, lectures, classes, clubs, IT, social space and other forms of recreation and leisure time occupations, so we that can improve the quality of life for its users and the community.

Lastly, but not least, I would like to take this opportunity to thank the PCC, the Whitehouse Board, old and new members, for the tremendous efforts they have shown with this project. As your Whitehouse Board we look forward to providing the whole of the Tupsley community with a first class facility in the future and we trust that we will be fully supported by our local communities.

A copy of this report and our financial report will be made available on the website.

Thank you.
Carol Teasdale
Acting Chair of the Board

Herefordshire Voluntary Organisations Support Service HVOSS
http://www.hvoss.org.uk/

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