Reading Room, Minutes of AGM – March 19th 2013



19th March 2013

Apologies for Absence:

Anna Corbett


Pam Allen, Stephen Allen, Cathy Ayers, Stuart Ayers, Hilly Dobson, Keith Manning and Mike Philipson and 6 members of the village

Minutes of last meeting:

These were read out by the Secretary, accepted and signed as a true record. There were no matters arising.

Chairperson’s Report

Cathy thanked everyone for attending and supporting the various activities organised by the Reading Room Committee during the year.

The Reading Room had enjoyed a busy year with the Diamond Jubilee celebrations attended by many villagers and friends. The Committee followed the Jubilee Steering Committee’s idea of afternoon teas to raise funds and this has attracted a following from outside the village. Cathy thanked supporters and helpers for their kindness and generosity. Likewise the regular Coffee Mornings have attracted a loyal following and provided a social meeting point. Helpers were thanked.

Penhill Painters have continued their Autumn and Winter meetings and held a successful Annual Exhibition at the end of August. The Welcome Club have met fortnightly and enjoy craft, talks and demonstrations with refreshments and social interaction.

The Supper Club held a few evenings with take- and- share meals. Themed evening events such as the Italian Night, Greek Night, Pie and Peas Supper with Beetle Drive, Spring Supper and October Brunch to recycle the Jubilee bacon were all very successful. There was no New Year Party in 2012 because of illness and other commitments.

The Room is developing a reputation as a party venue with landmark birthday parties for Liz Bell and Mary Sheffield and several organised children’s parties. The room has been let for forestry training days with the promise of further lettings. Use of the room as a polling station has provided useful income and it is officially designated as the Emergency Centre for the neighbourhood.

George Tomlin gave two interesting talks about his adventures in Africa which raised money for the Martin House Charity.

The Reading Room computer equipment is being well used with computer classes on Friday afternoons. We are gratefull to Mike Phillipson for organising this and also the village web site.

Despite the poor summer weather, a successful Summer Fair with Duck race was held, although the green was very boggy.

Cathy, the outgoing chair, hoped the Reading Room and its surrounds would be fully used by the community in the next twelve months and thanked again committee members, past and present for their work throughout the year.

Additional statement of thanks from the Chair:

Thank you for the hard work and generosity of all the people who gave their time and energy to make the Jubilee celebration a very special event for Constable Burton.

To Mike Philipson for his dedication in putting together photographs of the village and getting them produced into our very own calendar.

To Mary Manning for chairing the Jubilee Committee.

To the ladies of the Welcome Club and volunteers who generated in excess of £1500, out of the £2200 raised to cover the cost of the Jubilee event by producing and selling the calendar, selling cards and working so hard in building an excellent reputation for the traditional afternoon teas with a warm welcome to village visitors.

A lasting reminder of all the hard work and support is reflected in the addition of the new picnic bench on the village green; there for all to enjoy.

Councillor Keith Loadman offered his sincere thanks and personally thanked many volunteers for what he described as; “This is the best celebration Constable Burton has ever had”.


The secretary proposed thanks to Cathy for Chairing the Reading Room Committe over the past year and was supported by all those present.

Treasurer’s Report

Copies of the audited accounts were handed to the meeting.

Income for the year at £3866 narrowly exceeded expenses, at £3750. This left us with £2458 in our bank account at march 28th 2013 as against £2219 a year ago (a difference of £239 – partly the result of cheques which had not yet been presented for payment to date amounting to £80).

Principal income came from:

  • Social events £1380
  • Summer Fair/Duck Race £782
  • Room hire £476
  • Donation £500

Heating and light cost us £1392 against £993 the previous year – and increase of 40%.the other major expenses were roof and boiler repairs totalling £528

The treasurer urged every effort to maintain the current level of fundraising to provide the core funding for the Reading Room for an activite amenity and centre for social events open to all members of the village and visitors. Continued fiscal rectitude was demanded with a tight rein on non essential expenditure.

A grateful word of appreciation was expressed for the purchase of the catering urn from someone who had serviced teapots at the Afternoon Teas.

There were no questions about the accounts. The treasurer will make the customary remuneration to the auditor.

Election of Officers and Committee

Cathy Ayers stood down as chair and the position taken by Anna Corbett – proposed by Stephen Allen, seconded by Cathy Ayers and approved almost nem con. There were no other nominations.

Unfortunately Anna was absent through illness so Cathy continued in the chair.

The remaining officers and committee were willing to serve for another year. No one at the meeting expressed an interest in joining the committee which left it a very small group.

Appointment of Auditors

It is hoped that Alan Cape will agree to act as auditor for the coming year.

Future Events

  • Book sale – March 30th and 31st
  • Coffee Morning – April 6th
  • First Afternoon Tea – April 21st
  • An event to co-incide with the Leyburn 1940’s weekend to take advantage of passing trade
  • Summer Fare/Duck Race to be held at the end of August

Any other business

  • It was suggested that we give some thought to capitalising on the Tour de France passing nearby in 2014 with catering opportunities.
  • It was suggested that the coffee mornings should serve croissants/crumpets/teacakes or bacon rolls and keep the cakes for afternoon Teas
  • Greater effort needs to be made to increase lettings from what is becoming to be a promising start. We need to balance social/pleasure events with fund raising effort.
  • Getting onto the Lower Wensleydale web site will be investigated – Major Duff to liase with Mike Phillipson.
  • Major Duff spoke about the Community Opportunity Fund which has up to £5000 available for approved capital expense. Improved lighting and a viable disability lift were thought to be candidates. Applications need to be made through Keith Loadman.

Date of next committee meeting

Tuesday 2nd April at 7pm


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