Apologies – Tricia Golinski, Geoff Pell
Present – Trustees Rich A, Rich H, Ruth K, Grant G and 24 supporters/members of the public.
Presentation from James Halybone of Roundfield Architects. James unveiled the new Feasibility Study, which was commissioned by FML Trustees. Comments followed. A very good piece of work, that will help us to progress our plans. Reinforces the complicated and long term nature of the project.
Fundraising Appeal. We are asking for £30,000 to buy a strip of land as part of Phase 2. Slow start and so far quite low-key publicity, but we have passed the £2,000 mark.
Dalma and Paul Luttrell Sponsored Ride. Both spoke about their planned ride and invited people to join them at the start point on 6th May, 9am outside Cycology. Total raised so far is in excess of £1,200 – a terrific effort!
Chairman’s Report. Rich gave an update on Phase 2, 3 and 4 and the other work of FML. His official report for the Charity Commission is reproduced here:
Frome’s Missing Links – Summary for Charity Commission Report 2017
This year has seen a considerable amount of consolidation, with some fundraising and progress on building the path at Coalash Lane. However, continued delays along Phase 2 mean that we have not progressed as far as we had hoped. The planned extension of the cycleway at Great Elm to the next road junction at Elliotts Bridge is still awaiting final engineering clearance from Network Rail (NR). To help get NR approval we are applying for amended planning permission. With this is mind we have secured agreement to purchase a strip of land from a local farmer. Professional contractors are ready to carry out essential works as soon as we have clearance and amended permissions.
Other work on Phase 2 has continued and a variety of jobs such as shrub clearance and drainage works have been completed. At the insistence of NR more topographic surveys at Elliots Lane were carried out.
Our volunteers have completed a short stretch of path at Coalash lane with some super fencing. The total cost of this was just £1,595 thanks to in part to the practical support and free delivery of materials given by the Yeoman Trust. Three volunteers also benefitted from certificated Road Roller Training, which was generously paid for by FTC. Volunteers are also continuing with the Greener Greenways project, which aims to improve the cycle path verges for wildlife. The results of the reptile survey have been shared and work will now move forward on creating a better environment for other fauna and flora. Everyone involved has done a brilliant job and the trustees want to say thank you for all of their efforts.
This year, the trustees have paid for public liability, professional liability and management liability insurance, which alongside insurance cover provided by Sustrans, will mean that everyone who volunteers for us is insured against any accidents. All of the regular volunteers are now officially Sustrans volunteers, which further strengthens our public liability position. Other work on drafting policies for volunteering, risk assessment and finance was completed.
Following a presentation to Frome Town Council, we have reopened negotiations with landowners for Phase 3, from Whatcombe Fields to Jacks Lane and we will be producing further plans once we have agreement with them.
The trustees have also commissioned Roundfield Architects to conduct a feasibility study of the crossing of the A362, which will help us to determine exactly where we can go from the Coalash Lane end (Phase 4) and should enable us to formulate some more detailed plans for the whole route.
Earlier in the year we ran a week long School Travel Challenge, involving eight local schools. The week included bicycle breakfasts and Dr. Bike sessions and raised £1,472 towards our work. In November we ran a Pedal Powered Cinema event at the Cheese and Grain, which was well attended and raised some much needed publicity. Both events were grant funded by FTC to a total of £2,700.
Thanks to work completed by the trustees we can now claim Gift Aid on donations received and cash in collection boxes – this will increase our cash amounts by 25%. We also now have Just Giving and Local Giving payment options for donations. The intention is to step up our fundraising work in 2018 once construction work on the next part of Phase 2 begins.
Frome’s Missing Links
March 3rd 2018
Treasurers Report. Richard Hounsell related the latest accounts and transactions. Copies were made available for everyone to inspect. The accounts have been independently audited and were approved as accurate by a unanimous vote.
Website. Will gave an update on developments, including the latest Data Protection issues and changes to include the Ecology Group.
Nominations and Election of Trustees. Richard Hounsell was unanimously re-elected as Treasurer for another year. Other posts will remain unchanged for the next year. Agreed unanimously.
Upcoming Events/Opportunities for fundraising and publicity. Marjory asked for volunteers to help out particularly with Mayhem, the Ceilidh, School Challenge and Young People’s Fayre. Upcoming events are:
- Sports Festival April 29th – stall
- Dalma and Paul Luttrell Cycle Challenge send off at Cycology, 9am – 6th May
- Mayhem in the Meadow 7th May – 10am to 3pm
- School Travel Challenge Week 21st to 25th May
- Eco Trail at Buckland Bridge – 26th May
- Young People’s fayre 1st June
- Folk Night, Cheese and Grain Cafe – 7th June
- Ceilidh with Hobson’s Choice at Cheese and Grain £15 tickets – 22nd June
- Frome Independent Market 1st July is cycle themed
- Children’s Festival 8th July
- Richard Ackroyd Lands End to John of Gaunt “the long way” send off from Cheese and Grain at 9am – 2nd September
In addition, if you sign up to Bulb Energy at bulb.co.uk/refer/nat45 you’ll get £50 credit with Bulb and Missing Link will get a £50 donation!
Date of Next Meeeting: 29th April 2019