STANLEY CRESCENT GARDEN COMMITTEE
54 Ladbroke Grove W11 2PB
MINUTES – GARDEN ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
Thursday 17 May 2012
The meeting held on Thursday 17 May at 8.30 p.m. at St Peter’s Church, Kensington Park Road, London, W11 was attended by 19 residents.
1 Apologies for absence
Jean and Jan Gustafsson, John Seal
2 Minutes of the last meeting
Minutes of the last meeting were agreed – proposed by Sheila Robertson and seconded by Isabella Kullmann.
3 Chairman’s Report
The Chairman, Sandra Kamen, welcomed everyone to the meeting and began by reminding us how blessed we are to live on such a beautiful garden which could be compared to a village square and remains a unique and successful example of urban planning. She urged all residents to walk around and enjoy the garden and meet their neighbours in this wonderful setting.
The Chairman went on to thank the members of the committee for their work over the last year. She also offered her thanks and encouragement to both Gordon and Steve and raised a glass to Gordon’s good health.
Lawns — SK complained about the weather, despite the heavy rains, we are still in a drought, and the enforced hose-pipe ban will have an impact on the planting. At present it is the lawns that cause some concern; they are waterlogged and very muddy and sadly proved irresistible to young football players. SK urged all garden residents, not just the committee members, to remind children not to play football on the central lawn when the ‘no football’ sign is displayed. It was generally agreed that residents could –very gently — ask children to abide by the garden rules.
Garden website — JL joined SK in congratulating Ros Bardi on designing and setting up the garden blog. It was hoped that this would prove to be a good way of communicating garden information to all the residents. SK invited residents to contribute photographs and/or anecdotes to the site.
Trees — SK assured the meeting that no expense is being spared in the effort to protect the trees. They are closely monitored and inspected regularly. The Committee is looking into planting new trees which would replace the older trees in due course.
Gordon has drawn up a list of possible trees and is formulating a planting plan. A general discussion about the trees in the garden followed. SK explained that the greatest difficulty was finding suitable positions to plant new trees as they may only be planted in the central beds. SR added that the central flower bed on the top lawn had been identified as a suitable site to plant a substantial tree. JL pointed out that when the gardens were originally designed there were no legal issues such as subsidence to stop planting trees along the edge of the garden. CP mentioned that Gordon was keen to add some autumn colour to the garden. Residents were invited to use the website to put forward their suggestions for suitable trees.
Security – Security remains an issue and SK asked all residents who have side gates on to the garden to make sure that they are locked at all times. SK added that it is not uncommon for builders or outside contractors to leave the garden gates wedged open; this is completely unacceptable. Young children play in the garden, often unsupervised, and their parents need to know that they can do so in relative safety.
Summer Party — Linda distributed flyers advertising this year’s summer party on Sunday 1st July. There will be the traditional children’s party in the afternoon but the evening cocktail will be a less formal affair, and hopefully more convivial with music, food, and wine. S.R suggested that neighbours could bring out a picnic in the evening. LC hoped that the weather would be fine on the day and added that last year’s party was held on the hottest day of the year. She also asked for help erecting the marquees.
Fireworks Party – SK thanked Sheila and Geordie for organising such a successful fireworks party. SR announced that this year it would be a Halloween party with fancy dress, and a prize for the best costume. SR and GG have once again kindly agreed to organise it and the date is Sunday 28 October.
4 Treasurer’s Report The Accounts for the year 2011/12 were presented by the Hon Treasurer, James Lipton. In his words there was not a huge amount to say; the year-end cash position was £38783.09 and we are on schedule. JL congratulated SR on raising nearly £5,000 in donations for repairs and renovation works to the play area. This included replacing the rubber chippings with a solid surface that meets EEC safety regulations.
The water costs were less than anticipated. No legal fees had been incurred. Gordon is putting in place a lawn maintenance plan which would come to £1000 a year. The wage bill has increased slightly. The Garden rate would be increased to £38,000 in the current year 2012-13, this will need to be increased again next year as the reserves are decreasing as a percentage of outgoings. JL explained that ideally he would like to have a reserve equivalent to one year’s outlay to be in a comfortable position to cover any unforeseen expenditure. S.R reminded the AGM that on one occasion members of the committee had had to lend the committee money. The reserve also included builders’ deposits between £2000-£6000.£3,800 is held in the party account. JL reminded those present that this is a completely separate account. The fireworks party is paid for by ticket sales while the summer party is underwritten solely by donations. LC expressed her gratitude to the many families who regularly make substantial donations towards the summer party.
The Chairman and Hon Treasurer thanked Carla Petschek for her help with the treasury and management of the accounts.Carla Petschek proposed that the accounts should be adopted and seconded by Ralph Abraham
5 Elections to Committee
Carla Petscheck, Sheila Robertson, and Isabella Kullmann came up for re-election and they were duly re-elected. Jonathan Searle put himself forward and was co-opted on to the committee.
6 Any Other Business – General discussion
It was suggested and unanimously agreed to buy a new bench for the garden. Carmel Abraham asked if anyone else had heard the owl in the garden and a number of residents had — on two consecutive nights. On this mysterious but happy note the meeting was brought to a close.
SK thanked SR for the wine and the excellent nibbles.