Charity No. 292821

Annual Report of the Chairman and Secretary – April 2016/2017

This report covers the period from 1st April 2016 to 31st March 2017.


During the year to April 2017 Maggie Simons was Chairman, Margaret Smith Secretary, Booking Secretaries, Lynn and Kevin Clarke and Roger Baker, Building Renovations Officer.  Additional committee members were:  Julia Blake, Maxine Curtis, Rev. Norma Fergusson, Sue Reade (Senior Citizens),  Eliza Lewis (PC spokesperson), Diane Lovegrove, Vic Tombs, Kate Watkins (Toddlers’ spokesperson), Trudi Worner.

Julie Rafferty took over as treasurer in early 2016 but moved from the village to Cornwall in March 2017 which means that we are once again without a Treasurer at the Annual Meeting. Maggie prepared the end of year accounts from the figures that Julie provided, and they are being examined by Alex Peal.  During the year the Hall was revalued, for insurance purposes, from £424,360 to £1,153,000, which meant a considerable increase in our insurance premiums.

Since last year’s annual meeting on the 23rd May committee meetings have been held on the 7th September 2016, 6th February 2017 and today’s annual meeting on the 17th May 2016.  Margaret Smith, Secretary, has prepared and circulated minutes of all meetings which have been signed by the Chairman after approval of the committee and filed in the Hall Minutes File kept by the Secretary.  Electronic copies are also available.


The hall committee ran the bar at the Queen’s 90th Birthday Street Party in June; The Faringdon Singers gave a concert in July; There was a New Year Family Party in January 2017.

Regular Activities:

Between April 2016 and March 2017 there were regular meetings of the toddler’s group and keep fit classes as well as monthly Men’s Breakfasts and Community Club (was the Senior Citizens) meetings. In addition, the Parish Council and Hall committee have held regular meetings and the Hall continues to be frequently used for private parties, events, and Church functions.

Community Arts and Crafts Classes:

These were subsidised by a grant of £350 from the Vale of White Horse District Council, and were run frequently from September 2016 to March 2017, and included: working with clay, willow sculptures, Christmas flower arranging and Christmas wreaths.  The water colour painting class continues to prove very popular and is run monthly on Saturday mornings.


During the year small items of refurbishment were completed including replacing the cracked glass in the rear window by Heaths and some touching up of paintwork. From time to time there are issues with the secondary glazing dampness due to dampness in the walls and some black mould around the toilet windows.  The floorboards near the serving hatch are showings signs of wear and are being monitored.

25 of the old wooden chairs were taken to store at Bunces as they may be required for external events, and the Village Shop were given 12. A few surplus ones were also given to the church.

A group of committee members cleared out everything from under the stage in June 2016 and another group met in April 2017 to repaint where necessary.

All Fire extinguishers were checked and replaced as recommended in July 2016 and new emergency exit signs were put up.

Roger Baker has continued to monitor loose rendering on the outside walls of the hall, the curved boundary wall and cracks in the School House wall, all of which are still giving concern.


During the year a new external notice board was erected, four new small folding tables were purchased and Diana Lovegrove renewed the stage skirting.

Picture canvases of old views of the village were purchased and displayed on the walls.


Issues are regularly addressed.


Kevin Clarke continued to keep the grounds tidy and the outside windows cleaned. Lynn Clarke continued to clean the hall weekly. Both are paid for doing this work.


During the year the Chairman continued to work with the solicitors, Winckworth Sherwood, to get the village hall land registered with the Land Registry. At the end of the year this was still ongoing.


During the year Diane McLaren has regularly maintained the Village Hall pages on the Ashbury web site with information provided by the Committee.


We have an agreed minimum reserve of £5000 but during the year the balances have been much higher thanks to fund raising, grants and donations. The bank balance at 31st March 2017 was £10,148.67 and the value of our investment trust is £138,889.71.


A donation of £300.00 was received from the Ashbury Garden Club from funds raised at the Open Gardens event and a further donation from the Queen’s 90th Birthday Street Party proceeds.

Maggie Simons                                   Margaret Smith

Chairman                                            Secretary