Wilts & Berks Canal Trust EGM took place on Saturday 5th March in
Wroughton. There was a reasonable turn out of Trust members and a great
turn out from MCC branch members…thanks for those who attended and
those who maybe wanted to attend but couldn’t make it.
Each of the new Directors gave an overview of themselves and their Directors roles.
CoM has been disbanded it was decided to keep the current membership of
CoM as the Board of Trustees to allow the Executive to find their feet
so to speak and come up to speed. Those members of Com who are now on
the Executive have resigned as Trustees to enable them to take their
posts i.e. Derek Flexer, Kath Hatton & Chris Coyle. It is
intended that the Board of Trustees will be a mixture of Trust Members
(Inc one member voted for by the rest of the membership) and people
from industry who will bring different overviews/expertise to the Trust.
The Project Directors roles have ceased to exist but our own Colin
Fletcher has been asked to join the Board of Trustees and has accepted.
Of course we hope Colin will continue to share his knowledge and
expertise as a member of MCC and continue to assist with projects along
The Executive will
basically manage the day to day running of the Trust with the Board of
Trustees taking a bi-monthly overview and having the final say over
policy etc. The branches will be represented on the Executive by
one of the branch chair persons as voted by the other branch
chairpersons. The first 3 year stint goes to Brian Stovold (Chairman of
East Vale branch). Branch chairs will sit on the Executive but as
non-voting members so I will still be bringing feedback to the branch
from these meetings.
Due to the sensitive nature of some
information and the need to be able to speak freely about the
smallest matters without these thoughts being misconstrued it has been
decided the Executive meeting will be closed meeting but members of the
Trust are encourage to attend the Trust Board Meetings which is where
the main policies will be decided upon.
I stood down from my role as IT Director for a number of reasons but
have been asked to help Sheila Wade with the internal communications. I
don’t see this affecting my role as MCC Chair but will review the
situation in September to ensure this is the case. If you have any
comments on problems/issues you encountered prior to the new structure
I’d be keen to hear your comments either in person or by email.
Ray and his mid-week team have been using the good weather to crack on
with final areas of dredging and bund removal. It is hoped that the
line will be clear from bottom lock to the meadow by the time you are
Annual Chippenham to Lacock walk:
New Heritage Walk this year, from Chippenham to Pewsham Locks (and to
Lacock for those that want to go that far) see events report for more
Richard and Malcolm are putting together a policy with regards to
Trust Boat Purchasing in an effort to get the ball rolling with the
Executive so that we can then discuss the purchase of a Wheely Boat.
The same team are negotiating with regards to Damselfly and WCC licensing.
Richard is preparing for the good weather which will enable more
paintwork to be sorted on Boswell. There is not a great deal of room
for many volunteers to get involved with this work but if you are
particularly keen please do contact Richard.
I was asked to withdraw an Area Board bid for a second user dumper as
Kath had some intelligence on the amount of funds left with the Area
Board. This I did and Kath’s bid to the Area Board resulted in us
receiving funds for the Top Lock Project a surprising result but
the point of dumpers. WPO’s have agreed we do still need second one and
I have spoken with Mike Brotherwood, who donated the Godiva Fire Pump
and trailer, and he is happy for us to sell it if it would help towards
such a purchase. We have sufficient pumps now to be able to do this so
we will investigate what price we may be able to get for the pump and
trailer unit before a final decision is made.
A Project Manager has been found and work on the Community rooms has
started. As the volunteer coordinator I have listed a huge list of jobs
that need doing (both professionally and by volunteers) and these are
being sorted. The local area has lost a venue used by the community so
the availability of these rooms is now more important. Planned open
date is 31st may but some flexibility has been built in J.
there is the potential for us to gain
funding for Top Lock and the cottage see
Fundraising report for more info
Despite not being able to access the
green lane in December (Malcolm’s
Christmas tree sales prevent this) we
have made good progress on the wet
section at Pewsham and clearance work on
the section south of the A4. We have
also attracted 4 new work party members
over the past month or two.
Negations have also allowed us to get
two recently acquired trailers to a
commercial greenhouse locally. Plenty of
light, not surprisingly, power and space
so refurbishment of these two trailers
should be comfortable and hopefully
Lease on land north of Pewsham Top Lock
– I understand that the paperwork is
currently with the lawyers so we can’t
say exactly when the land will become
available but progress is being made.
I would encourage you all to get more
members into our branch during 2016, inc
close family and friends, who wouldn’t
want to support you in your endeavours
to get the W&B connected to the river
Avon at Melksham?? For just £10 or £15
per annum? Perhaps we should ask
friend/family to purchase a membership
instead of buying birthday presents
We will of course continue to spread the
word at events and along the tow path
and encourage more people to join us.