Minutes from board meeting – 9th June 2021

Date of meeting: Zoom meeting – Wednesday 9th June 2021, 6pm

Present: Pam Moore; Neil Hickson; Fiona Eccleston; Nicky Bailey; Chris Roberts

Apologies:  Mark Tebbutt; Angela Blackshaw; Andy Sheridan

Chair: Neil Hickson

Minutes: Pam Moore

Declarations of interest: None

Agenda Item Minute
Minutes of last MeetingMinutes of meeting 12/05/21
Proposed as a true record by: NH Seconded by: PM
Matters ArisingDBS Checks – In response to the suggestion of DBS checking everyone on the farm which was discussed at the last meeting, Katy Sneyd said the council would push back on DBS checking everyone and that having a good safe guarding policy in place mitigates getting everyone DBS checked.
Growers Report – Allotment café not approached because not enough salad being produced currently to meet the combined needs of Windy Arbour’s & Lily’s Café. (closed)
Power to change – use of funding (carry over to next meeting)Action: AS & MT
Co-op funding – use of funding (carry over to next meeting)Action: AS & MT
Additional person to train in Bore Hole and Legionella safety/compliance (carry over to next meeting)Action: AS & MT
Disabled access to an allotment plot. (carry over to next meeting)Action: MT
Allotments charged for email address. NB can find no documentation detailing this. NH to look for correspondence establishing the agreed charge.  Action: NH
Jewson’s credit note for £5K has been spent (closed)
Maternity policy for Kelly Hastings – details have been given to KH. Policy to be detailed and filed in Finance section on Teams.Action: NB
With Phil Moore stepping down from the board there needs to be another point of contact identified for “We Are With You”. PM to speak to one of the volunteers who has links with WAWY to see if they would be happy to liaise.Action: PM to speak to a WAWY contact
There was a discussion about how to present the minutes so it was easy to identify any agreed actions from the discussion. It was agreed to add an “actions table”  to the end of the minutes to pull together all the actions. Action: PM to include an action table in the minutes.  
It was agreed to hold board meetings on the second Wednesday of every month
Financial ReportThe results of the vote for accounts approval were:Approved        36Abstained          1Total Votes     37       The return will now be signed and filed.
It was recognised that going forwards there should always be qualified accountants on the board. 
A lot of money has gone into staffing up the café using the £2.5k restart grant. Until the café is demonstrating profitability it was asked that any big spend requests be put on hold. 
Investigations ReportNothing to report at the moment. Still on going.
Care farmNo report due to holidays. Concern expressed about that fact there has been no applicants for the Care Farm Co-ordinator’s role to cover for KH. 
Woodlands3 Requests have come in to use the woods, which is an opportunity to generate income. Rhiannon Jones has emailed asking for board approval for the 3 groups who have requested use of the woods. Action: Nicky to forward email to AS & MT and ask them to respond.
Strategic ReviewFE talked through the presentation sent out prior to the meeting, and also the key questions to be used in the meetings with staff and volunteers. There was general approval for the content and approach being taken.  It was agreed there was an advantage of having group rather than individual meetings but there may be sensitivities which would require individual discussions.  This will be taken into consideration when deciding next steps.
GrowingConcerns were expressed about lack of a growing plan and that not enough salad is being produced for Windy Arbour & Lily’s kitchen as well as the Greenslate café which is now open.  It was emphasised that home grown salad and vegetables are the main unique selling point of the Greenslate café and is integral to the success of the café and shop. It’s therefore vital that enough produce is grown to supply the café, alongside supplying third parties, to generate income.Action: NH to speak to RJ and help her define a growing plan for the next 3 months
Cafe & ShopThe weekend went well. More time needed to assess how successful it is.
CR has identified a way Greenslate eggs could be used in the café. A process would have to be put in place and there would be an initial outlay involved. To be looked at when the café is demonstrating profitability.
DigitalEmail Addresses – Work is being done to align email address to function so as people leave/join, access to the accounts can be removed/granted without losing data associated with the account. Email lists – Mailchimp is being used for the members email list which is currently just over 200.  Because Mailchimp charges for list > 400, Octopus is being used for the marketing email list which is now approaching 400.  
Virtual Café  – 2 new volunteers recruited from the last session. The intention is to use these sessions as an opportunity for engagement and for people to present ideas, and will in the future run from the Greenslate Café with a live stream to Facebook. 
Group communication with staffIt was agreed an email should be sent to staff members introducing the board and saying who the board member contact is for each area, along with contact details for board members.  It should also inform them of the 2 resignations we’ve had from the board.Action: NH to draft the email and send to AS & ABAction: AB & AS to send email from the Board@ account to all staff members when they have received it from NH.
It was agreed going forwards that within a couple of days of every board meeting, the staff should be sent a “bullet point” summary of the meeting so they feel informed about what is happening. To this end, during future meetings, bullet points should be identified, where appropriate, after each topic has been discussed, and noted by the secretary. The final agenda item should be to review and agree the bullet points so they can be sent out quickly by the secretary.  Action: PM to detail a standard agenda including a bullet point item.
AOBPowering up business support grant was successfully applied for by FE.  It is to provide business support, coaching, and mentoring in areas where it’s needed. Initially there’ll be a 2 hour meeting to assess our needs. This support needs to be used quite quickly. 
Dave Logan (volunteer) has written to NH about a pipe line going out to where the goats areAction: NH to speak to RJ about pipe line to goats

Actions Summary

Action Who Raised
Power to change – report back on possible use of fundingAS & MT12/05/2021
Co-op funding – report back on possible use of fundingAS & MT12/05/2021
Additional person to train in Bore Hole and Legionella safety/complianceAS & MT12/05/2021
Disabled access to an allotment plotMT12/05/2021
Neil to look for correspondence regarding allotments charge for use of email address NH09/06/2021
Maternity policy for KH to be detailed and filed in Finance section on TeamsNB09/06/2021
Speak to a WAWY contact to liaise with  PM09/06/2021
Reformat minutes to contain “action table”PM09/06/2021
Forwards Woodlands req from RJ to MT & AS for responseNB09/06/2021
Speak to RJ and help her define a growing plan for the next 3 monthsNH09/06/2021
Draft Staff Comms email and send to AS & ABNH09/06/2021
Detail standard agenda format including bullet points reviewPM
Send Staff Comms email from Board@ accountAS & AB09/06/2021
Speak to RJ about pipe line to goatsNH09/06/2021

Future Meetings.

Dates through to the next AGM are:

14th July 2021

11th August 2021

8th September 2021

13th October 2021

10th November 2021

8th December 2021

12th January 2022

9th February 2022

9th March 2022

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