Rona welcomed everyone including Councillors Coker, Cooke and Illingworth and Parish Councillors Andy Gibbs, Paddy Deeley and Archie Taylor.
She explained her aim was to make presentations as brief as possible allowing time for discussion of issues of importance.
Apologies had been received from Cllr Rowena Hill, Alan Marshall, Derek Silk,Mary Webb, and Betty Woodward.
2. Minutes of the last meeting
The minutes of the last Annual General Meeting of October 30th, 2017 were accepted.
Proposed: Deirdre Vernon
Seconded: Jill Line
3. Matters Arising
There were no matters arising.
4. Chair’s Report
A report had been circulated in advance as follows:
“The Residents’ Association continues to be vibrant, innovative and proactive in representing and supporting the Burton Green community.
The Santa Sleigh evening has now become a major event in our annual “repertoire”, thanks to our brilliant partnership with Balsall Common Lions. Last Christmas, collections at the doorstep, profits from Village Hall food sales on the night and a generous top up from Hickory’s, all contributed to an amazing £1000 total with £850 going to Zoe’s Place and £150 to the Balsall Common Lions’ charities. This year Santa’s Sleigh will be visiting Burton Green on Friday December 14th and residents will have an opportunity to vote for the Burton Green 2018 Christmas Charity at the AGM. We have set the bar high over the past 2 years, but I am confident we can match our £1000 record this year.
Thanks to the generosity of Joy and Rob Barnes, we were able to have a Christmas tree on the Jubilee Verge again last year and our Christmas activities also included a Christmas card competition, sponsored by Hickory’s, for Burton Green School students and a food bank collection at the Village Hall, with donations going to the Kenilworth Food Bank.
We had a village clean up in February and the next one is scheduled for October 14th. Several residents also collect litter on a weekly, and in some cases, daily basis, an on-going contribution to the community which we all greatly appreciate.
Our plant troughs at the entrances to the Village are a real asset to our environment, thanks to the hard work of residents who plant, maintain and water them.
Peter Hallam from WCC Highways Department continues to look after Burton Green roads, responding, usually the same day, to reports of potholes. This year we have also had major work completed on Red Lane pavements, following several years of pressure from the Residents’ Association. We continue to respond quickly to concerns about road flooding and faulty lighting.
Lunches for the Retired of Burton Green are always well attended; people look forward to catching up with friends and enjoying really good food at amazing value. We held a St Patrick’s Day lunch in March and a Royal Wedding lunch in July. Our next meal will be on October 26th.
The Speedwatch Team continue to turn out in all weathers. We all know our 30mph limit is frequently broken and the Team plays a key role in combatting this.
The Bugle has been published on a quarterly basis, thanks to Mary Webb and the distribution team who also this year helped with the Neighbourhood Plan. The £3 residents’ subscriptions have also been collected.
The Residents’ Association is always represented at the Burton Green Parish Council, where a monthly report is given, and at the twice-yearly Kenilworth Forum.
The Jubilee Group has this year been planning a very special commemoration of the centenary of the 1918 Armistice. There will be an afternoon tea, 3-5pm on Sunday November 11th. That evening, we will also be lighting a beacon at 7.00pm in the field opposite the Jubilee Verge, preceded at 6.55pm by a bugler playing The Last Post. This is part of a national Beacons of Light scheme, with similar ceremonies held at the same time across the country. Two life sized silhouettes of First World War soldiers will be on the Verge and a cascade of poppies will flow down the fence. Residents will be able to purchase British Legion crosses on which to record the names of loved ones they have lost, to be placed on the Verge.
The wealth of things which happen in Burton Green reflect the commitment of our residents; thank you to everyone for all you do.”
A short presentation was made by Richard Coates, the chairman of trustees of the Leigh Foundation. He explained that grants were available for young people up to the age of 25 in the villages of Stoneleigh, Ashow and Burton Green. Since Burton Greenhad established its own Parish Council, the Trust felt youngsters in Burton Green had not been kept well informed of the Leigh Foundation and he wished to rectify the situation and to alert families to the possibility of applying for funds to support university fees, purchase of school uniform or help with costs of educational visits, forexample. Educational groups could also apply. Over 18-year olds could apply themselves and parents could apply on behalf of younger applicants. Details of the Foundation were left for distribution.
5. Treasurer’s Report
Dianne had submitted a report. Copies were available in the hall.
As Dianne was unable to attend the meeting, Peter Tacon had kindly agreed to present the report.There was a deficit for the year of £856.83 which had been partly planned because of a donation of £334.48 to the Village Hall relating to the Queen’s 90th birthday and Jubilee event. There remained an operational deficit which would be rectified once a grant for Bugle printing had been settled. The total net assets at 21 August 2018 stood at £3309.24
Rona thanked Peter for both presenting and inspecting the accounts. There were no questions.
6. Election of Independent Examiner
Peter Tacon again agreed to act as Independent Examiner.
Proposed: Eileen Nisbet
Seconded: Liz Saxon
7. Election of Committee members
Janet Hickinbottom, as Joint Secretary, conducted this agenda item.
The constitution required that the officers and three committee members should stand down. All the officers, Rona Taylor, Mary Webb, Janet Hickinbottom and Judi Hibberd and Dianne Adams were re-elected
Seconded: Barbara Noronha
Three committee members also stood down and agreed to be re-elected: Andy Gibbs, Bron Putnam and Hilary Cox
Proposed: Peter Tacon
Seconded: Liz Saxon
Helen Hehir was nominated as a new committee member.
Proposed: Eileen Nisbet
Seconded: Hilary Cox
Trish Hancock had stood down from the committee during the year to take on the role of secretary to the wine club. She was thanked for her contribution.
Janet explained that more residents were welcome to join the committee and could either declare their willingness during or after the meeting.
8. Discussion of key Burton Green issues
Village Hall update
Cheryl Wall, Chair of the Village Hall trustees, explained that the current big issue remained the new village hall. At long last the planning application was to be heard on October 9th. Cheryl would be speaking at the meeting. Once permission was granted, tenders could be issued for the building work. Questions were asked about the length of time the building work would take and when it was likely to start. As the start date had already been delayed, there was uncertainty around this although the consultants had estimated six months to build. The lease on the current Village Hall would end in June 2019 but it was felt unrealistic that the build would have started before then.Another question related to the location of the entrance to the new hall. This was just beyond the current footpath entrance. A map would be made available at the Village Hall AGM in November. Currently plans could be viewed on WCC Planning website.
Three new Village Hall trustees would be sought in October 2019 when the term of office of some trustees would come to an end. Anyone who wanted to know what was involved should contact Cheryl.
Jill outlined the forthcoming Village hall events as follows:
October 13th: dancing to Off the Cuff with supper £15pp
October 28th: car boot sale with breakfast available
November 17th: Quiz Night with fish and chip supper £12.50pp
Rona thanked Cheryl and all the Village Hall residents for their hard work.
The Link Road
Andy Gibbs, with the aid of maps, outlined what was known about the proposed link road joining the A46 at Stoneleigh to the A452 near Balsall Common, or the A45. The official information provided by WCC is here: https://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/a46linkroad
The road would be important to local infrastructure with pressure of traffic from Warwick University, A46, A45, A452, Jaguar Landrover, Gaydon and Solihull and was supported by Coventry City Council as a relief road. It did not depend on HS2 but could help to provide access to a HS2 station.
Andy explained that the Phase 1 of the project related to a roundabout on A46 and this part of the scheme remained mainly uncontroversial. Phase 2 related to how the road would link to Westwood Heath and Phase 3 was the haziest and had most impact on Burton Green. At various recent public consultations local council employees from WCC have denied the existence of any specific plans for the 3rd phase of this project passing through Burton Green. Under the Freedom of Information Act, Dr Thornton managed to obtain plans produced in 2016, and which had been labelled 'Highly Confidential'.
The Phase 3 Option 1 route passes across the area of the proposed Burrow Hill housing estate and the site of the new Village Hall. There had been speculation that the dual carriageway might run along the top of the HS2 cutting and certainly there was a likelihood of it following the line of HS2. But currently there was no certainty about where it might impact on Burton Green.
A question was asked whether the tunnel would be strong enough to support a dual carriageway. HS2 had said this was not part of their plans and would have cost implications.
Did the councillors present know any more? They said they did not.
Even the plans for Phase 2 were fluid.It was generally agreed that many residents had resigned themselves to the coming of HS2 but could not stand the impact of a dual carriageway too and this would have a profound social impact on the village.
Santa’s Sleigh Charity
Four charities had been proposed as recipients of the donations on the night of the Santa Sleigh event. These were:
Canley Community Centre
Coventry Boot Fund
Helen Ley Centre.Kenilworth
Brief information was provided about each charity. Attendees were asked to complete slips to cast their votes.
Post meeting note: the majority of votes cast were for the Canley Community Centre.
9. Any Other Business
Cllr Coker said this was the last time he would be attending the BGRA AGM in an official capacity as he would not be standing for re-election in 2019. He had always been proud to be included in Burton Green’s developments over the past 12 years and had fought against HS2 on our behalf. Rona thanked Michael for his loyal support, wisdom and judgement and he would be welcome to visit Burton Green and our events in the future.
Parish Councillor Taylor said there was some doubt about what was happening with HS2. A contact who was writing a report on behalf of Burton Green had exposed the spiralling cost of the railway to government. There had been a terrible lack of communication regarding HS2. He felt the great majority did not support HS2.
Rona thanked Hilary and especially Mary who was unable to attend but had insisted on helping with the refreshments.
10. Date of Next Annual General Meeting
The next Annual General Meeting would be held on September 30th, 2019 at the Village Hall.