Annual Report for the Ringshall Parish Council - May 2023
The past year has been a period of great change for the Ringshall Village Hall Management Committee, RVHMC, with the very sad death of our Honorary Secretary Mrs Maureen Wills. Maureen had been an integral part of the Village Hall and Ringshall community for over 26 years and her contribution as a Trustee on the RVHMC has been invaluable. She is greatly missed by us all on the Committee and often in our thoughts as we plan activities and hold our Meetings.
Mr John Wills made the decision to retire from his role as Treasurer following Maureen’s death and with John’s Trustee Role also spanning over 26 years with the RVHMC, he too is missed enormously.
The RVHMC wanted in some small way to acknowledge this truly immense achievement and arranged an Afternoon Tea for John and Maureen’s family and friends in March. John gave a very witty and heart-felt thank you speech at the Tea and expressed his appreciation for the memorial bench and plaque which has been placed on the green space at the Hall. It is in Maureen’s favourite colour of yellow.
Our Clubs and Hirers
The Hall would be nothing without our regular Club Hirers. This includes the Line Dancing Club, Table Tennis Club, Art Club, Dog Training Club, Craft Club, Ringshall Amateur Theatre, Silver Ladies Group who utlise the space to run a range of activities for people of all ages. Their support and ongoing useage is invaluable to ensuring the Hall is maximised to it’s full potential.
Following the Covid pandemic and the lockdown measures we were all adhering to it has been incredibly encouraging to see the Hall being used more for larger Events such as parties and weddings. Over 2022 this has steadily built up and encouragingly for 2023 the diary is becoming increasingly busy.
Equally really positively the outdoor space from Spring 2023 is being used three nights per week for training by the Blakenham Football Club.
With any Committee it’s Members are truly vital to ensuring action happens! With this in mind we have been extremely fortunate to be able to now have a good compliment of Trustees on the Committee. Huge thanks to Lacey Luther for taking on the Treasurer’s Role and for recruiting Angie Rogers as the new Booking Clerk.
The Committee is as follows:
Brian Robertson – Joint Chairperson
Liz Hitchcock – Joint Chairperson
Lacey Luther – Treasurer
Sue Johnson – Secretary
Angie Rogers – Booking Clerk
Finances and Banking
The RVHMC are always conscious of the importance of being professional in all our dealings with the finances and the responsibilities as Trustees to ensure these are run accurately and legally. The reserves remain healthy due to a combination of undertaking fundraising activities to boost funds, purchasing items needed for the Hall competitively and running the bar to increase our income.
The funds as at 30 March 2023 stand at £ 36,042.52.
One of the initiatives being undertaken by the RVHMC over the last year is to progress to online banking with Barclays. This has been a time-consuming process but we are hopeful this will be completed by Summer 2023.
The Committee agreed at the April Meeting that it will not be asking the Parish Council for any grant support for 23-24 given the current positive position of the RVHMC accounts.
Volunteers from the RVHMC were very pleased to be part of the initial Play Area Working Group back in 2021 and were an integral part of getting information gathered, drafting forms, listening to the community and fundraising. This reflects the hardworking nature of the RVHMC and the commitment to volunteering with not only the Parish Council but other groups and organisations.
A very BIG thank you for all the volunteers who are on the Green Space Mowing Rota and ensuring the area looks smart and well kept.
Vitally important is the support, encouragement and hands-on help provided by the Hitchcock Family. This includes Liz as a Trustee of the RVHMC Committee, the maintenance and cutting of the boundary hedges, the time investment in the Play Area and the planting of trees and building of benches to commemorate events.
The hard work referenced above certainly comes into play when developing and co-ordinating Events. There have been a number of successful Events where the RVHMC Committee were and are involved. These include the Platinum Jubilee Celebrations, the Christmas Craft Fair, School Bulb Planting and the forthcoming Coronation Celebrations. The RVHMC value enormously everyone who attends these Events – they would not be successful without our communities support!
The RVHMC are very much committed to ensuring the Hall continues to be well used and supported moving forward and this year have made two key investments to broaden it’s use and encourage new users to hire the space. These are the new TV and recently installed hearing loop. We continue to invite the support of our local Councillors Dan Pratt and Kay Oakes with our initiatives to not only help with our funding but to also raise awareness of the Hall and enable them both to promote the benefits of Ringshall and our community spaces.
RVHMC – May 2023