Minutes of Committee Meeting
Autumn 2007

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Tuesday 13th November 2007

Present: Margaret Ormonde, Paul Gallagher, Diana Hartrup, Bill Harper, Barry Prior, Vera Bodman, Bob Cruickshank, Kate Manton, Ben Cosh

1. Apologies Tara Taylor, Jill Verran

2. Minutes of the last meeting (Tuesday 21st August 2007) were approved.

3. Matters arising:

Post Office
Post box moved 27th Sept 2007

Grove Road planters
MO met with Steve Radford RBC (tree man) and Andy Gillespie (street care/parks) on 11th October. Letter from Andy was handed round at the committee meeting; Andy stating that he hopes to have 4 planters removed by the end of the year, and new trees planted, in consultation with local residents.

Queen’s Birthday Commemoration
Celebration hosted by David Miles on 6th October. Good publicity and letter from Queen's Lady-in-Waiting. Stayed fine with a good turn-out including reporters from Henley Standard and Reading Chronicle.

St Barnabas Church
The meeting formally agreed £250 contribution to St Barnabas Fund. BH thanked the committee on behalf of the Church.

Lyefield Court
MO has heard from the Council that the parking restrictions have been approved, but they have not yet been actioned.

Road names
PG reported that all except one committee member had responded with their choices, PG forwarded list to RBC with covering letter, copied to Thames and Peppard ward councillors and Helen Lambert of CADRA. Submitted 80-90 names. PG hoping that this will push RBC into consulting with the local community on new road names, via the councillors.

PG reported no progress

BCr reported that 7 areas need attention. He is chasing Geoff Medhurst at RBC to action.

Peppard Road Junction road works
The committee queried whether they were fully complete as yellow lines and railings not replaced. BH commented he had seen the work being undertaken that day. MO will chase up the missing railings and will also ask about reseeding the old paths to discourage continued use.

BCr is storing the history exhibition display boards. Jill Verran has the new boards and photos. There are now 2 posters on the notice board at the shops and MO asked for ideas on where else to place posters. With JV absent no feedback on whether membership has grown since additional publicity put in place.

50+ forum meeting, organised by Help the Aged.
MO and VB attended on behalf of the committee. 91 people attended. The Police gave out 2 numbers (1) to report something that is not urgent 0845 850 505 (2) the office in Caversham 01189 474 269. Sergeant Nigel Scarrett has replaced Warren McKeown and PC John Finnerty has replaced Chris Manetta. The PCSOs Jenni Williams and John Hendy remain in post. Highdown School are looking for volunteers (see below). It is also hoped a litter clear-up enterprise at the school can be set up. The Help the Aged Home Handyman Scheme can help with small jobs free of charge. MO left EGRA leaflets and Highdown contacts at the meeting.

CADRA 40th Birthday Exhibition
Took place 17th October. EGRA there with new display stand combined with some from historical exhibition. People seemed very interested in the historical side. Around 20 stands in all, no formal part to the evening. In one room showing slides of old Caversham.

Clayfield Copse/CROW
MO attended CROW event, around 20-25 people there for each of two events. Jenny Leach is planning to continue, working with local schools. Nothing further on future Woodland Days.

Date for 2008 AGM.
29th April 2008. Tina Heaford will be speaker, hopefully with some of the youngsters taking part.

EGRA 25th Anniversary 2009.
There was some discussion about this. Preference to link it with AGM but hold on a Saturday, in May/June. To include historical exhibition, also event for children (BCo said he could organise a children’s entertainer), although need to bear in mind the interests of the elderly members. BH suggested we use Emmer Green School rather than the church hall as there is more room there. BCr proposed a sub-committee be set up to make proposals for the whole committee to agree. MO will include in Winter Newsletter to start raising awareness among members.

Highdown School links
The school requests volunteers (1) to help with listening to pupils reading one-to-one and (2) with a new garden project on an allotment to help more challenging pupils, gardening experience would be appreciated (people interested should contact the School on 0118 901 5800 or email hps@highdown.reading.sch.uk Polly Skates is the gardening contact and for anything else Maggie Barden). MO confirmed that the book prize is going ahead – the headmaster wrote back agreeing that the prize would be divided into 2 age groups and awarded on the basis of contribution to the community. He thinks the presentation will be in March, with someone from the Committee to do it. MO/BCr are going to the opening ceremony of the new hall on Thursday 15th Nov. BP’s son is happy to be a conduit for communications if appropriate. No response yet regarding showing of Al Gore film, MO to chase and BP to talk to his son.

Car park at Budgens
No action re lighting and drainage. Mark Ralph (Conservative Councillor) hopes Council may adopt.

Winter newsletter
MO hoping to get it copied by end November ready for circulation first week of December. BCr asked if it could include item on graffiti. MO reported that it did, including BCr phone number. MO will circulate draft via email. BCo would like to do more leafleting – BCo and PG will identify which roads to target – agreed an extra 150 newsletters will be needed.

4. Treasurer’s Report

BH noted healthy subscriptions since last meeting and Portman bonus. We are now customers of Nationwide Building Society.

5. Feedback from Committees

Safer Caversham Community Forum.
No-one attended September's and no minutes sent. Post committee meeting news - next date is 29th November. Vera Bodman agree to attend

North Reading Youth Project.
BCo attended 19th Sept meeting. Reported that there was discussion that activities for youth had stopped in Caversham Park Village but that that the Emmer Green Centre was well used. BCo said he would be happy to attend future meetings if TT cannot attend. MO to contact TT to see if she can attend next meeting. Future dates - 28/11, 30/01, 23/04.

NAG (Neighbourhood Action Group) Meeting
BP attended on 1st October and MO on 7th November. Main focus at present is Albert Park, nothing to report re Emmer Green. Future dates: 12/12, 22/01, 6/03, 15/04. BP volunteered to attend future meetings.

6. Planning

PG reported that there is nothing new. Jefferson Close – RBC at the point of putting notification in the press of the proposed footpath.

7. Any other business

Full discussion postponed to next meeting due to lack of time:
(1) Seats/benches at shops - Annette Hendry's idea
(2) Book award for The Hill's new library – confirmed
(3) Community book prize for Highdown School £50 per annum for 5 years - confirmed
(4) Locations for recycling of batteries. MO has written to Tesco re new garage.

History of EGRA
PG circulated a one page summary of the history of EGRA and proposed that it should be put on the website so that residents can easily find out about key moments for EGRA. The Committee agreed, also that it should be distributed with leaflets and placed in the new residents’ pack. MO replied that she would consult with the webmaster.

Brick at St Barnabas
BH asked if EGRA would like the agreed donation to be represented in their named 'buy a brick' fundraising scheme. Committee agreed. BH will action.

8. Date and venue of next meeting.
Tuesday February 26th at 8pm at BH house, 37 Kidmore End Road.