BVA Chairman’s Report, AGM 2009

The Annual General Meeting of the Beech Village Hall and Recreation Ground Management Committee was held on Friday 9th October in the Village Hall. The following is an extract of the report presented by Chairman Peter Cox.

I would like thank all the committee members for their hard work over the year together with those outside the committee who have given their time to help run the various events throughout the year and made it another success.

Landmark Event

The last 12 months have been a landmark in the history of the Village Hall.

At the end of last year, our application to the Big Lottery was approved, granting approximately half the funds required for the project. This enabled the groundwork to start in December and has now progressed to the point where the new extension is being used as clearly shown by our holding this AGM in the new hall. 

Project Team

The project team comprises Phil Ladds, Mike Smith, Vic Richards, Norman Adams and, to a lesser extent myself, Peter Cox.

It was with great sadness that in April, we learnt of the sudden death of Mike Smith. Mike paid a pivotal role in getting the whole renewal project off the ground. His technical expertise ensured the planning and design of the new Hall met with all the legal planning and building control requirements and that we made best use of the site. Most importantly, he made sure we made best use of the money we had raised. He is sadly missed.

I would like to take this opportunity to introduce and thank the rest of the team.

Phil Ladds has managed the project and has done a superb job along with all his other interests. Phil has made time to see that, wherever possible, the timetable was adhered to, and whenever problems cropped up, he reviewed, recalculated and resolved them in a most professional manner.

Vic Richards and his son Peter are our lead contractors. They are doing a magnificent job, working all hours necessary, Vic has ensured each phase of the hall’s development has been professionally carried out and has made every effort to meet the deadlines set.

The final member of the team is Norman Adams. Norman is our project coordinator and has worked his socks off on a voluntary basis to see that everything that should be happening, is. His dedication to the task has been unparalleled and the Committee particularly wanted to thank him personally.

Special thanks is also due to Patrick Burridge for his time and effort in ensuring the Village Green and Recreation Ground grass is cut on a regular basis.

Official Opening

The official opening of the Hall will be in the New Year. Already in great demand, the Hall is already booked every night from Monday to Thursday, while from January it is also booked Monday to Wednesday mornings. Friday nights are kept free for ad hoc bookings and our own village events.

Beech residents receive a 25% discount off of the hourly rate (booking forms can be found here).

Social Programme

Our social programme throughout the year has continued to be well attended and included our annual Fete and Hog Roast, quiz nights, comedy evenings, Valentine’s dance, Big Band Picnic, Craft Fair, Bonfire Night, cricket match and Christmas parties. 

The quarterly Wine Society evenings and the monthly Beech Ladies meetings have continued to be a great success.

The Social Evenings on the last Friday in the month have been well attended and with the improvement in the bar and catering facilities it is hoped that the numbers will grow. We do however need volunteers to produce the food for each social evening if we are to carry on catering the event, so please let us know if you are prepared to give it a go.

Volunteers Wanted

The Trustees (the Management Committee) now feel that, to manage the Village Hall complex efficiently, more of their time and efforts will be in the direction of planning and control. It is vital that our social calendar does not suffer and it will become necessary to set up various committees, outside of the management committee, to ensure that the standard of the events does not diminish. A plea here then for residents of Beech who feel that they could contribute some of their time, along with their ideas, to volunteer. Please let the new committee know of anyone willing to help.

All the social events can be found on the Beech village website, in the Diary and elsewhere. Thanks here to Helen Jayalath for her work keeping the website up-to-date and to David Woodroofe for maintaining it.

It would help the organising Committee enormously if we had as many residents’ e-mail addresses as possible so that we could keep the village up-to-date with what is going on. Those of you who have no objection to this please click here to add your address to our list.

Finally, as Chairman, I would like to thank my Committee and many of the residents of Beech for all their help and support during the year.

Peter Cox