Norton Bavant Snow Scene
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The Norton Bavant Amenity Fund  

Review October 2013

Introduction: The Norton Bavant Amenity Fund (Registered Charity Number 1099832), was established on the 4th September 2003 to: “ in the interests of social welfare to improve the conditions of life of the inhabitants of the parish of Norton Bavant without distinction of political religious or other opinions by the provision and maintenance of a recreation ground and a village hall for the use by the inhabitants including use for meetings lectures classes and other forms of recreation and leisure time occupation”.

The Village Hall and Playing Field are leased. The amenity fund also looks after the Phone Box and an area of land adjacent to the Village Hall. In addition to this the charity has improved the village with the provision of steps onto the playing field and fencing off the area behind the bus stop.

Finance: The Norton Bavant Amenity Fund needs to raise over £2,000 per annum to meet the basic running costs of the playing field and the village hall. This provides for; the grass cutting, insurance, electricity charges, service charges, subscriptions, repairs and small improvements. It is important to ensure that the amenities meet health and safety requirements and that the quality of the provision is maintained. It is also necessary to ensure that the village hall is comfortable and adequately equipped for its purpose. The field is maintained to a high standard and it provides a safe, accessible and attractive amenity in the centre of the village.

The core funding is received from villagers covenanting or donating an annual sum and this is complemented by income from the hire of the hall, and fundraising events.
The fund also benefits from the 25% recovered from the Inland Revenue on Income Tax payers who make a regular contribution. Some of our regular contributors have left the village in recent years so there need to encourage more villagers to make a planned contribution if the funding base is to be secured.

Villagers give their time, expertise and resources to help maintain the amenities and run the events which take place throughout the year.

The fund applies for and receives grant aid support, the most regular contributor being the Sutton Veny, Norton Bavant, Bishopstrow and Tytherington Flower Show.

A moderate sum is held in a capital account for the purpose of funding emergency repairs and to form the basis of any future major fund raising campaigns. It is important to note that as a Registered Charity, without any capital assets, the fund cannot obtain Credit.

No administrative expenses are charged against the fund.
Upgrading the fixtures and fittings

There is a need to redecorate the exterior of the village hall and to resolve the storage problem. Other requirements are: the provision of more coat hooks, tiling in the fireplace, and to redecorate the toilets. New Heaters have been installed in the Hall. In the last financial year the facia boards were weather proofed and the guttering and downpipes were replaced. The fencing at the front, which was blown down in the March storms had to be replaced as a matter of some urgency.

New railings have been fitted at the front of the hall to comply with the planning approval and to meet current access requirements. The cost of the new railing was met by 50% allocation from the Amenity Fund and a very generous 50% grant from the Ernest and Marjorie Fudge Trust.

Social Events: The committee, which runs under the auspices of the trust, has played a key role in contributing to the social cohesion in Norton Bavant by organising a programme of social events throughout the year. These events were initially fund raising events focussed on raising funds to boost the village’s contribution to securing and refurbishing the village hall (and the playing field). The focus of these events has changed in recent years to providing social evenings to bring people together whilst also raising funds to purchase new or replacement equipment.

Volunteering: Volunteers give of their time and personal resources to run the charity and undertake the day to day maintenance and caretaking activities. As well as organising the social events, volunteers undertake small projects, oversee contractors, maintain the lawns and gardens and provide food and raffle prizes for the various events. This has contributed to the sense of community which currently exists in Norton Bavant.

The future: It is now over twelve years since we started fund raising to secure some amenities in Norton Bavant and ten years since the Norton Bavant Amenity Fund was established. The initial objectives have been achieved and developed upon. We now have well established and well maintained amenities in Norton Bavant.

There are now several families with young children in the village. These families are the future of the village and they therefore need to engage in shaping the amenities to meet their needs. One suggestion is that they might be invited to take the lead in devising a programme of activities geared to their requirements. This could include events like: children’s games and activities on the field, afternoon teas and parties, a Christmas Party, barbeques etc. These events would be self-funding but the amenities, such as the tents and equipment would available for such events without charge.

Gordon Evans   Chairman of Norton Bavant Amenity Fund.                  October 2013

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