Oldhamstocks Community Association

Meeting held in the Hall on Thursday 6th October 2016:


Present: Neil Richerby, Chair, Barbara Richerby, Gordon Simpson, Nathan Simpson, Lorna Bairden, Alex Ainslie, Angus MacDonald, Lizanne Longmuir.

Apologies: Jacqui Riddell, John, Janice and Kaleena Hanvidge, Sharon and Lauryn Simpson, David and Mary Legge.

Minutes of the previous meeting wereapproved.

Treasurer's Report: Gordon Simpson reported that the current bank balance is £14058.94 (of which £4056.68 is not ring-fenced), and that he is about to prepare accounts for auditing (by Fiona Gray), and forwarding to OSCR.

Gordon has opened a second bank account (as yet balance £0) to enable us to keep separate any windfarm income. Gordon Simpson and Janice Hanvidge are current signatories – more names should be added in due course.

Recent electrical work has been paid for, also fire risk assessment.

Gordon confirmed that the insurers approve cover for the use of the Hall for overnight accommodation on an occasional basis (eg the Panners – NR to inform Sheila Ainslie of this).

Finance – forward planning for new hall: Gordon will ask Chris Bruce if detailed information re projected windfarm income can be available for the AGM. GS, CB

Alex suggested that we, as Oldhamstocks Community Association, ask all local windfarms directly for funding, as we are now well surrounded, and they are obliged to give back to the community. He also suggested asking for provision of/linking to satellite internet connection. 

Architects' proposals: Proposal folders had been circulated round the committee for consideration. Those present made brief comment, and Jacqui had sent an email to Neil indicating her preferred choice of Simpson & Brown. Neil noted that not all firms had followed the brief closely, and that some had given more detail than others, so that it is a question of choosing to take things forward with a firm or firms who we feel confident would understand and appreciate our needs and wishes.

Alex said that there could be a local supply of stone available – from Birnieknowes steading development – which would be appropriate in character and long lasting as a facing for a new building, and suggested asking John Fyall to quote for designing a new hall with this in mind. Neil replied that John Fyall had already been approached concerning a design for a new hall and had declined the invitation.

We could go on casting the net widely, but time is moving on and we agreed that it is important to make a choice, and also that choosing a local firm would be sensible – this would probably reduce costs for site visits etc, and we would benefit from a more immediate, local and relevant connection.

Sharon Simpson's request of Fleming Homes to produce a fresh design, in more detail, had not resulted in any new information.

Angus said firmly that he felt it is up to the committee to tell architects exactly what we want; Lorna and Neil felt strongly that there should be some leeway for interpretation and imagination, alongside a reasonably detailed brief.

After some discussion those present agreed to invite Ogilvy Chalmers and Simpson & Brown to meet with us in late October/early November to take their proposals a stage further, so that we have more information to present at the AGM in late November. We discussed questions to be put to both firms, and agreed to offer representatives of each firm a one-hour slot to present their ideas. Neil will arrange this meeting, and will also contact other firms to thank them for their proposals but to decline further advice. NR

Questions/brief/wish-list for architects should include:

indication of basic envisaged new footprint


toilets (incl disabled)

storage – multipurpose

main hall – size perhaps reduced from initial suggestion of 14m x 8m to 13m x 7m?

inclusion of second, smaller meeting room

external finish?

quality of internal fittings?

access from road, grassed hard standing path?

external lighting?

energy efficiency/use of renewable energy sources?

cost implications, fees, possibility of fixed fee?

logistics when building work gets underway

we should give details of the usage (current and expected) of the hall

AGM: will be held on Wednesday 23rd November. Neil will chair, Barbara will give notice of the AGM via email, the website, and bus-stop notice, and ask folk to pass the word out. We agreed on the need to keep firmly to the agenda – notes of any extra items should be lodged with the Secretary by 13th November, and will be dealt with under AOCB. Neil will give up-to-date information of new hall proposals in his report, and questions can be taken before elections/re-elections take place. Alex said that we must make it clear that the current committee hopes for general approval for what we intend to do with windfarm income, which is given for the whole community. BR, NR

Land: there was no update on any progress/conversation with Simon Usher, but we agreed that it is necessary to keep him informed – Chris to be asked to speak for us, hopefully before our next meeting. NR, CB

Grass-cutting on the Green: no report.

AOB: Nathan brought a suggestion from Mollie Manning that Excalon be invited to make a goodwill financial donation towards the new hall project as recompense for recent disruption to road access. GS, NS.

Date of next meeting: to be announced shortly.

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