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Minutes of the DVHA Committee Meeting held on Saturday 30 May 2009

 at Morden Village Hall, Wareham, Dorset BH20 7DL


Chair: Baird Oldrey (BO) - West Moors

Secretary: Mary Mathers (MM) - Morden VH

Members: Marian Eldrett - Woodlands VH, Colin Rhymes – Stalbridge, John Clode - Canford Cliffs VH

Apologies from: Simon Thomson (ST) - LUCA, Bill Crumbleholme (BC), Upwey VH, Pat Pullen (PP) - Walditch VH, Michael Sheasby (MS) - Thorncombe, Brian Baggott (BB) & Pat Baggott (PB) - Moreton VH, Peter Orchard (PO) – DCA


1.    Welcome

BO welcomed everyone and thanked MM for hosting the meeting at Morden.

2.    Minutes of last meeting

Minutes of meeting held on 19 April 2009 were corrected as JC is in East, agreed and signed.

3.    Matters arising (not covered below)

Data protection registration – carried forward in ST’s absence.

4.    Chairman’s Report

BO reported that he, MM & BC had met the new Dorset Village & Community Halls Advisor (DVCHA) Peter Orchard again.  PO has now had VHA training and found out that Dorset is better supported than some counties. PO sees that DCA and DVHA are friends.  PO’s priority has been to keep the £200,000 capital grants from DCC & the District Councils in place.  In the past Lois Rose split the capital grant for two major projects to provide the matched funding required by other funders. PO is proposing that, in the absence of matched funding, a number of smaller projects be supported e.g. 20 grants of £10,000 the slogan being 20 10 in 2010.  PO’s paper will be circulated to the committee.

PO also reported that Sussex were actively lobbying for county and VHAs.  PO is proposing a training programme for VHs and in particular on the role and responsibilities of committee members as trustees.

DCA is reviewing its publications.  PO’s view is that the world is electronic and will campaign that all halls can receive electronic communications.

The revised licensing legislation (that means that halls do not need a Designated Premises Supervisor (DPS)) is now enacted.  Halls need to be advised of the changes.

5.    Secretary’s Report

No specific items not reported elsewhere.

6.    Treasurer’s Report

JC reported that he has not yet received the cheque from DCA for last year’s subscriptions.  MM to send JC a copy of the invoice.  BO to give John the latest statements.  BO also to send cheque to Lois Rose.  MM & JC to get their signatures registered at the bank.

7.    Correspondence

BO had received the West Dorset Community Plan Review as a partner organisation.  They are holding a workshop on 14 July.  East Dorset is doing something similar and ME is attending.

8.    Organisation

Partnership with DCA

DVHA and DCA need common communications methods e.g. joint website.  DCA are building a new website based on open source software.  Their new senior manager will be responsible for getting it up and running.  PO will be responsible for setting up the VH section and will receive 1 day’s training.

We need a checklist of facilities for it to be a joint website.  For example, the contacts need to be individuals as potentially more than 1 person per VH would need access.

PO will prepare a list of things of general interest.  The Forum area will provide a series of discussions that anyone can join in eg access to funding.

PO has drafted a list of roles and responsibilities within the ‘Hallway’ partnership – what DVHA and DCA will do.  The updated version to be circulated to the committee.

DVHA were disappointed in the wording of DCA’s membership renewal letters which emphasised DCA over DVHA.  PO had apologised for this.

Area Structure and Representatives

BO said that there is a greater role for area meeting so that PO can work more effectively. The structure is OK as it is.  Areas may need to collaborate for a specific event. 

9.    Events

Area based meetings

Target September to introduce PO, show website and Forum and how to use it.  Maybe feature “20 10 in 2010”.  Further area meetings after September as training events.

JC asked about the approach and composition of VH committees.  They normally have representatives of specific user groups plus parish council etc..  Members are generally interested in the hall; some are active, others not.

10. Connecting Dorset Support

BO reported that it was hoped to hold an event for halls participating in the Connecting Dorset project at some time. 

11. Reports on Projects

BO asked if we as DVHA were willing to campaign on e.g. Capital Grants.  It is important to maintain a network of contacts  and cultivate acquaintances e.g. Cllr. Les Ames who is on the DCC Capital Grants committee. 

A recently discovered area of potential problems are changes in water rate charges for surface water drainage. JC commented that water charges are currently based on the bore of the water supply.  15 mm is treated as domestic, 25 mm is commercial.

12. Meeting Calendar

Next committee meeting at Morden VH on Tuesday 28 July or 4 August 2009. Subsequently date confirmed as Tuesday 4 August at 11 am. 

13. Any Other Business

The Corporate Manslaughter issue raised by Ann Abernethie has been referred to DCA.


Mary Mathers

Secretary Dorset Village Halls Association

Wayside Cottage, 36 West Morden, WAREHAM, Dorset BH20 7EA
Tel: 01929 459217  e-mail: