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The Digglers' Minutes

Meeting held on 19/08/15

Present:

  • Kath Pearson
  • Michael Gourley
  • Norma Smalley
  • Kath Birch
  • Joan Butterworth

Apologies:

  • Rachel Bean
  • Catherine Unsworth
  • Damian Lawless

Matters Arising:

Two new trustees were elected at the last AGM. Damian could not attend due to family bereavement. The other trustee was Nicola Worthington and it has been decided not to proceed with this appointment.

Accounts:

Last year the charities income was such that as well as a bookkeeper an accountant had to be employed at considerable cost - 700.

Income generated this year did not warrant such an expense therefore, KathP did the accounts. A summary was circulated and more detail accounts were available for inspection.

A very lively discussion ensued. Val enquired as to inclusion of last years residue.

This resulted in a debate as to what was included in the accounts as it transpired that Kath P has been subsidising the charity to a large extent with her own money. Some amounts that KathP had paid had not been included because they had not been paid by charity cheque.

The trustees felt that the accounts should be looked at again and re-presented at a later date. It was agreed to ask a bookkeeper to look at them. Kath P asked who would pay for the bookkeeper as there was no money in the working account. There was no response.

Val asked if the new accounts could be made available at least a week before the next meeting. Michael spoke briefly about account number2 that concerns student bursaries. Although there has been a good deal of interest, 34 student are currently enrolled, no money has entered the account since 31st March 2014.

It was agreed to ask the bookkeeper to keep account 1, relating to animal welfare and account 2, relating to bursaries separate on the summary to make it simpler for the trustees to see at a glance what was happening. KathP expressed she was not prepared to oversee the accounts in the future and other arrangements had to be made. This was the job of the treasurer. Norma volunteered to look at the accounts.

Lady Mumford:

The trustees wish to thank Lady Mumford for her continuing patronage and wish it to be noted that her title has changed Lady Herries of Terregles. Lady M inherited the title from her sister on her death last year. We send our condolenses and a breavement card was sent.

Bursaries:

Kath P reported that the fund raising discussed at last years AGM had not come to fruition. She decided we may be more successful in securing funding from within the veterinary fraternity. With the assistance of Michael, information regarding our involvement with secondary degree vet students and seeking their financial assistance for these students was to be emailed to all vet practices in the UK. Currently 3,200 practices have been contacted. The BVA, the BSAVA and the Royal College have also been sent this email. It has also been sent to an editor of The Vet Record. So far there has been no response.

Thanks to Simon Barns and Ruth Price our webmaster for their input in setting up this email.

Vets:

Kath P wishes to thank Ann Mee of Manchester Vets who does a tremendous amount of work for the charity often at reduced rates and there are times she makes no charge.

KathP has been donating her own money to the charity to pay vet bills. By doing this, gift aid can be claimed. However, there is a limit to personal allowances and has suggested that money could be given to other trustees that then can be donated by them and gift aid claimed in ther name. This was agreed in principle but must be made clear in the accounts.

Diggle update:

An owl box has been made by Rick Lawless and is now installed in the loft. A local farmer reported that owls have now moved in. The trees in Thornsbeck wood are flourishing.

Whisky's stable has been converted into an art studio for use by local artists. This is not yet in use as Chris our solicitor needs to be consulted regarding legal implications, this will be done when money becomes available.

Joel has sheared the sheep and they have had their annual injections and in an emergency, Joel would look after them. Thanks to Joel for looking after them during the year.

The annual mowing has been done by Richard and the marshy area is teeming with frogs.

Freddie:

The new guide dog that Kath P sponsors on behalf of the charity is called Freddie. Again this was pointed out that this needs to be recorded as outgoing for the purpose of the accounts.

Animal Assistance:

This is a company that operates in Mossley and could look after the cats in an emergency. Rachel Bean has offered to liaise with them and the vets in regard to welfare and medication. KathP will inject monies into account1 enabling access by the trustees to pay for this facility if required.

Any other Business:

New laws regarding charity fund raising are to be established. This will have to be discussed at a future date as to whether it will affect our charity.

Meeting closed. Kath P thanked those attending.