Annual General Meeting Minutes

Minutes of the Annual General Meeting of St James the Less Preservation Trust


11am Saturday November 7th 2020 by Zoom                                                                                        


Attendance:  Margaret Ritchie (chair), Richard Binch (hon sec), Gillian Tomlinson, Dale Culliford Janet Allan, Pam Craig, Penny Pope, John Pope, Alex Bond, Peter Gardner, Paul Sharp, Jane Cocking, Joyce Tyldesley, Terry …….

1.      Apologies:  Norrie Williams and Frank Allan.

2.      The Chair welcomed all to the AGM in these unusual circumstances

3.      Minutes of the 2019 AGM.  Approval of the minutes was proposed by Gillian Tomlinson seconded by Richard Binch and passed unanimously by those present.

4.      Matters Arising from the minutes.

-        Margaret Ritchie confirmed that she had written to former Chair, Philip Kendall, and offer Honorary lifetime membership of the Trust, which he had accepted.

-        Peter Gardner confirmed that one central heating boiler had been replaced and sudden drops in pressure had not recurred.



Reports and Accounts had been emailed to those who had registered for the meeting.  The Treasurer, Richard Binch commented that this was the fifth year that he had presented the accounts, and this was the first time he was able to report a trading surplus. It was due to a 25% increase in income from almost £35,000 to nearly £44,000, total expenditure was up by £2,000, leading to a surplus of £4,135 for the year.

He highlighted that the rise in income was due to significant increases in room hire and higher attendances at events. On the expenditure side he pointed out that the increase in Licences & Fees from £886 in 2018 to £2,135 in 2019 was due to our registration for Performing Rights (PRS) and a payment for previous years. This increase was offset by a reduction in Heat, Power and Water costs which was due to a refund of electricity charges again from previous years.     

Question: Will the PRS be at the same level in future years?

Reply: The Treasurer reported that they wouldn’t be at the same level as in 2019 but would be an extra cost on events. He commented that passing charges on to performers was something to be considered, but due to reduced activity hadn’t been addressed recently.

Adoption of the accounts was proposed by Gillian Tomlinson, seconded by Dale Culliford and agreed unanimously by the meeting. 



The Chair’s Report had been circulated with the Treasurer’s Report prior to the zoom meeting. Special thanks were noted to Rachel, our Administrator and to Rachael our Cleaner for their good work in the year.  Rachel had a baby boy in July 2019 and chose not to return from maternity leave. Isobel temporarily covered Rachel’s maternity leave but didn’t apply for the permanent post. The   numerous Volunteers were praised for their support of all our activities. It was proposed that the Report be accepted, proposed Richard Binch, seconded, Alex Bond and agreed unanimously.



This item was chaired by Vice Chair, Gillian Tomlinson.  Margaret Ritchie is willing to stand again. Norrie Williams had resigned earlier in the year.  The meeting voted unanimously to reappoint Margaret Ritchie as a Trustee. John Pope asked if the meeting was also reappointing Margaret as Chair. The Secretary replied that this was not the case as the Chair is appointed by the Trustees. Margaret’s term as Chair ends in April 2021.          



Alex Bond, Peter Gardner, Jane Cocking and Paul Sharp - Co-opted since the 2019 AGM and all willing to be formally elected by the Members. They were voted in unanimously by the members. All 4 new trustees were formally welcomed onto the Board and thanked for their invaluable contribution to date.



Finding a new examiner for 2019 had been more difficult than expecte. Finally and quite late in the day, Glenn Leathley of Leathley & Co., based in Poynton has approved the 2019 accounts. As his fee was £600, it was decided that Alex Bond, the new Treasurer would review his appointment for the 2020 accounts.



The Chair and Vice Chair expressed sincere thanks to Norrie Williams who joined the Board in 2014 and chaired the events planning committee for most of this time. The welcome increase in income from events has been achieved under Norrie’s efforts and leadership. He and Jill Hulme (who resigned in May 2019) will be offered Honorary Life membership of the Trust.


- Margaret gave an update of the current year which has been severely affected by the Covid 19 pandemic. She acknowledged that the government grant of £10,000 helped to keep us afloat. She also informed the meeting of our grant application under the Historic Buildings Trust to repair and replace the broken and discoloured windows in the Mackie Hall.


- Janet Allan congratulated the trustees on the running of SBA during the recent difficult times. She said she was delighted to see so many new faces on the Board which she thought augured well for the future.


 There being no other business the Chairman closed the meeting at 11.35am.   Richard Binch, Hon Sec