The Friends of St Anne’s Church, Kew
Registered Charity No. 1085389
Minutes of the Annual General Meeting held by Zoom on 27 June 2020
There was a quorum. Attending were Howard and Susan Bailes, Michael Barratt, Paul and Wendy Booth, Rosemary Charles, Barbara and Andrew Cook, Bill Cottle, Phyllis Cunningham, Marion and Robin Goodgame, Alethea Grint, Susan and Jane Hayman, Ben Jones, Simon Mollett, Heather Montford, Isobel Moses, Lorraine Neale, Belinda Pethick, Lesley Anne Reynolds, Gemma Roundell, Tina and Peter Ruygrok, Uta Thompson, Nigel Worn.
Apologies had been submitted by Joan Brown, Gilly Goddard, Anthony and Patricia Holme, Cate Lyon, Claudine McCreadie, Telfer Saywell, Sue Shorter, Francesca Snow and Joan and Derek Stanton.
After a welcome from the Rev. Nigel Worn, President, Lady Lorraine Neale (LN) chaired the meeting.
1 Minutes of the Annual General Meeting held on 8 June 2019
LN asked if anyone had questions on the minutes of last year’s meeting. As there were none, a poll was conducted and the minutes were approved.
2 Election of Executive Committee
The Secretary (Ben Jones) read the list of the officers (Lady Lorraine Neale, Chair; Simon Mollett, Treasurer; Ben Jones, Secretary) and the other elected representatives on the Executive Committee (Wendy and Paul Booth, Phylllis Cunningham, Belinda Pethick and Gemma Roundell) who are being presented for election this year. As there were no other nominations, LN indicated that in the absence of any objection (there were none) they would be declared elected.
3 Annual Report and Accounts
Copies of the annual report for the year 6 April 2019 to 5 April 2020, including a statement of account for that period, had been distributed to all members. LN welcomed Simon Mollett on his election as Treasurer and passed the floor over to him. Simon paid tribute to his predecessors in the job – Anne Barker and George Chesman – and noted that much of the financials being presented had been recorded by George. He noted that during the year The Friends paid £37,063 to the PCC for work on the churchyard wall and is now, thanks to recent membership subscriptions, in a position to agree to pay over £25,745 to complete the work. He noted that this leaves the charity only a small balance but this was acceptable as we have no imminent commitments. Ben Jones proposing and Lesley Ann Reynolds seconding, the annual report and minutes were adopted by poll.
4 Events and Activities Update
LN continued with an update on her Chairman’s letter which had been sent to members along with the AGM materials. She emphasised the challenge we face currently to protect the work of our 19-year old charity in the face of the limitations placed on us all during this pandemic. We look to our loyal members to support us in the coming months in whatever course of action we will need to take, given the uncertainty over public gatherings. The committee will do whatever we can to ensure that The Friends will still be here for both you and St Anne’s Church when this crisis is over.
She confirmed that she has spoken with several of the speakers for our postponed events and at least some are confident in doing lectures on Zoom. Unless restrictions are soon lifted, we propose to proceed with one lecture in September which will be conducted without tickets but with listeners being asked to make a donation in a suggested range. Once we see the results of that, we can decide if it is a practical means of going forward while we remain restricted. We have a number of possible events lined up for Autumn and Spring if we can do them. Susan Bailes indicated that other charities were also proceeding on this donations route. She hoped that older members, who have difficulties accessing Zoom, might be able to join with more able members to “attend” events.
LN advised members that we will again be selling Christmas cards this Autumn but that we will just be selling stock from previous years. No new card will be issued this year.
Finally, she pointed out that some work has restarted on the remaining bit of the churchyard wall (on the South Circular), and Bill Cottle advised that the project will fully recommence this coming Monday.
Wendy Booth noted that we ended last year with 163 members. The majority of subscriptions are due in April and we now have 145 so far this year. She noted three valued members who died during the year – Peter and Dorothy Hayman and Ian Lewty. 120 members have given their consent to us under GDPR, which means they can receive all our mailings; the remainder can only receive the legally required AGM mailing.
Paul Booth noted that the website is up and running. He asked if any member might be willing, or know someone willing, to help in doing reviews of events to be placed on the site after each event.
7 Any Other Business
There were no questions, so LN passed the meeting over to NW for some final words. NW expressed how much the church values the “amazing” work of The Friends – for the difference it has made to the look of the church and for the remarkable number of recent events. He thanked the committee but especially the Chair whose special gifts have enabled her to attract so many fine speakers. He asked that all join in applause for Lady Neale.
There being no further business, LN thanked the members for their attendance, expressed the wish to see them at an event in the Autumn and closed the meeting, asking anyone to submit questions or suggestions.