Board Meetings

Board Meeting June 2012

Draft Minutes of Assynt Foundation Board Meeting
14 June 2012
Glencanisp Office, Lochinver

Present: Helen Steven (Chair), Andy Summers, Stephen Smith, Bill Badger, John Cullen, Dorothea Standlick, Adam Pellant, Jane Tulloch

1. Apologies: Fergus Stewart, Patricia Robertson, Clive Sheppard

Meeting began 4.05pm.

New Chairperson, Helen Steven, reported that Patricia Robertson has now stepped down as Chair, and warm thanks were extended from Directors and Staff to Patricia for her hard work as Chairperson in the past. Patricia will remain on the board as a director.

Helen also explained some of the changes in the agenda format, with particular focus items highlighted.

2. Declarations of interest: None

3. Minutes of last meeting: (as amended) Andy proposed, Bill seconded. Minutes approved.
Note: It is requested that minutes be distributed as soon as possible after each meeting.
Also noted: Decisions made at board meetings are final, and may not be changed by email afterwards.

4. Financial Report

Adam spoke to the accounts. See appendix for report.
Thanks were given to Adam for presenting clarified figures.
A specific finance meeting is advised.
Action: A.Biz board and AF board to arrange meeting.

5. Staff Report

• It is asked that staff reports be submitted to Directors a week in advance of each board meeting.
• Dorothea advised that she is currently working on a presentation for Directors to fully clarify the work that is involved in running the lodge.
• Action: Jane to Doodle Poll for dates when presentation ready..
• The marketing sub-group has merged with the lodge sub-group.
• Action: Jane to arrange meeting before next board meeting.
• John reported that track repairs are continuing well on the estate, although there is still around 3-4 years worth of work still to do.
• Helen suggested volunteer groups may be interested in helping, for example the Mountain Bothies Association, Mountaineering Council, JMT etc.
• Action: Helen to contact relevant groups.

6. Focus Item A: Hydro

In the absence of Russell Robertson, who is leading on the hydro project, the matter was discussed generally. The consensus is that this is absolutely necessary for the survival of the Fooundation, but needs to be done in the least environmentally damaging way possible. It is proposed to arrange a visit to an existing hydro scheme for directors. The board plan to ask Russell Robertson to give them a detailed presentation on the hydro project in order that all directors are fully informed.
Action: Helen to approach Russell re potential presentation and arrange a hydro-specific board meeting.

7. Focus Item B: Extra Staffing Possibilities

A ‘wish list’ has been identified for staffing, and comprises:-

• A development/project manager to progress individual schemes
• A hydro officer (currently being investigated as part of hydro project anyway)
• A full-time maintenance person on estate
• Another stalker
• A trainee stalker/ghillie

Whilst it is understood that there is not money available for any of these at present, it would be worth looking into funding options, to identify if any grants/funding is available to create posts. In particular, John is concerned that there are not enough staff to fulfil obligations on the estate, despite a contract stalker coming to work this season, and additional voluntary help. It is noted that Stuart Belshaw is of great assistance to John on the estate at present, and has worked extremely hard in this respect.

8. Focus Item C: Arts Building

In the absence of Fergus Stewart, who is leading on this project, this discussion will be held over until next board meeting.
Action: Adam to progress for next time.

9. Sub Group Reports

Eco-Tourism Sub-Group: Newly created sub group comprising Bill Badger, Helen Steven and Roz Summers, with assistant from Di Oliver (CWA). First meeting was held in Clachtoll on 21 May.

10. Matters Arising

• CALL meeting was held on Tanera Mor on 11 June. See appendix for notes.

• Peat cutting: Jane to contact the person who had made the request to explain about delay in decision, and assure him that one will be made in plenty of time for next year’s peats.

• Woodchip boiler: still awaiting quote, which is due week commencing 18 June.

• Car park: Jane to get quote NOT including work on lay-bys to see if we can bring the cost down.

• Signage: Signs required for car parking, and to alert visitors to risk of fire.
Action: Jane to progress, Adam to investigate funding from Ward Discretionary Fund

• Sheep at Ledbeg: Board are informed that a letter from the sheep owner is forthcoming.

• Ledbeg House: Renewed quote for roof obtained. Stephen to forward to Jane. Advised that joiner will be required to ascertain wood damage to roof.

• Directors Day: Will be re-arranged for last 2 weeks in September.
Action: Jane to Doodle Poll with specific dates.

11. AOCB

There has been an enquiry to one of the directors about stalking for local people. Enquirer to be referred to John.

Date of next meeting: 12 July, 4pm, Glencanisp.

Meeting ended 6.45pm.