The Management and Operation of the Village Hall
Your Village Hall Needs You!
Following the meeting held on 5th March, a small group of volunteers analysed the responses. These are shown below.
The report, recommending establishment of a Management and Operations Team (for day to day running of the hall) and a Social and Events Team (to organise fundraising social activities and events for the Parish), was accepted by the Managing Trustee, who have called for volunteers to take this forward.
Analysis of Attendee Ideas from 5th Mar 2022
Following the Trustee open presentation to the Parish, a group of volunteer beneficiaries took the ideas and feedback of the attendees to analyse and make recommendations to the Managing Trustee. A total of five meetings were held and there was debate/clarifications over email. The volunteers were:
- Robin Hollington,
- Alison Driver,
- Genevieve Hayes,
- Shannon Askew,
- John Grove,
- Carole Kiddle
The remit signed off by the Trustees was:
“Initial Analysis of the meeting notes, with a report to the trustees within 6 weeks”.
Due to existing commitments and or illness, not everyone was able to attend every meeting, though the final meeting on 25 March of five of the volunteers was unanimous in the directions of travel waiting for this report to be written and circulated.
Initial Ground Setting Decisions
Our initial meeting was to clarify what we were tasked to do and decide how we would approach the task. The starting point was a transcription of the table comments from the Open Meeting (see Annex A) The group agreed the following
- No Group Leader – the group would act as a “cohort”
- The Focus for the team was to collate feedback from those participants who attended the Village Hall meeting on 5th March (from the notes on the flip chart pads) and to then present a report/recommendations to the current Trustees of SWMVC within 6 weeks of the 5th March meeting. It was agreed focus of the work is to identify the financial viability and structure of the day to day running of the Village Hall.
- It was agreed that recommendations had to fall within the objects of the charity.
- While it was agreed that the make up of trustees should be considered, it was appreciated that this, given it weas likely to take several years to action, should not be addressed until the initial recommendations had been implemented and would require further discussions by those concerned.
- An initial sift of the responses clearly showed comments falling predominantly into two groups. Subsequent to our initial analysis the transcription of attendees comments (Annex A), was grouped to reflect the discussion and to give greater clarity, see Annex B. In addition, there were points that should be parked in the short term while the team focused on the remit:
- Operational management of the Village Hall. This concerns the day to day running of the Village Hall. This group should have effective financial autonomy, reporting on a regular (tbc) basis to the trustees.
- Social/Events This was envisaged as a team of volunteers who would take ideas for social activities and events, develop them to cover indicative costs/revenues for Management Team to review/approve, then to put on to increase revenue.
- Parked – Ideas in this category included the discussion of who the trustees should be the sensitivity that some felt in respect of the land associated with the club, landscaping maintenance and any redesign of the car park. It was concluded that these areas of discussion were not going to impact the need for immediate action nor were activities that would likely impact our deliberations.
- It was agreed that each of the teams should be both inclusive, but also Needs Based – The Management Team, in particular, will require volunteers with the appropriate skills in order to successfully carry out the tasks of day to day management, as well as the drafting and agreeing with the Trustees a Business Plan to the return the Hall to financial viability.
- Working titles for the focus of these groups were:
- Management or Operations Team (inc Finance)
- Community Social/Events Team
- Immediate Help Offered:
- Genevieve offered to put the bins out (and in) on weekly basis as she put hers out
- John offered to open and close the hall for all ad hoc bookings (those without access details)
- Agreed that the reports/recommendations would need to be agreed and approved by the trustees to proceed to the next level
- Agreed that prior to taking on any day-to-day responsibility, there would need to be a handover from the current secretary.
From the analysis of the attendee comments, it was agreed to recommend to the Trustees that
- The day to day running of the Village Hall should be vested in a “Management/Operations Team”, initially formed from volunteers from a “Needs Based Assessment”. The needs were to be based on the functions of management of Stroud Village Hall
- Volunteers should be invited to an interview process (to be defined) lead by an independent chair, such as a Trustee from SVHARA, the remainder coming from the current Trustees as they are legally responsible for the charity.
- The purpose of the interview process would be to ensure needs based assessment for the functions of the team were covered as much as possible, and not unbalanced. For example The needs based analysis will likely cover business planning, fundraising, employment, social, H&S amongst others. A team of 6 willing volunteers with only H&S experience would be unbalanced.
- Initially they would be tasked to produce a business plan, to include financial independence to act and reporting criteria.
- When available, that plan may introduce a paid manager/caretaker role
- It was envisaged that the plan would include a request for a PC grant (from the Precept) of about £1000 pm (approx. £1.25 per house per month in the parish, details tbc), to help underpin this parish wide resource.
- Initially the existing management team from the trustees would assist in order to provide background information.
- Once appointed this team should have SWMVC email addresses and access to relevant records, subject to accepting the Data Protection Policy
- Calls for volunteers should happen early in April, interviews by the end of April, the Business plan agreed with the Trustees by the end of May and be operational by 1 June. Whilst a tight timeline this was essential if the current direction of financial travel was to be turned around
- Once up and running this team should address any “parked issues”
- Concurrently the Social Team of volunteers should be appointed. This could be less Needs Based and more enthusiasm based as each activity should come with a micro cost plan. However, in the short term the Trustees should call for volunteer(s) to run some quick wins events starting in April (such as a [Monthly?] Quiz Night).
- It was envisaged that the Management Team would generate a business plan that modelled the revenue that socials/events needed to raise each year and the Social/Events team would take this on
- The final meeting discussed some short-term imperatives (including the timings above) that need to be started now:
- A “Stripe Account” (PCI DSS authorised payment gateway) for the online bookings package that has been procured.
- Same Stripe account needed for online tickets to events
- Promotion of the fundraising event(s) such as the quiz to start as soon as possible.
- Interim Appointment of
- The Bin putter outer/bringer inner (Genvieve Hayes)
- The Hall opener/closer (John Grove)
- A “Bookings Manager” (Robin Hollington offered in the very short term as he was in the process of adding the online bookings to the village Hall website)
- Someone to run the new online Accounts from 1 April
- The Trustees need to agree these interim appointments, complete the list and or find alternatives with all due speed as the current clerk has no desire to implement either from 31 Mar 2022.
- The wider group of volunteers from the 5 Mar meeting should be approached for these roles as well as the management and social teams, now!
- The final meeting also raised the issue of “commitment” of the management and social teams. It was hard enough for the team of 6 to get together as work/illness/life in general got in the way. Those present commented the now understood the pressures the existing trustees are working under