Minutes of DCA meetings June-Dec 2004
Doxey Community Association
Minutes of meeting held on 9th
Present: Joyce Beach (JB), Tom Beach (TB), John Corcoran (JC), Susan
Corcoran (SC), Michelle Elliot (ME), Sue Fox (SF), Claire Gaisford (CG),
Sally Hems (SH), David Hughes (DH), Sarah Jessop (SJ), Joan Moore (JM),
Stephen Moore (SM), John Perks (JP), Pat Perks (PP), Barbara Simpson
(BS), Iain Simpson (IS), Eileen Skelton (ES),Gill Smith (GS), Mike
Turner (MT), Adrian Venables (AV) and Mr J Solly
Apologies: Jane Essex
1 Minutes of the meeting held on 14th April 2004
Approved as a true record. JM apologised for not
distributing them prior to tonight's meeting.
2 Matters arising from the minutes of the meeting held on lOth
Closure of Doxey Post Office The post office closed on 4th
May. David Kidney MP is still campaigning and considering possible
options for the future. A fresh lobby will be made if/when Doxey
obtains Parish status. A cash machine is now available in Bradbury
Rise Stores, but there is a £1.50 charge.
Neighbourhood Law and Order Conference Five
people from DCA attended the conference. It was interesting that
Staffordshire Police are already implementing many of the
suggestions made. There is an emphasis on partnership working to
combat local crime. MT attended a workshop on Neighbourhood Watch.
Five to ten households and a co-ordinator are required to set up a
scheme. PC Jane Jepson would be happy to come to a meeting to
discuss the issue further if we were interested. Crimestopper
information cards are available from ME at the Sutton Centre. A full
report can be obtained from SJ or MT.
Anti-social behaviour PC Cassie urged everyone to keep
reporting incidents to ensure the police presence remained. Whilst
most people had seen more patrol cars very few had seen our
Community Beat Officers or police on foot. There was concern that
police funds were not being applied where they are needed most, i.e.
more beat officers in the community.
Parish Council Campaign
Stafford Borough Council forwarded a letter they received from the
Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM) informing them that our
petition will be considered as soon as possible.
AGM JM reiterated the need to encourage more Doxey people to
attend the meeting.
3 Computer access in Doxey
JM had a meeting at UCM with Bob Hughes and Stafford College.
They are willing to let the community use a room for training
courses of any variety. The college will provide free IT training
using laptops if there is sufficient demand. DCA needs to research
the demand for courses in the area
4 DCA Website
IS is working on the development of a website. Set up costs would be
approximately £72.47 with annual running fee of £45.48 plus VAT (this
includes access to 100 free e-mail addresses). The site will include
information on local organisations and businesses, schools, churches, local
history, news and links to other sites. There was a unanimous decision to
instruct IS to go ahead. Anyone with contact details of local organisations
should contact IS.
5 Clear Out Day
An outstanding success, there was no rubbish left after the event, any
remaining items were taken to a local charity shop. There were lots of
children at the event, which made it difficult to manage, but there was more
waste left at the Three Tuns event last year so JM suggested a Clear Out Day
be held at alternate venues as there are pros and cons to each.
6 Red Cross Training
Emily gave a very informative talk but the turn out was disappointing. A
suggestion was made to pass details to the drop in and youth forum to
7 Litter pick
The Smith and Turner families collected three blue bags of rubbish from
the Doxey area on Wednesday 2nd June. The Moores and Simpsons
covered the Greensome Close to Conway Road area the following day. Litter
Pickers are available from JM if anyone would like to do their area.
8 Mikron Theatre Weekend, 5-7 June
Two plays were performed; On The Line on Saturday and Pedal Power on
Sunday, on Monday Mikron visited Doxey primary school. Approximately 80
people attended on Saturday evening (including David Kidney MP) and 70 on
Sunday (approximately half were Doxey residents). Half term was thought to
have reduced potential audience numbers. Two grants covered the cost of
hiring Mikron and tickets and donations raised £307. Sadly the Arts Council
turned down the bid for a larger project with Mikron but the steering group
will meet at l0am on 12th June at 57 Doxey to evaluate the event
and discuss options for the future.
9 Youth Forum
There was a meeting on 7th June with the regular turnout and 3 additional
people. It is hoped the new members may have fresh ideas. Main areas
discussed were the closure of the post office, Mikron and transport to
school. David Kidney MP is supporting the transport appeal. The leisure barn
remains a priority, but no action can be taken until the Saint Gobain
planning application decision is made in July. The group are taking part in
a media project using video, photography and art to illustrate what life is
like for a young person living in Doxey. The next meeting will be on 7th
July at 6.30 all are welcome and SF would be grateful if DCA could
encourage more young people to come along to that. JM suggested a certificate
of commendation be provided to young people who have
given their time to Doxey for their Record of Achievement files. This
10 Guest speaker Mr Solly
Mr Solly retires at the end of this academic year after 20 years as
head teacher at Doxey Primary School. He commented on the mix of
children being a key strength and the invaluable support of his staff.
All are welcome to join a tour of the school, new nursery and oak tree
planting ceremony at 4pm on Wednesday 16th June (in
recognition of the DCA Green Award and Mr Solly's retirement).
11 Proposed programme 2004
Doxey Day is being held at the Parish Church this year on 17th
July. DH will approach the Army Cadet Force Band to establish their
availability. JM will ask Mr Solly if he will open proceedings and
organisations will be approached to organise stalls. Ideas included face
painting, a tombola, a cake stall, fancy dress, a bouncy castle,
Playaway equipment and information stands for local organisations.
The Funday will take place on 14th August following the
successful format of last year. PP and JP will organise and update the DCA at the next meeting.
12 Doxey Times
The next edition will include information on Doxey Day, a Mikron
write up, possibility of courses, the website, anti-social behaviour,
congratulations to Mr Solly, a report on tree planting and the youth
• Walking For Health programme, for further details contact
the coordinator Lynn Clements at Stafford Borough Council or ask
SJ for a copy of the leaflet.
• Green Award, JM will ask Jane Essex to submit an
application to Stafford Borough Council featuring details on
Clear Out Day, litter picking, other sustainable local
activities (e.g. Mikron) and our Post Office campaign.
• Community Champions, up to £2000 for individuals who want
to make a difference in their community. Application details are
available from SJ.
• P.E.P. A free Tackling Anti-Social Behaviour training
course is being held on 15th July 2004 in Birmingham. JM has details and DCA will pay the train fare of anyone wishing
to represent us. MT to attend.
14 Any Other business
There was no other business
15 Date of next meeting
The next meeting will be on Wednesday 14th July 2004 at 7.00pm at the
Minutes of meeting held on 14th July 2004
Present: Sam, Nick, Yas, Lee, Nathan, Michael, Lewis, Joyce
Beach Tom Beach, John Corcoran, Susan Corcoran, Michele Elliott,
Sally Hems, Dave Hughes, Joan Moore, John Perks, Pat Perks, Barbara
Simpson, lain Simpson, Eileen Skelton, Gill Smith, Mike Turner,
1 Apologies Rob Belcher, Sue Fox, Claire Gaisford, Sally
Jessop, Stephen Moore, Adrian Venables, Dan Wood
2 Minutes of the meeting held on 9th
were approved as a correct record
3 Matters arising
(i) Anti-social behaviour
MT had applied for a place on the PEP course on tackling anti-social
behaviour but the course had been heavily oversubscribed.
AW suggested that the lack of facilities for young people in Doxey
could be linked to some anti-social behaviour. The young people at the
meeting asked for the help of the DCA in getting the football pitch at
the end of Greensome Close back into use. At present they reported that
there were deep holes on the pitch, it was badly littered and the grass
had not been cut. They needed somewhere to play football etc. during the
summer holidays. They offered their help in restoring the pitch. AW
offered his help and to enlist the help of some parents. It was agreed
that JM would speak to council officers, explain the situation and seek
help in restoring the field. There was the possibility that there were
dangerous materials on the field at present and it was advised that the
young people wait until a council officer had seen the field before
doing anything themselves. JM would report to AW before the weekend and
to the next meeting. The meeting welcomed the approach that the young
people had taken and thanked them.
All Doxey residents were urged to report non-emergency incidents of
anti-social behaviour, including vandalism to our local Community Beat
Officers on 234936.
(ii) Parish Council
We are still waiting to hear from the office of the Deputy Prime
(iii) Stafford Borough Green Awards
On Wednesday 16th June a group of DCA members and Mr Solly planted
the oak tree which had been awarded to the DCA in 2003, in the grounds
of Doxey Primary School. Mr Solly then took members on a tour of the
school. An application has been submitted on behalf of the DCA for a
Green Award for 2004.
4 Youth Forum
The Youth Forum met on Wednesday 7th July with Ellie McClelland and
Alison Dickens to discuss their media project. The meeting was also
attended by 4 other members of the DCA. The Forum decided to work on
making a virtual seating/garden area which could then be realised at an
agreed location. They are meeting again this evening to begin the
5 Computer Access in Doxey
Stafford College have responded to our appeal for some public
computer facility by negotiating with the school to host computer
courses. The College are currently researching demand in Doxey for the
whole range of FE and leisure courses and locations. The UCM premises
are another possible venue.
This has been running since the beginning of July and has recently
been extended to include photographs. lain Simpson, the webmaster,
appealed for information on local organisations to be passed to him.
Local non-profit making organisations are not charged. Businesses pay
7 Mikron Visit
The Theatre weekend had been a success. The preliminary evaluation
indicated that most of those attending were from Doxey and that everyone
had enjoyed the performances. There were many appreciative comments on
the acting, the versatility of the actors and the variety within each of
the performances. However there were some negative comments on the
timing of the event - at the beginning of a half-term weekend. JM and JE
will visit the Arts Council tomorrow, 15th July, to discuss the
resubmission of the bid to fund the larger theatre project.
8 Doxey Day
Plans were well advanced. The organisation of the event will be a
joint effort by the DCA and the church. Doxey organisations had agreed
to 'do their own thing'. There will be a number of displays, celebrating
the activities in Doxey and recruiting supporters, stalls and
competitions. The Church will have a display(JC. SC.) and serve
refreshments (GS plus team). The DCA will have a display about the
Coffee Morning (JP, PP.) Parish Council Campaign, (SM) the Mikron
weekend (JE) Doxey Website (IS) Greetings cards (SH.). PTA, Playgroup,
Friendship Group Doxey Archive, Whist Club, Heraldry Society, the
Rambling Group, Guides, Ethnic foods, Mother and Toddlers, the Primary
Care Trust and the Community Council of Staffordshire
The party tent will be erected on the grass outside.
The press has already been informed.
There are no overhead costs for the event and it is not a fundraising
effort. Organisations can keep any money they take from their activity
and/or they can make a donation to the church/DCA as they see fit.
Dave Marsden will be invited to open the event.
The church will be open at 10.30 am on Saturday.
9 Fun Day 14th August 2004
Plans are well advanced. PP has applied to the Community Champions
fund for money to cover prizes, an entertainer and insurance. PP asked
for volunteers to do specific jobs on the day and took names of the
volunteers. It was proposed that DCA take out one off day public
liability Insurance at a cost of £55, to cover the event. This was
agreed. JM to organise. The Party tent would be erected.
10 Doxey Times
The July edition was printed be the William Sutton Housing
Association. They have agreed to print future editions. The cost of £25
per edition is a considerable saving for the DCA and a letter of thanks
will be sent to the Housing Association. The DCA will be invoiced
Some items to be included in the August edition:
Visit of the Bishop of Lichfield 1st Aug.
Sunday bus service from beginning of September.
Report on Doxey Day.
College courses in Doxey.
(i) Neighbours SBC magazine to Council tenants -
congratulations to DH for his service to Army cadets
(ii) Marsh Warblings and info on the Doxey Marshes open Day
Sunday 18th July
(iii) SDVS promoting a course on legal responsibilities of
management committees. This would be held on 5th November 2004. This is
an important opportunity for us to to prepare for charitable status. It
was agreed that JM would attend and DCA would provide the £50 course
(iv) It was agreed that DCA renew membership of the Community
Council of Staffordshire. BS to find out if that fee covered
our membership of Playaway. If it did not she would renew DCA's Playaway
12 Any Other Business
There were no other items of business
13 Date of next meeting.
The next meeting would be a social event held on Wednesday 11th
August. DH to organise.
Doxey Community Association
Minutes of meeting held on 8th September
Present: Joyce Beach (JB), Tom Beach (TB), John
Corcoran (JC), Susan Corcoran (SC), Michele Elliott
(ME), Sally Hems (SH), David Hughes (DH), Joan Moore (JM),
Stephen Moore (SM), John Perks (JP), Pat Perks (PP),
Gill Smith (GS), Mike Turner (MT), Adrian Venables (AV)
Apologies: Sarah Jessop (SJ), Barbara Simpson, Iain Simpson,
Robert Simpson, Dan Yates
1.Minutes of the meeting held on 14th July 2004
Approved as a true record.
Anti-social behaviour There were several reports of anti-social
behaviour experienced since the last meeting and the response of the
police to reports about this. . An incident of dogs being shot at by an
air rifle in Fern Drive was mentioned specifically. There was concern
that there was insufficient police presence in Doxey. There was a
suggestion that police resources were not being used appropriately. The
importance of continuing to report to police was stressed so that they
would be able to build a picture of what was happening in Doxey. If it
was suspected that the culprits came from the William Sutton estate ME
should be informed, too. Subsequently, there was discussion of a
possible rape incident at the church. It was suggested that it was
sometimes difficult to know how to respond to screams, which might in
some circumstances be simply the result of high spirits. It was
suggested that one should call 999 if one felt that someone could be at
risk. It was agreed that contact should be made with the police
at several levels to express the concern of a large number of the Doxey
community about how the police were dealing with anti-social behaviour.
Parish Council Campaign A few days before the meeting a letter
had been received from the Office of the Deputy Primer Minister saying
that they had approved, in principle, the creation of a parish council
for Doxey. JM had spoken to the relevant borough council officer about
what would happen next. The council will come into being at the
beginning of a financial year. This could be April 2005, but might have
to be postponed to April 2006. It was now necessary to start thinking
about who might stand for election to the parish council. Nine
councillors would probably be required. Members were urged to discuss
this with friends and neighbours. If there were more nominations than
vacancies there would be an election. It would also be necessary to
think about how the community association would relate to the parish
council. Thanks and congratulations were offered to PP, JP, and SM who
had done the majority of the hard work in collecting signatures for the
Mikron bid The bid for funding from the Arts Council had been
resubmitted at their request. They had said that a decision would be
made no later than the end of October.
AV gave a report. The main concern was to get the leisure barn
project moving. To this end the garden project would be put on hold. It
appeared that it was more important to get the leisure barn into action
as soon as possible than to secure the ideal location. Therefore, the
Forum wished to pursue the option of locating the barn on the play area
at the end of Greensome Close. Better lighting in this area would be
needed if this were to happen. The cost of this could be included in the
cost of the barn. Contact had already been made with suppliers who had
done projects of this kind before. The Youth Forum thought that another
public meeting would help to get more interest in this project and to
move it forward.
AV also reported on the present state of the play area. Rubbish was
being tipped again and there had been fires with the fire brigade
attending on at least one occasion. Some DCA members reported that
children had been making a den and pond on land adjacent to the playing
area. These children had been advised about safety precautions.
4 Update on play area
JM reported on a meeting she had had with Joe Scully from the Borough
Council. He said that a risk assessment was necessary to bring the area
up to standard. He was horrified about the way it had been neglected. He
had been told that a massive amount of work was required to bring the
area back into use, but, having seen it, he thought that the work to
level the pitch, move the goal posts so that the part that had been dug
would not be on the pitch and to mark out lines for a pitch, would take
about a day. He will inform JM when this is to be done and she will let
others know. To make progress on the Youth Forum's plans for a leisure
barn it would be vital for the council to conduct a survey of need. To
do this would need the support of local councillors. JM reported that
they had been contacted.
It was agreed that the DCA should support the Youth Forum's
call for a public meeting and that David Kidney would be approached with
a view to holding a meeting during the first week in October.
5 Computer access in Doxey
There had been no progress on this. JM would investigate.
6 Doxey Day
It was reported that the event had been successful. Nearly all
organisations active in Doxey had been represented and attendance had
been reasonable, despite the poor weather. It was agreed to set a
date and venue for Doxey Day 2005 at the next DCA meeting.
7. DCA "meeting" 11 August 2004
There had been a good turnout and it was regarded as a successful
social occasion. David and Sally were thanked for their work in
8 Fun day
This was well attended by local children. Thanks were extended to
William Sutton Housing Association for the donation of £50 for prizes
and to Dave from Bradbury Rise Stores for the donation of drinks. An
application for funding from Community Champions had not been successful
because the event was not the first of its kind and this fund was
largely for training purposes. It was noted that older youths spoiled
the enjoyment of the younger ones. The following changes were suggested
for next year.
Set an upper age limit
Younger participants should be supervised
Involve the community police
9 Proposed programme 2004
Clear out day It was agreed that this should be held on Sunday, 7
November. MT agreed to organise.
Outings Several possibilities were discussed: Walsall
Illuminations; a trip to Blackpool, including the illuminations;
Shrewsbury flower show; Aladdin at the Gatehouse.
10 Doxey Times
The following subjects were suggested for inclusion in the October
The parish council decision
The senior citizens Christmas meal
The Youth Forum open meeting
The new litter bin at the play area
The play group
Work being done at the play area
Clear out day
Something from the police
Information about the new vicar
Something from the school
It was noted that it may not be possible to cover all of these issues
in a single A4 sheet, though the fuller version would be on the website.
It would be possible for people who do not have access to the internet
to be sent a printout of the website version of Doxey Times if they
Community Matters Details of the AGM had been received, but
it would not be easily accessible to DCA members. SJ had completed a
questionnaire about information technology needs and use on behalf
of the DCA.
ETN training and NOW courses.
Coop funding JM had submitted an application for funding for
Mikron. The total amount of money available is small so the chances
are not good, but submitting the application gets the project known.
CAB outreach request
12 Other Business
There was a discussion of the bus service. Some services had been cut
out due to driver shortage. Most serious was omission of the school us
on the first day of term. SM would make representations and JM would
contact Robert Simpson. More encouragingly, 60 people had used the new
Sunday service. Super low floor buses are gradually being introduced to
the number 6 service and bus stops in Doxey are being rebuilt for them.
However, this is drawing attention to the otherwise poor condition of
some footpaths in Doxey. It was noted that there is a telephone line for
reporting highways problems.
It was noted that comments about the proposals for dealing with
congestion on the M6 - widening or a new motorway in parallel, should be
made by 21 October.
13 Date of next meeting
Wednesday, 13 October at 7.00 p.m.
Minutes of meeting held
on 13th October 2004
Present: John Corcoran (JC), Susan Corcoran (SC), Isabella Davies
(ID), Michele Elliott (ME), Sally Hems (SH), David Hughes (DH), Sarah
Jessop (SJ), Joan Moore (JM), Stephen Moore (SM), John Perks (JP), Pat
Perks (PP), Barbara Simpson, Gill Smith (GS), Mike Turner (MT)
Annabel, Chloe, Christine, Hayley, John, Jordan, Scott, and Scott
Apologies: Joyce Beach (JB), Tom
Beach (TB), Iain Simpson, and Robert Simpson
1. Minutes of the
meeting held on 8th September 2004
Approved as a true record.
2. Matters arising
We were urged to keep reporting
crimes as problems are persisting around the church and an incident
at the church on the 12th
October had led to a police patrol on the 13th October. Two
other issues were raised, the first about using the church as a meeting
place while services were taking place. This had led to the confiscation
of a spade after it had been used to hit the church, the spade was
returned to a responsible adult. Alternative places further from the
building were recommended. The other related to cyclists with no lights
and disregard for basic road safety. The young people at the meeting
suggested reporting the incidents to the police, council and school head
teachers. Drivers were criticised for disregarding zebra crossings and
parking on double yellow lines on Doxey Road making it difficult to
cross safely in some places.
Parish Council Campaign
As yet there is no further update
As yet there is no further information,
but a decision will be made no later than the end of October.
were urged to voice their opinions by 21st October deadline,
whether in favour of an expressway, an alternative or more sustainable
transport. A protest will be held in the town centre on Saturday 16th
3. Youth Forum
There will be a public meeting to
discuss the future plans of the forum on Friday 22nd October
at 7pm in the church hall. DCA will be represented and David Kidney will
There have been requests to re-start the
drop in club. There are three volunteers (SH, DH & GS) another is
required and a back up team to cover when required, volunteers should
see GS. Sue Fox is negotiating the restart of the play clubs for younger
4 Update on play area
Stafford Borough Council (SBC) have cut
the grass, levelled the land and are currently re-seeding bald patches,
the goal posts will be re-painted in good weather. SBC requested that
everyone ensure it is cared for to help with long-term maintenance. Some
young people would like a large slide and others had seen people cutting
down trees in the area. The problem of dog fouling was noted and an
enquiry about the younger children's play area was received. The space
outside the Sutton Centre is for small children and is open when ME is
in the office.
5 Computer access in
There had been no specific progress on
this, but courses are beginning. A 12-week Word Processing course starts
on 02/11/04. It is between 7 and 9 on Tuesday evenings and costs £5. No
booking is required, just turn up at school. Yoga and keep fit are also
happening at the Universal Social Club.
6 Proposed programme
Clear out day To be held on Sunday,
7th November at the Sutton Centre from 1pm. MT is organising the event.
Lights Switch on There was a
request that The Doxey Arms be approached to host the village Christmas
tree again. It was suggested that there could be a procession from the
Christmas tree to the Church on the first Sunday of Advent (28th
November 2004). This was felt to be a good way of welcoming the new
vicar. JM to ask Doxey Arms landlord
and Mick Johnson about transport for the procession.
Outings Several possibilities were
discussed: DH is investigating the cost of a trip to Blackpool
Illuminations with Happy Days Coaches. Further trips may be organised in
the spring if there is demand.
7 Doxey Times
The following subjects were suggested for
inclusion in the November issue.
Road safety issue
Help at Drop In
The parish council
The senior citizens
Firework law changes
Clear out day
New Vicars induction
and special service
There has been a new request to advertise
in the Doxey Times, this will be discussed at the next meeting.
Craft Workshops are on at Playaway on
Saturday 30th October. They cost £5 all welcome.
A Green Award has been presented to
DCA for our efforts
A document about the future of
planning has been received. SM will look through it and make
comments for feedback at the next meeting
A wall has been knocked down in
Greensome Lane, the matter will be investigated
Mark Smith made a request for funding
for the Christmas lunch. DCA agreed to give £70.
9 Other Business
A Charitable Status and Responsibilities course is being provided by
Stafford District Voluntary Services. JM to represent DCA.
The Post Office closed six-months ago. DCA have been informally
monitoring hardships and it was felt to support helpful anecdotal
comments a formal survey and report should be produced. A separate
meeting will be arranged.
Treasurers update: DCA currently hold (at 13/10/2004) £488 in the
current account and £203 in the deposit /savings account.
Floral Displays are being created in public locations throughout the
Borough; organisations have been invited to have their logos planted
in flowerbeds. JM will request PP's ducks be one such display.
The status of a Planning Application for the land behind Universal
Grinding remains unconfirmed. The land between the crescent and the
railway is also being cleared.
A 'Commended' Green Award has been received from SBC for the
environmental and sustainable community efforts of the Community
Association. SH painted a metal
plate to commemorate last years award and will be invited to
do so again this year.
Advertising on the web will be discussed at the next meeting when
the Doxey Times advertising issue is discussed
10 Date of next meeting
November at 7.00 pm at the Sutton Centre
Minutes of meeting held on 10 November 2004
Present: Nigel Barnett (NB), Hannah Burgess (HB),
John Corcoran (JC), Susan Corcoran (SC), Isabella Davies
(ID) Michele Elliott (ME), Claire Gaisford (CG), Sally
Hems (SH), Sarah Jessop (SJ) Kate Lee(KL), Joan Moore (JM),
Stephen Moore (SM), John Perks (JP), Pat Perks (PP),
Barbara Simpson (BS), Terence Strickland (TS), Mike
Tripp, (MTr), Mike Turner(MT) Adrian Venables (AV)
Young people: Annabel, Hayley, and Kirsty
Apologies: Joyce Beach, Tom Beach, Jane Essex, David Hughes, Iain
Simpson and Gill Smith
1 Minutes of the meeting held on 13th October 2004
Approved as a true record.
2 Matters arising
Anti-social behaviour ME met with PC Croft who told her that they
are maintaining a police presence. Two officers have been seen walking
around the village and patrol cars have driven through on a number of
occasions. There had been relatively few incidents reported but a
vehicle had been driven onto the play area and destroyed the newly
seeded grass, one solution is to put in collapsible bollards to allow
grass cutters through but stop illegal vehicle use, but the last time
one was put in place it was destroyed.
A bonfire had been lit on the field, when the fire brigade tried to
put it out they were prevented from doing so by verbal abuse and
obstacles to prevent their equipment from working. The police were
called for assistance but did not turn up.
Children had dug up some grass on the Ridegeway, but it was
eventually replaced when neighbours said they would call the police.
People were asked to remain vigilant and continue reporting incidents.
Parish Council Campaign A draft order is due to be produced by the
Office of the Deputy Prime Minister. Stafford Borough Council can then
make arrangements for us to hold elections and will ensure that funds
are available for the first year as a precept cannot be set after the
start of the financial year. (The Parish Council will begin on the 1st
April 2005). The number of councillors has not been fixed but it is
expected that we will need nine as Doxey has an electorate of about
1700. A number of queries were raised about what impact regionalisation
might have on parish council status (this has not been decided, but is
expected that the impact will be minimal) and political status (Parish
Councils do not stand for a political party, they are independent). The
Parish Council would take on some of the tasks currently undertaken by
the DCA (e.g. liaising with the Borough Council to resolve the playing
field issue and looking at planning issues), but the DCA will remain
active with the focus on activities such as Doxey Day, the Arts Project
etc. Clerks from local parish councils have offered to talk to Doxey
people about the process and training is available via the SPCA
(Staffordshire Parish Councils' Association).
Post Office Survey It was decided to put the survey on hold as
recent developments,(i.e. the potential loss of the Crown Post Office in
Stafford town centre) could cloud people's views. MT will contact
Postwatch to establish what support they can offer to save Stafford Post
office, in the light of the fact that we have lost our local post
office. The matter will be discussed at the next meeting.
Update on Play Area The goal posts have now been painted.
The play strategy officer and local councillors are meeting on 12th
November to discuss the Borough' play strategy. They have decided to
maintain existing facilities but not provide new ones so Doxey will not
benefit from any new services. JM thanked our borough councillors for
consulting us on the matter.
3 Youth Forum
AV thanked DCA for their support at the meeting on 22nd October.
Following the fire on the play area there is now a question of whether
that would be a safe and suitable site for new facilities. DK is helping
the forum to find alternative sites (there should be a decision on tile
Universal planning application very soon which will determine
availability of land there). There had been a meeting of the Youth Forum
on 8th November to discuss the school transport issue. It is currently
running well but prices have increased to 75p each way making the trip
to and from school £1.50 and this caused concern especially for families
with more than one child at the school. The situation has been
compounded by the introduction of a new container for bikes which is
locked and difficult to open, therefore inaccessible and is leading to a
lot of damage to bikes making walking the only affordable alternative.
An alternative bicycle storage unit cannot be provided until Easter. The
youth forum was asked to liaise with the head teacher on the issue.
Sue Fox has received a copy of the transport bill from David Kidney
MP and is highlighting areas the forum can concentrate on. One
suggestion has been that those entitled to free school meals should be
eligible for free transport tokens. The example of Doxey has been raised
in the House of Commons because Doxey is 2.9 miles from the school and
the cut off point is 3 miles. The Youth Forum is keen to be involved in
the Mikron Steering Group and workshops.
4 Mikron bid
The bid to the Arts Council for the Mikron 'Village Voices' project
had been successful, the DCA had been awarded £27 510. The full meeting
unanimously agreed to accept the money. The project will address local
issues that are relevant to communities throughout the country. Signal
radio had done a feature about it and other media had picked up on it.
5 Computer access and Training Courses in Doxey
Kate Lee, the Community Link Worker from Stafford College, attended
the meeting to discuss training in Doxey. The 12-week Word Processing
course at the school now has 7 people attending but further uptake is
needed. It is held between 7 and 9 on Tuesday evenings and costs £5. No
booking is required, just turn up at the school. Yoga is well attended
on a Thursday evening at the Universal Social Club and Keep Fit and
Water Colours are as popular as ever. Recent .consultation led to
requests for creative crafts - a Christmas special during the weeks
beginning 6th December and 13th December is being held - and Arabic
dance for which an event will be held on 20th November on the Universal
Grinding site. Family Tree classes were also requested and should begin
in the new year. For full details see http://www.doxeyca.co.uk
Report on Clear Out Day
Poor weather meant there had been a low turnout but most items were
taken and items left were being taken to local charity shops. The
rubbish truck was not required as all items brought were recyclable.
Suggestion was made that it should happen earlier in the autumn, e.g.
early October. MT thanked everyone who participated and those who
6 Proposed programme 2004
Lights Switch on. The Doxey Arms have agreed to host this year's
Christmas Tree. DCA will provide a 12' tree and lights and the pub will
pay for the electricity. It was felt the lights switch on would be best
left until December (12th or 19th). Additional suggestions included
involving the school choir and having children in fancy dress, the tree
could be decorated by local people and through the school, "Playaway"
course ideas and creative craft course items. SC will liaise with the
PCC and with the youth forum
Outings JM will ask JE to arrange a trip to this years pantomime
as demand was high.
7 Doxey Times
The following subjects were suggested for inclusion in the December
PTA's Christmas fair
Article from PC Croft
Mikron bid success
Procession and carol singing, Christmas services and panto trip
SM may produce a Christmas and New Year issue if space is tight, he
also welcomed letters from local people which could feature and reminded
people that the full version of the newsletter is available on the
Advertising was agreed to be available to commercial concerns within
Doxey at £25 for one quarter page or £5 for 2-3 lines. An article will
feature to let businesses know they can advertise. Fees for the website
are £25 for one year's sponsorship and £5 for a small advertisement. Any
proceeds from the advertising will be put back into DCA funds and used
to benefit local people.
Sustainability Charter - copies of the document are included
with these minutes and should be read and returned to the next
meeting so a decision can be reached whether to sign up to it,
the form will then be completed or discarded (depending upon
Local Development Framework - SM had received the new
(replacement) local plan document and drafted a response. The
document used a lot of 'jargon', was poorly laid out and
difficult to follow. This highlights future difficulties in
people using it and will therefore not get the optimum community
involvement the Borough Council wants meaning people's opinions
are not heard. SM suggested a restructuring of the document
asking questions and answering them in a logical order, e.g.
what is the document about, who will be consulted and how, what
help is available to support community members complete the
document, will people be informed of outcomes? Anyone wanting
full details or copies of the response should ask SM.
New walks for health programme leaflets have been received.
9 Any Other Business
SDVS have a quiz night on 3rd December, all are welcome. The
DCA will pay to rejoin
It is expected that the Doxey ducks will appear in flower
beds in the park in the spring.
JM had been on the charities training provided by Skills
Base, although it was interesting, there were certain points
which needed clarification. SJ will ask the Community Council
charities advisor to help.
The William Sutton Housing Association Ltd is repairing the
wall which had raised concerns at the last meeting.
MT had received a renewal notice for his building and
contents insurance. The cost had increased significantly and he
was told it was because of the flood dangers. Others had noticed
this increase. If you want to check if your home is in the flood
zone use the Environment Agency's website http://www.environment-agency.gov.uk/subjects/flood/
and insert your post code in the box on the left hand side.
10 Date of next meeting
Wednesday, 8th December at 7.00 pm at the Sutton Centre
There will be tea, coffee and mince pies available
Minutes of meeting held on 8th December 2004
Present: Nigel Barnett (NB), Hannah Burgess (HB),
John Corcoran (JC), Isabella Davies (ID), Michele Elliott
(ME), Sue Fox (SF), Sally Hems (SH), Sarah Jessop (SJ),
Helen Moore (HM), Joan Moore (JM), Stephen Moore (SM), John
Perks (JP), Pat Perks (PP), Barbara Simpson (BS), Mike Tripp
(MTr), Mike Turner (MT), Alistair Wray (AW), Michael Wright
Apologies: Joyce Beach, Tom Beach, Susan Corcoran, Jackie D'Arcy,
Jane Essex, Gill Smith and John Smith
1. Minutes of the meeting held on 10th November 2004
Approved as a true record.
2. Matters arising
Anti-social behaviour Following on-going issues with cyclists AW
suggested setting up an out-of-school cycling proficiency group; JM will
investigate if this is already done at the primary school. ME had spoken to
our Community Beat Officers about problems experienced by some residents and
they have promised to step up patrols when possible, people were asked to
keep a note of when they saw officers to monitor this. Stafford Rotary had
contacted JM to inform the DCA of a stone-throwing incident whilst Santa was
in Doxey on 6th December, they were forced to leave and were
concerned this would lead to disappointment for some young families. The
procession went onto the Ridgeway but it was not apparent that children were
behaving badly, but left Brooklime Gardens as the crowd caused problems. PC
Croft will try to be in Doxey when they return on the 20th
December and will be invited to talk to DCA about new Anti-social behaviour
legislation. Other incidents reported included footballs being kicked
directly at a number of vehicles. People were asked to remain vigilant and
keep a log of incidents including dates and times and particularly names if
they are known.
Parish Council Campaign No progress has been made on this, but an
existing parish clerk will be invited to speak at the January meeting about
the roles and responsibilities of a parish council.
Post Office Survey Stafford General Post Office should not be
affected by the closure programme featured in the press and it was decided
that in the New Year SJ and SM would develop and conduct a survey of a
sample of houses in the village to gather information about the effect of
the closure of Doxey Post Office.
Sustainable Development Charter JM distributed the document and
requested signed copies be returned to the next meeting.
3. Village Voices Project (Mikron)
We should receive £24 000 to our bank account by 13th December
2004 to enable us to begin the project, a further £8000 is needed and JM is
currently making applications to other funders, such as the Co-op. The
steering group have met with Mikron and the Doxey performance will take
place at the end of April/early May before touring the country from June.
Mikron will return to Doxey on 17th January to talk to people
about the history of the area and to gather stories, which could be featured
in the play. Please pass your details to JM or BS if you would like to be
involved, they need approximately 20 people. A plea was made for people with
enthusiasm and/or skills to become involved in the workshops that will be
facilitated by Mikron and other local artists and experts after the New
4 Training Courses in Doxey
The Christmas Decoration course was poorly attended on 7th
December, but will run again on the 14th, appeals were made for
people to take items and support the next session. ME said it was a fun
evening with useful ideas and a good teacher. The computer course at the
school has 8 people and is going well, it consists a number of exercises,
which can be worked through individually with a tutor on hand to help when
required. Yoga and watercolours groups continue to be popular but no date
has been confirmed for the Family Tree group to start. For full details of
courses see http://www.doxeyca.co.uk
5 Proposed programme 2004
Lights Switch on The Doxey Arms have agreed to host this years
Christmas Tree, DCA have provided a tree and lights and the Doxey Arms will
pay for electricity. The switch on will happen at 6pm on Friday 10th
December with carols around the tree (Geoff Moore will play guitar and
church will provide carol sheets) followed by mince pies in the pub,
everyone is invited. The church carol service will take place as normal on
Sunday 19th December - all are welcome and the school carol
concert will be on Monday 20th December but entry is ticket only.
6 Doxey Times
The following subjects were suggested for inclusion in the January issue:
Our first advertisement for an oven cleaning service
Post Office survey awareness raising
Thank Rotary and explain which good causes benefit from the money
Advertise Parish council Speaker at the next meeting
Interview with/welcome the vicar
Information about the Patients Forum
Christmas Card recycling collection points (see AOB)
7. Youth Forum
SF thanked ME for the use of the William Sutton Centre for their last
meeting. Six people attended, including SF. Issues raised included concerns
about school transport costs and a driver leaving pupils at a bus stop on
one occasion. The transport bill is still being debated and David Kidney MP
continues to support the group. Problems with the bike sheds continue and a
letter will be sent from the DCA to Robert Simpson (our County Councillor
and portfolio holder for the environment) about the issues, it is
unacceptable that damage is continuing and the only solution suggested by
the head teacher is for prefects to leave lessons early and supervise pupils
as they remove their bikes at the end of school. The Borough Council will
receive a copy of the letter as they encourage alternative transport and the
problem could lead to increased car use. The leisure barn remains a
priority, David Kidney MP has arranged for a business advisor to help the
group in their campaign and fund raising, he will attend the next Youth
Forum meeting. It was re-iterated that the Forum wish to be involved in the
Village Voices project. The next Forum meeting will be on 10th
January at the Church.
The William Sutton Housing Association is currently under going an
audit re their Charter Mark status (award given to agencies for good
customer service and partnership working with contractors, suppliers,
etc.) DCA have been asked to contribute to the Doxey audit, JM will be
our representative. We also received details of other Community and
Residents Associations operating where William Sutton have properties to
enable us to make contact and offer support to each other if or when
Community Matters sent details of their 2005 AGM, the matter will be
discussed at the next meeting and an appropriate representative
identified to attend if applicable
9 Any Other Business
JM and BS are meeting SDVS on 13th December to discuss the
implications of charitable status
The cost of some bus journeys on the Number 6 service is different
depending on the bus and the driver, it appears some machines have not
yet been updated!
As Christmas Cards cannot be placed in the green doorstep-recycling
containers people were urged to recycle them at Tesco or WH Smith, SJ is
investigating the possibility of obtaining recycling containers from the
Community Council to be placed in locations throughout Doxey so that
people can leave their cards there and have them collected and recycled
centrally. The issue will be included in Doxey Times with details of the
location of boxes.
A letter of thanks will be sent to Mark Smith as a sign of
appreciation for his hard work on the older peoples' Christmas lunch
this year, DCA gave £70 towards the event and reports have been that the
meal and activities were excellent and well received.
10 Date of next meeting
Wednesday, 12th January 2005 at 7.00 pm at the Sutton Centre
DCA - 2003-2004
The following is a Chair's report given to the Annual General Meeting
of the Doxey Community Association on May 12th 2004.
The year has been busy, eventful and interesting, but more importantly a year in
which the community association has made considerable progress in meeting its
aims. Rather than follow a chronological account of the year I have grouped the
association's achievements and activities into areas in which I believe that the
DCA has made a difference to the lives of people living in Doxey and in the
The association's monthly meetings have been very well attended. Sadly for us we
had to lose our secretary. Rachel, is training to serve with the Ionian
community. Our best wishes go to her. Members have taken on the various
secretarial tasks between them but we have not been as efficient. We look
forward to welcoming a new secretary this year.
Doxey Times has run to 11 editions since last May - and one of those was a
double pager. Through its columns Doxey people have been informed of events and
issues arising in Doxey and in Stafford. Doxey Times has also celebrated the
participation and achievements of several of our young people in the spheres of
music, theatre and service to the community. Thanks to Stephen, Doxey Times'
editor, to Sally and the team of deliverers who get out each edition cheerfully
and promptly. Thanks also to the four new recruits to the delivery team.
It is now almost five years since Pat and John organised the first coffee
morning at the William Sutton Centre. The event is held each Monday morning at
10.30am. It is well attended by between 20 or 30 people each session. Everyone
is welcome and each meeting provides the opportunity for people to meet old
friends, to make new ones and to keep in touch with what is happening. If you
would like to attend but have problems with transport please contact Pat or
The DCA is proud of the youth forum, which it helped to establish, now in its
third year. A separate report details its activities but it should be noted here
that members of the Youth Forum have contributed to discussion at each of the
DCA meetings. We look forward to the progress of the Forum in its quest to
secure facilities for young people in Doxey and have pledged our support.
In January 2004 a drop-in was opened for young people between the ages of 13-17
at the Sutton Centre. Its purpose was to provide a safe and comfortable place
for young people to meet with adults around. This is staffed by 4 community
association volunteers and runs on Thursday evenings. So far between 6 and 12 young
people have dropped in each session. Thanks to volunteers, Gill, Sally, Dave and
Paul. More volunteers are needed to ensure the future of the drop in.
Joan and her team at Doxey House organised a very successful Doxey Day last
July. Highlights of the event included the opening by the Mayor, the competition
led by the Town Crier and the crowds of Doxey people who supported the event.
new event - Fun Day- was held in August on the grassed area around the Sutton
Centre. This was a games afternoon for children and young people. Pat and John's
organisation enabled the children of Doxey to enjoy an exciting afternoon where
everyone was a winner.
Two further events, a trip to Walsall illuminations in November and the trip to
the Pantomime in late December, were well attended. There's something special
about being with friends and neighbours, enjoying new experiences. Thanks to
Jane for organising these events. These and the other events serve to bring our
community close and to earn us the reputation of a strong community.
That strong community was up against the might
of a national body in December when the Post Office announced its decision
to close the Doxey Branch. The Community Association led a campaign to
retain the post office and the campaign was well supported by Doxey people,
by our MP David Kidney and our County Councillor, Robert Simpson. Sadly the
campaign failed. Maybe it could never have succeeded but it is worthy of note here that over 50 Doxey residents wrote to
the post office and David Kidney is currently working to secure alternative post
office provision in Doxey.
The long standing campaign to have a Doxey Parish Council has met with more
success. A petition with almost 600 signatures is to be sent to the office of
the Deputy Prime Minister in the next few days. Doxey could have its own parish
council in 2005. Thanks here to Pat and John and Stephen for their tireless work
in knocking on doors to collect signatures, to our local councillors, Adam
Tedstone, Peter Goodland and Robert Simpson and of course to those residents who
supported the petition. Having a parish council will give Doxey an official
voice in borough and county decisions. It will also give Doxey access to funds
for projects to enhance our facilities and our environment.
The environment has again been high on the agenda of the Community Association.
A squad of Doxey litterpickers helped with the clear up in Stafford in
preparation for the judging of Britain in Bloom. The association is represented
on the Local Environmental Quality Group which as well as improving the
environment seeks to improve responsible public access to wildlife sites.
In October the association received a Green Award from the Borough Council in
recognition of litter picking, the Clear Out days and the Garden Sale. The Clear
Out days enable people to recycle their unwanted items by offering them to
others. Thanks to Michele and Richard for organising these events. The latest
Clear Out day was held just last Sunday, organised by Mike. The garden sale held
each spring, gives an opportunity for people to buy plants and garden items,
surplus to the needs of other gardeners in Doxey, at low prices. This event is
very much a joint effort and thanks are due to all those who prepared and
donated plants, those who bought them and to those who helped on the day.
Arts in Doxey
Last June the association arranged for the Mikron Theatre Company to visit Doxey
to conduct theatre workshops and to perform their play All Steamed Up, about the
steam Pioneer Richard Trevithick. Both workshops and performance were so well
received by Doxey people that the theatre director expressed his company's wish
to work again with Doxey people. Clearly this was going to involve a lot of
organisation, not least in raising funds in the form of grants. The Community
Association appointed Jane Essex as its Arts Officer and Jane will give you more
details of what is planned.
In May 2003 Dan Yates, a student photographer, from Greensome Lane offered to
take and collect photographs around Doxey. His efforts, supported by the
association culminated in a display in the church in September. His 40 or so
photographs were enjoyed by the 40 or so Doxey people who visited. This was no
ordinary art gallery. The hall was alive with conversations as people exchanged
information and reminiscences about the village.
We were approached by the Stafford Arts Council with a request that Doxey
host the launch of their Film Festival Roadshow. The launch took place early in
March in the church hall and was attended by many Doxey people as well as by the
Mayor, his entourage and other Staffordians. Throughout the day films and videos
of Stafford, and notably of Doxey were shown. As an outcome of the launch three
student filmmakers are currently busy making a film about Doxey and its people.
That is a summary of the work of the Community Association in the past year.
We have taken on new challenges as well as developing the initiatives begun in
previous years. We have been fortunate in recruiting active members. Being an
active member can include: attending meetings; contributing to or delivering
Doxey Times; organising an event or helping someone who is doing so; taking on
secretarial or financial responsibilities.
We still need more active members.
Come and join us.
The Doxey Community Association is alive, flourishing and
working in the interests of Doxey.