Minutes of the Fifteenth Annual General Meeting held on 17th January 2023 @10.00am at The Life Centre, Romiley.

Present: - Tracey Adams*, Alan & Beryl Smith*, Jean Bartlett* & Pam Reed.

1. The Chair (Tracey Adams) welcomed all present and read out the Notice of the Meeting.

Apologies – Debbie Barraclough, Philippa Bonorino, Terry Holmes, Abdulnasser Alshurbaji, John Young, Anne Granby & Glenys Backhouse.

2. Minutes of the Meeting held on 18th January 2022 were approved as a correct record.

3. Treasurers Report: - Pam Reid had circulated the accounts for the year ending 31 December 2022. Income totalled £2868.53, expenditure £3325.09 leaving a balance of £2116.98. The income was from the Community Fun Day and Romiley WI. The items of expenditure were for the website hosting renewal, plants, T-shirts and the costs of the Fun Day. In addition donations totalling £400 have been made to local voluntary groups and charities. Pam requested that anyone paying monies into the account give her details. There were no questions.

4 Chairperson’s Annual Report

2022 saw the Government lift restrictions, which were imposed following the covid pandemic.

The Year also saw record breaking adverse weather conditions around the world and this evidenced the negative impact of Global Warming. Even in Romiley, the prolonged hot, dry spells and heavy rains came at times of the year unknown before. That then effected the growth of many bulbs, flowers and fruit which were appearing earlier than expected or not coming back at all. Some plants were lasting longer than usual and were still blooming when the next seasons plants started to grow. Consequently, the Friends along with Anthony Crook, Senior Arboriculture and Habitat Officer at SMBC, have had and will have to ensure in the future, that all new planting can cope with the changing conditions, whilst still encouraging wildlife and helping to combat global warming. The wildflower meadow at the back of the park, which was introduced in 2021, has progressed well. Many of the bulbs and seeds put in have appeared in 2022. The Friends bought 150 wildflower plugs and with a 150g of wild flower seed were planted and scattered and these should start to come up in 2023 There has been a number of new trees added to the park. SMBC provided 6 Betula, 3 Alders, a Red Oak and a Crataegus. The Lions and the Romiley WI each provided funding for another Betula. Sadly, two of the Alder were lost to vandalism along with an Amelanchier and an ornamental Pear Tree. The tubs throughout the park, continue to be kept well-tended, with Jean and Barbara changing the planting in line with the seasons. There has also been an additional tub installed at the Compstall Road entrance. Some funds were provided by The Lions, enabled the purchase of plants and bulbs. Jean then designed an annual scheme and started this off. However, the country then underwent an unseasonal extended heatwave. Jean was steadfast in visiting the park, to water the new plants, which enabled their survival. The front circle remains the focal point of the park. Many hours have been spent, on weeding, grass edge trimming, planting and amending the design as appropriate, ensuring a stunning and interesting start to the journey through the park or to sit on the benches around the circular bed.

To increase the number of seating places, the Romiley and District U3A, donated the funding for a commemorative bench that is now situated at the front. A significant amount of work has been accomplished on the redesigned planting in the school beds. Firstly, the one next to Sandy Lane has had some of the bramble, weeds and thuggish plants removed and new bulbs and plants put in. The second area and the main project for 2022, has seen the introduction of over 60 plants, these will be added to at the relevant part of the year. The beech hedge, that grows adjacent to the school, has some branches that have grown through the fence towards the playground. Permission was received by the school Head Teacher, to enter the grounds, when the children were not in attendance and this allowed for some of the branches to be cut down. The optician’s bed at the front of the park has been regularly maintained and the benefits of the previous year’s overhaul, is now evident in the healthy planting there. The Carlton Avenue bed continues to provide a pleasant and colourful entry to the park from that entrance. The wet beds have both been maintained throughout the year and are an example of the right plant thriving, in the right place. The two pieces of outdoor gym equipment that were removed, due to health and safety, have now been replaced. The damaged sign on the Compstall Road Gate has also been changed. Royal Party in the Park - In celebration of the Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee, took place on 25th June. This was the first fun day since 2019, following the global pandemic. The sub-committee, set up to specifically for fun days, were exemplary in their organisation. From applying for permissions for the day, sponsors, entertainment, competitions, voluntary exhibitors, etc. The event allowed several hundred residents and visitors to enjoy the stall, dancing, music, sports etc. and get to see the park and its facilities. There was high praise received by attendees and the day was a huge success. The Friends of Romiley Park are a small group of volunteers dedicated to giving their time, to gardening and raising funds for the park. They turn out twice monthly in most weathers, sorting out the designs and purchases of the flower beds, shrubs, trees and liaising with the appropriate people at Stockport MBC and TLC. They have helped make the park a beautiful, inviting greenspace that offers residents and visitors to Romiley a place to relax, socialise and play, which all help support physical and mental health Along with their gardening, there is also thanks to Pam Reid as treasurer, producing accounts and keeping finances in order. Jean Bartlett as social secretary, organising bi-monthly meals out. Special thanks to Philippa Bonorino as secretary, who takes and circulates the minutes. She also researches and completes grant applications, keeps in contact with SMBC officers and TLC workers, through meetings, writing and phone. She is also the primary task manager for gardening days. Thanks to the FoRP Fun Day sub-committee, who spend many months organising the annual event. To SMBC Parks and Outdoor Spaces for their help and assistance. Anthony Crook, Senior Arboriculture and Habitat Officer at SMBC, for his advice and work with trees and the wild lower meadow. TLC for tasks including removing our green waste and cutting the grass. Lesley Cranwell, Manager at Romiley Life Centre, for the continued support of the Group with use of a meeting room and refreshments. It is most appreciated. Finally, in 2023 we look forward to lots of gardening, socializing, enjoying the fresh air and free exercise, but most of all the laughter. OUR PARK, YOUR PARK - all volunteers are welcome to join.

5. Election of Officers

Chair – Tracey Adams was proposed, seconded and elected unanimously.

Treasurer – Pam Reed was proposed, seconded and elected unanimously.

Secretary – Philippa Bonorino was proposed, seconded and elected unanimously.

6. Fun Day

Debbie Barraclough had requested a change of date this year. Saturday 1 July was provisionally proposed but the Sub-Committee should make the final decision.

7. There being no further business the Chair declared the meeting closed at 11.34am.

Alan Smith Assist Secretary 17/01/2023.