Decisions from the board
- Minutes 28 October 2021
Public report directors meeting Dufftown & Mortlach Development Trust
All Directors are present: Eleanor Candy (chair), Norma Hunter, Gillian McGarthland (treasurer), Siebette Wester (secretary), Anne Jan Zandstra.
In the directors meeting of 28 October 2021 the following items were discussed:
- The minutes of the previous meeting on 23 September were approved by all present.
- Two new members have been approved by the board bringing total membership to 65 members – 52 ordinary members and 13 associate members.
- In follow-up on the previous decision not to do a monthly newsletter it is now decided to do a quarterly edition to go with The Speirin’s. We’ll continue to also publish this online on our website.
- Treasurer’s report: we now have £ 531.61 in the bank and £ 203.07 in cash.
- Eleanor and Siebette had an informal talk with Statkraft on 26/10. This is originally a Norwegian company now operating across Europe and the UK. In the UK, Statkraft develops, owns, and operates renewable production facilities and manages trading and market operations for hydropower, wind and solar projects and those of third parties. Statkraft is proposing a wind farm located approximately 8km south-east of Dufftown. The site straddles Moray and Aberdeenshire Council boundaries (Craig Watch). If it goes ahead building will start in 2023. They are meeting with local community groups as part of their public consultation.
- We decide on getting a quote for more signage at the entry ways to Dufftown for the Farmers markets.
- The December market will be a Christmas edition with live music, mulled wine and spiced apple juice, decorations/lights inside and outside the hall, a multi-prize raffle, etc. Run time 3-7pm instead of the morning. Dave Brown has created a new fairy house which will be raffled at the Christmas market. The money we raise with this raffle will be ring fenced for the fairy village.
- The grant applications for the history walk app and the heritage trail have been sent in.
- Date and time of next meeting: it is agreed to have our monthly meetings on Mondays instead of Thursdays. Next meetings will be Monday 15 November and 13 December.
- Minutes 23 September 2021
Present: Eleanor Candy (chair), Gillian McGarthland (treasurer), Michelle van den Hout, Richard Gallicker, Theresa Campbell, Siebette Wester (secretary), Anne Jan Zandstra.
Apologies: William (Bob) MacDonald.
Norma Hunter attended the meeting as she stands for election for Director at the AGM 30/9.
In the directors meeting of 23 September 2021 the following items were discussed:
- The minutes of the previous meeting on 26 August were approved by all present.
- Six new members have been approved by the board bringing total membership to 63 members – 50 ordinary members and 13 associate members.
- A donation of £ 50 will be made towards The Speirin’s to show our appreciation for including our Membership application form in their latest edition.
- Agenda and other preparations for our first AGM on 30 September. Over 20 members have now confirmed to attend so the quorum should be met.
- For the October Farmer’s market we will have 27 stalls. The free stall to fundraise will this time go to the Aberlour care home. The gazebos promised to us by a third party have not yet been delivered. The trust will therefore buy a few themselves which can be rented by stall holders that are new to markets or don’t have their own gazebo for any other reason. A donation of £ 50 will be made towards to the Highland games committee as a thank you for letting us use their gazebos at the previous markets. They are also offered a free stall at one of the next markets to fundraise.
- To increase atmosphere local groups that play music or dance will be invited to perform at the markets.
- For the Christmas edition of the market in December we want to add Christmas lights and sell spiced cider and mulled wine. The market will take place from 3-7pm if the stall holders agree. We’ll apply for an occasional license with the Council.
- Public Toilets at MMH car park: talks are ongoing with ‘VisitMoraySpeyside’ and the Mortlach Memorial Hall. First everyone’s wishes and possibilities need to be aligned before we can continue.
- History Walk App: we have received several quotes from app developers to build the app and the first grant application has been sent in. Moray college is trying to get funding through an innovation grant. The app will also be signposted by the ‘Spirit of the Highlands’ (Inverness City Deal) project interactive map as a place of special interest to visit.
- Heritage Trail: the council is looking into landownership and is in contact with Diageo who are landowner for most parts of the trail. We’re still waiting for the quote from a local contractor.
- Fairy Village: the house for the raffle is almost finished, promotion to start soon.
- Next directors meeting will be 28 October 2021
- Minutes 26 August 2021
Present: Eleanor Candy (chair), Gillian McGarthland (treasurer), Siebette Wester (secretary), Anne Jan Zandstra
Apologies: William (Bob) MacDonald, Michelle van den Hout, Richard Gallicker, Theresa Campbell
In the directors meeting of 26 August 2021 the following items were discussed:
1. The minutes of the previous meeting on 22 July were approved by all present.
2. Five new members have been approved by the board bringing total membership to 57 members – 44 ordinary members and 13 associate members.
3. AGM 30/9: We need a quorum of 20 ordinary members present. An invitation has gone out to all members last week with the request to indicate if they will attend. So far only a few responses. Siebette will send a reminder.
4. Farmers market 2n edition: Stallholders again very pleased with turnout and turnover, although not as much footfall as previous
market. Visitors enthusiastic but keen to have more produce stalls. We keep trying to find more. The decision is taken to extend the
market with one hour, as most stallholders feel it could improve turnover. The MMH group will do tea/coffee/bacon rolls and soup from the kitchen and back hall every month to help them fundraise. We will continue to offer a free stall each time to other local groups to fundraise – either outside or from back hall with optional use of kitchen (shared with MMH group). Speyside Youth will have a free stall in November. In November and December we will incorporate a Christmas theme into the markets.
5. The theatre production group Frozen Charlotte will perform in Dufftown in the first weekend of September. They have a few requests for support, we’ll refer them to the local primary schools and halls. When we receive marketing material from them, we will distribute it.
6. The next directors meeting will be 23 September 2021.
- Minutes 22 July 2021
In the directors meeting of 22 July 2021 the following items were discussed:
- The minutes of the previous meeting on 24 June were approved by all present.
- No new applications have been received since the last directors meeting.
- Richard Gallicker has informed the board that he will not put himself up for re-election as a director at the AGM in September.
- The Farmer’s market on 10 July has been a great success. It’s estimated there were about 300 visitors, the stall holders have sold well and would like to return for future markets. Based on our own review and a survey amongst visitors it is decided we’ll keep the same running hours and that we will try to get more stall holders, especially ones selling fresh produce (meat, fruit and vegetables). Theresa Campbell will take on the role of stall holder coordinator, complementing the existing team of Michelle (marketing and social media) and Eleanor Candy (operations and compliance). The free stall on the next market will be for the Mortlach church. Each market a different local organisation will get a free stall to promote themselves and raise funds. The 2nd Market will be on the 14th of August.
- Giant’s chair path: a contractor has looked at the work that needs to be done. Before the contractor puts effort into compiling a quote (as prices for wood are fluctuating wildly at the moment) we need to establish landownership and get permission to get the work done. It is agreed it would be good to receive several quotes. We will approach local companies for this.
- Fairy Village: it is agreed it would be good to put up some more/better signage for people to find the Fairy Village. Anne Jan Zandstra will talk with Davey Brown about this.
- Outdoor theatre: the DMDT has been approached by a theatre production group called Frozen Charlotte. They will be performing in Moray over two weekends in August and September. They ask if Dufftown could offer a suitable site and if the DMDT would be willing to promote the event. The Directors feel this would be a nice event for local families and it would attract visitors to Dufftown which benefits local businesses. The show will be free of charge and the production group will organise the event themselves. Meg’s Widd would be the most suitable location in Dufftown. Eleanor will check all details with the production company.
- AGM DMDT: on Thursday 30 September the DMDT will hold its first AGM. Three of the current directors will not be available for re-election, so we need to find new people.
- Date and time of next meeting: 26 Augustus 2021.
- Minutes 24 June 2021
In the directors meeting of 24 June 2021 the following items were discussed:
- The minutes of the previous meeting on 27 May were approved by all present.
- One new member has been approved by the board bringing total membership to 55 members – 39 ordinary members and 13 associate members.
- The second newsletter is ready to go out next week.
- The first edition of the Farmers Market will be held on Saturday 10 July, all open and pending actions are discussed – a lot of work still needs to be done. We have now 5 confirmed stalls, 2 interested and 6 tentative stalls.
- Paths – an initial meeting with Moray Councils Outdoor Access officer has produced an inventory of the work that is necessary to upgrade the Gordon Cross and Giants Chair paths. For parts of the track we are still researching who the landowner is. Quotes for groundworks and storyboard production have been sought. Once all of these pieces are brought together we will be applying for grants from a number of different sources.
- The Cabin – we continue to offer a supporting role.
- Toilets at MMH car park – met with Moray Council to assess condition of the building. Next actions will be taken after the Farmer’s Market.
- Fairy village – now falls under the DMDT and we will support going forward.
The next Directors meeting is on 22 July 2021.
Update on the Pictish Stones at the Mortlach Kirk by Peter Bye-Jensen:
The application for Planning Permission has just gone in, this is necessary as we need to extend access to the stones. Peter is now working on the Scheduled Monument Consent and has also obtained quotes from two companies who can do conservation work. When all information has come back, he can put together the funding application which will be ready around mid July. In the meanwhile, preparations are underway for finding a contractor for the design and interpretation. Peter has already lodged interest with Historic Environment Scotland, which is necessary to be eligible to apply for funding. And he is liaising with Archaeology Services for Aberdeenshire from Aberdeen University for his research to establish factors concerning the current condition of the Pictish stones and general background historiography. From now on Peter will make monthly reports to update the Trust on the progress.
- Minutes 6 May 2021
In the directors meeting of 6 May 2021 the following decisions have been made:
- The minutes of the previous meeting on 25 March 2021 were approved by all present.
- There were no applications for new members.
- Jill Smithurst and Derek Candy have resigned as directors but will both remain a member of the Trust.
- A number of directors from the Trust and of the DDCA had a Zoom meeting on 27 April to get to know each other and explore opportunities to work together. Both parties agreed it would be good to open communications and work together when beneficial. The first project that has been identified is exploring the possibility of creating a mixed use path that connects the four Dorenell communities and Huntly. Also other local organisations and Moray Council have been invited to join this project.
- The Trust is to set up it’s own website, decisions have been made about the URL name, hosting and a content management system.
- Due to the worrying Covid case numbers in Moray it is agreed the first farmers market will need to be postponed to July.
- The Trust has send an Expression of Interest for a Community Asset Transfer (CAT) for the MMH toilets to the Council.
- Support for the Cabin to find a new, suitable location are ongoing.
- The business plan for the preservation of the Pictish stones in/around the Mortlach Kirk is almost finished and will be discussed mid-May with all parties involved.
- The Trust is looking into the opportunity to upgrade the Giant’s chair walk.
- Minutes 25 March 2021
In the directors meeting of 25 March 2021 the following decisions have been made:
- The minutes of the previous meeting on 25 February 2021 were approved by all present.
- There were 2 new members approved by the board bringing total membership to 51 members – 38 ordinary members and 13 associate members.
- Mhairi-Ann Gallicker has resigned as a director but will remain a member of the Trust. She will be available for a number of voluntary hours from Truerlein for the Trust for advice and support as will other employees and associates from Truerlein.
- Michelle van den Hout and Gillian McGarthland have been approved as directors for the Trust.
- Michelle will develop the idea to create a Forest Garden in/nearby Dufftown. When set up as a community project it would provide respite, areas of relaxation, education around permaculture / sustainable practices, food diversity and self-sustainability.
- The Trust will send out a letter of support on request from Deveron projects for setting up a long-distance walk enriched with (local) art from Huntly to Tomintoul via the Cabrach; with spurs to Dufftown and other places in this area. The support letter will increase their chances to receive grant funding for this project.
- The next director’s meeting will be on 29 April 2021 at 19.00 on Zoom (postponed to 6 May 2021).
- Truerlein will start a series of webinars to provide information about their projects. The first one will be Saturday 3 April providing a general overview of the Dufftown: a New Dawn project – our vision, goals, concrete plans and estimated timelines. People can sign up through the Truerlein facebookpage.
- Working with the Church of Scotland and Trust, Peter Bye-Jensen is researching the Pictish stones found at Mortlach Kirk, one of the oldest sites of continuous Christian worship in Scotland. Together, the team aim to preserve the stones and educate people about the Pictish history of the site.
- Minutes 25 February 2021
In the directors meeting of 25 February 2021 the following decisions have been made:
- The minutes of the previous meeting on 28 January 2021 were approved by all present.
- There were 3 new members approved by the board bringing total membership to 49 members – 37 ordinary members and 12 associate members.
- Eleanor Candy has been approved by the directors to step back into the position of chair person of the board. Mhairi-Ann Gallicker will remain active as director.
- Jill Smithurst has been approved as a director for the Trust. Chris Stuart has resigned as director.
- It was agreed that sub-groups could be formed with approval from the board, and that the nominated director would feed back to the board on a regular basis. It was also agreed that no decisions regarding expenditure could be made without the approval of the board, and that further clarification and training would be sought from DTAS.
- The directors have approved the mission statement for the trust: The Dufftown & Mortlach Development Trust Ltd is committed to facilitating the regeneration of Dufftown through delivering targeted projects that will enhance and improve the lives of the community in a progressive, inclusive and sustainable way.
- A newsletter will be send out to all Dufftown households to inform them about everything that has been set in motion over the last year, the organisation of the Trust and the first projects of the regeneration. The first newsletter will be a hardcopy in order to reach everyone. This will be followed by monthly digital newsletters with updates on the projects, to be send out to all Trust members.
- The Trust would like to expand the number of directors. In the coming newsletter we will invite people to express their interest.
- Farmers market: due to the ongoing Covid restrictions the first edition will be postponed until Saturday 8 May.
- The next directors meeting will be on 25 March 2021 at 19.00 at Zoom.
- Minutes 28 January 2021
In the directors meeting of 28 January 2021 the following decisions have been made:
- The minutes of the previous meeting on 26 November 2020 were approved by all present.
- There were 3 new members approved by the board bringing total membership to 46 members – 34 ordinary members and 12 associate members.
- The Trust needs to get it’s own website, media platforms and a facility for storing documents. The Trust will look into funding (grants) and a suitable party to provide these facilities.
- The Trust will have a prospectus developed to inform Dufftown’s residents and businesses about their goals and activities.
- The Trust has received provisional membership from DTAS (Development Trusts Association Scotland), if the Trust establishes itself in the coming period we will receive full membership after a year.
- The Trust needs more directors to be able to govern all projects properly. After releasing the prospectus a general call will go out to Dufftown’s residents to register interest.
- The first Dufftown’s farmer market will be held on 10 April and then every 2nd Saturday of the month at the Mortlach Memorial Hall and car park.
- The directors are to have an online introductory meeting with an external party to talk about the possibilities for a Dufftown heritage/archeology/ecology centre.
- The Trust will look for a project manager to upgrade the roads in Dufftown in a sustainable way. Truerlein has secured provisional grant funding.
- Due to new legislation the Cabin (local nursery) needs a bigger location, they have reached out to the Trust for help. This seems to fit within the goals of the Trust, more details to be discussed in the coming weeks.
The DMDT is a company limited by guarantee, with charitable objectives.
We are ruled by a governing document called Articles of Association, which is lodged at Companies House (SC658961).