Minutes of Meeting July 2013


Minutes of meeting, July 2013

Venue: Kinveachy Gardens

Date:  Thursday 18 July 2013

Present (19): Tim, Steve, Gulle, Edna, Nigel and Ronnie, Steve and Liz, Jason, John and Hazel, Alan, Evelyn, Pat, Chris, Lesley, Christine, Catherine; Ian Robertson (MWAP).

1. Maryon Wilson Animal Park

Special guest Ian Robertson from Maryon Wilson Animal Park Ltd addressed the meeting. There had been a fruitful meeting with the Council at which funding was guaranteed until the end of the financial year next April. The Council said they would cover any shortfall in running costs if necessary during 2014-15 and possibly 2015-16. It is hoped however that the company would be self-sufficient by 1015. They are writing a business plan based on a lease of 10-15 years and are aiming to appoint a full-time development officer, taking over the running of fundraising for the animal park by the end of this year. They would extend opening hours for visits and tours to include weekends and consider a take-away coffee stall. Edna pointed out that there is a builder prepared to renovate the derelict toilets in exchange for having his sign put up. A Friends representative would be welcome at meetings when relevant items were on the agenda.

Ian was thanked for coming to the Friends’ meeting and was welcome to stay on.

2. Apologies: Andrew, Carol, Grace, Elen, Mickey, Paul, Tammy.

3. The Minutes of the May meeting were approved. There were no matters arising.

4. Maryon Wilson Park: Tree Plaque

Tim reported that he had ordered a small plaque to go on the tree, paid for out of the grant. The management committee had approved the purchase of a double-sided plaque out of Friends funds, although at £245 + VAT (but including fitting) was felt to be expensive. This would go on the fence near the tree. The Council took three weeks to approve the wording, which required some amendment. Nigel pointed out that if there was a sign on the tree, for people inside the sheep pen, then the plaque on the fence did not need to be double-sided. Tim to investigate a possible price reduction.

5. Clear-ups

At the July clear-up a child’s scooter was among items recovered. Liz said the Barrier Park was in poor condition. The Big Lunch after the June clear-up had been a great success with some two dozen attending. The Parks department has taken on some new personnel as part of an employment scheme, whose tasks include clearing up. Tim will explore with the Council the possibility of the Friends taking on some other project-based jobs instead of just litter picking.

6. Maryon Park Community Garden

Edna reported that all the plots are now in use, with two dozen different types of vegetables grown as well as much fruit. A picnic table, made by Men in Sheds, has been provided by the local Men’s Group who raised the money.

Forty volunteers organised by HBC through a friend of Jason’s will be working there in September subject to Council approval.

There will be an Open Day on Saturday 3 August with activities for children plus tea and cakes, and another on 21 September. Anybody interested in making cakes or helping, please contact Edna or through the Friends: FriendsofMaryonParks@gmail.com .

7. Cycle path through Maryon Wilson Park

Liz and Steve had attended a meeting in Charlton House at which plans for a cycle path from the Cemetery Lane gate to the bottom of MWP by Thorntree School were discussed. They had expressed the Friends’ strong opposition to the scheme, which was felt to be dangerous to pedestrians, children and dogs. It was supported, however, by the representatives of Greenwich Cyclists and Charlton Society. Cllr Alan MacCarthy was “neutral”. A revised scheme to be considered was said to include “a wider path next to the animal park”. Our meeting reiterated strong opposition. Tim and the MWAP to formulate a response.

8. Greenwich Parks Forum

No minutes had been received as yet from the June meeting. Gulle will attend the next meeting on 3 October and report back as usual.

9. Website

Jason reported that the Tree Walk app had been downloaded 31 times on Android and 15 times on the iPhone.

Andrew had sent a message to say we now had 213 followers on Twitter, some tweets being passed on to up to 8000.

10. Treasurer’s Report

A very successful stall at MWP Open Day in May had raised £416.45, leading to a balance of £1,702.32 plus £21.51 petty cash.

11. Money spending ideas

Ideas included a gazebo, shed, sensory garden for the Community Garden; a bird survey; badges or tabards for clear-up days; and a calendar, see below.

11b. Friends’ 2014 Calendar

We would receive a 20% discount if supplying material to the usual printers by 1 August. Steve to confirm that and price for 100.

Meeting at Tim’s on Wednesday 24 July at 7.30 to select pictures. Please email any suitable pictures before that to the Friends email address : FriendsofMaryonParks@gmail.com

12/13. Information and other correspondence received + AOB

Mickey had submitted a ‘report’ on the Green Flag inspection of Maryon Park. Inspectors were impressed by the Community Garden, less so by rusty bins and signs and names etched on seats. No verdict has yet been received but should be shortly. The issue of the toilets was not addressed.

Andrew said Hyder Consulting (also present at the Cycle Path meeting) had reportedly been engaged to consult on the Green Bridge over the Woolwich Road (between Maryon Park and Barrier Park).

We feature prominently in the current Green Chain newsletter and events calendar and also in the current Greenwich Time.

Breaking news was tweeted on 13 July: a fawn had been born in MWP 10 minutes earlier.

Trees in our local parks’ is the focus of a talk by tree expert Jim Hedges at the Charlton Society on Saturday 20 July starting at 2.30pm.

There will be another exhibition in September in Greenwich Heritage Centre and also Charlton House following on from last year’s Charlton Parks Reminiscence Project. Carol Kenna would welcome any photos or memorabilia not already submitted, email: carol@greenwichmuralworkshop.com .

Charlton Champion is holding a summer social at the Rose of Denmark, Woolwich Road, Wednesday 24 July.

Parksfest events: Winns Common on 21 July, Well Hall Pleasaunce and the Tarn 28 July.

Horn Fayre at Charlton House/Park on Sunday 28 July, 11am-4pm.

Those very busy Men in Sheds (see also item 6) are looking for votes so that they may win a National Lottery Award. To register a vote visit:


Gulle will arrange with Jeremy for the Friends to plant daffodils in the park later this autumn, as some years ago.

Dates of next clear-ups: Saturday 3 August and 7 September. Meet at Flamsteed Road entrance to Maryon Wilson Park, 10am.

14. Date of next meeting

Thursday 19 September at Kinveachy Gardens, and

AGM Thursday 14 November at St Thomas Church, Woodland Terrace (note the date).