2014 AGM Minutes

Minutes of the Findhorn Hinterland Group AGM
22 May 2014 at the James Milne Intstitute
Welcome: Jonathan was pleased to welcome members, friends, representatives of the Findhorn Dunes Trust, Duneland Ltd and the Findhorn Foundation.
Apologies: Adele Long, Jon Golding, George and Heather Paul, Cornelia Featherstone from Duneland Ltd., Frank Allan and Marek Durkacz from the FDT.
Minutes of the 2013 AGM were read and accepted as a true record. Proposed by Duerten Lau and seconded by John Willoner.
Matters Arising: Jonathan will follow up on the Mammal Survey with Helen Watts.
Insurance Policy: Will to follow up and check the details in reference to the Green Burial Site.
Performance Grant Money: There is £200 remaining that is held by the NFA.
Convener’s Report: Jonathan’s report noted that it is a time of change on the Findhorn Peninsula both in terms of land ownership, as the FF conclude the purchase of part of the land from Duneland Ltd and the Findhorn Village Conservation Company works towards buying land currently owned by Novar Estates, and also in terms of the FHG’s legal structure as it moves towards becoming a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation from an unincorporated community group. This latter process will include public consultation in collaboration with the Findhorn Dunes Trust that will set the vision for a new management plan.
All the regular and diverse conservation and woodland management activities have continued and good progress has been made with new projects emerging such as the Edible Woodland Garden Project and the Wildlife Ponds in partnership with Froglife.
Questions Arising from the Report: In response to a question about the contaminated land owned by Duneland Ltd and the sale of the Hinterland to the FF it was explained that the contaminated land would remain with Duneland Ltd as it was not possible for the FF as a charity to include this piece of land as part of the purchase. It was also confirmed that although there were some hot spots where radioactive materials had been buried SEPA assured that there was no risk to the public as long as the material was not disturbed.
Financial Report: The total income for the year was £23926.57 and the expenditure £6165.95
It has been decided to place £10000 in Ekopia (adding to the £5000 already held by Ekopia) for anticipated future costs and maintenance particularly those associated with the Green Burial Site. There has been a significant increase in income from the purchase of lairs during the year due to successful marketing by Will Russell our Funeral Co-ordinator. John was requested to send a copy of the Financial Report to the Findhorn Foundation and Duneland Ltd.
Alison proposed that the Accounts for the year be approved, seconded by Will. Motion carried.
Election of Office Bearers: Duerten indicated that she would not stand for re-election as Vice-Convener. She was warmly thanked by Jonathan for all she had done in support of the Hinterland. Jonathan, John and Judith agreed to continue in their respective roles and were elected unanimously. Jonathan proposed Kajedo for the position of Vice-Convener, seconded by Judith. Unanimously agreed.
Ann M. expressed concern about the planting of non-wild flowers and plants on the green burial site which she felt were inappropriate in a natural woodland. Will said he spends a lot of time with people before they purchase lairs and before a burial explaining the pros. and cons. of a natural burial site but it is difficult to police what people do. He will continue to educate people to what is allowed and make it clear that it is a managed site and any inappropriate plants will eventually be removed. A list of acceptable trees and flowers for planting will be offered, some of which it may be possible to plant on the actual grave site.
New Legal Structure: Jonathan introduced Fiona Chalmers who is a professional land manager and who is working on behalf of the FHG to gain funding to finance the change to a Scottish Charity and then work to produce a new management plan in collaboration with the FDT. Fiona explained that there are three steps. The first is applying for funding to change the structure to a SCIO (Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation) and an application has been sent in to the HLF Start-Up Fund. Once funding has been secured the next step is consultation with the public for their input and out of this emerges the vision for the future. The third step is to translate this vision into a management plan which would require an application for further funding.
Appreciations: Jonathan thanked Fiona for attending the meeting and explaining her involvement with the Hinterland Group. Appreciation was also expressed to the Committee for all the work of the past year, and to all who attended the AGM. Thanks were also given to Jonathan for the enormous amount of work he continues to do.
The meeting closed and refreshments were served with thanks to Fay.

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Findhorn Hinterland Trust, Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO) SC045806
228 Pineridge, Findhorn, Forres, Moray IV36 3TB