Friends of Allestree Park

Allestree Park in Derby, England

Friends of Allestree Park AGM 11 October 2017

Friends of Allestree Park AGM 11 October 2017 The Memorial Hall, Cornhill, Allestree


Present: Martin Pickard Chair Edwin Slade Secretary Mark Sims Treasurer Felicity Jackson Committee Member Monica Monticelli Committee Member
David Winslow Derby City Council
FoAP Members
1 Apologies:  Martin Hamblett, Pat Sear, Graham Spencer Margot Keats, Jocelyn Dawson, Judith and Brian Wood, and Anne Wigley,
2 Minutes of AGM held 12 October 2016  These were accepted as a true record.  There were no matters arising raised at the meeting.
3 Chairs Report  See separate Annual Report (below).
4 Treasurer’s Report  See separate Statement of Accounts
5 Election of the Committee  The following were elected unanimously to the committee:
 Chair – Martin Pickard  Treasurer - Mark Sims  Secretary - Edwin Slade
Monica Monticelli, Felicity Jackson, Martin Hamblett, Graham Spencer and Pat Sear as Committee Members.
6 Any Other Business  None.
7 Members  A positive and informative discussion took place with attending Members during the meeting, the following points are noted:
• A member suggested that FoAP approach the Allestree Gardening Club to see if they would be willing to assist with the formal beds in front of Allestree Hall, the Chair is to make contact.
• The current position with regard to Allestree Hall was raised and while it was reiterated that the FoAP has an interest only in relation to the hall being located on the park, the Chair agreed to contact the Council for an update.
• The meeting noted the positive impact that the Earl of Harrington Angling Club (EoHAC) management of the lake was having on Allestree Park, the Chair agreed to contact the EoHAC  

1. Introduction Your Committee continued to try to meet monthly in 2016/17 and this was largely successful, despite one or two inquorate meetings. All meetings were held at the University and we again formally thank the University of Derby for their support in hosting us, despite some early issues with the new room booking system!
There were no resignations from the committee this year but we were delighted to welcome back Pat Sear who has been an invaluable member of the team previously and has come up trumps again this year.

2. Events 2.1   During the year we decided that we would concentrate our efforts on fewer, but historically more popular events. Regrettably, we do not have sufficient committee members to shoulder the burden of organising more events. 2.2  Local expert John Bland led a Bird Walk on a chilly night in April and it was attended by 3 committee members and a couple of other members – a disappointing attendance for what was a very interesting and informative evening. 2.3  There was another “Painting In The Park” event organised by Felicity Jackson and Monica Monticelli, again with a disappointing number of people attempting to paint a view north across the golf course from the Evergreen Hall.  2.4  The Annual Pond-dipping event, held on 21st May was a great success with an estimated 150 people attending and the added bonus of only one and a half wet children! Many thanks are again due to Pat Sear and Monica Monticelli for organising this event and to the Derby City Pond Warden Association for loan of nets, trays and ID charts. 
Friends of Allestree Park AGM Minutes 16th October 2013
2.5   There was a “Mini-Beast Hunt” held on 15th July, organised by Monica Monticelli and led by Bill Grange and Steve Plant. Around 50 people attended of which half were children.  

2.6  Monica Monticelli organised Walk and Picnic for pupils in Year 2 at Portway Infants School on 23rd July. This was attended by 90 children plus teachers and parents. They walked the Nature Trail and had a mini beast hunt. Thanks are also due to Pat Sear and Steve Plant for assisting with “herding” duties. 2.7  Another Bat Walk was held on 15th September which was also well attended, and this time bats were actually seen! Thanks to Derbyshire Bat Conservation Group for their help and assistance.
3. Other Activities and Works in the Park 3.1 As part of the High Level Stewardship scheme to enhance the biodiversity within the meadows, conservation grazing took place on the Park during the autumn and winter. We welcomed Jacob sheep and heritage cattle, including highland and belted varieties. Many thanks are due to all who have been involved in this project, including Derbyshire Wildlife Trust and the DerwentWISE Project, as well as to David Winslow and his ever-decreasing team from the City Council who, as always have been a huge help to the Park over the entire year. 

3.2 Following the very interesting talk by Ken Orpe at last year’s AGM, the committee decided to back the creation of a “Butterfly Bank” on the south side of Arboretum Wood close to the main car park. This huge mound of subsoil and limestone is not, as you might imagine where we bury retired Chairs of this committee, but designed to attract certain species of butterfly to breed there. Plants were purchased by the committee and hardened-off in Pat’s greenhouse before being planted out on the bank. Thanks to all who got involved in this together with those who carried water from their homes to keep the plants alive!

3.3  The Turtle Pond flower beds have continued to be a hot topic for the committee during the year. Unfortunately, we have concluded that there are insufficient numbers of members who are fit enough and able to give enough time to maintain the beds in their current form. Reluctantly, we have to admit defeat and try to find a different solution.
Friends of Allestree Park AGM Minutes 16th October 2013

3.3 The Derby Parks Volunteers have carried out some fantastic work building a new boardwalk (with materials funded by this committee) in Burley Top Field which now makes the informal path there fully passable. They have also rectified the flooding issue at the lower kissing gate. Further work has been done to replace the steps from Big Wood onto the Golf Course. Many thanks to everyone involved.

3.4 As predicted in last year’s report, the pathway project between the Evergreen Club and Woodlands Car Park has now been completed and will not only enable walkers to avoid the areas of deep mud but will encourage them away from the potentially dangerous 15th fairway. Despite some opposition from local residents to the construction of the path on environmental and archaeological grounds, this committee has always supported the project and continues to do so. We trust that users of the Park will agree. 3.5 Himalayan Balsam remains a constant and, we suspect a growing (excuse the pun) problem within the Park. “Bashing” sessions were held for FoAP members but were not very well attended and were only partially successful. Perhaps more concentrated efforts by members, Derby Parks Volunteers and Council employees might enable us to get on top of this problem next year? 

3.6 Several fallen trees have been cleared from the woodland path beside the lake and a sign replaced to improve access to the Nature Trail.

3.7 Much work has been carried out by members of the Earl of Harrington Angling Club to improve the habitat of the lake itself and its surroundings. Overgrown and overhanging trees have been removed improving the light levels and work has been carried out to stabilise and enhance the banks. Much replanting of marginal plants has also taken place as well as the clearance of a huge amount of litter from the lake bed. All the efforts by EoHAC have led to steady improvements in the health of the lake water and to the increasing numbers of fish breeding there. We are most grateful to members of EoHAC for their help in supporting the work of this committee and for transforming this area of the Park.
Friends of Allestree Park AGM Minutes 16th October 2013

4. Once again, we are very grateful to Martin Hamblett for writing and producing our quarterly newsletters and for replenishing our newly purchased Nature Trail leaflet dispensers. Many thanks too to Monica and Bill Grange for keeping the website up to date and for advertising our events via our Facebook page.
5. We continue to look for new members for our committee. The workload is not too onerous, especially if we can share it around. Please encourage your friends and family to put themselves forward and help us to maintain the prettiest park in Derby.
Martin Pickard        October 2017

Sunday, January 20, 2019