Wigan Borough Environment & Heritage Network

Meeting minutes

7 January 2008, Wigan Baths

Present: Carol Littler (Orrell History researcher), Tom Price (Civic Trust), Tom Glover (Wigan Archaeology Society), John Hesketh, Philip Butler & Zenno Vattev (L&CT), Glenys McClellan (Leigh Family History Society), John O'Neil (WMBC)

Apologies: Joe Taylor(Billinge History/Heritage Society), Rachel Orme

In attendance: Emma Scott (Community Empowerment Programme)

Minutes: Emma Scott

1. Minutes of the last meeting: Accepted as a true record, to include the alterations mentioned below.

· Need amendments to dates and spellings.
· Tom gave an update on resistivity survey so far.

2. Matters arising

Zenno asked for information to support a funding bid for schools heritage project. 22/8/07 was the date of opening bank account in bank book, however need the date the group started-up to be given to Zenno. Need to produce projected expenditure for the year and addresses of main contacts and one senior contact who knows in detail what the bid is all about.
Action - Emma, Peter and Zenno to ensure bid gets all necessary inputs and signatures.

3. Heritage Project

Zenno gave an overview of what the project is aimed to do ie. Engage local people in heritage activities and investigating. Eg local groups might put a campaign together to save a local historical building.

Zenno asked who would be the main contact for the project as Joe would be out of the country whilst the funding was being considered because once it was submitted it would need someone on the group with knowledge.

4. Curating in the Community Scheme

The Civic Trust obtained funding to give awards to buildings that were of significant importance. Eg. (1) The Orchid Room (top of W. Lane) converted from some (2) Philbin's new office in Chapel Lane (matched local environment very well (3) Canon Sharples school - new design with good use of natural light and eco friendly (4) British Coal for filter beds in Whelley at side of Douglas.

Four awarded so far, eight remaining - very good bronze plaques.

WMBC with partners wish to encourage more interest by local people in design with a view to stimulating potential jobs and careers in Y.P. to help local heritage.

Trenchfield Mill project has been given a new lease of life to the building. There is much more to the story about the mill which a report on will be being sent out.

WAS found a blacking mill when excavating there and at Arley Golf Club - possibly thought to be using in engineering of Wigan.

Could we publicise such reports through Past Fwd? Tom is receiving copies of planning approvals but requires someone to pay true diligence to it. Tom to propose @ WAS AGM to see if a university student could assist.

Leigh FHS pleased that through membership of Heritage Network has managed to out faces to people and a good relationship formed with Heritage Services. They are hoping to set-up a starter pack for people wishing to look into family history and receiving at least five enquiries a week at the helpdesk in Leigh library and are handing out bookmarks with opening times on.

John O'Neill suggested might be a good thing to put together a work-plan for three years concentrating on specific projects. This would then be circulated to the network and wider to new potential members would generate interest in local issues and create a group.

Suggested it was worth putting some energy into an action plan which could be promoted at an All Networks meeting (plus BLINT)

John and Zenno noted since working on schools DVD project that there needs to be some more capacity building with group's members to be able to develop services and activities in future.
Action - John, Tom and Emma to discuss how to develop the organisation and it's members.

5. Chair and Secretary for 2008

These roles require separate people to fulfil and be responsible, especially when considering funding applications. A proposal to have an AGM towards the beginning of March to elect new committee, publicise work-plans and BLINTS.

Debate meeting times from members. Needs 21 days notice and draft agenda in advance agreed by email/post.
Action - Emma to ask Joe to agree to that

6. Any other business
Tom has been invited to a scoping meeting on the Grand Hotel site for a voluntary sector hub building.

Friends of Worsley Mesnes Park has received their lottery grant (promoted in paper).
WAS often get asked to do work in area but insurance would be invalidated if just started digging-up.
Carol agreed that Friends of Worsley Mesnes Park/Memorial would have to apply for permissions to do that via WLCT Parks Manager who would liaise with Chief Exec as official owners of the land.
Action - Tom should seek guidance from CE of WLCT.

Pulham fountain - If Friends of Worsley Mesnes Park are interested in doing some work on this it would be in everyone's interest for them to seek permission form WLCT and get a quote for costs so that funding can be found be Zenno.

7. Date and time of next meeting
Friday 22nd February at Wigan Baths between 11am - 1pm.