Thursday, 16 January 2014

It's crunch time at Ford Park

Ford Park Community is having it's AGM this next Tuesday in the Coach House.

I've had a chat with Ali, the newly appointed director and top of her agenda is to create a strong and supportive membership  that can substantially back the charitable trust financially rather than be totally dependent on grants as it is now.

As we all know money doesn't grow on trees which is becoming increasingly true  nationally in the coming months and years. Over the past ten years,  grants and knowing how to access them has been the sole reason for the development of this wonderful facility that is taken for granted by most Ulverstonians, particularly dog walkers. The latter have a very positive influence on the park by their presence at all waking hours of the day. They have detered vandalism and provide a steady stream of friendly people through the park , often on their way up Hoad. But often they don't understand how much they could help with a facility they very much enjoy. We would all be distraught if these open spaces ceased to be available because they had to be sold. If the park is to survive they and we all need to adopt Ford Park as our own.

Sadly few people in the town realise that Ford Park is privately owned - by the trust - with very little support from local government.

Next Tuesday at the AGM there needs to be a total change of emphasis towards every person in the Furness area feeling some ownership of the project. There is no doubt that the hard work of Jackie Williams and supporting cast has achieved something we all enjoy tremendously: the open well maintained fields, the excellent playground, the family activities with its friendly, welcoming kitchen garden, the tastefully designed and decorated meeting room upstairs and now the very successful and imaginative Bistro that provides food and drinks from ten till five every day and superb three course meals at very reasonable prices on at least two evening 'Theme nights'  - Friday and Saturday. Personally we enjoyed one of the most memorable meals in our lives when we had their French Menu a few months back.

Fufino Ferriera is their skilled chef using the quality home grown vegetables produced in their kitchen garden by Sarah McCormack and her voluntary helpers.

Here is the Agenda:

Which will be held on
Tuesday 21st January 2014
In The Coach House at Ford Park, Ulverston at 7.30 p.m.

Do come along and find out more about exciting future developments!


1. Apologies
2. Minutes of the Last AGM
3. Chairperson’s Report
4. Annual Report and Accounts
5. Trustee resignations & retirements
6. Election of Trustees:
7. Election of Officers:
(a)    Chairperson
(b)    Vice Chairperson
(c)    Treasurer
(d)    Secretary
8. Plans for the Future
9. Proposed changes to Membership Cost and Structure
10. Questions & Answers
11. Any Other Business
Copies of the Annual Report and Accounts/ the Chairperson's Report and the minutes of the previous AGM will be available on the night


Anonymous said...

Are the Trustees open to the involvement of the general public?
I feel that I have been rebuffed in the past and the meetings that I have attended were not businesslike.
A change in culture may be painful but it is essential

Geoff Dellow said...

It's good to get this kind of feedback. It's a view charged by many. A dogwalking friend of mine who joined and attended their meetings got fed up with the unbusinesslike behaviour and has now left.

If we care I suggest that we have to stand up and be counted. We need to even offer to get involved. The sight of Jane Harris becoming a trustee is encouraging. There are others in the town that could considerable weight to the trust and could help shift it more towards a widely supported organisation. The Bistro, Kitchen Garden, Hall above, and playground/field make into a highly valued part of the Ulverston scene.

My dream would be for every organisation in the town to want to support it in some way. Let's put aside our cultural differences and make this place become a truly communal facility.

Anonymous said...

A large welcome sign at the entrance gate would be a start.

Geoff Dellow said...

Now that's a lovely idea.

Some of the staff say this by the way they behave - some don't (or perhaps didn't).

Geoff Dellow said...

I've just been through the entrance and realise that the first notice does say "Welcome" at the head of some more information. As a generally understated country - do we in fact want a larger sign to get the message across? My impression is that the whole of the Park echoes the message "welcome". The people that use it are particularly friendly and the Bistro and Kitchen Garden staff are nearly all (one guy at the counter could smile a bit more) very warm and welcoming. The design of these buildings and garden are superb - so what provoked the remark about the Welcome Sign - it would be good to know.