Wimbledon and Putney Commons Levy To Rise 2.5%

Board appoints legal advisers for 'Putney Hospital issue'

The Chief Executive of Wimbledon and Putney Commons, Simon Lee has infomed this website that at their Board meeting on the 14th December 2015, the Trustees considered a number of matters:

Putney Hospital Site
The first stage of the agreed Formal Action Plan set out by the Charity Commission in their letter of the 22nd October 2015 requires the Board to appoint appropriate legal advisers to
guide/advise Trustees.

A number of legal firms have been contacted and the Chairman, Vice Chairman and Chief Executive met with a shortlist with a view to making a recommendation on which firm to appoint.

Following a presentation to all Trustees on 6th January 2016, we have invited Charles Russell Speechlys to make proposals for how they would guide and advise the Trustees through the implementation of the Formal Action Plan.

Levy 2016/17

The Trustees are always very mindful of the need for the careful husbanding of the asset that is the Commons, particularly at a time of general austerity. They have sought to maximise investments and achieve other efficiency savings in the long-term interests of the Commons.

Over £550,000 has been “ring-fenced” from reserves and invested in the infrastructure of the Commons in the recent past.
Further investment is also needed in the REMPF pavilion, footpath renovations and on-going tree management works, including those associated with the Oak Processionary Moth.

To support this investment, the Trustees will be increasing the Levy by 2.5% for 2016/17, generating an additional £25,747. This is likely to represent a very small increase in the Levy paid by each household.

Conservator Vacancy
The Board considered independent legal advice on the vacancy arising from the recent resignation of an elected Trustee. On balance, the decision was taken not to hold an election in the near future. Several important factors were considered in reaching this decision, including the estimated cost of £50,000 to undertake a by-election. In terms of effective governance there continues to be a majority of elected Conservators (four) over appointed Conservators (three). This decision will be kept under review by the Board.

Heritage Lottery Fund
Working in partnership with the Wimbledon Windmill Museum Trustees, an external funding
bid will be submitted very shortly to the Heritage Lottery Fund under the “Our Heritage”
scheme. If successful, these funds will allow essential restoration works to be undertaken
on the Windmill, including the repair of the sails together with opportunities to enhance
volunteering activities. It will also enable the development of a broader range of initiatives to
engage the community and enhance understanding of the Windmill’s importance.

January 9, 2016

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