Sedlescombe Public Playing Field & Recreation Ground Trust Annual Report 2013-14

1 TRUST DEED. By a Trust Deed dated 26 August 1971, Sedlescombe Parish Council is the sole Trustee of Sedlescombe Public Playing Field & Recreation Ground Trust, Charity Number 305305.

2 MANAGEMENT AGREEMENT. Since 23/01/12, there has been a Management Agreement between the Parish Council and the Trust whereby the Parish Council will undertake the "entire care, management and control of the Playing Field and maintenance of the Playing Field as the Trust has limited funds".

3 REVIEW OF 2013-14.

  1. Refurbishment of the MUGA. The MUGA was re-opened by the Chairman of the Parish Council on 28th September 2013 during a free community tennis event.

  2. MUGA Use. The area has remained open to the public who can use it free of charge unless it has been booked for a particular event.
    1. The main commercial use has been by Nicholas Montague, a tennis coach who has arranged tennis coaching sessions for all ages during the winter.
    2. Staplecross School has hired one half of the area for netball training on a Wednesday afternoon during term-time.
    3. Sedlescombe Netball Club is expected to restart hiring the MUGA in May on Monday evenings for their training sessions.

  3. Tennis Lines. The Parish Council has agreed to have a further set of tennis lines painted so that Nick Montague can bring his portable net and use both sides of the courts.

  4. Insurance. The Trust had £5,000,000 public liability insurance cover during the year, renewable in June 2014.

  5. Grass Area in front of MUGA
    1. Services. The Secretary had produced a map showing all known services under the land in front of the MUGA which are 24" concrete sewer (to the Pumping Station), 24" cast iron water main, 9" water main, gas main.

    2. Drainage. During the very wet winter weather, the eastern edge of the MUGA had been under water. In April 2014, the land beside the courts was reprofiled by a volunteer in order to keep floodwater off the MUGA.

    3. Path and area around the gate. The paving slabs across the grass to the gate had been uncovered and more slabs had been installed around the entrance in order to keep mud off the area as far as possible.

    4. Pumphouse Designs had drawn a plan showing how a football mini-kickers pitch could be provided on this land. Quotes had shown that the cost of drainage, levelling, seeding and fencing would be between £5,000 and £7,000. No definite plans provided by the Football Club.

      The Youth Club had organised a petition in the Village to get support for installation of a skateboard ramp, although this had never been presented to the Council.

      Although there had been plans made to install outdoor gym equipment, members were concerned that there would not be enough use made of this type of equipment.

      The Trust had considered during the year whether the land should be used for housing local people. A proposal to support housing on the site had been defeated.

      Selling a strip of land to the owner of the land to the east so that the site could be used for building was not taken forward because of flood risk zone problems and underground services. However, from 01/05/14, the flood risk zone area had been amended.

      A proposal to cover the MUGA to make a year-round all-weather facility was not taken forward.

      Erection of a timber building to be used for storage and indoor sport. Maybe the tennis club will reform and will want a pavilion. Not taken forward.

      Use as a temporary car park to ease parking problems. The Trust agreed that the Parish Council should be asked to consider installing a temporary car park on the land. The Parish Council had included an amount in its 2014-15 budget to help pay for works for the temporary car parking area and a proposed development at Gregory Walk close to the area was showing that financial support for this work could be the community benefit from the housing development.

  6. MUGA Gate self-closers. An attempt to fit self-closing hinges had not been successful. Further attempts are being made to find a more suitable self-closing hinge, maybe secondhand.

  7. MUGA Surface. A volunteer had swept the surface several times to remove twigs and alder flowers and cones.

  8. Trees. A tree inspection was carried out by Pat Martin and some tree work undertaken by volunteers so that the courts are kept as clear as possible.

  9. Driveway to Powdermills. The Parish Council is responsible for paying half the cost of repairs. Some of the small potholes had been filled in when the MUGA was resurfaced. The Parish Council planned to purchase replacement plastic posts for installation by volunteers along the drive.

  10. Grass area in front of Play Area. It had been agreed that this should be left as a green space.

  11. Play area. In a review, the Trust had decided that as the area is well-used, it should continue as a playground. The Parish Council had undertaken some major repairs at the playground using volunteer labour which is much appreciated.

  12. Playground inspections.
    1. Weekly inspections. A new schedule of inspection dates and a new online form had been brought into use by the Parish Council at the beginning of January.
    2. A Company called "The Play Inspection Company" had been appointed to carry out the 2014 professional inspection in June 2014.

P J Raymond
Secretary, Sedlescombe Playing Field & Recreation Ground Trust