Chair's Report: from 2024 AGM of Coulsdon Community Partnership

Chair's Report: from 2024 AGM of Coulsdon Community Partnership

Chair’s report for 2024 AGM, Feb 9th at The Coulsdon Club

The first year of CCP as a charity has been an eventful year. We ran our first Yuletide event before we received charitable status and learnt a lot from doing so, leading to a much improved event this year, although there are still further learnings to be made!

Yuletide Magic Coulsdon logo

Our first event as a charity was adding to Cozy Glow’s Easter event with a market. Last year this was quite small as it was our first event and this year we are building on it to make the event bigger and better.

Ester Egg Hunt leaflet Coulsdon
We also hosted the Big Lunch for the Kings Coronation, this was a great community picnic in Coulsdon Memorial Ground, Marlpit Lane.  It was really well attended and a great community event with the Friends of Marlpit Lane Bowling Green running taster sessions for people on the bowling green and Poppy’s Café keeping everyone in ice cream!

pic of Picnic for the Kings coronation Coulsdon memorial park

Our second event was becoming involved in Cozy Glow’s community Halloween event, adding in a stop at the Hive which was manned by Coulsdon Community Partnership volunteers. As with previous years, this was a great community event and thank you to all the shops who took part and made it the magical event it could be!

Halloween pic at The Hive community garden Coulsdon

Coulsdon Yuletide Magic came around all too quickly and it is with huge thanks to Ashley who coordinated the stall holders, council, fairground and sponsors and to Wendy to walked the high street getting businesses on board and persuading them to sell raffle tickets to make it a bigger success than last year, to Charlie who liaised with the Council to get us free rattail lights that we can use for other events throughout the year and for organising additional motif lights this year, and of course thank you to Gary at Advanced Print for all of the printing that he donated for the event that made a massive contribution to the success of it.

This (Yuletide Magic) is our main event each year and we are hoping that this event will keep growing, but we do need more volunteers to help spread the load in the preparation, on the day and particularly in packing down the event.

Crowd at the stage pic from Coulsdon's Yuletide Magic Christmas event

We were successful, thanks again to Ashley, in obtaining grant funding for community events to promote well being in and around Coulsdon. So far we have provided yoga mats to help get free yoga classes off the ground in Tollers Community Centre and are exploring art classes, plant to plate classes, helping to fill the funding gap for tea parties for older lonely people in Coulsdon, and adding in exercise classes.

Yoga mats laid out for class at Tollers Community Centre, Coulsdon

In addition, we are hoping to complete the first phase of the Coulsdon Art Trail
which Charlie King has done so much to get off the ground and to establish this as an interactive walking trail, similar to the interactive walking trail that the Friends of Farthing Downs put together.

We are also looking forward to partnering with Cozy Glow again for the Coulsdon Easter Trail, and the Hive will host the Easter Bunny and Streeter Marshall’s sponsorship will contribute additional Easter Eggs to enable free places to be given to local schools for those children who would otherwise be prevented from being able to take part due to the cost of living crisis.

The Hive community garden pic with logos
The Hive has gone from strength to strength last year due to the continued efforts of Gill and Wendy, Emily, Nikki and all of the remaining Hive volunteers. Thank you also for helping out at other Coulsdon Yuletide events, particularly the wrapping of the santa grotto gifts and manning the stalls at Halloween and Easter.

We are open to other ideas for ways that we can help the community and are looking for volunteers that are willing to take on projects, with a trustee in partnership with them, to enable us to spread ourselves more widely.

As trustees we are all volunteers with other commitments and other businesses. We are not paid for any work that we do for the charity and there are only so many hours in the day.

We are all passionate about making Coulsdon a success, but we do need to work more closely with other volunteering groups so that we are all working in the same direction for the good of Coulsdon as a whole.

I would like to thank my fellow trustees and all of the volunteers that have helped us get to where we are in just one year as a registered charity, and look forward to an even more successful year next year.

Eleanor Richardson

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