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The last twelve months have been quite busy for the committee. We were
heavily involved with arranging public meetings in order that residents could
debate with Wolverhampton Council their plans and vision for the W.E.C. We
have been informed that the Council have come to a decision on this matter,
and are about to make an announcement any time now. We were hoping this
would be before tonights meeting, but we have not heard anything.
During the first six months of 2016, Heather and myself were trying to obtain
funding in order that we could re-start our IT computer classes, and after
several meetings and the valued help of WVSC we were successful in getting
a grant from the lottery Awards for All scheme for 12 months, and with a
much sounder financial foundation, classes resumed on the 22nd. June., and
have proved a great success. During the summer we also helped
Wolverhampton Council present a series of weekly puppet shows and
workshops, again this proved very popular.
Our partnership with Creative Black Country continued, and with the expert
help of Jeremey Brown, were able to put on 2 outdoor plays in the rose
garden at Bantock Park. We also enabled over 70 parents and children to see
the “Smartest Giant” at Wightwick Manor by offering a discounted ticket.
Also 35 residents took up our offer to see “As you Like it” at the same venue.
These events were part of our Go and See programme with CBC.
June saw our 3rd annual canal cruise, this year we “sailed?” to The Anchor at
Coven for an evening meal. Champagne was served on the way, followed by
coffee on the return journey. A good time was had by all, and plans are being
made for our next cruise later this year.
November saw another annual event, with our 3rd barn dance. This year
however, we changed venue to Bantock, as the facilities were much better –
especially car parking and security. Our thanks to Chris, head of catering for
providing a superb licenced bar, and for Nigel for providing some excellent
mood lighting at very short notice.
February saw us present in partnership with Wolverhampton Council the one
man play / monologue “The Tat Man”, again held in the Tractor Shed at
Bantock This was an excellent production, well attended and enjoyed by all
In December we had the shock news of the sudden death of Stephanie
Clarke, wife of James Clarke, one of our excellent tutors at our Smart Yoga
classes. Stephanie herself was well known and respected for her dedicated
voluntary work with local communities. She was also an accomplished
photographer, and had staged several exhibitions of her work. The
committee sent their condolencies to the family.
Our relationship with CBC continues, and we were successful in our bid for
2017, which will enable us to deliver some even more exciting projects, and
entitles us to a further funding grant of £3000.00. Plans are afoot for series of
4 plays, again outdoor at Bantock, and also, subject to us getting the licence,
an open air cinema event to show “La La Land” - watch this space !
The pupets, and a new “walk in “ interactive play “Life’s a Beach” which will
be staged over several week-ends are booked for this summer, and will be
funded by the Council, with FCCA providing management.
Funding for Smart Yoga runs out in June this year, and your treasurer and
myself have been active in trying to obtain funds in order to allow it to
continue. With the help again of WVSC, and Sharon Nanen-Sen in particular,
we were again encouraged to approach the lottery. This year we were up
against 7 other groups, and for a smaller pot of money. We had to compile a
20 minute presentation in the style of Dragons’ Den, and in a very short
timescale. Again, with Sharon’s guidance and the professional services of
Derby based Jasper Film Studios Ltd, who made a power point video for us,
we managed to secure our full funding request, enabling us to carry on IT
classes until August 2018, and with added features.
Thank you.
Andrew Atkinson Chairman, FCCA

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