Archive for April, 2011

Minutes of meeting 19th April 2011


Held at No 59 (Sally and Jonathan’s), Tuesday 19th April, 8pm

1                    Attended by: Sally, Jonathan, Gordon, Betty, Bill, John (chair)

2                    Minutes taken by John.

3                    Apologies: Lindsey and Derek, Nick Lee, Jelly and Bob, Sam and Ali, Paul and Mary, Mick and Philipa, Da, Mireille and Mike, Sue Austin, Elman Poole, Peter and Susie, Ruth, Oona.

4                    Minutes of last meeting.

  1. Ali and Sam are still preparing a general newsletter.
  2. Bill has identified a skip hire company and will book one for after Green Balloon Day.
  3. John is still thinking about this will report to a later meeting.
  4. A new chairperson?

Minutes approved.

5                    The Annual Photographic Competition.

With help from Sam and Manda, Elman and John have finalised an Announcement letter to be sent to all residents shortly.

In summary:

  • The aims are “to stimulate observation and interest, encourage good photography, and at the same time collect an archive of relevant and possibly useful information about the Victoria Road community for the future”. The theme this year will be “Summer in Victoria Road
  • Entries will be in the form of 7-by-5 prints (very cheap from photo shops such as Jessop’s in St. Ebbes.)
  • Entries will close on 31st October.
  • Judging will be in time for an exhibition of entries and prize-giving at the Christmas Drinks in early December.
  • Elman has agreed to donate a First Prize of £40 and a Second Prize of £10, and the judges may nominate commended runners-up.
  • There are some other details and restrictions detailed in the Announcement. The panel of Judges will be announced in due course.
  • We need a volunteer to be Competition Coordinator and one of the judges.

The job involves receiving entries, passing them round the judges ensuring that judges don’t know who the entrant is, recording judges’ decisions, preparing the award cheques and certificates, organising the exhibition of entries and the prize giving. Elman will give support and guidance. He has considerable experience with such competitions!

If you are interested in photography, have a knack for working an administrative process, and can drive a computer, please volunteer to or 310248!

6                    Events

  1.  Prep for Green Balloon Day (14th May).

VRG Chair John can’t be here on the 14th. So the people who have volunteered will have to organise themselves and sort out any unexpected emergencies!

People who gave apologies but volunteered for GBD: Jelly for leafleting; Nick and Sue; Mick and Philippa for anything except judging the pet show; Sam and Ali; Lindsey and Derek later in the morning.

Mary and Paul will be back well before the day.


  • Preparation of text: these should give instructions (which could be copied from 1st flyer). Refreshments/bakery contributions should be taken to Bill and Diana’s. People should bring their own mugs/cups to the refreshment table. – John will prepare this.
  • Printing – we hoped that Mary and Paul will be able to run off enough copies for all Victoria Road addresses from the Invitation text supplied by John – Mary/Paul.
  • Attaching of balloons – Ali has the balloons and knows how to do this. I expect others will volunteer to help her directly. (We didn’t know how long this takes. But the printing will have to take place early enough to leave plenty of time.) – Ali.
  • Distribution of ballooned Invites (prepared by Ali and team) to all residents around 7th May – Jelly and another volunteer (contact Ali to volunteer and pick up Invites.) – Jelly plus volunteers.

Days before 14th:

  • Find the

o   Urn – we thought Mary and Paul had this – Jonathan/Bill.

o   Extension lead – if there is one with the urn, use that otherwise Jonathan, for example, can supply – Jonathan/Bill.

o   Serving tables, sitting tables and some garden seats – are at #59, plus additional seats/tables and parasols/sun-shields would be welcome. – Jonathan/Bill.

o   Plates – Diana.

  • Shopping for refreshment table: tea (breakfast blend or similar), coffee, milk, sugar, squash, Gordon will supply real coffee.  – Sally.

In time for start at 10:30:

  • Decorating of lamp-posts with coloured paper or other decorations 8^) (Last year red, white and blue. Different this year?) — Ali.
  • Receiving of contributed cakes at #55, etc.– Bill and Diana.
  • Decision about weather – even if the weather were to be quite unfavourable, we expected that there would be some GBD activity. So the clear up at 15:00 would be needed. Otherwise, we will leave it to individuals to decide: refreshment table (Bill and Diana), pet show (Ali), any music (Dick)
  • Setting up of refreshments table at Bill and Diana’s – Bill, Diana, Nick, Sam, Sally.

From 10:30 to 1:00:

  • Refreshment table rota

o   10:30 – 11:00 Gordon and Jonathan

o   11:00 – 11:30 Sally and Betty

o   11:30 – 12:00 Mick and Diana (suggested)

o   12:00 – 12:30 Nick and Philippa (suggested)

o   12:30 – 13:00  Derek and Lindsey (suggested)
If suggested times are unsuitable, please sort it out between you on the day!

  • Events

o   12:00   Pet Show – Ali

o   John has suggested to Dick that any appropriate Street Music would be well-received. Any volunteer performers, coordinate with Dick. — Dick.

At 15:00:

  • Collect unwanted items.  — Nick, Sam and two other volunteers. It would probably help to volunteer a van or similar. Peter is away this GBD. (contact Nick or Sam to volunteer help or a van.)
  • Take them to several local charities. — Sam, Nick

7                    Communications received

  1. Police Superintendent Amanda Pearson: “…we have continued to see a downward trend in crimes that matter to our communities. For example, 120 fewer people have had their homes broken into in 2010/11, compared to the previous year. Burglary, robbery and autocrime have reduced by 283 offences…. In a period where cuts are being made across the public sector, I would like to reassure you that my front-line officers have been protected, so the excellent work … will continue… anti-social behavior, … has also fallen this year. …continuing to target offenders and work together in our neighbourhoods to show that criminal activity will not be tolerated in our city.”
  2. PC Amanda Kerman emailed me via Oona: “We would like to increase our visibility and engagement opportunities with you all by attending any meetings or summer events that you may have planned. If you would be interested, please feel free to make contact with us on – marked for my attention. Kind Regards, PC 5401 Kerman. Neighbourhood Specialist Officer. North Oxford Neighbourhood Team.Oxford Police Station. 08458 505 505”

We agreed that a discrete uniform presence would be OK for GBD, and might even help PC Kerman’s aims. It’s less clear that this would work at events held in peoples’ houses or gardens. John will email PC Kerman, and suggest

  1. She attend GBD
  2. If she would like to talk to a VRG meeting, we will put her on a future agenda, or arrange a special session.

8                     AOB

Nothing arising.

9                    Thanks to hosts Jonathan and Sally.

10                The next meeting will be on Wednesday 8th June at Bill and Diana’s.

Future Dates

1                    Summer Garden Party 19th July at Sally and Jonathan’s

2                    The next Music Evening is planned for the Autumn.

Ideas gratefully received on how we might broaden it to include Dance and/or Drama, and maybe even thread Music together with some kind of overall narrative, perhaps linked to some local historical story. What was here before Victoria Road was built?



Facebook Group


Leave a Comment

Exploring Views on a Community Benefit Co-Operative: Photovoltaic Panels for Cherwell School

Dear friends, and neighbors of Summertown,

I am contacting you to ask whether you’d complete this modest survey to help us gather information about our emerging enterprise to put photovoltaic panels on the roofs of The Cherwellschool. We are setting up a community benefit co-operative and are circulating this survey to assess views and reactions.

How Photovoltaic Cells Work

How Photovoltaic Cells Work

I’d be very grateful if you could give it the 4-5 minutes it might take and circulate it if you can think of anyone who might have feelings or interest in this sort of thing.

Though there’s the opportunity to give feedback contained in the survey, please comment on this blog if you have further reactions that don’t fit the survey template, or which you wish to share with others.

Just follow the link

Thanks very much


Comments (3)