The Town Council has read with interest Mr Roger Bellairs’ letter in the October edition expressing his concern that the Council was ‘distancing itself’ from St Mary’s Day Centre. We can assure both the community and Mr Bellairs that this is very much not the case.
The Council has a history of grant-aiding the Day Centre and the sums awarded are increasing. We awarded £1,500 in July 2018 – the sum requested. The Minutes go on to say that the Council would look into an ongoing commitment. However, the Day Centre did not apply for the first ‘window’ of grant applications in June/July 2019, so the management was prompted to put an application in.
For several years the Day Centre has provided an excellent service on a fairly informal basis – so informal that it does not have its own bank account. This informality can be a considerable obstacle when seeking grant funds elsewhere. In order to secure a long-term future for the Day Centre I, along with the other Trustees for the Tetbury Relief in Need Charity, am working with the Centre management to identify the funding it requires and to transform it into a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO). This is a relatively new type of charity with a formal management structure that will enable the Day Centre to apply for grants more widely. Tetbury Relief in Need is separate from the Council but I made the Council aware of the discussions and it supports the change. It was those talks that were the topic of my Mayor’s article in the September Advertiser; the talks are progressing well and no doubt there will be an announcement in due course.
On 23rd September, prior to Mr Bellairs’ letter being published, the Council granted a further £1,500 to the Day Centre. This was again the full sum requested. In addition to awarding £1,500 to the Day Centre itself in 2018 and again in 2019, last year the Town Council also awarded a grant of £500 to the Memory Club and a further £150 to the Bingo Club. Both of these groups add much to what the Day Centre can offer while being independent of its management.
I hope this response shows that, far from ‘distancing itself’ from St Mary’s Day Centre, the Town Council is doing everything it can to support it.
Councillor Nikki Ind
Mayor of Tetbury
How can I support the Day Centre?
Donations to St Mary’s Day Centre can be made through the Town Council offices, with cheques made payable to ‘Tetbury Relief in Need’.
BACS transfers to the Tetbury Relief in Need bank account can be made to Sort Code 30-92-06, account number 01580297. As reference, please quote your name and either ‘Day Centre’ or ‘DC’