NORDEN FARM - UPDATE
To consider report and update.
Steph James, Maidenhead Town Centre Manager, introduced the report and Jane Corry, CE and Artistic Director at Norden Farm who will update the panel on the activities at Norden Farm and the AGM that took place in December 2020.
Jane Corry, Martin Kay (Chairman of NF Board), John Seymour (Chair of Finance Committee) and Ray Bauer (Financial Controller).
Martin Kay thanked the borough for their continual support and handed back to Jane Corry to go through the presentation. (Presentation attached).
Councillor Price commented that she was very impressed with all the engagement and looking after the disadvantaged children and all the social media activities, the coverage had been excellent. Councillor Price asked for clarification on the £50K that had been put aside for art organisations to bid for, in order to develop further funding streams. Martin Kay informed the Panel that of the £50K, £16k had been earmarked for Norden Farm and that had been included in the £80 that was projected as the total council support for next year.
Councillor G Jones asked John Seymour a question about the business interruption policy and that there may be potential for some pay-out. Councillor Jones asked for more information about this, how much had been applied for and what were the chances of receiving it. John Seymour advised the Panel that a number of claims had been put in ranging from £18K to £80K. Norden Farm felt that most of the applications would be invalidated as they had received the CRF grant.
Councillor Rayner gave more detail to the Panel about the £50K. This was in the growth bid in the budget for 2021-2022. It was an ongoing £50K which had been earmarked in the budget for the borough. Organisations such as Norden Farm and The Old Court can then bid for monies from other funders such as the Arts Council, charities and trusts if they are supported by the borough.
Councillor Del Campo asked that when the council funding eventually stops, what will be the biggest impact for residents? Martin Kay commented that they would like to continue the discounted rates for residents as this was part of the ethos of the arts centre, to help the community group. Jane Corry continued that when the funding disappeared completely, Norden Farm would be a very different place. It would only be open to the public for half a week so that would immediately impact the community groups. In that time, Norden Farm would need to look for new business. Jane Corry continued and said that they were very determined, had an amazing board, brilliant business brains, a really strong management team and a very loyal supporter base.
Councillor Bhangra thanked everyone at Norden Farm. Councillor Bhangra asked if there was any grant funding that they were still waiting to hear from as the government had recently announced further support for arts and culture. Norden Farm had filed an application for CR1, CR2 and would be applying for CR3. Jane Corry had ben completing at least two applications a day and earlier on, she was successful in getting the grants but that was decreasing.
Councillor Hilton, Lead Member for Finance, commented that it had been an interesting year, but the council had come through with putting three million pounds into reserve. This reserve would be used towards filling the black hole of £9.25 million that had been created by Covid 19. This was a result of lost income in car parking and leisure centres. Councillor Hilton informed the Panel that money had been put aside for grants and Councillor Rayner and Chris Joyce were working with the organisations to turn £50K into £100K.