In answer to a recent enquiry about what happens to the proceeds of the village fete, I provided some thoughts. I think perhaps this note might be a useful refresher on FVT matters for everyone?

We are planning to donate 10% of the net fete proceeds to charity, Bill has proposed Fitzwaryn School ] as a worthy cause for a village fete donation. It is a remarkable place, doing wonderful work with challenged children and young people.

The maintenance of the Village Hall building, which is FVT’s only major asset, is covered by the FVT General Fund. We share the cost of any maintenance of the building with St John’s Church on the ratio of the building area – Nave to Chancel, 70% to FVT, 30% to St John’s, an arrangement which works well. The latest project to be completed is the refurbishment of 5 of the leaded windows with most of the funds coming from grants which I applied for. In case you wondered, St John’s Church pays FVT a hall hire fee for the use of the Church for each Sunday morning service. and for other religious uses (funerals, baptisms, weddings etc). Annabelle’s Nursery pays FVT £1000 per term and this covers hall wear and tear, insurance and other running expenses. Annabelle’s makes a major contribution to all utility bills. Income from the hall is used by FVT for many purposes, not just building maintenance – a new Coleman shelter is just one example of a recent purchase.

In case you are not aware, the FVT shed was broken into two weeks ago and some expensive grounds maintenance equipment was stolen. As with house insurance, the insurance excess means we will not get back enough to re-purchse these items. A sad outcome. So if you see anyone in the Hall car park, and especially vans etc, please be challenging, take a photo of the number plate and let Herbie or I know (or Police if you feel a robbery is in progress). Many thanks.

Turning to village amenity projects (bus stop, flashing speed signs etc), these are covered by the Parish Meeting and specifically by Village Precept funding, not by FVT. The village discusses and then takes a vote at the Parish Meeting on what it wants to do with the precept money and which projects the village wants to take forward. The projects are discussed at one of the Parish Meetings, David Burke would be the contact for any queries.

The FVT charitable objects require its money to be spent on community benefit and enterprises only, however, discretionary charitable grants can be made if the case is strong (as above). In recent years FVT has sent money to the Teenage Cancer Trust, Police Dependents’ Trust, Shelter, Crisis at Christmas and the Salvation Army.

FVT Volunteers take the lead in organizing the two major events of the year – the fete in June and the fireworks in November.  FVT owns the village marquee and has recently purchased a new Coleman shelter (like a gazebo) for the village fete. It is available for hire by villagers, as are all the Trust’s assets – tables, chairs, car park hire etc, for a modest fee.  Most of FVTs expenditure is on Fernham’s Fabulous Fireworks (recovered from entrance fees) and the Christmas Pensioners’ Lunch. This year FVT made a £500 grant towards the village’s Royal Wedding celebrations in May. Other village celebrations that have been supported include the Queen’s 90th Birthday Tea Party and the previous Royal Wedding (William and Kate).

If you would like to step forward to run a community event in the village, FVT may be able to help, we are simply a group of village volunteers who try to make the village a pleasant place to live in for everyone. We can’t run everything in the village (and don’t want to!) so if you would like to join in as a FVT volunteer, please let Bill, Herbie, Steve Lee or myself know, we’d be delighted to chat things through.

Thanks and best wishes, and I hope this note was useful for you.


on behalf of FVT Volunteers