Last updated: 17th June 2014

VIEW or Download a copy of  ESJF Chair’s Report to the third AGM 14th July 2014

VIEW or Download a copy of Exeter St James Forum Accounts 1st June 2013 to 31st May 2014



Annual General Meeting & Presentation and Update on Queen’s Crescent Garden
was held Saturday 14th June 2014 - 4pm to 5.30 pm

Members and Associate Members of ESJF were formally invited to the third Forum AGM on Saturday 14th June 2014 at St Sidwell’s Primary School, York Road.

The AGM meeting started at 4.45pm and was followed  by a presentation and update on the Queen’s Crescent Garden Project which will start at 4 pm.

Below (also downloadable) – AGM Agenda... minutes of AGM of 8th June 2013,
nomination forms for the Standing Committee elections, the Forum constitution

To follow, before AGM on 14th June: Chair’s report, 2013/14 Accounts, copies of any motions received by 5pm on Friday 30th May (see below)


Note that the event has now passed, so the gramatical tenses in the following text will be out of date.

Motions to AGM
Members are welcome to submit a motion for consideration at the AGM.
Motions should be proposed and seconded by members of ESJF and should be sent to the Membership Secretary by 5pm on Friday, 30th May, either by email to:
or by post/hand-delivered to:–
ESJF, c/o St Sidwell’s Centre, Sidwell Street, Exeter EX4 6NN

Nominations for Officers and Steering Group members
Please seriously consider standing for election to the Steering Group – we welcome new people with ideas and enthusiasm for St James. The Steering Group meets formally once every two months with Project Groups and Forum Panels meeting between times. There is a lot to interest any volunteer and a much we could do.
Our constitution states that there are 4 Officers and 5 open place Steering group members to be elected at the AGM. The 4 Officer roles are Chair, Treasurer, Minute Secretary and Membership Secretary. After her year in the Chair Di Boston will be standing down from that role but will be re-standing as a Steering Group member. Annette Plaut will be re-standing as Treasurer. The Forum needs a Minute Secretary and Robyn Connett would like to pass on the role of Membership Secretary to someone who is happy with databases so she can concentrate on Queen’s Crescent Garden. If you are considering standing for the SG and have any questions please get in touch with Di Boston at

The work of preparing the Neighbourhood Plan finished a year ago. Now the Forum Projects and Panels can get on with making our ward a more vibrant and balanced community. The fun and wider local involvement in getting on with the projects is underway. Now is a great time to join the Steering Group, to take a more direct interest in the future of St James.

You can nominate yourself – don’t wait to be asked. Nominations can be sent to the same e mail or postal address as motions (see above), they may be submitted up to the start of the AGM at 4 pm on 14thJune.

Download a copy of the Nomination Form




4.45 pm AGM    Download a copy of the AGENDA 


1. Apologies
2. Minutes of the second AGM - June 2013
3. Matters Arising from those minutes
4. Matters Arising from those minutes but not on this Agenda
5. Chairman’s introduction and report for the year 2013/14
6. Financial report for the year 2013/14
7. Any motions to the AGM submitted in advance of the meeting
8. Any 2013 AGM matters not on this Agenda
9. Election of Officers for the coming year:
a. Chair
b. Treasurer
c. Minute Secretary
d. Membership Secretary and
e. 5 Steering Group members

Please note that Residents’ Associations have a standing invitation to send a representative to Steering Group meetings – names to be submitted by the Residents’ Associations.


1. The coming year
2. Budget for 2014/15
3. Projects and Plans
4. Any other business





Download a copy of the 2013 AGM draft minutes


SAT 8TH JUNE 2013 4pm


Katy McCleod, Judy Yung, Gareth Oughton (Students ‘ Guild), Dawn Rivers (ECC), John Croysdale, Ian Hodgson, Ruth Stringer (Steering Group), Mark Phillips (Steering Group)

2. INUTES OF THE FIRST AGM June 2012 Approved

3. MATTERS ARISING There were no matters arising

Jo Hawkins introduced the current Steering Group members to the meeting and reiterated the apologies for Ruth Stringer and Mark Phillips
The Forum had had an eventful year since receiving Front Runner status and funding of £20,000 which had been given to ECC. The Forum had directly spent funds on consultation meetings, venues, design and production of printing and publications. On our behalf ECC had spent money on three applications – for St James as a designated area, for the Forum to be the recognised body for the area and finally to seek feedback on the Neighbourhood Plan. They also paid for help from consultant David Bell of LDA, the Independent Inspector (Graham Swift)’s examination of the Neighbourhood Plan and the cost of the referendum itself. The Forum was now broke as any remaining front Runner funding, if it existed, could not be spent by us now the referendum has given approval of the Plan.
St James was the second approved NP in the country, the first urban plan and the first to use a Forum to represent a designated area. The 91.6% yes vote was very pleasing despite the poor election turnout. Government Ministers Nick Boles and Don Foster had visited the ward and now the Forum was receiving enquiries from academics and other groups seeking information and advice. The neighbourhood Plan will go to ECC for final acceptance in July.
Jo herself was not re-standing as Chair but wanted to remain on the Steering Group. Jo hoped the Forum would now be more relaxed, taking forward projects such as Queens Crescent Garden and Neighbourhood Walks.
As there were no questions for the Chair she handed over to Paul Hedley, the Treasurer, for the Financial Report for 20112/13.

Paul Hedley presented the accounts which were for 14 months in order to be up to date following the referendum. He gave thanks for the donations given which enabled the Forum to run a Yes Campaign, including £100 from John Lewis, for which taxpayers’ money could not be used.

Jo Hawkins outlined the rationale for the amendments being put to the AGM.
a. Forum Funding – a new Section 6 a) – d) to give the Forum powers to raise funds for its projects and Steering Group activities - the latter were estimated at £950 for the forthcoming year. Agreed unanimously.
b. Membership – section 4c) – to enable others with ‘an interest in St James’ such as people walking regularly through the ward en route to work to join the Forum as an associate member. Agreed unanimously.
c. Reports to the Steering Group – Section 5j) – to reflect the work of the SG post referendum. Agreed unanimously.

Di Boston was unanimously voted in a Chair
Annette Plaut was unanimously voted in a Treasurer
No one stood as minute secretary
Jo Hawkins, Ruth Stringer, Frazer Osment unanimously SG members
Phillipa Hogan was also unanimously elected to the SG
Mark Phillips to remain as rep of Devonshire Place residents’ Assoc
Meg Hitchcock Prospect Park RA rep
Lynn Hartmann for Bury Meadow RA
Aylwyn Bowen for Thornton West RA
Mark Clemoes for Oxford Road RA
Paul Layton to replace Paul Hedley as rep for Powderham Cres RA

Jo Hawkins thanked Jill Day, Dawn Rivers and Richard Short , ECC officers for their help and support, also Rory Cunningham and Gareth Oughton from the University and Guild of Students and all the elected local councillors.
Cllr Keith Owen thanks the Steering Group on behalf of the St James residents and Frazer Osment gave particular thanks to Jo Hawkins.

The business of the AGM being over, Jo then handed over to Di Boston, the incoming Chair to take the meeting through The Coming Year.



A. Di outlined her vision for the Forum and reminded members to keep in touch.
B. Jo Hawkins outlined the SG budget for 2013/14 to ensure sufficient funds for the SG’s work.
C. Frazer Osment outlined the Forum’s ‘Top 5’ projects agreed at the Members Workshop in February:
a. Queen Crescent Garden
b. Relationships with University and Guild
c. Street improvements – Well Street as a possible focus
d. Transport Panel - to be led by Mike Reddaway
e. Design Review Panel – to look at applications from the Cricket Club, Exeter City Football, at HMO variations etc
D. There was some discussion regarding the surplus of student accommodation – building a surplus could not be a factor when considering planning applications the Councillors explained.
E. Davis Trehearne described his application for lottery funding for his oral history walks project which would be submitted after 16th July.





Download a copy of the Constitution

Amendments and addition in italics, approved at AGM on 8 June 2013

1. Exeter St James Forum was established by a number of Residents’ Associations and individuals in the St James ward for the express purpose of promoting or improving the social, economic and environmental well-being of the ward primarily through the development and implementation of a Neighbourhood Plan

2. The Forum shall exist for 5 years from its formal designation by Exeter City Council, and at its AGM at the end of year 4 (2016) the AGM will give consideration to a continuing or successor organisation to maintain and monitor the St James Neighbourhood Plan

3. The Forum’s ultimate authority comes from its Annual General Meeting
a) The AGM, and any other public meetings held, give legitimacy to the Steering Group of the Forum (as defined in 5e) below) and the plans they or Forum task or working groups may develop
b) If there is more than one public meeting in any one year, one (in May or June) will be designated as the AGM
c) The AGM will be called with at least 15 working days’ notice once per year by informing all residential properties in the ward
d) The AGM has the power to both elect, and remove by a vote of no confidence, any member of the Steering Group
e) At each AGM the Chair will provide a written report, the Treasurer will provide a set of accounts for the previous year and the Minute secretary will record the proceedings

4. Forum membership is open to all residents of St James ward
a) Individuals can sign up as members at any Forum public meetings or by contacting the Forum via its website or any Steering Group member
b) Members may be contacted by the Steering Group from time to time to act as a litmus test for ideas and proposals or to be invited to participate in other activities related to the work of the Forum
c) Individuals running businesses or working in St James or with an interest in St James can become Associate Members of the Forum, can attend meetings, including the AGM, can volunteer for the Forum and receive Forum mailings but cannot vote at the AGM
d) Membership is open to all elected local authority councillors whose ward or division includes St James
e) The Forum can liaise with the larger employers in the ward via designated representative(s)
f) Membership of the Forum should at all times be a minimum of 21 individuals

5. Forum Steering Group
a) The Steering Group (SG) exists to co-ordinate, implement and monitor the work of the Forum including developing a Neighbourhood Plan for St James. It will prioritise, schedule and publicise the work of the Forum
b) The SG is a working committee made up from Forum members elected at the AGM and representatives of Residents’ Associations within St James, all of whom have a vote.
c) Non- voting SG members with specialist skills may be co-opted onto the SG and the SG may set up Task or Working Groups of Forum members for specific projects or tasks to be undertaken
d) The SG will liaise with the relevant bodies such as the University, Exeter City Football Club, business associations, the local authorities and the elected representatives for St James ward
e) Steering Group Members to be elected at the AGM, are: Chairman, Treasurer, Minute Secretary and Membership Secretary plus 5 Open Place members
f) SG decision making can be by consensus or after a vote – the Chair will have the casting vote
g) The SG has the power to hold votes of no confidence in any member by simple vote
h) Only full members of the Forum may stand for the Steering Group and should be nominated by a member or Associate Member
i) Representatives of Residents’ groups and associations on the SG are responsible for communicating between the Forum and their group/association
j) The Steering Group will receive and consider reports from relevant project groups and panels

6. Forum Funding

The Forum can raise funds for its activities by one or more of the following methods:
a) Charging membership fees on an individual and/or associate member basis – level of fees to be agreed at an AGM or extraordinary general meeting
b) Submitting applications to grant awarding bodies for appropriate funds
c) Working in partnership with organisations which have funds to spend in the St James ward
d) By other means in keeping with the role of the Forum, including revenue from the website, donations, and proceeds from events

June 2012/amended May 2013


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