Notice of WHRF Annual General Meeting (AGM) 2023

Dear all

We hereby give notice that the Annual General Meeting of Wookey Hole Residents’ Forum will take place on Tuesday 12th December 7.00 - 8.00pm upstairs in the Skittle Alley at Wookey Hole Club.

All residents are automatically members of the Forum and welcome, and encouraged, to attend the AGM.

Re-election of the committee

1. The current WHRF Forum committee are standing to continue for a further year if approved by members at the AGM.

Chair: Jo PlimmerVice chair: vacant - re-considering as Co-ChairSecretary: Sarah MardleTreasurer: Sarah Chambers Committee member: Joanna DaveyCommittee member: Charlie ChambersCommittee member: Dave Plimmer

2. Verity Lake has joined the committee as an un-elected committee member over the last year, and has already been a huge help in enabling the success of recent forum events.

Verity is standing for election to formally join the committee.

3. Doug Robinson has resigned from the committee; we are all very grateful for his support and efforts over the years and wish him well.

4. We are looking for new people to join the committee, including to support us on minute-taking and social media, and also to step into the role of Vice Chair (which we propose to change to Co-Chair).

If you are interested in either of these roles, or getting more involved in the Forum and committee in any other ways, please get in touch.

Election of these roles will be at the next General Meeting.

Other business

The meeting will include annual reports on the last year from the Chair and Treasurer.

Following the formal business there will be a chance to socialise with other village residents. Cold drinks available from the Club Bar downstairs, and tea and coffee in the Skittle Alley along with seasonal snacks.

We look forward to seeing you on 12th December.

Kind regards

WHRF Committee

Minutes of WHRF committee meeting held at The WH Club 7.30pm 4th May 2023



Jo Plimmer-Chair, Sarah Chambers-Treasurer, Joanna Davey, Verity Lake

Apologies for absence

Charlie Chambers, Dave Plimmer, Sarah Mardle, Doug Robinson

Minutes of last meeting

held 23rd March 2023 were agreed but will check with Doug for quorate

Welcome Verity Lake! Brief intro to the Forum and what its aims are, and the committee

Treasurers report

Current balance in the WHRF account: £1,539.64 £520 is being held for the Parish Council grant (Neighbourhood Plan) Leaving a balance of £1019.64


Working Group reports:

Alternative community space;

One meeting in January to explore alternatives Task of group since then to investigate/shortlist Findings to date: Several groups have started using alternative spaces in village in the last few months WH Hotel: WI WH Club: Ladies Club, Lunch Club and Cinema Club. Latter attracting bigger audience since the move. Hotel use limited by needs of guests and business; couldn’t accommodate all groups. Club happy and interested in exploring and enabling more community use. Fits with their purpose. Broader issues around logistics and accessibility which perhaps the Forum could work with them on? Wookey Hole Church a genuine option but likely to be more complex, requiring significant investment and complex permissions. A long term option. Other options which are unlikely (long list): St Cuthberts Mill Lodge (needing refurbishment, not easy to negotiate as under control of demolition company: too far from village) Corner of land near allotments (due to distance, access, parking) Former Community Hall site (building too far gone, site too close to the resort) Still to investigate: feasibility of various Glencot options put forward including alongside cricket pavilion. Action: Sarah and Charlie to explore with Mr Harris via Graham Communication

What’s on email

All agreed Sarah M doing a great job on this. The list is much broader; great to see cricket and pizzas on the list!

Coronation email

All agreed to this, and to also add the link to the Armchair Field planning application etc. Sarah C to email Sarah M about this so she can get the email out Thursday


Sarah M and Jo started looking at this: move this to next meeting when Sarah M attending

Discussion around Somerset Community Foundation application (to help with website & village connections etc) hard to do this without first finding out from village what is needed (see below)


August Cream Tea at Glencot (Charlie and Sarah to ask Graham and Mr Harris to arrange date alongside cricket)

Tree planting discussion around wider context for replacing the millennium trees of Ash dieback impact on our area. Also, whether village can engage with Caves and other landowners and stakeholders to encourage and work with them on a broader approach to tree planting. Somerset Community Foundation suggest sources for trees and grant funding if need and opportunities there. Action: Jo to ask Julia and David for advice, and then potentially explore with Woodland Trust first

December Christmas meal idea move to next meeting but Sarah C noted request from village for Christmas tree. Discussion around planting a tree, or doing something temporary to begin with.

New idea (Charlie and Jo on their Bristol commutes together) Wookey Hole village witch trail (like scarecrow trail). Caves are very interested and have offered to support with marketing and prize (eg weekend in a chalet with hot tub). Positive at meeting; need to get views of rest of committee.

Potential Committee Projects/Tasks Mendip Hills Grant and Somerset Community Foundation - discussions & actions coming out of this - Sarah C/Jo

Safeguarding policy

(Jo offered to action)

Village questionnaire

Joanna suggested beginning process with Coffee Morning at the Club, inviting representatives from the Club and other Village groups to attend Then flyering village to check what we’ve heard and had suggested at event. Invite village clubs, Club and Caves and circus school to share things (Sarah and Jo to get together and organise a to do list and plan of action) Dates: 25th June or 2nd July? Early afternoon at club? 2-4?

Websites & socials

to be discussed next meeting, Sarah M and Jo looking in to this Should we be considering a Facebook page – perhaps need to consider paying for professional help

Local Planning Applications

An appeal has been raised regarding the 50 houses planning request at Armchair Field. Ivor Tetley is engaging a planning officer to defend this. Poster to be circulated to the email group by Sarah Mardle


Tree plaques options: take this off agenda until we know what we are doing about tree planting

Sarah C suggested hamper to thank Julia for all she has done for the village and Forum. Sarah to action and get back to committee.

Date, time and venue of next meeting

After June/July event, but event working party before

WHRF Update & Village Witchy Scarecrow Competition

Dear all
Thank you to everyone who came to the village forum coffee morning in September. Around 40 people came, bringing lots of comments and ideas: we will review and report on these at the AGM in December.
Thanks to some amazing village bakers and a raffle the event raised over £180 for the Church Flowers Fund.
One of the popular ideas put forward was a village ‘witchy scarecrow’ competition and trail for Halloween.
We’ve decided to go for it and try this out this year, and thanks to support from Wookey Hole Caves, Wookey Hole Inn and Souldough pizzas there are some great prizes on offer for winning scarecrows:
1st Mendip View Lodge weekend
2nd Dinner for two at the Wookey Hole Inn
3rd Souldough Pizza family voucher
We’re a bit later than planned publicising but we do hope you and your neighbours will join in and get creative with making your own witchy scarecrow!
How to take part:
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and let us know your name and address (by Sunday 22nd latest please so we can put you on a trail map)
Let us know if it is a child or adult entry (or both). Have your witchy scarecrow ready and on display from Thursday 26th to Tuesday 31st October.
Prizes will be awarded 6-7pm Mon 30th October at The Mill Restaurant, Wookey Hole Caves (formerly Captain Jack’s).
If you are not quite in the village but are interested in getting involved please get in touch.
Best wishes from
Wookey Hole Residents Forum Committee



Minutes of WHRF committee meeting held at The WH Club 7.30pm 23rd March 2023

Minutes of WHRF committee meeting held at The WH Club 7.30pm 23rd March 2023

Present Jo Plimmer-Chair, Sarah Mardle -Secretary, Sarah Chambers-Treasurer, Julia Scarth, Doug Robinson, Dave Plimmer,

Apologies for absence Joanna Davey, Charlie Chambers

Minutes of last meeting held 7th February 2023 were agreed and signed and will be posted on the Wookey Hole website.

Treasurers report Current balance in the WHRF account: £1,539.64 £520 is being held for the Parish Council grant (Neighbourhood Plan) Leaving a balance of £1019.64 Sarah C reported that the WHRF insurance is currently with Zurich & this covers us for up to 12 community events per year with up to 500 people.

Mendip Hill Projects Tree Planting Grant Sarah C reported that the application for a grant had not been successful, but Mendip Hill Projects had said they would work with Sarah C & help her re-apply.

Jo has asked Somerset Community Foundation for information re developing new village communications & they have replied requesting a meeting. Jo & Sarah to report back at next meeting.

The ideas for how to attach the tree plaques will be discussed at the next meeting.

Working Groups WH Community Space working group - Jo will report back once the group has done first tasks (exploring options) and met up again.

Traffic in Village - A preliminary report was submitted to Somerset County Council last year but no feedback has been received. Marcel Haydn had said last year that SCC would put up some signs, but no further info has been received regarding this. All the data collected during the investigations will be kept by Sarah C in case there is any future interest.

Communications WH Whats On Sarah M has agreed to produce this

WH Website alternatives Jo is going to meet Somerset Community Foundation for advice & report back at next meeting.

Sarah M has had a rough quote from a local web designer to create a new village web site with links to all the other businesses & clubs in the area. Jo suggested we meet to discuss options after her meeting with Somerset Community group.

Future Events The annual Bring & Share supper - Dates to be suggested at next meeting

King Charles Coronation 06/05/23 It was suggested that we could send out flyer to ask villagers what they want to do. Concerns were raised that we haven't got enough time left to organise a village event. Sandy has volunteered to organise a childrens’ activity stall if required.

Sarah M to check with WH Inn to see if anything is organised there. Julia to check with Church, Jo P to check with Sandy & Jenny, Jo to check with Caves & Circus. The WH Club has nothing currently planned.

Tree planting Now postponed until November '23 - Jo to report back after meeting with Somerset Community Foundation.

Glencott Cream Tea August '23, Charlie to ask Graham if this is possible, also to coincide with a cricket match - 6th, 13th August or 3rd September.

Julia has spoken to WH Inn & has a rough idea about costs for having a village meal there at the end of the year. The pub can seat up to 60 people & a week day event would require a min spend of £2000, a Frid/Sat event minimum £3500. It was suggested that the cost of the food could be subsidised by WHRF e.g. £20 per person. To be discusses further at next meeting.

Local Planning Applications None

Somerset Emergency Community Contacts Julia attended a Teams meeting with Daisy from Somerset Emergency Community Contacts (Lisa Pool from parish Council also present). Ivor Tetley has volunteered to be the emergency community contact for Wookey Hole.

AOB Julia reported that conversations around creating an oral history of the village are taking place (Tess Lipin, Elizabeth Rennie, Rob Hale, Paul Fisher & Dave Hudsmith). Jo suggested this might connect with ideas put forward by Colin about the Bus Shelter’s potential as a natural and local heritage hub. Both could perhaps be included in a Heritage Lottery Funding bid.

Julia has, after 3 years of great service, stepped down as Chairperson of the WHRF. The committee thanked her for all her work. Jo Plimmer has now taken up the role.

Next meeting 7.30pm 17th April 2023 in WH Club

Minutes of WHRF committee meeting held at The WH Club 7th February 2023

Minutes of WHRF committee meeting held at The WH Club 7.30pm 7th February 2023

Present Julia Scarth-Chair, Sarah Mardle -Secretary, Doug Robinson, Joanna Davey, Jo Plimmer, Dave Plimmer,

Apologies for absence Sarah Chambers-Treasurer Charlie Chambers

Minutes of last meeting held 3rd November 2022 were agreed and signed and will be posted on the Wookey Hole website.

Treasurers report
Current balance in the WHRF account: £1,539.64
£520 is being held for the Parish Council grant (Neighbourhood Plan)  
Leaving a balance of £1019.64

Elizabeth Rennie’s donation to LWTST during covid
Elizabeth Rennie approved plans to donate 50% of this money to the Elim Church for the Food Bank at the Connect Centre & 50% to be held by WHRF to be used for whatever use they wanted to make of it.  The idea of using it towards the Coronation celebrations in the village on 06/05/2023 she thought would be fine. The Elim Church were very grateful for this donation.

New Venues for community groups
At the last Wookey Hole Residents Forum (WHRF) AGM last October, a number of people expressed concern at the loss of the community hall and showed an interest in exploring an alternative option.
As a result of this, the Wookey Hole Community Space working group was created by Jo Plimmer & the first meeting was held with 5 local residents on 26/01/23.
A number of venues were suggested & members of the working party are to investigate these further. They also agreed to draft a flyer / questionnaire for villagers and community to test the need and uses required.
They will meet again in March to discuss their findings.

WH Whats On
Jenny is standing down from producing the WH Whats On email. Sarah M said she would have a look at producing it until a new volunteer is found.

WH Website alternatives
Further investigations need to be done about how other villages websites work.
Jo suggested that she contact Somerset Community Group for advice.
Sarah to speak to WH Club secretary & their web designer to see how their web site is set up & what it's linked to.

Local Planning Applications
The Homestead Park planning refusal appeal lodged by the Caves has been dismissed by the Central Government Planning Inspector.

Tree walk 26/11/22 feedback
The event was a bit wet but a great success. Afterwards in the WH Club, the delicious cakes & lovely old village photos supplied by Dave Hudsmith were greatly enjoyed by all who attended.

The ideas for how to attach the plaques will be discussed at the next meeting.
Future Events
The annual Bring & Share supper could be re planned for March '23. Sarah M to ask the WH Club if it could be held there.
King Charles Coronation 06/05/23 WH Caves are closed that saturday so we could ask to use car park area for a village fete? Sarah M to ask WH club if they have anything planned, and if Sandy might consider coordinating an event. A couple of ideas included a cake and hat competition.
Tree planting that was due to take place in Feb '23 will now be postponed until November '23
Glencott Cream Tea August '23, Charlie to ask Graham if this is possible

Julia to find out more from the pub about costs, capacity and menu options for having a village meal there at the end of the year sometime.  

Traffic in Village
To discuss at next meeting

Mendip Hill Projects Tree Planting Grant
To discuss at next meeting

Les Cloutman has information about the TPO's in the village & will provide it to anyone wishing to take this up.

Julia to look at Webinar for Somerset Emergency Community Contacts on 14th March

Next meeting  7.30pm 9th March 2023 in WH Club

Minutes of WHRF committee meeting held at The WH Club 7.30pm 3rd Nov 2022

Minutes of WHRF committee meeting held at The WH Club 7.30pm 3rd Nov 2022

Present Julia Scarth-Chair, Sarah Mardle -Secretary, Sarah Chambers-Treasurer, Joanna Davey, Jo Plimmer, Dave Plimmer, Charlie Chambers

Apologies for absence Doug Robinson

Minutes of last meeting held 8th September 2022 were agreed and signed and will be posted on the Wookey Hole website.

Feedback on AGM There was a good turn out of residents, the feedback was positive & plenty stayed on to enjoy some Wookey Ale donated by Sam Mills, some local cheese donated by Mike Pullen & some wine provided by the WH Residents Forum.
No councillors attended & it was agreed that next time we make sure they are personally invited.

Treasurers report
Current balance in the WHRF account: £1,800.53
£520 is being held for the Parish Council grant (Neighbourhood Plan) and
£540.73 for Let’s Weather the Storm (LWTS)
Closing balance after the above taken off £739.80
Sarah C  checked with Roger re money from protest around the Pyrolysis Plant & all moneys had been transferred to WHRF account in 2013.
LWTS money - this was donated by Elizabeth Rennie towards food delivery during Covid.
It was agreed, subject to Elizabeth Rennie’s approval, that 50% of this money would be donated to the Elim Church for the Food Bank at the Connect Centre & 50% would be used for the Coronation celebrations in the village on 06/05/2023.

Community Hall Closure Marcel Hayden from the Parish Council has confirmed that due to the poor condition of the Community Hall, it is not financially viable for repair & future use.
Julia & Joanna had a meeting with Chris Goodchild from WH Caves to see if there was a room that could be used for the Cinema Club & the Ladies Club. Chris confirmed that this could possibly be done if a room was available but couldn't guarantee it.
WHRF agreed to request a working group to look at possible venues in the village, The WH Club was a popular choice.

Future Events
2.00 - 3.30pm 26th November - Village walk to see year 2000 commemorative trees.
An hour and a half walk led by Julia and Doug, followed by seasonal refreshments at the Club.
Event has been promoted by emails, posters and website. All those interested have been asked to register interest via whrf email in order to know numbers for teas and scones.

The commemorative tree plaques are being held by Julia until a suitable decision are made on how to attach them to the trees.

11.00am - 3.00pm 3rd December - Come help plant trees
It was agreed that this event be moved to February 2023.
Sarah C to approach Mendip Hill Project re £2000 tree planting grant, closing date 25/11/22

January 2023 Bring & Share Supper - possible venue The Club, to be discussed further at next meeting.

06/05/23 King Charles Coronation If hotel is closed could caves car park be used for village party? to be discussed at next meeting.

WH Village Web Site John Clarke is happy to run Weebily Web Site. Sam Mills of Wookey Ales created the Club website and might be interested.  Jo had mentioned asking young people that might have ideas.
Sarah M reported that the items listed on the web site were being viewed regularly.
Alternatives to be discussed at next meeting.

Planning Applications No new applications at present

Traffic in Village Paul Cannon has sent a preliminary report to Somerset County Council.
Marcel Hayden has confirmed that SCC will put some road signs up.

AOB Jo Plimmer to speak to Colin Babb about wild garden planting by bus shelter.

Next meeting  7.30pm 7th February 2023 in WH Club


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