Reminder to all in the village, that the CDT AGM takes place in the White Church at 7pm on Tuesday 11th April.
All welcome – members and non-members.
The CDT is owned by the community, for the benefit of the community. This is your chance to come along and tell us what you think – good or bad.
Here is a brief update on the current developments at Cultybraggan from Jeremy Spurway, the CDT chair.
Hopefully you’re aware of the many community benefits hosted out at Cultybraggan: the Orchard, the Allotments, Comrie in Colour, the Outdoor Playgroup, the Woodland, the Cubs, the Men’s (and Hen’s) Shed, and storage for other groups (PFA, Fortnight, Drama, Cancer, Christmas Lights., Mums & Toddlers), but here I’d like to focus on the areas that feature most heavily in our financial balancing act.
In essence, CDT has four distinct operational areas at Cultybraggan Camp:
- renovating, maintaining, and letting huts, other spaces, and infrastructure for private and commercial use and events
- self-catering accommodation in the renovated B-listed huts
- public events
- museum, Camp and Comrie heritage
Looking at these in reverse order, here are my thoughts:
In common with most museums and other sites of historical significance, income from Camp admission fees and shop sales is insufficient to fund the permanent staff position required to operate and deliver the museum and heritage facilities. This is a clear area where we can seek charitable donations to help support ongoing delivery, and grant funding for development. Importantly, we cannot afford to fund delivery from other Camp revenue streams.
In recent years, public events at the Camp have centred on military and martial history – these are popular, and fun, but require a lot of organisation and volunteer support and tend to break even-ish. As such, they don’t represent a significant or reliable source of income. But they are fun (as I said) and are also an important showcase. There is scope for hosting more diverse events, but these would require some dedicated organisation team, maybe per event.
The self-catering huts have yet to be open for a full season but have, so far, generated great reviews. There are still 5 of the 10 huts to complete and furnish. Once that’s done, we’ll be in a position to realise the return on the development and management effort and generate the greatest contribution to our balance sheet.
And finally, we come to possibly the most complex and contentious of our responsibilities: being the landlord of an iconic mixed-use estate of dilapidated and superannuated buildings of largely impractical dimensions, legally constrained by heritage listing, and morally constrained by public veneration, where we strive to host and foster both local enterprise and community benefit whilst minimising the conflict with the other three strands of our operations, and ensuring that we deliver contemporary standards of comfort, health & safety, and service provision, sustainably. Easy-peasy!
Why do we need to make money? Quite simply, to enable us to provide ongoing support to our existing beneficiaries – public, private, and commercial – and to maintain the framework that allows us to take on new projects.
If all this sounds like the sort of fulfilling and diverting challenge that you’d love to sink your teeth into, I invite you to get in touch to discuss where you can contribute – there’s lots to do – and, specifically, if you have skills, experience, and time to donate for the following, consider putting yourself forward for the Board: charity accounting, business planning, marketing, communications, employment law, equal opportunities, contract management, and everything in between. Once all the Camp’s activities are running slickly, we’ll have more scope to support other important projects.
We look forward to seeing you in the White Church on April 11th @ 7pm for the AGM.
best wishes – Jeremy
Jeremy Spurway – Chair