Minutes of the AGM 16 September 2022


The Meeting took place at the Clay Farm Community Garden building on Friday 16 September 2022, between 19:00 and 21:20.
The agenda for the meeting was published on 6 August 2022 on the Society’s website and advertised on public channels, and to all plot holders via the City Council officer responsible for tenancy.
The meeting was chaired and minuted by the Management Committee Chair Diego Magrini.
The society comprises of 62 Members, therefore the quorum for decisions by this meeting is of 16 Members.


  • Lucy Castang CF74
  • Richard Wilson CF105
  • Isabel Vique CF16
  • Chris Bailey CF31
  • Carol Holloway CF38
  • Nancy Muir CF98
  • Tomasz Wojtania CF99
  • Philippa Slatter CF32
  • David Newcombe CF01
  • Neil Vasili-Hadjitoffi CF142
  • Alistair Bochel CF150
  • Kevin Ramsden CF133
  • Tomasz Wójtowicz CF135
  • Diego Magrini CF121
  • Anne L’Hernault CF146 (Peer voting by Diego Magrini)
  • Claudio D’Agostin CF117 (Peer voting by Tomasz Wójtowicz)
  • Luis Rey CF113 (Peer voting by Tomasz Wójtowicz)
  • Nicola Saragossi CF25 (Peer voting by Tomasz Wójtowicz)

Election of the Management Committee

At the time when this item is being discussed, there is not a quorum to formalise a vote. Considering this AGM is taking place less than 12 months from the constitution of the Association, and lacking the required number of votes to elect a new one, the current Management Committee will remain in place.

However Treasurer Chris Bailey has handed in his resignation from the Management Committee due to personal reasons.

In accordance with the Constitution, the Management Committee has therefore appointed Additional Member Tomasz Wójtowicz as Secretary and Chair Diego Magrini to also cover the role of Treasurer.

Mandate to open a bank account

Having reached the voting quorum, and with unanimous vote, the Meeting gives mandate to the Management Committee to open a bank account.

The bank account is to be opened with Metro Bank.

The official roles of our Society, are currently as follows:
Chair: Diego Magrini
Secretary: Tomasz Wójtowicz
Treasurer: Diego Magrini
Additional Member: Nicola Saragossi
Additional Member: Christopher MacFarlane

Chair and Treasurer Diego Magrini, and Secretary Tomasz Wójtowicz are the parties authorised to execute operations with the bank account.

Both are individually authorised to execute transactions on their own.

Review of the proposed tenancy with the Council

The most recent conversation with the Council about this item shed some light on the costs that the Society would bear for the land rental. For season 2022/23 this would amount to £477.37 per year. In addition to this, a charge for the water usage would be due. Currently this is not quantified.
Most maintenance issues would then need to be taken care of by the Society.
While discussing this point a general consensus emerged that the step of taking over management of the site should be delayed until such point when the Society feels comfortable with the levels of defects and the general state of the site.
It was also noted that a wider membership across tenants would be beneficial before the management of the site is taken over by the Society.

Management of the communal areas

It is agreed that it should be a goal of the Society to manage the communal areas across the site.
To do this effectively, Philippa Slatter and David Newcombe were appointed to carry out a survey of the site to achieve a full understanding of the areas currently not utilised. In addition to mapping communal areas, they will also report on the location of individual plots and major features such as paths and water throughs.
All areas of the site and individual features will be mapped and assigned a unique identification so that they can be easily addressed in internal and external communication.

It is agreed that many of the communal areas require urgent care, and in the coming weeks volunteer parties will be organised to cut the grass on such areas.
Diego Magrini, Lucy Castang, and David Newcombe have volunteered to support this effort, however an attempt to recruit more members will be made in due course.

Once a clear view of the situation is available, the Management Committee shall put together a survey for the wider membership, with ideas for developing the communal areas currently untended.

Recurring issues observed or that needed discussion with the Council

It was decided that an information note should be put together and circulated, ideally also by the City Council to all tenants.
The content of the note should highlight the most common reasons for complaints amongst plot holders. These were reported as:
Plot holders are responsible to maintain the internal paths adjacent to their plots
Stones, soil, and any other material should not be piled up in any area outside of one’s own plot, including on paths and communal areas.
No produce shall be taken from any other plot without explicit permission. Breaching this rule is sufficient ground for expulsion from the Society and termination of the tenancy by the Council.
Encroaching on others’ plots without explicit permission is not allowed.

The Meeting has agreed to consider sensible options to use the organic material currently piled up in various parts of the site and not managed, as a mulch to prepare communal areas.

On the matter of security, it was decided that a coded padlock might not be an ideal solution at the moment.
Plot holders are encouraged to report any theft to the Police.
The Management Committee will make available an online form to report theft in a way that data can be preserved for future analysis.

Answering a question about the responsibilities of managing the gravel roads, the Council has clarified that those remain responsibility of the Council.

The removal of the remaining raised beds should be restart in autumn, subject to the Council resolving their staffing issues.

About two weeks ago the Council (in the person of David Malia) should have chased Countryside for the removal of the toilet, which was promised months ago.
The green metal container currently used as on-site storage will temporarily remain in place. From John Parrott (City Council): “This will be removed by either Countryside or the City Council. We are not accepting of it being on site long term.”.

Other Business

The Management Committee will publish on the website a Governance page where the details of the Management Committee members will be available.
The Society’s Constitution will also be made available to the public via the website.

Cambridge, 16 September 2022.