Annual General Meeting 

 Thursday 29th February 2024  

Present: Tracy and Adrian Rathbone, Carol Copland, Ruth Craib, Jim Hope, Helen Marshall, Alison Ogilvie, Dave Smith, Ann West 

Members of the public present – Karen Bjork, Maureen Clark, Laura Davy, Catriona Foote Paula Godson, Christine Grist, Mary Henderson, Steven Izatt, Dora Kitching, Scott Lawrie, Diane Martin, Pauline Murray, Avril Neagle, Emily Noakes, Ailie Philip, Lucy Turner, Joanna van de Berg, Jayne Wilding 

Apologies: Peter Copland, Alison Child, Elaine Porteous 

Chairperson’s Report: Since the Arts Festival conception some 13 or so years ago, we have maintained the festival’s ethos of “by the community for the community” trying to keep as many events as possible free for participants. The core festival events are an art exhibition in the Town Hall alongside exhibits in Open Houses throughout the village, even including the windmill last year, and craft stalls in the Church Hall beside the Festival Cafe. Various workshops and demonstrations were held in both venues. We held several events involving music, poetry, storytelling, a history walk and a ceilidh. It was also a welcome addition to have the camera exhibition and Heritage Centre open. Our annual photographic competition produced some excellent photo entries, and we again produced a St Monans calendar which sold well helping to boost Festival funds. Once again thanks to Dave Smith for all the work he does with this. Once again, we were very fortunate with the weather and footfall at the Festival was good. We were grateful to the help from volunteer stewards this year who helped with car parking and general directions. We were also grateful to those who came to help with transport, set up and clearing up. This is an area where we are always needing more help – especially from younger and fitter members of the community given that the present committee is not getting any younger! We are always keen to inject fresh ideas to the Festival and, despite being really grateful to the hard work, skill and enthusiasm of the current committee I know that we are hoping this year to attract some new people to the committee as we move forward. 

Treasurers Report: Carol summarised our financial position which is a healthy one. We have a balance of £5,898.79. We have not applied for Common Good funding for the last few years. The main income streams last year were the café, the ceilidh and calendar sales.  

Election of Committee: Elaine Porteous has resigned and a few of the present committee are going to be moving away, so Ruth asked for volunteers to work alongside the present committee in the meantime. Christine Grist, Dora Kitching, Avril Neagle, Ailie Philip and Lucy Turner all volunteered and were duly elected. 

Date of this year’s festival. We had previously planned to have it on the weekend of 31st August but, as Anstruther have moved the date of their festival to that weekend, it was decided to have it the following weekend – 7th /8th September. We had already booked the band for the ceilidh on 24th August, and we will stick with that. Generally, people felt that it might be better to have two weeks between them, rather than the one we had previously. 

Any other business: 

  • Paula Godson confirmed that the Larder would be suspended on 6th September to allow time for setting up the hall. 
  • Karen Bjork, Chair of the Parents Group at St Monans Primary said that Mrs McBain, the new head, is keen for the school children to be involved. Karen will liaise with Emma Johnstone to take this forward. Some suggestions were to give children specific roles e.g. making posters, doing drawings that might then be made into soft toys by Lucy, who agreed that she could go into the school to talk about that idea at some point. 
  • Christine Grist told us that Marie Lousie Copland, a storyteller who lives in Abercromby had said she would like to be involved. 
  • Christine offered to a workshop on basic music theory. Ruth said she could work with her on that. 
  • Dora Kitching offered to do a workshop on polymer clay. 
  • Diane Kemp offered to do a workshop on English Paper Piecing 
  • Ailie Philip suggested a Drink and Draw evening and suggested that the Giddy Gannet might be a venue for that. 
  • Emily Noakes suggested having a children’s drawing event on the Saturday morning, whereby they could go out and draw something. 

Ruth thanked everyone for all their ideas and said that the committee would take them forward and aim to incorporate them into a programme for this year’s festival. She thanked all those who had attended and the AGM was brought to a close