Happy New Year indeed.
Good to see that they have a new Director and two new volunteers.
Unless they come with a fresh and intelligent approach and can wield some influence on the current organisers how will it make a difference?
I couldn't possibly answer!
Happy New Year...
Happy New Year! Should any more really be said, I know its almost Christmas, but blimey Dawlish Carnival, your almost as eager as the shops! The new Director Anton, a good friend, has actually been on the Committee for quite some years and the new Volunteers are also choosen by what seems to be the inner circle to join.
The I have faith? No. Do my kids have faith? No.
In the words of The Seekers and lovely funeral song to the late great Mr Brian Heath. The Carnival Is Over.
See todays front page of Gazette
thanks for the indication @roberta - i am disgusted that this can even happen, for years the carnival "mysteriously looses money", for years they are unable to provide accurate accounts of what happens, for years they have been rude and abusive to the council and the members of dawlish and surrounds, yet the council still proceed to help them.
I know for fact that over the years money has gone missing and unaccounted for, and since some of those involved at the time, still are today, it would go at no surprise that it wasen't still happening. Okay that is an assumption so we shall leave the money asside, but the attitude and behaviour shown towards the town, the council and the people of Dawlish is not worthy of 5p let alone £5000.
Well there we have it, anyone else wish to donate this group large amounts of money, or is there a group of people out there who want to turn this town around, form a new non-for profit group and make something better of it!
I would like to know how they can have collecting tins in outlets purporting to be a Charity also benefit from the Bingo Sessions held at Langstone Cliff when they are in fact a CIC ltd
And to think that I've (wrongly) been accused of libel on here! TheObserver has just taken it to a different level!
Roberta, I can confirm that the Bingo at the hotel is open to any "organisations" to apply to be recipients, not just charities.
That said, DTC should not be giving away money to the Carnival company. I've not seen the Gazette yet so don't know the full story, however I understood that last years donation was a one-off specifically to fund repairs to the carnival float / wedding car. So what's the donation for this year?
Are the Carnival company's accounts available for all to see anywhere?
@roberta Are you sure? Could you post evidence?
At some point the begging bowl will come before the Town Council Finance and General Purposes Commitee. I recall they got 5k last year in spite of that lamentable rant in the programme and dismally organised events the previous year.
These are the current members of that committee:
Cllr Michael Clayson (Chairman)
Cllr Mrs Linda Petherick (Vice Chairman)
Cllr Humphrey Clemens
Cllr Adam Dimond
Cllr Terry Lowther
Cllr Mrs Carol Payne
Cllr Ms Margaret Swift
Cllr Robert Vickery
Also Mayor John Petherick and Deputy Mayor Cllr Howard Almond
I recall they got 5k last time despite that lamentable rant in the programme and a dismally organised set of events the year before. Since then they pathetically threatened to sue anyone who posted the event timings and used spurious grounds to pull out of a meeting that could have been very constructive. I wonder which of our councillors will have the gumption to put our money where their mouths are and 'stand up to the bullies'. Worth knowing before the council elections.
I have seen collecting tins on counters in the Strand Church Community Cafe, Brainwave Charity Shop also Take the Bait, not really looked hard enough elsewhere.. Front page of Gazette today Town Council have granted them £5000 to cover losses of £5500 last year. Condition is not to receive until after Carnival. Cllrs Clayson and Burrowes abstained from voting
.Mrs C everytime I see the Bingo advertised its billed as the" 4 charities bingo"
Frustrating isn't it, when you know so many people have offered help and it's been turned down again and again.
To say they have had to pay for help just doesn't seem right, I know they had volunteer marshals for Pram Race and the procession.
There are lots of people who would have help run an event or marshal or collect. But when the events are run so poorly and the directors are so arrogant it's very off-putting.
Because it’s a small company only abbreviated accounts need to be submitted, but it has to file an annual CIC report detailing how it continues to engage appropriately with its stakeholders and satisfy the community interest. This information is available from Companies House, and I’ve sent a copy to the Webmaster to attach here as a PDF.
In summary, as at 31/10/2013 (the most recent filing) the accounts show that the company’s only asset is £924 cash in the bank (down from £6244 in 2012). Profit was £144 down from £5704.
This from their CIC report
Q. In the space provided below please insert a general account of the company’s activities in the financial year to which the report relates, including a fair and accurate description of how they have benefited the community, or section of the community, which the company is intended to serve.
A. The company raises money throughout the year to provide an eight day carnival in August and Christmas Market. Both events attract an enormous amount of holidaymakers to our small town and this benefits the local traders and economy. We also donate funds to local charities within the community.
Q. Please indicate who the company’s stakeholders are, how the stakeholders have been consulted, and what action, if any, has the company taken as a result of the feedback from its consultations? If there has been no consultation this should be made clear
A. The company is made up of local residents who donate their time all year to providing the events shown overleaf. Locals and holidaymakers let us know through media websites or phone or when we are out and about what they would like to see or do during carnival week
Q. Directors remuneration
A. None of the directors receive any money from the company
Q. Transfer of assets other than for full consideration
A. No assets to transfer.
Seems to me that the CIC report is massively lacking in detail and fails to recognise that stakeholders are not just its shareholders.
Questions that spring to mind: Who owns the carnival float or does it have no financial value? When the Council granted the funds to repair it, what was their understanding? Has the Council seen Oct 2014 accounts? Have their claims been taken on face value or have they been scrutinised? Has the Council challenged the Carnival board on any matters? Why would a Council fund a loss making limited company that persistently refuses help to make it profitable?
Who owns the carnival float or does it have no financial value? The carnival float was purchased for the town of Dawlish by the Council and was made at HMP Dartmoor some many years back, the Carnival Committee do not have and can not take sole responsiiblity of it.
When the Council granted the funds to repair it, what was their understanding? Regardless of the Councils understanding I would like to think the Council have asked for reciepts of proof that the moment has been spent where due.
Well that tallies, at least they're not counting it as their asset. So who does own it? Is it Council-owned and for use by anybody? (No, I'm not planing a wedding Mrs C).
@Mcjrpc when it was brought it was purchased as an asset to the town, so in theory it makes the council the responsible owner, but it is owed by the people. it's a community asset so therefore can not belong to any single group.
Thanks for the clarification. I have a low opinion of the Carnival organisers but you might want to edit your earlier post. As Mrs C points out, it's quite an allegation.
@Mcjrpc as i appreciate "alligations" the incidents i refer to were made public knowledge and some even printed in the press.
Can I just point out that if anyone is unhappy with the decision made by the council an ideal opportunity to show this is imminent in May - lovely local elections.
As one of the two councillors who did not vote for the Carnival grant - can I just defend my colleagues? Whatever you may think of the carnival team, Carnival 2014 was definitely better than the 2013 version. We can hope for this improvement to continue.
There is not much coming forward by way of alternative mass entertainment on the Lawn. Council has always given support to Air Show and to Party in the Park. We pay for entertainments on Armed Forces Day. We pay for "Dawlish Celebrates" on the two key Bank Holidays.
Those aren't many swallows to make a summer in a seaside town. Parents complain when there is a lack of entertainment during the holidays. Carnival says it will help fill that gap. I'm not persuaded by their business plan, I think my colleagues are giving them the benefit of the doubt
If you are not persuaded by the carnival's business plan why did you not vote against awarding the grant, instead of merely abstaining?
That's a cop-out.
The reason why I am able to defend those councillors who voted for the grant is that this was a finely balanced decision . I've tried to give a flavour of the dilemma we faced . To vote against the grant would have been too strong a position to take given that I had come down on the other side of the benefit of the doubt.
I would have preferred to see the grant conditional on successful delivery of Carnival 2015, but given that colleagues felt this was not possible abstention seemed the best way to express my doubts
The biggest cop-out are the ones who voted for it because they are too scared to stand up to them. Why should it have been unconditionally granted, it's a limited company not a charity. There's a reason for that.
Which councillors were/weren't at the meeting and did anybody vote against it?
Linda Petherick, Robert Vickery, Margaret Swift - you all read and post on this forum. Would you care to share your thoughts?
i think @michaelclayson makes some valid points, if we take away the week of carnival we have nothing to fill the gap. it goes without saying that carnivals across devon and fading away rapidly. we as a town don't want to loose our carnival week, thats for sure.
However we as a town do not wish to see time and time again a failure of a week and the towns money being invested into something that is time and time again making bigger losses. We as a town do not wish to see a group of people running an event who do not listen to what the public want, continue to bad mouth our town, its people and councillors. We as a town do not wish to see people offer thier help and get trodden on and pushed away.
I used to organise big festivals in my hayday from Isle of Wight to reading, and I too have offered my support to Dawlish Carnival and offered promising finacial sponsorship, I was not even invited to a meeting and recieved a letter informing me "thank you, but no thank you", I will not offer my support again, certainly not to the current led team.
So Dawlish, if your not happy with your Carnival, if your not happy that they are making massive losses, if your not happy that they recieve large grants and still fail to make the mark. Do Something About It! We can not blame the Councillors for trying to save something, but we can have our say and make a difference.
@michaelclayson i admire your stance and agree that to abstain was the best option. it is a shame that some of your fellow councillors don't have the same courage to say that they aren't entirely happy about the situation.
@the observer. Many people have tried to have their say and make a difference but it is ignored. Sadly their point of view is that they are the directors and there is nothing that can be done about that so they'll do it the way they want.
I don't understand your logic. If you wanted the £5k grant to be paid only on successful delivery of the carnival, how on earth were the organisers supposed to do that with no upfront funding available?
And I still think abstaining is a cowardly act, you're either for something or against it.
Cowardly is continuing to support a failing carnival and a failing company with tax payers' money because you're too scared to change the status quo or alienate a few people. No one will set up a rival carnival, it's too confrontational, but they will fill the void if it's not there. So pull the plug, let's go without a carnival for a year and I guarantee something bigger and better will come along. Look at how the Airshow has gone from strength to strength.
It's exactly the same condition we apply to the Air Show grant, and it doesn't seem to cause them a problem.
As councillors we have to exercise judgement. On this ocassion the option I favoured wasn't supported by colleagues. I didn't support either of the other two possible choices, so I abstained to remain consistent with what I thought. Further, I have come on this site and explained why.
The air show and the carnival are two completely different beasts. I understand the air show runs a surplus whereas the carnival does not, hence their need for upfront funding. Or is that not the case?
Yes the Air Show has built up some money (Not enough to run the entire show, they still need a lot of support from Dawlish people) whilst the Carnival funds have dwindled. In my judgement that required greater caution,not less
I accept this is a difficult issue calling for fine judgement. That is why I am defending colleagues who on balance took a different view
Michael is not a coward and he has every right to vote whichever way he wants to vote.
Clearly you've read this thread, are you going to share your view on this grant with the people you're meant to represent? How did you vote and why?
I voted for my reason being that I felt Dawlish needed the carnival to go ahead. So many people look forward to Carnival week.
At Companies House there is 2 registrations Dawlish Carnival Ltd and Dawlish Carnival Community Interest Company Ltd. Has the Town Council looked into both of these to satisfy our curiousity
The application received was from Dawlish Carnival & Entertainment CIC.
If some of you who want answers to such questions would actually come to the Council meetings and listen to the debate, you could then spread the word among others of like mind.
If there is an item on an agenda that concerns you, you have the right in 'Public Participation' to speak about that agenda item, and you should take it.
I make no apology for that suggestion, but in response to various challenges I set down my reasoning:
I listened to the pleading from the Carnival Treasurer and saw the accounts that indicated a tendency towards deficit in running the carnival. I heard the comments from those who were disappointed by the reduction in the programme content in recent times. We were faced with a request that would largely cover the cost of the marquee where many events are held and which also provides a covered space if the week is rainy. We also know that marshalling and control of events (not just the Procession, but also pram race, raft race ,etc.,) are increasingly demanding from the authorities, and thus more costly.
Last year we heard that the Float was in a bad way and being refurbished and re-lit for the season and we were asked for, and granted, a sum to cover that one item. I pointed out that the Carnival programme did not mention anywhere in it the contribution from the tax payer via the Town Council, but I was told that the float does carry a logo and message 'supported by Dawlish Town Council'. That float was taken to 23 carnivals and won prizes at 22 of them (I think I remember the numbers correctly) and I feel that this activity of taking a prize-winning float to 20+ towns across the region is helping to keep Dawlish in the limelight. I know that it only appears on one evening in Dawlish, but it is another aspect of carnival eventing. Some people and youngsters obviously derive considerable pleasure from that activity.
It is important that carnival accounts are transparent, not only because it is now a charitable company but also because the council-tax payer is being asked to support it through a grant by the Town Council. We were set the challenge posed by the timing of national and local elections that means that unless we came to a decision last week, there would not be a proper opportunity to review the grant request until at least the end of May, by a new Council. That would not give the carnival organisers time to confirm arrangements, bookings, marshalling etc., I agree that it was 'Hobson's choice' , but against promises of new Carnival trustees and volunteers I decided to give it my backing and hope that the week in mid-August will be filled with fun and activity to draw the summer visitors.
@roberta As at 31/10/13 DC Ltd is a dormant company. Maggie Farley is the sole director. Interestingly her nationality is given as Irish - I wonder how that tallies with being 'Dawlish born and bred'
@Lindapetherick - Thanks for replying. Given it's such a contentious issue I was hoping for a less simplistic reason.
@Robert Vickery. Can you direct me to which Council meeting/Agenda this item was listed on? Thanks for giving your reasons for supporting it but I disagree with them. The carnival people show nothing but contempt for the people of Dawlish. It's all about them and the float.
@Mcjrpc - the meeting was of the town council on 4 march and it was introduced as a late item since the application from the carnival committee arrived after the agenda was published (about a full week before the meeting). because of the rules about purdah before council elections, it was realised that unless it was added as a late item at that meeting it would not have been able to be considered until after the elections of may 7th.
You have a fair point, but it is still important that people do come to Town Council meetings to take part in the action and make judgements about what they hear with their own ears.
I too voted in favour of awarding the grant to the carnival for many of the reasons stated on this thread. But additionally, I believe in giving everyone a last chance and this, for me, is the 'do or die' year. The Carnival has been awarded money towards the cost of running the carnival and now need to prove to the people of Dawlish and DTC that they can deliver a high quality product in a professional way. I hope they do and I believe they will; this is an important week in the calendar for Dawlish that residents and visitors enjoy enormously and one that needs to continue for many years to come.
sorry but thats.........
add your own expletive
In my opinion, the Carnival company had their last chance last year. The procession was good thanks to the visiting floats, however the rest of it was an amateurish shambles. And of course they have continued to use the float (the people's float) for their personal use.
@RobertVickery. I've been following the Council Agenda waiting for this to come up and I'd have been at that meeting like a shot if it had been published. If it came in a week before the meeting is it beyond the realms of possibility that the Agenda could have been updated online? How convenient it went under the radar.
@MargaretSwift - you of all people make a big deal on this forum of standing up to bullies, so what happened? Where have you been these last couple of years as they've bullied their way through the town and council? Shame on you.
And can someone from the Council confirm The Observer's claim that the float is owned by the Council and whether they saw the accounts to Oct 2014?
I've just seen that their rattling tins state that they're "Registered in Wales", whilst other documents correctly state "Registered in England and Wales". My understanding is that you can only state the former if you are registered in Wales, and last time I looked Teignmouth was definitely in Devon. I trust that this is just a printing error on the part of the Carnival company (literacy isn't their strongest point), and not indicative of anything untoward.
Referring back to Bobs post last night, seeing as the people's float won prizes at 22 carnivals last year, surely the prize money would have been enough to cover the Farley family's travel expenses?
The Council does not own the float, it does not appear on our list of assets and it should be there if it is council property.
The Council has only seen accounts to October 2013, we are told that their Accountant has not yet completed the next set of accounts
Late items for discussion are not updated on the Agenda as legally it cannot be altered once the summons has been issued. There is a generic "Late items" slot on each agenda.
The application from the Carnival committee was received after the agenda had been issued, and the Council took it as an urgent item because of the rules about making decisions after the election had been called. The alternative would have been to delay making a decision until it would have been too late for Carnival to go ahead. An outcome that many may have wished, but others in our community would have deplored
I can assure you that the Councillors would all have preferred it not to be dealt with as an urgent item, but such are the circumstances we found ourselves in. The penalty is a degree of unpopularity whichever action we took, but that is sometimes the only choice left open to us.
This is directed at TheObserver (or anyone else who knows and can verify the answer), who owns the float?
Mcjrcp.......like BV said, you need to attend the meetings to hear the full debate then you might, just might, have a better understanding than you do at the moment.
In my opinion they seem to laugh at us all.I believe David Farley said at a meeting "we do what we want as you cant touch us".They have indeed become "The Untouchables"
That's just the kind of supercilious response we've come to expect from you Margaret. But well done on making it to that meeting at least. I see from the recent minutes that your attendance record is still woeful.
Who owns the float please? Surely we don't need to attend a meeting in order to find out?
We certainly don't need to attend one to be on the receiving end of condescension from someone notorious for not attending meetings and for not understanding what people are actually saying.
Depends which meetings you are blathering on about Mrjrcp, I attend those I can within my work commitments and when I do I try to make positive contributions. Sometimes it's not the quantity but the quality that counts. A bit like this forum in some ways.
To quote from the Gazette regarding the 5K grant.
"Increased costs, entertainers who didn’t show up and several days of bad weather put the event, which costs about £30,000 to run, into the red."
Does that mean thay they (Carnival Committee) pay for entertainers in advance and not get any refund for a 'no show'?
@MargaretSwift. To give them a last chance in your final year of this council is a total cop out. If you stand again for council and get re-elected will you then say to them they had their last chance? Or will you walk away from council being able to say that you supported the carnival all through your term of office?
either way seems bull crap!
We are dammed if we do and dammed if we don't................at least I used my vote to come down off the fence! And actually, for the sake of accuracy, I have not supported them throughout my term of office, in past years I have queried their accounts and voted accordingly. But, on this occasion the accounts were available and for a whole variety of reasons I voted as I did, and I do not apologise for doing so. Time will tell whether they deserve further suppot from the next administration. I presume your comments apply equally to the other ten Councillors who also voted in favour of awarding the grant?
It's true you can't please all of the people all of the time but it's been said the accounts were only up to October 2013. Wasn't a previous grant postponed until they could come up with the last set - it sounds like the alarm bells have rung before. I have a small business and I have nine months to submit my official accounts but it doesn't stop me having a working set of up to date accounts in the meanwhile. Try asking a bank for a loan or an overdraft without them. Don't they have a Treasurer?
I don't get why no one knows who owns the float. Also, they're still making donations to charity, that'd be the first thing you'd stop when you can't keep your head above water. I'm not against them getting a grant but these grumbles have been public for ages and I think it's a shame it's been agreed with no strings attached.
I think Michael Clayson answered the question of ownership of the float earlier in this thread, or it could have been on a different thread.
I don't disagree with some of the comments being made but this grant application came to full council due to the Purdah restrictions being imposed by TDC earlier than normal. It would have been better to have had a full F&GP meeting, brought forward to avoid Purdah, to discuss all the grant applications which were dealt with as late items at the full council meeting, but that suggestion fell on deaf ears. At the end of the day 10 Councillors voted to support the grant and two abstained. If all 10 got it wrong then I am sure they, including me, will hold their hands up and say so. I cannot say why the other Councillrs voted to award the grant but I have made my reasons known earlier in this thread, and again, I make no apologies. I hope the carnival week is a success and that it goes from strength to strength.
As stated, I have already explained who owns the float. My father was upon the "Committee" at the time this was purchased. The trailer was made at HMP Dartmoor and funded partially by the Council at the time under the ruling that it would be an asset to Dawlish and not to be deemed ownership by any single group.
The float might have been sold off since but seeing as it's such a hot potato, it's seems reasonable to hope it would be followed up properly.
TheObserver - send a letter or email to the Council asking them to account for its disposal or maybe one of the councillors here could volunteer to investigate. Any takers?
The silence from Duckileaks is deafening! Do your comments apply to the other ten Councillors or did you just jump on a popular bandwagon?
Calm down Mrs S, at 35 minutes to midnight he/she might be asleep, with a professional commitment in the morning. It's often only peope of leisure that surf this late.
If you do a bit of research ( I.e. click on Duckileak's posts) you'll see their first comment about the Carnival was in 2011 Then a more detailed one in 2013. I wouldn't call that bandwagon jumping, would you?
Why even call it a bandwagon? The word belittles the very serious and articulate points many posters have made, here and elsewhere.
Well, clearly you haven't any professional commitments tomorrow or any other day! Good night!
Yes Mrs S, I'm a bit like you, all talk no action. Let's discuss this bandwagon thing tomorrow. Goodnight.
@Dorian. I'm at a loss to know how I or any councillor can help with the issue of the float ownership other than to tell you that it does not belong to the council. I respect that observer has a clear understanding that the council gave a grant at some point in the past with a condition that the carnival group should let other groups also use the float. That may be confirmed in a grant letter but such paperwork is only retained for six years.
In defence of Cllr Swift, and the other councillors who voted for the grant, this was not an easy decision and guaranteed to upset someone whichever view you took. Those of us who post on Dot Com have all explained our thinking on this issue, you have the absolute right as Electors to criticise us. I'm not sure beyond that there is much further any of us can go with this issue?
Sorry Michael, just need to reply to Margaret...
I didn't intend to leave you waiting by your computer into the wee small hours awaiting my reply, I do apologise for the inconvenience. Dorian was right, I was trying to sleep and then was enjoying the company of my family over the weekend.
Strangely this forum didn't feature highly on my list of things to do.
In answer to your question; yes indeed my comments do apply to all the Councillors who decided to support the application for a grant. If after 4 years for some, and more for the remaining, the members of that committee cannot see a pattern emerging then they need to go to Specsavers.
The Carnival Committee/Directors are running this event into the ground, they have lost the goodwill and interest of many of the town residents and traders and the remaining are apathetic at best.
If our Councillors cannot keep up to date with the way that the town feels about this then shame on them.
I would happily direct the same remarks to them as I did to you Margaret, after all you are just one of them.
Thanks for the clarification Duckileaks. I still stand by my decision and if I decide to stand again and get elected then yes, I would hold the carnival committee to account if they don't deliver this year. I really hope they do because Dawlish is probably one of the best towns in the SW to hold a carnival for both residents and visitors alike.
I'd like to continue this thread by praising David Force for his excellent letter in this weeks Gazette. He has eloquently summed up the thoughts of nearly everyone I've spoken to about the Carnival company. They'll obviously just bluntly call it a witch-hunt yet again but that says more about them than it does about anyone else.
I wonder what the next "Carnival Column" will have to say?
I agree it was excellent as I don't subscribe online maybe somebody can put it on here for others to read
Well said that man! And now will those councillors who voted to give them money actually realise what has been going on and see that all they have done is prop up a group of people who are so blind to public opinion they should hang they heads in shame.
Full page reply to David Forces letter in todays Viewpoint Dawlish Gazette
Can't wait to read that when I get home tonight!
Thanks Ken. I've read the paper version and I genuinely appreciate Sue taking the time to eloquently put across the Carnival companys point of view. However we all know that help has been offered and rejected because those offering help aren't friends of the family.