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Labour Graves Park leaflet

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I've certainly got my facts right. I know who is trying to sell property that they don't own, and it is only one party that is trying to sell it. You probably missed the fact that audited accounts are only as good as the information given to the auditors, which is why I have passed on my concerns to those in a position do do an audit.

We have been here before several times in the last 15 years and I have yet to have been on the side not backed by the Charity Commissions verdict.

 

If the Council or its representatives continue to try and sell off land that they have no right to sell, then isn't the remedy to go to court and take out an injunction to prevent them trying in future?

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I've certainly got my facts right.

 

I don't think you understand the law, accounts or the facts.

 

I was formerly the company secretary of a successful charitable trust mainly concerned with bringing historic buildings (some were, but most not, Listed) back in to use before they fell in to ruin.

 

The Charity Commission remains fairly useless. It has come under so much criticism that it now spends more time protecting its back than doing the right thing.

 

The job of the Trustees is to pursue the charitable objectives. In this case, it is to secure the maintenance of parkland for the people of Sheffield to continue enjoy.

 

The objectives are not to retain and spend money on surplus buildings which might have been, but clearly are no longer, integral to the Trust’s objectives.

If anything, the Trustees might be open to criticism for failing to act earlier. Whilst they were not spending money on the maintenance of the cottage, that wasn’t a particular problem. It clearly is now.

 

What are the options?

1) To spend c£100,000 on modernising the cottage and letting it. Difficult to justify investing to produce an annual loss not in pursuit of the charitable objectives.

2) Demolish. I must say I’m gob-smacked by the so-called Friends proposing a c£25,000 demolition just to leave bits of wall in place.

3) Dispose of the surplus asset and use the receipts – however small - for investing in the Trust’s objectives. Of course, this has the advantage of bringing a home back in to use.

 

It’s a no-brainer.

 

I simply don’t understand the mind-set of those who object to the proposal but have no realistic alternative.

 

Neither do I understand the party political games being played.

 

It’s a surplus asset. Both Eric Pickles and Nick Clegg have been insistent that councils should dispose of surplus assets so that other services don’t have to be cut. In fact, I seem to remember that Nick Clegg said this very specifically about Sheffield in The Star a few weeks ago.

 

[Arguing that this is a Graves Trust surplus asset and not the Council’s doesn’t stack up either. There is a huge subsidy from SCC to Graves to keep the parkland maintained. Without the receipt, the council would have to increase its subsidy.]

 

For goodness sake, just get on with it.

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I don't think you understand the law, accounts or the facts.

 

I was formerly the company secretary of a successful charitable trust mainly concerned with bringing historic buildings (some were, but most not, Listed) back in to use before they fell in to ruin.

 

The Charity Commission remains fairly useless. It has come under so much criticism that it now spends more time protecting its back than doing the right thing.

 

The job of the Trustees is to pursue the charitable objectives. In this case, it is to secure the maintenance of parkland for the people of Sheffield to continue enjoy.

 

The objectives are not to retain and spend money on surplus buildings which might have been, but clearly are no longer, integral to the Trust’s objectives.

If anything, the Trustees might be open to criticism for failing to act earlier. Whilst they were not spending money on the maintenance of the cottage, that wasn’t a particular problem. It clearly is now.

 

What are the options?

1) To spend c£100,000 on modernising the cottage and letting it. Difficult to justify investing to produce an annual loss not in pursuit of the charitable objectives.

2) Demolish. I must say I’m gob-smacked by the so-called Friends proposing a c£25,000 demolition just to leave bits of wall in place.

3) Dispose of the surplus asset and use the receipts – however small - for investing in the Trust’s objectives. Of course, this has the advantage of bringing a home back in to use.

 

It’s a no-brainer.

 

I simply don’t understand the mind-set of those who object to the proposal but have no realistic alternative.

 

Neither do I understand the party political games being played.

 

It’s a surplus asset. Both Eric Pickles and Nick Clegg have been insistent that councils should dispose of surplus assets so that other services don’t have to be cut. In fact, I seem to remember that Nick Clegg said this very specifically about Sheffield in The Star a few weeks ago.

 

[Arguing that this is a Graves Trust surplus asset and not the Council’s doesn’t stack up either. There is a huge subsidy from SCC to Graves to keep the parkland maintained. Without the receipt, the council would have to increase its subsidy.]

 

For goodness sake, just get on with it.

 

Spoken like a true servant of Sheffield Council.

 

I think I know charitable law pretty well. I also know the objectives of the Graves Park Charity as well as the covenants that apply. They state that no land can be sold without the receipts being used to purchase further land of equal or greater amenity value to the park.

 

Regarding the cottage. It was the responsibility of the council to insure the cottage. They chose to put that insurance through the city council. When a pipe burst through negligence the council decided not to claim against its own insurance. This is the reason the cottage needs repair.

 

No spin will get round this. The cottage belongs to the Graves Park Charity. The bill for its repair rests with Sheffield Council. The Charity Commission have been made aware of the situation. In the past they have certainly not been toothless regarding the abuse of the Graves Park Charity.

 

The small cost of the upkeep of Graves Park is a trivial amount compared to the assett value of 248 acres of prime parkland that the council is allowed to use otherwise rent free.

Edited by barpen

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From a freedom of information request the car park raised over £50,000 last year. There were concerts, shows and fairs where those using the park paid a fee. I have yet to establish how much rent comes from the cafe but assume it to be around £20,000/pa. There is also a £10,000 fee for using part of Norton Nursery as a depot.

It seems in return 0.7 people are employed to maintain the park. Perhaps if the accounts were audited we could find out where all this cash goes.”

 

The council are embezzling funds from the Graves Park Charity??

 

---------- Post added 21-04-2015 at 15:04 ----------

 

What are the options?

1) To spend c£100,000 on modernising the cottage and letting it.

 

I would argue with that massive figure, it is - well massive. The place would have to be literally falling down for that figure to make sense.

Having renovated property myself the imagination runs wild at the thought of a 100K or even more budget to work with.

 

Also, who is it required to spend the money in the first place??

The Trust as it's their asset, or the council as it's their responsibility to look after the asset?

 

If anything, the Trustees might be open to criticism for failing to act earlier. Whilst they were not spending money on the maintenance of the cottage, that wasn’t a particular problem. It clearly is now.

 

If the Trustees ARE the council then who's fault is it the cottage is in such a state - and who pays for repairs??

Edited by geared

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Also, who is it required to spend the money in the first place??

The Trust as it's their asset, or the council as it's their responsibility to look after the asset?

 

If the Trustees ARE the council then who's fault is it the cottage is in such a state - and who pays for repairs??

 

Well there you have it.

 

The council are trusted with looking after the property

The council are the insurers of the property

The council neglect the property allowing it to flood.

It is the responsibiliy of the council as insurer of the property to rectify the damage, not use it as an excuse to sell something that isn't theirs to sell.

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Spoken like a true servant of Sheffield Council.

 

Blatantly. They even tried to shift the blame to Pickles & Clegg :hihi:

 

Everyone needs to read localmans post and read between the lines.

 

1. Let asset go to rack and ruin.

2. Mark them as surplus assets/destroy/re-build.

3. Move to the next asset.

 

Managed mis-management.

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I don't think you understand the law, accounts or the facts.

 

I was formerly the company secretary of a successful charitable trust mainly concerned with bringing historic buildings (some were, but most not, Listed) back in to use before they fell in to ruin.

 

The Charity Commission remains fairly useless. It has come under so much criticism that it now spends more time protecting its back than doing the right thing.

 

The job of the Trustees is to pursue the charitable objectives. In this case, it is to secure the maintenance of parkland for the people of Sheffield to continue enjoy.

 

The objectives are not to retain and spend money on surplus buildings which might have been, but clearly are no longer, integral to the Trust’s objectives.

If anything, the Trustees might be open to criticism for failing to act earlier. Whilst they were not spending money on the maintenance of the cottage, that wasn’t a particular problem. It clearly is now.

 

What are the options?

1) To spend c£100,000 on modernising the cottage and letting it. Difficult to justify investing to produce an annual loss not in pursuit of the charitable objectives.

2) Demolish. I must say I’m gob-smacked by the so-called Friends proposing a c£25,000 demolition just to leave bits of wall in place.

3) Dispose of the surplus asset and use the receipts – however small - for investing in the Trust’s objectives. Of course, this has the advantage of bringing a home back in to use.

 

It’s a no-brainer.

 

I simply don’t understand the mind-set of those who object to the proposal but have no realistic alternative.

 

Neither do I understand the party political games being played.

 

It’s a surplus asset. Both Eric Pickles and Nick Clegg have been insistent that councils should dispose of surplus assets so that other services don’t have to be cut. In fact, I seem to remember that Nick Clegg said this very specifically about Sheffield in The Star a few weeks ago.

 

[Arguing that this is a Graves Trust surplus asset and not the Council’s doesn’t stack up either. There is a huge subsidy from SCC to Graves to keep the parkland maintained. Without the receipt, the council would have to increase its subsidy.]

 

For goodness sake, just get on with it.

 

Yeah get on with it...what a load of twaddle, Graves Park has been under threat long before Eric Pickles and Nick Clegg joined forces.

 

I also don't understand the party politics being played, but why is it always the Labour party which seem hell bent on this ?

 

I'm no fan of the Lib Dems either, but I don't understand your mindset that this land should be sold off, the money raised from this is miniscule in the grand scheme of things.

 

Sheffield City council does not own Cobnar Cottage, nor do they own Graves Park.

The land on which this cottage stands is part of land which was gifted to the City of Sheffield. This was given by the late JG Graves to be held in perpetuity.

They should be protecting this land not selling it off at any available opportunity.

It is not theirs to sell, this Labour council should hang their heads in shame.

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Spoken like a true servant of Sheffield Council.

 

 

Other than as a council-tax payer, I have no relationship with Sheffield Council.

 

I think I know charitable law pretty well. I also know the objectives of the Graves Park Charity as well as the covenants that apply. They state that no land can be sold without the receipts being used to purchase further land of equal or greater amenity value to the park.

 

I was quite clear that the capital receipt should be re-invested in Graves Park.

 

Regarding the cottage. It was the responsibility of the council to insure the cottage. They chose to put that insurance through the city council. When a pipe burst through negligence the council decided not to claim against its own insurance. This is the reason the cottage needs repair.

 

If the Trust has a claim against the council, then that should be pursued and settled. That doesn't mean that the Trust should be forced to become a loss-making landlord, when that is clearly not one of the Trust's objectives.

 

The small cost of the upkeep of Graves Park is a trivial amount compared to the assett value of 248 acres of prime parkland that the council is allowed to use otherwise rent free.

 

I hardly think that the cost of the upkeep is small; just remind us of the figure again. And, I hardly think you can describe it as 'the council is allowed to use...'; it's us citizens who are allowed to use in keeping with the Trust's objectives.

 

You keep telling us what you are against. Can you clearly and concisely explain what you are proposing should happen and the costs of delivering it.

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You keep telling us what you are against. Can you clearly and concisely explain what you are proposing should happen and the costs of delivering it.

 

Simple. The cottage belongs to the Graves Park Charity. It was in the trust of Sheffield Council when it went from being a valuable and appreciating piece of real estate to becomeing a run down and neglected one. At the time the damage was caused it was on Sheffield Council's insurance policy. That policy should pay for the restoration of the damage. The cottage could then be rented out to a deserving person and the cottage could bring in revenue to the charity whilst appreciating in value as a capital assett of the charity.

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Sheffield Council especially Labour are desperate to sell of Graves park. They only view it as prime building land its truly a disgrace that they treat it this way. Its a fantastic park and it should be embraced

 

I don't think it is just Graves Park. There was a Labour Party policy of selling 10% of all parks to raise finance. It was quite popular with the council until they got rumbled.

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Yeah get on with it...what a load of twaddle, Graves Park has been under threat long before Eric Pickles and Nick Clegg joined forces.

 

I also don't understand the party politics being played, but why is it always the Labour party which seem hell bent on this ?

 

I'm no fan of the Lib Dems either, but I don't understand your mindset that this land should be sold off, the money raised from this is miniscule in the grand scheme of things.

 

Sheffield City council does not own Cobnar Cottage, nor do they own Graves Park.

The land on which this cottage stands is part of land which was gifted to the City of Sheffield. This was given by the late JG Graves to be held in perpetuity.

They should be protecting this land not selling it off at any available opportunity.

It is not theirs to sell, this Labour council should hang their heads in shame.

 

We got a reply from the Charities Commission at the weekend. They didn't seem too impressed.

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We got a reply from the Charities Commission at the weekend. They didn't seem too impressed.

 

Go on, tell all: did they seem not impressed at your complaint, or not impressed at the proposed sale?

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