The CTRAA 2017 AGM

Some 60 members attended the 2017 AGM. Picture by Robert Freeman.

Some 60 members attended the Cherry Trees Residents’ Amenities Association annual general meeting for 2017 on 14 November, which as usual was held in St Mary Abbots Church Hall.

Just like last year and the year before, the meeting was visited by Kensington’s by two of our three ward councillors, Robert Freeman and Catherine Faulks, and by Victoria Borwick, who at the 2015 and 2016 AGMs was the MP for Kensington. Our current MP, Emma Dent Coad, could not come, as Parliament had a heated Brexit debate and vote that Tuesday evening.

The two main issues for the evening were the introduction of the CTRAA discount scheme and an increase of the membership fee.

Twenty local retailers – 7 serving food and drinks and 13 offering goods and services – have signed up to the discount scheme from the beginning, and it is hoped that more will join once the scheme has been up and running for a while.

Those attending the meeting were given their membership cards directly, and all other members should find them in their mailboxes soon. A list of all participating retailers and the discounts they offer can be found here. It will be updated whenever  necessary, hopefully with more participants.

After having had the same, very low membership fee for more than 10 years, the committee proposed an increase from £6 to £10 for one year, and from £15 to £24 for three years – or £8 per year for those who choose to pay through standing order. Standing order is a new payment form for CTRAA.

The increase is needed to make the association less dependent on our estate agent sponsors, who nowadays pay something in the region of £2,500 per year for the wine and nibbles at the summer and autumn parties and the AGM, while the income from our members is only around £1,200 per year.

To be so dependent on sponsors is not healthy, and there are also indications that some of them may not continue their sponsorship, as times have become rather difficult for their industry.

The increases will only apply immediately for new members, while renewals for existing members will be available at the old prices until the next AGM in November 2018.

The proposal to increase the membership fees was unanimously approved by the meeting.

After the meeting there was the usual wine and nibbles (kindly sponsored by John D Wood and Huntsworth Wine) and mingling in the foyer.

The new committee for 2017-2018 can be found here.

Parts of the CTRAA committee sat up front. From left to right: Myrto Rochat, Monique Bahadur, Charles Penney, Ashley McNeile, Thomas Blomberg and Caroline Cuffe. Picture by Robert Freeman.