Agenda and minutes

Trustee Board of the Gilstrap and William Edward Knight Charities - Thursday, 4th March, 2021 6.00 pm

Venue: Broadcast from Castle House, Great North Road, Newark NG24 1BY

Contact: Helen Brandham  Email:


No. Item


The meeting was held remotely, in accordance with the Local Authorities and Police & Crime Panels (Coronavirus) (Flexibility of Local Authority and Police & Crime Panel Meetings) (England & Wales) Regulations 2020.



Declarations of Interests from Members and Officers




Declaration of Intention to Record the Meeting


The Chairman advised that the meeting was being livestreamed by the Council on social media.


Minutes of the Meeting held on 2 October 2020 pdf icon PDF 249 KB


AGREED      that the Minutes of the meeting held on 2 October 2020 be approved as a correct record.



Land off Cedar Avenue/Lincoln Road, Newark - Update pdf icon PDF 240 KB

Additional documents:


The Trustees considered the report of the Clerk to the Trustees which provided various options for the future of the land owned by the Trust at Cedar Avenue, Newark.  The options also included an alternative proposal received to develop the site as a ‘Children’s Wood and Wildlife Meadow’.


In considering the report Councillor D.J. Lloyd, a non-voting Trustee, noted that the recommendation of the report invited the Board of Trustees to debate the various options available and that a series of sequential decisions would be beneficial. 


He commented that the trustees, in accordance with their duty to protect the assets of the Charity, had sought to get full financial yield from the land when marketing it to sell for housing development. He noted that the purpose of the bequest of the land when the Charity was first established in 1883, (at the time it was used for farming), had been to yield an income to support the original object of the Trust, which was to provide a free library for Newark.  The land had been allocated for housing development, however following an open marketing process and lengthy negotiations with a social housing company - which had submitted the successful tender for the land - the sale had fallen through. The social housing company receive grants from Government and others to support their business and therefore it could be argued that it was a subsidised bid.  The developer had withdrawn its bid following several unsuccessful planning applications which suggested that the land would not be viable for housing development. He suggested therefore that the Trust seek the de-allocation of the land as unsuitable for residential development having undertaken a proper marketing exercise. 


The taking of that decision would then mean that the value of the land should be revised, as reflected in the officer’s report.  The land could be retained as an open space and the Trustees should then consider whether the Charity should retain responsibility for the provision of the open space together with the continued financial responsibility this would place upon the Trust.  In considering the financial interest of the Trust, it was noted that retention of the land caused expenditure but provided little return.  Councillor Lloyd also noted that to lease it as open space would return little or no income.  In considering the above he suggested that the Trust should formally designate the land as public open space.


Councillor Lloyd further stated that he would recommend that the Trust approach both the District and Newark Town Councils formally to explore if they would be interested in acquiring the land as open space to be protected, noting that such protection could be achieved by a number of options e.g. by covenant. 


In clarifying the reasoning behind the above recommendations, Councillor Lloyd stated that should the land be designated as open space very few parties would be interested in purchasing it. In referring to the alternative proposal received to develop the site as a ‘Children’s Wood and Wildlife Meadow’,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 14.


Grants Awarded Update pdf icon PDF 236 KB


The Trustees considered the report of the Democratic Services Officer which sought to provide an update following the decisions taken at their previous meeting held on 2 October 2020 to allocate funding to the Newark Civic Trust and the Newark R&M Cricket Club and the decision to request further details from the organiser of the Newark Book Festival. 


The report set out the decisions taken and the responses received from the above mentioned organisations.  In noting that the Newark Civic Trust had decided to accept the lower offer of £1,918, the Trustees wished to express their thanks for their continued efforts to promote the town through the work they undertook.


AGREED      that the report be noted.