Newsletter - July 2010 ___________________________________________________________________________________ Our first set back was our from the car booters, the site visitors THE CHAIRMAN’S REPORT unsuccessful bid under the Town Centre Regeneration Scheme. If we had been successful in obtaining that funding we would by now not only have had an office but also a multi-tasking town centre Community Hub building. However it was not to be.
John Brownlee - Chairman I would like to begin at the beginning by saying a few words to encapsulate what Peterhead Projects Ltd actually stands for. Very much part of Aberdeenshire’s Community Planning Partnership, PPL is a not for profit social enterprise company. We are actually owned and led by members of the community in order to initiate and develop new projects for and within our community. Until March 2011 we are in receipt of ‘core-funding’ from Aberdeenshire Council, thereafter, to ensure our self-sufficiency and to further our aims, the company needs to generate income through our social enterprise activities. Having provided you with a summary of what we are about let me now turn to our first year. Well I can certainly say that it has been frenetic and at times a little discouraging while at other times it has been quite uplifting. When we first started work, more than 12 months ago, we discounted nothing and in so doing we considered a very wide range of possible projects but as the year went on we realised that our enthusiasm was overriding our available commitment and that we had to prioritise a number of these prospects whilst putting others on the shelf ready perhaps to be taken up later - when we had more resources.
and the local shop keepers has all been highly positive. This low cost operation brings a steady weekly income into the company.
Not letting that set back put us off we subsequently leased the office space that we currently occupy in Broad Street. Although somewhat ‘bi-jou’ for our needs, these premises still enable us to operate an office and a shop and even provide space for the Family History Society of Buchan.
SHOP AND VISITOR INFORMATION CENTRE The Peterhead Projects shop and Tourism Information Centre is progressing nicely and sales continue to grow with us stocking a great range of local material and goods. We also act as the booking office for a number of town activities such as the ‘Hairy Bikers Dinner’ for Buchan’s Larder (formerly the Fish Fest), The Tartan Ball, the Peterhead Half Marathon and a growing number of other events. It is good to see that these various other community groups in our area are now using our facility and recognise it as being a worthwhile asset. If you have yet to visit the shop then I urge you so to do.
CAR BOOT SALES After much protracted negotiation we eventually acquired occupancy of the St Peter Street Car Park where, every Saturday morning, we now operate our acclaimed Car Boot Sale. We have up to 25 spaces available and most weeks we are achieving a 90% occupancy. Part of our thinking on an in-town car boot was that it would also bring more people into the town centre shops and this appears to be happening – thus bringing further benefit to the town. Certainly the feed-back that we get
Peterhead Projects, 35 Broad Street, Peterhead. Tel: 01779 478950
Currently, our biggest project to date is our – soon to be launched – ‘2ReUse Project’. This is a recycling project with a difference. Working closely with the various Social Landlords and the Shire Authority we shall be producing basic Home Packs of recycled furniture targeted at those entering into rented accommodation perhaps for the first time or through some form of trauma. These Home Packs will consist of the primary requirements for setting up a home such as: Bed and bedding, Suite of furniture, Table and chairs, Kettle, Microwave, Cutlery, China and cooking utensils, Towelling, Curtains etc. We shall also being operating a shop selling surplus second-hand furniture and equipment. While we shall be seeking donations of furniture from the public we also have an agreement with the local authority to place a container at the Peterhead Recycling Depot where we shall be able to re-direct many of those items that people throw away but are in fact simply un-wanted and
are perfectly usable. Aberdeenshire Council will even pay us for taking this material away. Our operating base for this project will be from the currently vacant shops on Berryden Road. Although we anticipate that this project will initially run at a loss it is forecast that it will be in profit within 6 months.
WOODLAND WALK If I can now briefly look towards our next project where we are considering something totally different and that is to create a local Woodland Walk right on the outskirts of the town. We have agreed a lease on a fairly large tract of mixed woodland, which as it stands will make an excellent woodland walk for the community while, if we were to subsequently apply for planning permission, the opportunities begin to become truly immense. It is early days yet for this project but we hope soon to invite comments from the local schools and various members of the community in order to ascertain what is really needed on the site, how it should be laid out etc. We shall also be looking for volunteers to help with the development and upkeep of the site. This project is not to be seen as an income-earning project but the set up costs will be quite low. The opportunities for funding are good and the end result will certainly be a worthwhile and lasting community benefit. These then are our initial priority projects. Other prospects that we originally considered such as Community Wind Turbines, an Eco Wood, Town Centre Hub, are still there, ready to be taken up if and when the circumstances allow. While partnership projects with other bodies such as a new community crematorium also continue at their own pace. Peterhead Projects is just one of four similar development trusts in this corner of Aberdeenshire with
Huntly, Banff & Macduff and Fraserburgh being the other three. As a group we meet regularly to freely exchange ideas or to share any concerns. We also benefit from the services of Bill Clark of Aberdeenshire Council who is always there when needed. The directors are acutely aware that our local authority funding will stop at the end of March 2011 and that those projects that I have listed, plus any others that we might take up need to be self funding in themselves or viable through other appropriate grant funding by that date. To this end we very much welcome Karen Brown on-board who will be able to assist us on identifying, applying and achieving such funding but I would also like to state that we also are in need for far more direct member input and for some of those members to volunteer to become directors, especially if they have particular business, professional or practical skills. John Brownlee, Chairman ______________________________
LATEST PROJECTS NEWS CAR BOOT SALES The weekly car boot sales continue to flourish with an average of 22 car booters selling their wares on a Saturday morning at the St Peter Street site. The Car Boot Sale is run by our attendant, Edward Fernandes, and costs £10 per pitch, payable either in advance at the Broad Street shop or on the day. Running every Saturday morning from 8am to 1pm, it is a great chance to have a clear out and make some money on those items that you no longer need. All profits are ploughed back into our other projects.
Eileen Styles and Karen Brown
2REUSE Good News! We will be moving into the retail units in Berryden Road to begin the 2ReUse Project in the very near future. We have a bit of work to do to get things ship-shape but we expect to launch the project in the next few weeks. All donations of furniture and other unwanted household goods are welcome. If you require items to be collected please contact us on 01779 478950. The shop will be open to the public daily. Karen Brown is the Project Manager of 2ReUse, ably assisted by Eileen Styles, who has done a tremendous amount of work on the project over the past year and will be running the shop units on a day-to day basis. We are looking for volunteers to help us with this project – please contact us on 01779 478950 if you feel you can contribute. We are also looking for lots and lots of stock so don’t throw away that unwanted item – give us a call!
MEMBERSHIP Membership of Peterhead Projects costs just £1 a year for individuals and £10 a year for businesses and organisations in the AB42 area. All members are encouraged to take an active part in the development and activities of Peterhead Projects and will receive regular updates on what we are doing in the area.
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