WHAT IS RVCBS?
RVCBS was formed in December 2011 and is registered with the Financial Conduct Authority under the Co-operative and Community Benefit Societies Act 2014 (CCBSA2014) to own assets or manage activities within the Redlake Valley and its environs that are solely for community benefit. The Society aims to provide an opportunity for public-spirited people to invest and get involved in projects that maintain or improve their surroundings. There will be no financial return for any investment but as well as being involved in decision making, shareholders will be able to take part in the running of projects and practical work. Although the aims of the Society are wide-ranging, and permit other projects in the future, the initial reason for the formation of the Society was to purchase Quillet no 2879 which became available for purchase in 2011.
WHO IS INVOLVED?
1. Management Board
Mark Limbrick is Chairman of the Society and a Founder Member. He lives at the Smithy in Chapel Lawn, is married to Karen and has two grown-up daughters. He is a member of the Parochial Church Council. Mark is employed as a civil servant in Shrewsbury.
Karen Limbrick is Secretary to the Society. Married to Mark, she is also on the Parochial Church Council. Karen is trained and self-employed as a landscape architect.
Anthony Morgan is Treasurer to the Society and a Founder Member. Although retired as a hospital consultant, Anthony still carries out work for the General Medical Council. Married to Christine, they moved to Lower Lye in the Redlake Valley from Whitcott Keysett two years ago and are keen cyclists and gardeners.
Ollie Holder is a lawyer by profession and spent many years in public service. Before moving to Clun he and his wife, Stephanie, lived in France for ten years where they managed their own woodland. Ollie and Steph are both passionate about wildlife.
Simon Jameson has lived in the valley for 12 years. He and his wife, Sarah, are both self-employed as successful artists and were instrumental in forming the Redlake Valley Artists’ Association. Simon also serves on the Village Hall Committee.
Patrick Cosgrove is a retired civil servant. With his wife, Di, they ran a B&B in Chapel Lawn until 2012. Patrick is Secretary to the Village Hall Committee. He walks, rides and cycles in and around the Redlake Valley and spends a great deal of time researching the history of the Valley. He is a Founder Member of the Society.
In addition to theManagement Board, , the early shareholders of the Society were Bob James and Claudia Brown of Bryncambric Farm, Chapel Lawn; Liz and Ian Campbell of Pentre Hodre; Barry and Beryl Palmer of Chapel Lawn; Eddy Allebe, working in London but also of Chapel Lawn; Christine Morgan of Lower Lye, Bucknell; Sarah Jameson of New Invention; Michael MacTurk of Pentre Hodre. They have since been joined by 27 others, most of whom live in or near to the Redlake Valley.
We obtained expert advice at each stage of setting up the Society and purchasing the quillet. At the very beginning we talked to the Cooperative Society and the Plunkett Foundation who were both extremely helpful. Others we have taken advice from include: Nicky Kent of Shropshire Rural Community Council whose role is helping communities set up social enterprises and Michael Whithouse (now a shareholder) who has formerly advised Fordhall Community Land Initiative and Knucklas Castle Community Land Project. Eventually we chose Wessex Community Assets to draw up our rules and register us as a CBS. Later we talked extensively with Brian Barker, the Woodland Officer for Shropshire Hills AONB who helped us with the woodland management plan and Fiona Gomersall, the Conservation Officer for the Shropshire Wildlife Trust. We are also in touch with nearby projects that have similar aims. These include Knucklas Castle Community Land Project which manages a community woodland and the Knighton Tree Allotment Trust, both of which are just over the border into Wales.
WHAT WE INITIALLY INTEND TO DO AND WHY.
With the purchase of the quillet, the Society will strengthen the historic link between Brineddin Wood and the community of Chapel Lawn and the wider Redlake Valley. This will provide a focus for joint action and cooperation by members of the community and will increase the opportunity for people to use, learn from and enjoy the woodland. We would like to develop a long-term sustainable vision for woodland under community management in Brineddin Wood. After consulting Shropshire Wildlife Trust we will commission a management plan for the quillet. We also hope to work with some of the other quillet owners. Already two owners of neighbouring quillets have agreed to let us undertake management work there, principally coppicing overgrown Hazel. The Society would expect to enhance biodiversity in the woodland, (both wildlife habitats and species of fauna and flora), thus preventing further decline, and would look to produce small-scale woodland products, obtained in a sustainable manner, in accordance with the management plan.
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