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Big Night Out youth arts fundraiser at New Wimbledon Theatre, Mon 3 Feb

WCTT YOUNG ACTORS CO. AND MERTON MUSIC FOUNDATION’S BIG NIGHT OUT NEW WIMBLEDON THEATRE 7PM, MONDAY 3RD FEBRUARY, 2020   Merton Music Foundation and the Wimbledon Civic Theatre Trust are teaming up with the New Wimbledon Theatre to present Big Night Out, a celebration of young MMF and WCTT talent and the fabulous partnership between these two Merton youth arts charities. It promises to be a night of magical music and thrilling drama – full of songs you can sing along to and theatre which will have you cheering the hero and booing the villain.   Big Night Out is an evening of two halves, showcasing some of the very best young talent from across the borough. The first half will see an uplifting musical programme from Merton Music Foundation’s flagship band, the Merton Youth Concert Band, featuring plenty of family-favourites from stage and screen.   In the second half you can expect lashings of comedy and audience participation in Twist a revolutionary 21st Century take on the classic Dickens novel brought to you by the Young Actors Company.   What more do you need to banish those winter blues?     Tickets: £15 (group discounts available)   Produced by WCTT and Merton Music Foundation in partnership with New Wimbledon Theatre and supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England and The Taylor Family Foundation.

Rebecca Cresta ● 1620d0 Comments ● 1620d

Mandela Day Fun-Run!

Mandela is remembered for celebrating the idea that every individual can have an impact on the world, and that no gesture is too small to spark change. To continue his legacy, we ask everyone to commit just 67 minutes to help make the world a better place! So, use this time to do something positive, whether that is helping out a friend, or making a difference in your community.To keep his spirit alive, Starfish supporters are organizing a charity fun run in Hyde Park at 10am on Wednesday 18th July - Mandela Day. The idea is to run for as long or as little as you like, meeting everyone at the start line to run the final, and most important, 466.64m (Mandela’s prison number) to the finish! As it is suitable for all athletic abilities, and all ages, it is a perfect opportunity for the whole family to get out and enjoy the sun during the school holidays! Although there is no strict theme, fancy dress is encouraged as there are prizes up for grabs for the most creative outfit, as well as for most money fundraised and longest distance run to the start line. If running isn’t your thing, there are plenty of games and sports to take part in during the day, as well as snacks and drinks to enjoy in the park afterwards. In the true spirit of Ubuntu, all funds raised will be shared between Starfish Greathearts Foundation and Uthando Masibulele Education Centre, helping vulnerable children in South Africa.To register,visit any questions, please email us at

Starfish Greathearts Foundation ● 2188d0 Comments ● 2188d

Memorial Service.

On Saturday 4 August 2018 at 2.00pm, a memorial service is being held in the Metropole Theatre, Abertillery, South Wales for two Abertillery murder victims, 8 year-old Freda Burnell and 11 year-old Florence Little who were killed in Abertillery in 1921.Their killer, Harold Jones a.k.a Harry Stevens lived in Fulham, Putney and Hammersmith between 1946 and 1971 when he died. With a choir and town band performing at the memorial service there is expected to be over 250 people attending. There will be an expected 50 members of the 2 girls' family members attending from various parts of Britain. After the service there will be a re-dedication of the 2 girls' memorials at Brynithel Cemetery.Over the past 7 months, myself, Councillors Gill Clark and Julie Holt have raised nearly £3,400.00 towards the cost of restoring the 2 dilapidated memorials. We are still about £200 short of paying the memorial mason who has done the work at cost price and about £300 short of printing 260 memorial service programmes. These will consist of 8 pages each.We have now been given a donation to book the Metropole Theatre for the event. We  have also been kindly offered a donation of £300 towards the cost a buffet that will be held in the Metropole later in the afternoon.If anyone would like to consider making a donation for this worthy cause please contact me on 07989555376 or n.milkin@sky.comPlease google Florence Little/Freda Burnell  or Harold Jones - Killer for more information.Regards.Neil Milkins

Neil Milkins ● 2206d0 Comments ● 2206d

WPCC Election - John Cameron's Q&A

Unfortunately John Cameron was unable to attend the Hustings arranged by the Wimbledon Society which was held on Wednesday this week. The Society refused to allow me as his designated representative to read his statement or answer questions. He had prepared answers to 10 "tough" questions, and in a spirit of openness has asked me to copy them here:JOHN CAMERON – QUESTIONS AND ANSWERSQ. Can you really work together with other Trustees considering you have failed to do so for the last three years? A. I haven’t failed to do so - from April 2015 to November 2016 I participated fully in all the board matters. The ‘disagreements’ were over fundamental issues which I considered to be misconduct . It was clear to me that a faction of the board were colluding to kick the undersale into the long grass. They were doing so with the support of professional advisers. Trustees and advisers failed to disclose material conflicts of interest, which are now known, and these have been passed to the Charity Commission. As a Trustee I was exposed to this collusion, misconduct and mismanagement. I was elected as a Trustee to serve ONLY in the interests of the charity, and that is exactly what I did. To participate in a cover up would not have been in the interests of the charity, it would have been misconduct. Q. Why do you want to sack Simon Lee? A. Simon Lee deliberately misled the Charity Commission in January 2015 when he stated in writing that the WPCC did not have a case to answer in respect of the undersale of the access. We now know the undersale caused a loss of £1.55m. Mr Lee participated in the very obvious attempts to block an independent and fair investigation. He also participated in the appointment of Daniel Watney LLP which does not stand up to scrutiny. The Daniel Watney LLP valuation cost some £40,000 and has now been shown to be fatally flawed in terms of its assumptions and conclusion. This is misconduct and mismanagement. CEO’s need to take responsibility for their actions. The board, as Lee’s employer, will need to review his actions in due course. There are a number of fundamental reasons why Simon Lee’s leadership should be reviewed including whether he continues to have the support of the WPCC team members. Q. Your actions have caused the financial crisis the charity is in by forcing the board to spend £400,000 with lawyers? A. My actions have not caused the financial crisis. The conflicted Trustees went on a ‘spending spree’ with lawyers to run up as large a bill as possible. The initiative was led by the conflicted Trustees to enable them to close down the Putney Hospital investigation without procuring an independent valuation. When it was clear to me and other Trustees that BWB were acting in the interests of the conflicted Trustees, BWB were challenged and quit. A material conflict of interest was not disclosed. Charles Russell Speechlys were then a mirror image of BWB. A material conflict of interest was again not disclosed. The unnecessary expense was committed by the board in order to try and avoid taking responsibility for the the deliberate undersale. The financial meltdown was deliberate and instigated by Trustees. The Charity Commission have the evidence of this, and have been continuously informed from the summer of 2015.Q. Why do you want to remove the benches on Putney Common outside the Spencer pub on Putney Common? A. I do not want to remove the benches. My opposition to them was driven by the lack of consultation. The benches appeared overnight. The charity charged the Spencer a token amount, without taking any professional advice. When I became a Trustee I challenged this and advice was taken from unqualified advisers. Their advice was fundamentally wrong, based on incorrect assumptions. The advice then suggested that the Spencer could ‘go legal’ if they did not get their way. The advice was worthless, yet accepted by the board and acted on. If the Spencer want benches the Trustees have a fiduciary duty to ensure that the agreement is on the best available terms in the interests of the charity. That is not the case, as the benches are under rented. In December 2018 the WPCC made a deliberate misrepresentation to Wandsworth Council over the planning application for a permanent change of use. The application has now been withdrawn. Q. Why did you refuse to abide by the agreed policy of the board not to disagree publicly with agreed actions? A. For the simple reason of ensuring that levy payers were fully informed of the serial misconduct and mismanagement of the WPCC. To not do so would not be in the interest of the charity or the levy payers. It would be mismanagement and misconduct.Q. You shouted at other members of the board and acted unreasonably to such an extent that you had to be excluded. Is that the sort of behaviour we should expect from a Trustee? I have not shouted at anyone or acted unreasonably. I have simply argued my corner. I have been threatened physically, lied to repeatedly and placed under huge amount of financial stress by the board to force my resignation. When I resisted this and asked questions about transactions a vexatious complaint was submitted by Prue Whyte and Simon Lee to the Charity Commission. It was rejected by the Commission as I and my lawyers refuted it line by line. There was no case to answer. The WPCC tried to sack me and failed. They wasted £60,000 of levy payers funds with lawyers, an utterly shameful misuse of the charity’s resources.Q. Why don’t you want the charity and its management to work with the local community. Aren’t Stakeholder groups important? A. Stakeholder groups are important. But the Trustees have the legal responsibility for the charity and the founding legislation. Derogation of setting strategy, governance and legal responsibility is completely contrary to good governance. Q. Will you accept the Statutory Inquiry report if it decides that no action should be taken to recoup the losses incurred at Putney Common? A. There is ample evidence to support the case that undersale in 2014 was deliberate. I have been interviewed by the Interim Manager and made my position clear to the Charity Commission. It is up to the Charity Commission to make whatever Direction(s) it decides. I believe that the losses are recoverable and it would be in the interests of the WPCC to do so. To not do so because of personal loyalties or conflicts of interest is contrary to the legal responsibility of Trustees.Q. Why are you suggesting that the democratic election of Trustees will be abolished? A. It is clear to me that there is an agenda to make sweeping changes to the 1871 Act. This will include the cessation of elections which allow residents to have a voice in the governance of the WPCC. Other changes include vesting more power in the executive, the ability to commercialise the commons, including the sale of land if it is in the interest of the charity to do so. The commons are coveted; 1,140 acres of freehold land in central London. The 1871 Act has not protected the commons due to weak Trustees. Trustees who act as a clique cannot be trusted. We know from experience that cosy cliques are prepared to roll over for political allies or personal friends. Protecting the commons is paramount, for us, our children and their children. Q. Why won’t you support the Strategy and Vision statement? A. It is management speak and white noise. A document which is not costed and cannot be implemented. Designed to deflect from the real issues. It is not necessary to commission market research as what the WPCC’s role is in modern society. The commons are precious. Managing them is not challenging. Balance the books. Invest wisely. Keep it simple. Do it well. Be a little better each year. Repeat. John Cameron, 7 February 2018

Nicholas Evans ● 2326d0 Comments ● 2326d

WPCC Election 2018 - why I am not standing

Why I am not seeking re-election as a Conservator in the February 2018 election…..and why I am recommending that none of the Conservators elected in February 2015 do so either.We need a clean sweep so that the charity can move forward with confidence into the next triennium.  Our precious open spaces are more important than any individual or group of individuals.Regrettably there is an extremely destructive small group who, in my view, will go to almost any lengths to try and bring the charity down.  This, I believe, is their aim.  The Charity Commission’s statement of 22nd December 2017 made clear ‘It would encourage those with appropriate knowledge and skills to consider standing.’The statement continues: ‘The Commission hopes that after the election all the elected and appointed trustees will work together to take the charity forward. This would include considering mediation to resolve any outstanding issues within the trustee body and putting into place any actions issued by the Commission.’It is not encouraging to think the new Board may have to consider mediation as a starting point.  With new, ‘fresh faces’ and open minds this should not be needed.The Commission has given an indication, but without commitment, that they are looking to close the Statutory Inquiry within the first six months of 2018.It is my understanding, from a meeting I had with the Charity Commission on 18th December 2017, that the Commission wants to bring this whole matter to conclusion so that the trustees can get on with running the charity.  I am equally clear that the only issue that the Commission is investigating is that within the current remit of the Interim Manager.I will be looking to give my five votes to candidates who are able to prove to me that they are not coming with any ‘baggage’ or arguments from recent past disputes. We have many talented levy-payers with sound common sense and appropriate skills including the ability to work collectively who we need to support to take on these important Conservator/trustee roles.  I will give them my full support in whatever way I can.  I will also continue to give my full support to the quite excellent staff that WPCC is fortunate enough to employ.  Prue WhyteElected Conservator

Prue Whyte ● 2366d1 Comments ● 2365d