Over the past few years, the fortunes of Chilworth Hall have been turned around. Now it’s looking forward to a more successful future: would you be willing to help with that?Just a glance at its Calendar is enough to confirm that the Hall’s in frequent use these days and that means that its operating finances are such that it need not re-enter a downward spiral. The final phase of a complete refurbishment is currently being planned, although it’s clear that normal maintenance is reminiscent of painting the Forth Bridge. By the time you finish, it’s time to start again!
There are two main reasons the transformation has been successful:
- The support of local people, either as volunteers in some way, or as supporters of fundraising events. Quite a few people qualify on both counts.
- The decision to try to run the Hall more like a small business. (Formally of course it’s a registered charity, but charities can be thought of as not-for-profit businesses.)
As a business, the Hall needs a board and that function is fulfilled by the volunteers who serve on its Management Committee. Committee members are trustees, registered as such at the Charities Commission.
We always welcome anyone who is willing to contribute a little time to our combined efforts but, right now, what we need more than anything is someone with accounting and/or bookkeeping skills to act as Treasurer so that the finances can be managed more effectively, and so that we may budget for an affordable rolling maintenance plan. If that’s something that you think you could do, then please e-mail Brian Luff, the Hall’s chairman via firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a chat.
Ideally, we would like to get away from using spreadsheets because they are inherently prone to errors, and they tend to be the product of just one mind. Using an online accounting system would be ideal. Something like Sage, Quickbooks, BYOB, Clearbooks – there are plenty of options and, provided the need was met, you could have free rein to set up a new system. We would look to the Treasurer to also take care of the Hall’s banking and investments.