A third attempt is being made to set up a “Penarth Town Trust”

A so-called “Penarth Town Trust”  – an  idea which twice failed to take-off when originally floated out last year  – has now been registered with the Charities Commission.

The venture may well be linked with similar proposals in a report discussed last month by Penarth Town Council – but which did not refer to the “Penarth Town Trust” by name [see  PDN report https://penarthnews.wordpress.com/2017/07/31/penarth-council-considers-setting-up-its-own-town-charity/%5D .

The Penarth Town Trust has now been formally registered as what’s called a Foundation CIO or “Charitable Incorporated Organisation” . This is a type of CIO in which  the trustees  alone  – ( in this case just three people) – would make all the decisions.

Penarth Town Trust promoter – and former Labour councillor Tracey Alexander

Behind the putative new charity – and its first trustees are are:-

  • Former Labour town councillor and former deputy mayor of Penarth Tracey Alexander (who attempted top set up the Penarth Town Trust in 2015) ,
  • Charles Patrick Race Williams
  • William John Hudson.

The Trust has told the Charities Commission that its aims are :-

  1. The advancement of education for the public benefit of Penarth through the operation of what’s described as a “Public Training and Community Education Resource Centre”. [One PDN source says this is a coded reference to a potential acquisition of the Turner House Art Gallery – which is currently in the possession of the National Museum of Wales. The potential acquisition of Turner House from the National Museum was  referred to in last week’s internal council report 

“The advancement of education for the public benefit into the history and heritage of Penarth and the surrounding area” (sic). [ A PDN source  believes this could be – in effect – a scheme to take-over the Penarth Civic Society –  or that society’s aims and objectives. The Penarth Civic Society stated firmly last year that it had “no plans to participate in the Penarth Town Trust”. ]

3 “The preservation and protection of good health in Penarth by the education of the public in skills, techniques and approaches to maintaining natural health through diet and exercise”.

4 The organisation would also promote local sports which are adjudged to be “capable of improving physical health and fitness”.

5 The Penarth Town Trust would also operate a “database of the Voluntary Sector” in Penarth

The people whose interests the new Penarth Town Trust has said it intends to serve are listed as :-

  • “Children /young people”
  • “Elderly/old people” [ It’s not quite clear what the distinction is between the two]
  • “People of particular ethic or racial origin”  – [the particular ethnicities are not specified]
  • “The general public/Mankind”

The Trust has told the Charities Commission that the Penarth Town Trust would: –

  • Make grants to individuals
  • Make grants to organisations
  • Provide what is described as “other finance”
  • Provide buildings, facilities and open space [ One source says this could be a means of hiving off the Town Council’s major assets  – the Paget Rooms, the Kymin, the allotments and the Cemetery]
  • Provide “services” [not specified]
  • Provide “advocacy, advice, information”
  • Sponsor  or undertake “research”
  • Act as an “umbrella or resource body”

The first two attempts to set up a “Penarth Town Trust” ( in April and in September last year) were  both piloted by Tracey Alexander  and both fizzled out .

The second attempt to launch the much-heralded body in 2016 collapsed when the organisation’s then lack of any formal status came to light. [ See PDN https://penarthnews.wordpress.com/2016/09/02/the-penarth-town-trust-fizzles-out-on-the-lunch-pad/%5D

The one piece of information missing from the Charities Commission entry on this 3rd attempt to initiate the Penarth Town Trust is any clue as to just where the Trust proposes to get all the money from to achieve its ambitious  objectives.

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  1. Dan Potts says:

    Why on the face of it are they being so secretive about this, what are they trying to hide ?

    • Philip Rapier says:

      It is exactly the same dosh the incompetent uncaring Vale of Glamorgan Council gets filtered down from Cardiff Bay but given to the Towns People in Trust instead.
      There is no new money. Quite the opposite a Town Trust is an awarding charity able to award grants to local environmental and preservation schemes.
      Works brilliantly in Stratford on Avon where they know a thing or two about heritage tourism. All historic assets in Stratford belong to either the Town Trust or the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust
      Would you like to remove those politically, self motivated cultural vandals the Vale of Glamorgan Councillors from controlling Penarth’s heritage and prime historic assets?
      You would? Then support the plan.! The Pier. Railway Path, Turner Gallery, Dock Office even the sacred tombs of S.A. Brain and Joseph Parry in St.Augustine”s Churchyard could qualify under this worthy scheme.
      The Pier and Turner Gallery are prime targets and desperately in need of being returned to the trust of the people of Penarth who will elect the Trustees via open democratic membership elections.
      Samuel Arthur Brain would certainly have approved of investment in the community.

      ———– extract from the Stratford upon Avon website statement. ————————
      “As corporate Trustee of the Guild and College Estates, Stratford Town Trust owns a portfolio of over 100 properties in Stratford-upon-Avon. The property consists of retail, commercial, residential and land (including allotments). “

  2. Jayflan says:

    Hmmm. I thought that all these things were already included in the council’s remit.

  3. Peter Church says:

    My vote is for Professor Anthony Hazell to chair it, as he has shown such leadership and his openness in responding to all inquiries. As for deputy chair, it must to be the Rt Hon. Lizzy Burnett for her wise spending decisions and careful use of tax payers money.

    • Daft o dull says:

      Another vote for Hazell, if it is a secretly run organisation funded by the public and supported by under apppreciated volunteers, he is your man!

      • Anne Greagsby says:

        Another vote from me. They will be followed by Chris Loyn and Martin Gossage from the secret momentum group. All the big fish in our little pond calling the shots and spending our money!!

      • Betty Swallocks says:

        So, let Anne Greagsby spend your money on her pet projects instead. Vote for me!

  4. Mrs Tumble says:

    Isn’t Ms Alexander the Councillor who didn’t turn up for about 60 plus meetings
    Bodes well?

  5. Anne Greagsby says:

    This wouldn’t be the charity the town council wants to set up already a fait accompli?!

  6. David Day says:

    what safeguards are there that would preclude taxpayer liability for any fiasco that may (and probably will) occur financially?

  7. penarthblog says:

    Wouldn’t it be great if local traders and politicians and individuals got together to improve the town.

  8. snoggerdog says:

    they forgot nematodes on there list.

  9. Stuart says:

    Wasn’t Tracey Alexander behind the failed “Friends of Cosmeston Medieval Village” group several years ago? I seem to remembered her trying to flog membership. Yes check online first meeting held May 16th 2012.

  10. Clive says:

    The breadth of ambition is too great and the purpose capable of being confused. Far better to my mind is to focus on something like the Turner Galley. Make a success then in a controlled manner diversify. Open book accounting would help gain public confidence.

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