Annual Report 2021

Posted by Philippa Morgan on 29 March 2022



The Trust for Devizes is a local civic society. It is a registered charity whose aim is to preserve and enhance the amenities of the Devizes area. That is principally the built environment of Devizes and the contiguous urban area which extends into Roundway and Bishops Cannings. The Trust does not oppose new developments but does campaign to ensure that new developments are in the right place, are built to a high standard, are compatible with the existing townscape and they are of a type and quality that enhances the street scene and are of benefit to the community. There are many factors which can affect local amenity, so the Trust is also concerned with matters such as traffic congestion and the lack of any planned new green spaces, which have serious adverse health effects for the community.

CONSTITUTION OF THE TRUST – Please note that the Trust does not currently have a Chairman but this position is held open.

  1. The name of the Society is 'The Trust for Devizes'.

  2. The objects of the Society are: To protect and maintain the character and amenities of the Devizes area.

  3. Membership of the Society shall be open to any person willing to support the objects of the Society.

  4. The minimum subscriptions for Annual membership and Life membership shall be as determined by the Committee and approved by a majority of members present and voting at an AGM. The Society shall have the power to accept donations for any purpose consistent with its objects and may make special appeals for funds to be used in connection with any such purpose.

  5. The Management of the Society shall be vested in a Committee consisting of the Chairman, The Honorary Secretary, The Honorary Treasurer and not more than seven other Members provided that the Committee may co-opt additional Members to the Committee. Five members of the Committee shall constitute a quorum.

  6. The Society shall at its first Meeting and at every Annual General Meeting elect a Chairman, Honorary Treasurer and Honorary Secretary together with seven other members to constitute the Committee for the ensuing year. The Members of the Committee shall take office at the end of the Meeting at which they are elected and shall hold office until the end of the next Annual General Meeting. All members of the Committee may be re-elected for a further term or terms of office. The Chairman for the time being of the Committee shall also be the Chairman of the Annual General Meeting.

  7. The Honorary Treasurer shall keep accounts of all moneys received and expended on account of the Society and shall present such accounts at the Annual General Meeting of the Society. A Banking Account shall be opened on behalf of the Society and all cheques drawn upon the said account shall require the signature of at least two Members of the Committee.

  8. The financial year of the Society shall end on the 31st day of December in each year and a General Meeting of Members shall be convened by the Honorary Secretary as soon thereafter as possible and in any case within three months for the purpose of receiving the Annual Report and Balance Sheet, for electing the officers and the Committee for the ensuing year and to consider any other business as may be necessary. Fourteen days notice of such Meeting shall be sent to all Members. Fifteen Members present in person shall constitute a quorum at the Annual General Meeting. In the event of a quorum not being present the Meeting shall be adjourned to such place date and time within the ensuing fourteen days as the Chairman shall decide and the Members present at such adjourned Meeting shall constitute a quorum.

  9. An extraordinary General Meeting may be convened at any time by a resolution of the Committee or on the requisition of at least ten Members of the Society. A Meeting held on such requisition shall be held within twenty-one days of the receipt of such requisition by the Honorary Secretary and the Honorary Secretary shall give to the other Members of the Society fourteen days notice of such Meeting. A quorum shall be the same as a quorum at the Annual General Meeting.

  10. All matters not hereinbefore provided for and not involving amendment to this constitution may be dealt with by the Committee.

  11. The Society in General Meeting by a resolution passed by not less than three-quarters of those present and voting may amend this constitution save that there shall be no power to amend clauses. 2 or 3 or this clause.


The day to day business of the Trust is organised by its Committee in accordance with the Constitution of the Trust. The Committee Members meet at least once a month and are the Trustees of the Trust for Devizes, which is a charity registered with the Charities Commission.

The Committee members during 2021 were:

Mark Boden

David Dawson

James Flood (Hon. Treasurer)

John Girvan

Philippa Morgan (Hon. Secretary)

Richard Ormerod

Ian Sharp

Inez Skinner

All were elected unopposed. The Chairman’s role remained vacant with members of the Committee acting as Chairman on a monthly rotation basis.

The Trust is always eager to expand the skills and interests represented on the Trust Committee and members who would like to be more actively involved in the work behind the scenes are always welcome. Members can help by suggesting membership of the Trust to friends and neighbours. The larger our membership the more influence we have on local issues. It is the role of the Committee to decide on which local issues to pursue but we are always pleased to hear from members if they want to draw attention to anything of local concern. You do not need to wait for the AGM to become a committee member or to express an opinion. Members without access to the Internet who wish to contact the Trust should write to the Secretary at the address given in Trust News, which is distributed to all members.


The Trust is a wholy voluntary organisation without any statutory powers but it is effective because it represents the combined voices of a large number of people. The Trust is politically neutral, but in its efforts on behalf of the community it does sometimes take local authorities and individuals to task. The Trust was formed in 1967 when the local council attempted to wall-in the historic Crammer pond against the wishes of local people. The petition against the Crammer wall collected over 3400 signatures and this opposition, organised by the Trust, caused the Council to promptly change its mind.

Today the Trust has a membership of around 260 people and continues to campaign and influence developments. We work with other Devizes-based organisations to safeguard, improve and develop our town.


The Trust's activities during 2021 were again affected by the Covid pandemic which curtailed activities. However, the Trustees quickly adapted by holding online meetings and emails. We were able to return to holding 'live' meetings in October 2021. Most of the Trust’s activities in 2021 have been reported to members in our regular newsletter Trust News. Back numbers of Trust News can be viewed on the Trust web site

Meetings and Public Events

Committee members attended meetings (both online and in person) of other community based organisations, such as the Devizes Air Quality and Transport Strategy Group and the Neighbourhood Plan review group to present the views of the Trust. We were unable to hold any public events, including our AGM, during 2021.

Planning Applications

The Committee regularly reviews the planning applications submitted to Wiltshire Council that concern the Town and its environs. It does this to support the right sort of development as well as to put forward fact-based logically argued objections to inappropriate development. 2021 was a very busy year, with around 170 planning applications being reviewed. We are grateful to Richard Ormerod for all the work he does on planning applications.



The draft financial accounts for the year 2021 are attached.

The annual family membership fee continues to be £15.00.

Members are invited to put any questions to the Honorary Treasurer.

Reserves Policy

Charities are required to maintain reserves in order to be able to meet any outstanding liabilities in the event of their being wound up or for any appropriate reason identified by the trustees. Liabilities could include rents or utility bills due, redundancy payments or outstanding bills. The Trust for Devizes has no employees or freehold or rented property.

Money donated to a charity has to be used for the purposes of the charity. In addition, money donated for specific purposes should normally be used only for that purpose. The Trust was given money specifically to establish and maintain the blue plaques on certain buildings of historical interest. The major part of the reserve funds have been that money but very little expenditure on the blue plaques has been required since they were established. In recent years, it has not been possible for the Trust to obtain interest on money in deposit accounts, consequently the reserve funds have been losing value due to inflation.

The Committee has decided that the objectives of the Trust would be better met by using the reserve funds, as appropriate opportunities for meeting the Trust’s objectives arise, rather than keeping funds for unlikely eventualities, whatever the original purpose of the donation.



Philippa Morgan


March 2022












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