Banbury Community Action Group

BCAG  January ’24 catch-up meeting

Chair:          Jim                       

Minutes:    Harriet

Present:      Jim S, Lynda S, Harriet J, Chris M, James N


1. Agenda item I   Welcome and apologies                                                                            Jim

A warm welcome to everyone from Jim.  Apologies from Tila R, Maria M, Lynne C, Dan P

2. Agenda item II   a) Minutes of the last meeting, 07/11/23 b) Matters arising from the last meeting, 07/11/23                                                           Jim

No comments were received on the minutes of the last meeting.

All matters arising are covered under items in the minutes.

3.  Agenda item III   BCAG admin                                                                                             Jim                                                      

Total hours spent on BCAG business and projects for December were recorded – thanks to everyone for putting in time.  Harriet to ask any core members not at the monthly meeting, for their hours. 

4.  Agenda item IV   Treasurer’s report                                                                                Lynda

The balance stands at around £23K – this is almost entirely grant money for specific projects with the unallocated balance standing at around £1K.  The meeting noted that this is lower than usual and will make it challenging to meet ongoing running costs including insurance, calibrating PAT testing equipment, and venue hire.

BCAG insurance has been renewed (29/11/23, McClarron, premium £423.52).  Many thanks to CAG Ox for their generous contribution of £338 towards this, and to Lynda for getting it sorted. 

5. Agenda item V   Social media, Newsletter, publicity                                                      Jim   

Items please to Maria M for the upcoming Newsletter, scheduled for early January.

Stats:   276 subscribers of which 201 are voting members.  BCAG has 1,232 followers on Facebook; BSCG has 747 followers.  BATS has 50+ followers.  There were 130 visitors to the BCSG website in December.

6. Agenda item VI   Bridge Street Community Garden  BSCG                                          (Tila)

Thank you to the Brighter Futures in Banbury, Community Insight Fund Programme, for funding for a series of well-being workshops to be held at the Garden over the coming months.

The Garden participated in the International Tree Foundation’s tree giveaway, helping distribute around 200 trees to Banbury residents to plant in their gardens.

Local artist Hayley Stevenson led an art and well-being workshop (04/12).

Three wreath-making workshops were held (with Aspire, Restore, and The Hill Community Centre).

A winter celebration event with artist Rhiannon Evans (21/12) focused on the heritage wheat.

Patrissia Cuberos led the latest in her popular singing workshops (16/12).

Tila and volunteers from Bridge Street Garden and Banbury Trees have provided extensive support to Banbury Town Council with their Urban Orchard project.  They have been encouraging residents to sign up as tree wardens, assisting the BTC landscape officer with the logistics, and helping the park rangers supervise the planting of the fruit trees.  The project is well underway with more planting scheduled to get the remainder of the 60 fruit trees in the ground by the end of February.

7.  Agenda item VII   Food Action                                                                                       Harriet                                                      

Dan is organizing the first CTET event of ’24, to be held at the RVS (18/01), and also the follow up event in February (15/02).

As part of the BCAG Food Action, Dan has also been actively supporting CDC and associated network of community groups and individuals working to improve access to food surplus in the Banbury area, with the aim of ensuring food waste is minimized and food security, maximized.

8.  Agenda item VIII   Browning Road Orchard BRO                                                        Harriet

With Colin leaving the Banbury area (we will miss you!), we are looking for a new lead for events at the Orchard.  Harriet to ask Colin for contact details of those living locally who might be interested in taking this on. 

The Town Council are interested in holding some joint events based at the Orchard as a social and training focus for the Urban Orchard volunteer tree wardens.  Harriet to liaise with Julia O’S.

9. Agenda item IX   Banbury Active Travel Supporters group                                 (Paul/Chris)

BATS has submitted an application to the Oxfordshire Community Active Travel Fund (OCC) for funding for cycle parking at Banbury Community Garden and Wood Green Leisure Centre.

BATS continue to attend Oxfordshire Active Travel Roundtable meetings.  This is the county-wide forum for discussing walking and cycling.  The next session is 08/01.

Good news that a live departure board has been installed at the Dashwood Road bus stop on South Bar.  Note existence of the group Oxon4Buses (O4B), an informal association of users of bus services in Oxfordshire.

Following data and the lead set by The Bikeability Trust, BATS have contacted the Minister of Education to ask what plans are in place to include active travel principles and good practice into the National Curriculum.  The reply from the minister, Damian Hinds, basically sets out that there are currently no plans for this to happen!

10. Agenda item X     Banbury Environment Network                                                     Harriet

The BCAG/WI ‘Water Vols’ continue with their ongoing testing of the local water quality, and the 100th record has been submitted on the FreshWater Watch site.  Congratulations to the testing team of now 15 regular testers.

Sue and Harriet are organizing a ‘water blitz’ event (16/02) to give publicity to the scheme and to increase coverage, providing a snapshot of water quality across the town at a single point in time.

11. Agenda item XI     Climate Action                                                                                    Lynda

In partnership with Age Friendly Banbury, Lynda is taking the lead on a ‘sew and sow’ clothes repair and seed swap pop-up at the Community Space 15/02.

The next Give and Take event is booked for 24/02 at The Haven.

CDC is planning a re-use focussed campaign.  Thank you, James, for the update – BCAG would be keen to key in with this, within our existing repair cafes and give and take events.  Note that the Shed would be a main player in any Banbury-centred repair campaigns.


  • Lynda will attend the meeting to discuss Canal Day 2024 (11/01).
  • BCAG is acting as host for the next Citizens’ Assembly at the Community Space (20/01).
  • There will be a group travelling from Banbury station to Farnborough Airport to join the climate change demonstrations.
  • CDC, looking to the ‘Keep Britain Tidy’ lead, is planning to run an anti-litter campaign.  BCAG would support Banbury Litter Pickers to take the lead in supporting litter-related events, but would be delighted to give any action publicity.


Tuesday 06/02, 7.30pm.