Meets every Thursday at 7.25 for 7.30
at Mountnessing Village Hall, Roman Road, Mountnessing, Essex, England, CM15 0UG

Mountnessing Parish CouncilAnnual Parish Assembly, April 16th 2012

The good news is that the Club still flourishes, and the membership year just ended saw stabilisation of both membership and average weekly attendance compared with the previous year – halting several years of steady decline. However, the heady days of 30 tables / 120 players are just a distant memory, and often we now have less than half that number playing at the club on a Thursday evening. Membership renewals for 2012/3 are still coming in, but at the moment we have 83, just one less than the same time last year. Sadly, however, two of our long-standing members passed away last year; we still have two nonagenarians and several members well into their eighties who attend most weeks.

We go out of our way to be as welcoming as possible to players of all levels of ability, and certainly our membership comprises mostly 'club-level' players, and nobody need feel intimidated. We are all here to enjoy the company and the game!

A new innovation that we introduced last year was to use 'Computer Dealt' hands. They are dealt for us by a neighbouring club, and as well as providing 'properly shuffled' boards, the computer also provides a hand analysis sheet that players can study and base their 'inquest' around, thus serving to help to improve their skills.

At just £2.50 for a night’s entertainment, including unlimited tea /coffee / biscuits and the chance to win a bottle of wine as a prize, this still represents an amazingly cheap, and highly enjoyable night out, and our players usually go away with a smile on their faces! We are open to non-members; membership is free for residents of Mountnessing Parish.

During the course of the year we do our bit towards the wider community by participating in charity-oriented ‘Simultaneous’ events that are held in numerous clubs throughout the country, or even throughout the world. These Simultaneous events are huge fun, as well as often supporting some very good causes. Our next such event will be in July, when we will be supporting Kidney Research, and then in January we will be competing in a World-Wide Charity Event. Last year's Charity events raised £200 for Kidney Research, £150 for Children in Need, and £170 at the World Event, which last time was in aid of UNICEF.

I hope that I am not speaking too soon, but our past problem with car parking on light Summer Evenings seems to be just that – a problem of the past - though the car park does seem to be used by a number of people who are neither Hall nor Playing Field users. We still like to push the idea – for example, in case a suitable grant becomes available – to pre-paint parking bays in the car-park. One argument against put forward before was that if the lines are too close and as a result damage is caused by careless opening of doors, then the Parish Council could be liable. However, we note that many other organisations seem to get round that problem – even Basildon Council, whose parking bays are notoriously narrow!

We get a weekly snippet in the Gazette, and we always contribute to the Parish Newsletter, so more can be read about who has done what at the club in one or other of those media.

Page 1 of 1 16/04/12 annual parish report 2012.doc