DARTMOUTH PARK NEIGHBOURHOOD FORUM CONSTITUTION
APPROVED AND ADOPTED AT PUBLIC MEETING ON 6 FEBRUARY 2013
- Establishment, Membership and Purpose
1.1 The Dartmouth Park Neighbourhood Forum (‘DPNF’’) is established as a neighbourhood forum under the provisions of the Localism Act 2011.
1.2 Membership of the DPNF is open to every person (a ‘Member’) who:
- lives in the Area defined in section 2 below ( the ‘Area’); or
- works in the Area (whether for a business carried on there or otherwise); or
- is a London Borough of Camden Councillor for the Area
and every such person may consider himself or herself as a Member and therefore may participate fully in the activities of the DPNF including by attending meetings of the DPNF and by voting on resolutions in accordance with section 4 below.
1.3 The DPNF recognises the role of tenants and residents associations, business associations and other organisations serving the interests of people who live or work in the Area. The DPNF intends whenever appropriate to work cooperatively with such associations and with other local organisations and institutions providing services to the Area, and each association, organisation or institution will be requested to identify a person to act as a contact point for the DPNF. An indicative list of such organisations and institutions is set out in Annex 2.
1.4 The purpose of the DPNF is to promote and improve the social, economic and environmental well-being of the Area. How the DPNF will seek to achieve this purpose is described in Section 3 below.
- The Area
2.1 The Area, all of which falls within the London Borough of Camden, shall be the area shown on the map in Annex 1. The Area may be revised in accordance with the procedure set out in section 4.6 below.
2.2 The Area, and any revision of the Area, will be determined finally on designation of the DPNF by Camden Council.
3.1 The basic purpose of the DPNF is to promote and improve the social, economic and environmental well-being of the Area. The DPNF will seek to achieve this by:
- actively encouraging all the Members to participate fully in the activities of the DPNF for the promotion and improvement of the Area
- preparing a Neighbourhood Development Plan which will set out the DPNF’s policies for use of the land in the Area taking into account the need to balance the different concerns of the people who live or work in the Area and the powers and resources of the local authority in relation to planning matters
- exercising any powers which attach to DPNF as a designated neighbourhood forum; this could include producing Neighbourhood Development Orders, Community Right to Build Orders and identifying Assets of Community Value
- providing a forum for discussion of issues that may affect the Area as well as ideas that may enhance it, such as transport planning, streets, health, local public services, local businesses, open spaces
- supporting projects that are of benefit to the Area
- considering proposals by public or private sector bodies likely to have a significant impact on the social, economic and environmental well-being of the Area.
3.2 The following principles will inform the steps which the DPNF takes toward the achievement of the above purpose:
- protecting, preserving and enhancing
- the architectural heritage and physical and environmental character of the Area
- green spaces and the natural environment
- local businesses serving the Area
- use of land for public purposes
whilst acknowledging that some change for social, economic and environmental reasons can be desirable;
- taking into account the imperatives of climate change and other sustainability considerations;
- maintaining or enhancing the diversity of the Area;
- encouraging the development of a close and integrated community;
- recognising the importance of good service provision for all sections of society within the Area, in particular for young people, older people and more vulnerable members of the community;
- supporting efforts to reduce crime in the Area.
- seeking at all times to act on the basis of equality between and respect for all persons regardless of gender, age, race (including ethnicity and nationality), sexual orientation, religion or belief, disability and socio-economic status.
3.3 Wherever the boundary of the area of the DPNF adjoins the boundary of another neighbourhood forum, the DPNF will seek to establish mechanisms for joint planning and decision-making.
- Membership of the DPNF and General Meetings
4.1 As stated in 1.2 above, membership of the DPNF is open to anyone who lives or works in the Area or is a councillor for the Area. Any such person age 14 or above is entitled to attend any General Meeting, including the Annual General Meeting, and to vote on any matter to be decided at such General Meeting.
4.2 “Registered Members” are Members of the DPNF who have provided their contact details to the Committee of the DPNF. Registered Members will receive communications concerning the DPNF from the Committee between General Meetings. London Borough of Camden Councillors elected to represent the Area shall be ex-officio Registered Members of the DPNF. There shall be at least 21 Registered Members. Any Registered Member may at any time notify the Committee in writing that they no longer wish to continue as a Registered Member, and from the date of their notice, if they continue to live or work in the Area, they will be an ordinary member only.
4.3 An Annual General Meeting shall be convened by the Committee not later than 15 months following the inaugural General Meeting and thereafter not later than 12 months from the previous Annual General Meeting .
4.4 A General Meeting may be convened by the Committee on its own initiative or when requested by 35 members who shall indicate the matters they wish such a General Meeting to consider.
4,5 The quorum at a General Meeting shall be 35 members. In the case of a General Meeting being attended by fewer than 35 members, the Meeting may proceed but no formal votes may be taken.
4.6 Approval by two/thirds of those present at a General Meeting shall be required for approval of the Constitution, amendment of the Constitution, approval of the Neighbourhood Development Plan and approval of any significant change to the boundary of the Area. Approval by a simple majority shall be required for any other resolution.
4.7 Each General Meeting shall be chaired by the Chair of the Committee or in his or her absence by the Vice Chair or another member of the Committee.
4.8 Notice of an Annual General Meeting or any other General Meeting shall be at least 30 clear calendar days before the date of the meeting. Notice shall state the date, time and place of the meeting and, where appropriate, the main business of such meeting. Notice to Members shall be by way of notices giving such details publicly displayed in all parts of the Area and by other means which in the view of the Committee will bring the date, time and place of the meeting to the attention of the members. Notice will be sent by email (or by post) to Registered Members. In the event of a matter requiring urgent decision by the members the Committee may convene a General Meeting at short notice, taking all reasonably practicable steps to notify members of the date, time, place and matter to be considered.
4.9 Each General Meeting shall be minuted by the Secretary of the Committee and the minutes shall be posted on the DPNF’s website and on local community notice boards as soon as practicable after the meeting.
- DPNF Committee
5.1 There shall be a Committee of not fewer than 12 and not more than 20 people age 14 or above, up to 17 of whom shall be elected from the membership at the inaugural General Meeting and at each succeeding Annual General Meeting. The Committee may co-opt up to 3 additional people provided the total number of Committee members does not exceed 20. London Borough of Camden Councillors elected to represent the Area shall be ex-officio members of the Committee.
5.2 The Committee shall be responsible for the day to day management of the DPNF.
5.3 Every effort shall be made to ensure that the membership of the Committee accurately reflects the full membership of the DPNF. This should include representation of people who live or work in different parts of the Area, including representation of the different tenure groups, that is owner-occupiers, tenants of the local authority or a registered social landlord and private tenants.
5.4 Therefore, so far as is possible the Committee should include:
- at least two people who live or work in the part of the Area which is on the west side of, or west of, Highgate Road
- at least two people who live or work in the N19 part of the Area
- at least two people who live or work in other parts of the Area not included in a) or b) above.
5.5 Every effort shall be made, including full use of positive action provisions in current legislation to ensure that the membership of the Committee, elected or co-opted under 5.1 above, will always include:
- at least one person age under 26
- at least two people from local businesses
- at least one person from each of the tenure groups: owner-occupier, tenant of the local authority or registered social landlord and private tenant.
- members who are women
- members who are men
- ethnic minority members
- disabled members
5.6 Within two weeks after the Annual General Meeting, the Committee will elect the officers:
- Vice Chair
The procedure for election of the officers will be determined by the Committee.
5.7 The Chair shall not be someone who is also the chair of another local organisation unless the Committee considers that there is no other candidate who would be a suitable, effective and appropriate Chair.
5.8 No person may serve in the position of Chair or Vice Chair for more than two years in succession, or within two years may resume the position of Chair or Vice Chair (except when called upon as temporary ‘acting Chair’).
5.9 The quorum for any decision by the Committee is 8.
5.10 The Committee will meet at least quarterly.
5.11 Members of DPNF may attend as observers any meeting of the Committee but may not vote; the Committee reserves the right to exclude observers where a majority of Committee members present deem that this is necessary for the effective conduct of Committee business.
5.12 The Committee shall pass resolutions by a simple majority with the chair of the meeting having a casting vote in the event of voting being equal.
5.13 Each meeting of the Committee shall be minuted by the Secretary and the minutes shall be posted on the DPNF’s website and on local community notice boards as practicable after the meeting.
5.14 Each member of the Committee shall:
- provide his or her services voluntarily and so shall not be paid any remuneration for serving on the Committee
- inform the Committee of any financial, professional or personal interest that he or she has in the Area that might be perceived as having an influence on decisions that may come before the Committee, which information shall be recorded by the Secretary in a register of interests
5.15 The Committee may take appropriate steps, including purchasing insurance, to indemnify its members against any liabilities resulting from their work for the Committee and DPNF.
5.16 The Committee may appoint working parties from within or outside the Membership to consider and advise it on specific matters.
6.1 The DPNF may raise funds as may be necessary to carry out its activities and may expend such funds in furtherance of the activities as the Committee considers appropriate.
6.2 The funds shall be held in a bank account in the DPNF’s name for which two signatories (one of whom shall be the Chair) nominated by the Committee shall be required.
6.3 The Treasurer shall produce accounts each year to be laid before the Members at each Annual General Meeting.
7.1 The DPNF may be dissolved by resolution of the Members passed at a General Meeting provided that:
- notice of the proposed dissolution has been given in the notice calling the meeting
- the resolution is passed by at least 75% of members in attendance.
- any assets or monies held by DPNF at the time of dissolution shall be directed by the resolution to be paid to an organisation that will continue the work that has been carried out by DPNF or (in the absence of such an organisation) to an organisation or organisations that is or are recognised by Camden London Borough Council as carrying out purposes similar to those of DPNF.
Annex 1 MAP OF THE AREA
Annex 2 – an indicative list of organisations serving the interests of people who live or work in the Area
Local tenants or residents associations including:
(Lower) Laurier Road Resident’s Association
(Upper) Laurier Road Resident’s Association
124 Croftdown Road Tennant’s Association
Boscastle Road Resident’s Association
Brookfield Park Resident’s Association
Chetwynd and Twisden Roads Resident’s Association
Croftdown Road Resident’s Association
Dartmouth Park Road Resident’s Association
Glenhurst Avenue Resident’s Association
Grove Terrace Resident’s Association
Haddo House Leaseholder’s Association
Heathview Tenant’s Co-op Ltd
Highgate Road Resident’s Group
Old Brookfield Estate Resident’s and Tenant’s Association (Chester Road/St Albans Road//Kingswear Road/Croftdown Road)
St Albans Villas and Oak Court Resident’s Association
Swains Lane Resident’s and Neighbourhood Watch Association
Whittington Estate Resident’s Association
Woodsome Road Resident’s Association
Associations of local businesses
Churches and other faith organisations
Highgate Newtown Community Centre and other community centres
Health centres or doctors’ surgeries
Fire and rescue service
Transport for London
Voluntary organisations providing services to children, older people, disabled people who live in the Area
Corporation of London (in respect of its functions relating to Hampstead Heath)
Safer Neighbourhood Panel
Transition Dartmouth Park
Dartmouth Park Conservation Area Advisory Committee
Friends of Highgate Library