Southwick Playing Field

Southwick Village Newsletter - Autumn edition published

The Autumn  edition of the village newletter has been published. The website has a direct link to the Newsletters, access  from the main menu.

The March 2024 Draft minutes have been published. The April 2024 Agenda has also been published.

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(Registered Charity Number 305570)

A summary of legal and financial history taken from the minutes, other referenced sources

and the Charity Commission web site.  Compiled by Stephen Carey


Conveyance dated 24/02/54 and Scheme of 28/10/77. (Charity Commission web page).


A playing field to be equipped, maintained and managed for the purposes of cricket,

football or other games or recreation for the benefit of the inhabitants of the Parish

of Southwick or its immediate vicinity. (Second Schedule of conveyance dated 24/2/54


Registered as charity number 305570 on the 14.05.62. (Charity Commission web



A Public Meeting to "consider what steps should be taken to welcome home members

of the forces" led to the formation of the Southwick Welcome Home Committee

which subsequently established a Playing Field Fund.


The Secretary explained that it was a condition of the Ministry of Education grant

that the field must be held in trust by the Parish Council. This was agreed with a

proviso that if ever the field was sold, £500 should go to the Royal British

Legion (RBL).


Cash available for the purchase of the field, fencing, expenses etc was approximately

£1270 consisting of £500 from the Playing Field Fund with the rest coming from

Wiltshire County Council (£350), Ministry of Education (£400) and National Playing

Fields Association (£20).


Meeting agreed to pay the 10% deposit of £110 for the Playing Field purchase.


Conveyance of the field for £1100 to the Parish Council of Southwick to be held in

trust for the inhabitants of Southwick etc. (Note only the SPFMC £500 contribution

would have to be given to the RBL if the field was ever sold - cf Second schedule of



The Parish council held a Parish Meeting to establish a Management Committee for

the Playing Field.


First meeting of Southwick Playing Field Management Committee (SPFMC). Last set

of regular minutes produced 08.11.59. Committee reformed 01.07.68.


At the AGM it was reported that whilst reviewing the rules "it was found that a Trust

Deed regarding the terms of management had not been lodged with the Charity

commissioners. As a consequence the Parish Council will, at their meeting on 6

April, draw up a draft Trust Deed for approval by the Charity Commissioners."


Final version of the "Trust Deed" became our "Scheme for administration and

management of the charity known as the Playing Field at Southwick" and was sealed

by the Charity Commissioners on the 28.10.77 whereby the Parish Council became the

Custodian Trustee and the The Playing Field the Managing Trustees.


After funding discussions with the Parish Council it was jointly agreed that the

SPFMC would manage funds provided by the Parish Council.


Because of funding and VAT problems it was agreed to consult the Charity

Commissioners about the possible handing over of the field to the Parish Council


The Charity Commission explained that instead of dissolving the charity, making the

Parish Council "trustee for all purposes rather than simply custodian trustee" was

possible but would be "costly .... require a full case in support .... not simple

convenience .... is not one which the Charity Commission would usually encourage

since local authorities often fail to appreciate that they are not free to deal with the

property of a charity in the same way as they can deal with their corporate property."


".... the legal estate in the Playing field is vested in the Parish Council, but in a trustee

capacity for the benefit of the Playing Field Charity ..... as such the land is not a

Parish Council asset in the accepted sense." (Letter from Sylvester and Mackett,



A letter from HM Customs and Excise explained that village hall guidance could be

applied to the Playing Field: "If the authority carries out work to a hall that it does

not own and receives nothing in return .... VAT will be recoverable"- Letter 26.03.99


Custodian Trustees (Southwick Parish Council) do not have any involvement in the

management of the charity - this is the role of the Managing Trustees  (The Playing

Field Management Committee).  They must follow the managings trustees' instructions... .

(Taken from Charity Commission website - What are holding trustees and custodian trustees.)

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