poppy field




Minutes of the Toddington Branch of The Royal British Legion

Committee Meeting 7.30.p.m. on

Tuesday 20th June 2023


1. Present

 Bill Levinson, Melanie Parker, Pippa Brazier, Debbie Gibbons, Glen Gadsden,

Graeme Kelly, John Wood, Melanie Parker, Shaun Prior, Lee Stone


2. Apologies

Kelly Grumoli


3. Silent Tribute.


4. Exhortation

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;

age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning,

we will remember them.


5. Previous Meeting – Committee Meeting 16th May 2023

The minutes were read and agreed to be a true report of the last full committee meeting. One error was raised by the PAO, the figure stated as the schools’ figure was incorrect it should have been £18,911.89 as opposed to £21,010.72. Other figures were correct.

Proposed – Glen Gadsden

Seconded – Pippa Brazier


6. Chairman’s Report.

 The new re-vamped Village Fete is this coming back on Saturday the 24th June.

Toddington RBL will be in attendance with our Poppy Merchandise stall, a Prize raffle for the Poppy Appeal and we will be hosting our obstacle/assault course for children.

Arrangements for the forthcoming village fete were discussed and agreed:

  • RBL Large gazebo is being used for the Village Showcase. RBL members to put up from 10.00 am.
  • Obstacle/Assault course is being run by Lee, with help from Graeme, Pippa.
  • Merchandise stall and Raffle stall to be attended by Bil, John, and Shaun.
  • Graeme to move between stalls as required when he is free.
  • Kelly can help before and after depending on family commitments.
  • Glen can help work depending.

Lee will be on the green from 09:30 to start on the assault course.

Main meeting time to start setting up will be 10.00.

John will pick up the PA system from Lee and bring to green to set up for the Dog Show.

Shaun to bring his generator.

Graeme will bring the gazebo with help from John to the green.

All to bring tables if they can.

Melanie to bring tables from Guide hall and all the merchandise and buckets for all stalls.

Debbie to bring all raffle items.

It was agreed that the items stored in the Club would be reviewed and cleared out at a later date if now not required. The blue gazebo cover with the Poppy sewed onto it to be checked on Melanie’s gazebo frame.

  • Memorial Bench

 It was agreed by the committee that the Stanford style bench with the RBL crest, along with “Royal British Legion” above the crest, is to be requested from the Parish council to be on each end of the bench. The wording for the memorial plaque has been agreed and the dates found for when John Bryant joined the RBL. John Wood is to confirm the layout with the Parish Council and to ask for the bench to be ordered.


7. Reports

  • Branch Community Support

We Currently have no members that require any welfare assistance.

Lee Stone has been carrying out his annual BCS refresher training via Zoom.

  • Treasurer – Debbie Gibbons



Expenditure for this month: -

Cheque no

100325            Toddington PC (bench)                         1580.28

100326            J Wood (standards etc)                           723.60

TOTAL                       £2303.88

Both cheques have cleared the bank.

Previous balance                                                         £5163.77

Expenses                                                                     £2303.88


BFI as at 30-Jun-22                                                           56.95

Bank Account                                                              2802.31

BFI sept22 – jun23                                                             0.63

Balance 20 June 2023                                                 £2859.89

30th June is the year end for Branch Accounting. There are no known expenses or payments to come from this account.

The only expected income is BFI (Branch Fund Initiative) which is quarterly and due 30 June amount approximately £0.21.

Closing accounts will need to be agreed by the Committee before auditing.

  • Poppy Appeal Report – Melanie Parker

We received one local school pot that amounted to £117.04 this makes our local total £21,081.79. The separate Luton schools amount remains unchanged at £18,911.89. This makes our overall total £39,993.68.

Poppy Appeal Totals National & Bedfordshire

Bedfordshire: 2020/2021 £333,198.40

Bedfordshire: 2022/2023 £248,401.95

National: 2021/2022 £38,015,706.93

National: 2022/2023 £33,457,735.42

  • Membership Secretaries Report – Bil Levinson


From the membership list on 17th June 2023, we have 58 members.  Our secretary Kelly is still not on the membership Spread sheet, I have asked Kelly to call the membership team to check if they have her on the list, once this is sorted out, we will have 60 members.

Web Site Report

I am hoping soon to email every member and ask if they have any historical pictures of Remembrance Parades. We can make digital copies of any photos (Which will be returned after being scanned) so that I can create a new section on the website of past Remembrance Day Parades, meanwhile I shall start to incorporate some very old photos supplied by Melanie.

  • Standard Bearer – Pippa Brazier

Our Standard Bearer, Pippa Brazier, continues to go to various Funerals, events, and parades that she is requested to attend, the most recent of these since the last meeting are set out below.

1st June 2023   - Funeral of Mr John Horne, a Normandy D-Day Veteran, at St Marys Church Eaton Bray.

15th June 2023 – Lancastrian Parade, Tower Hill Memorial plus a service at St Katherine Cree’s Church

19th June 2023   Armed Forces Day, Flag Raising Parade at Bedford, with the Mayor of  Bedford.


8. Correspondence

All items of correspondence are now sent out via email to the committee members prior to the meeting taking place, so that they can be read beforehand and discussed as necessary during the meeting. If any member would like a copy of any correspondence item, please contact John Wood or Kelly Grumoli (details at the top of these minutes) and we will get copies to you.

Correspondence circulated at the meeting were:

  • County Bulletin – which incudes our Coronation event and the use of our new gazebos.


 9.Future Events – Memorable Dates

Toddington Village Fete.

24th June 2023 Toddington Village Green – RBL Merchandise stall

Toddington RBL Coffee Morning,

10 - 12pm Saturday, 28th October 2023

Armistice Day 11th November 2023

Armistice Day Service 11am Toddington Village Green.

Remembrance Service and Parade 12th November 2023

From 10:30am Toddington Village Green.


10. Any Other Business.

Remembrance Service Booklets.

Agreed to hold a meeting on Tuesday, July 11th. John to book with the club.

At the meeting all to review the prayers and Hymns for their thoughts and discussions.

Gazebo Hire.

The local U3A group has approached us to ask if they may borrow the new RBL gazebos on Monday 21st August. Graeme to confirm if they mean one or both of them. It was agreed at the meeting that there would be no charge to local Charity groups and the hire rules are to be amended accordingly.


11. Next Meeting


The next meeting will be at 19:30 on Tuesday 18th July 2023 and will be in the top bar of the Social & Services Club, High Street Toddington.

If any member would like to attend a committee meeting, please contact John Wood or Kelly Grumoli and we can send you the details.

 The meeting was closed at 8:50 pm