3rd August 2022
Kyle : chairing : metal tech and works on CNC, knitting punch cards
Lauren: finished the blue quilt today
Steve Jones: woodtech/inductor, working on side tables
Julia: welcome team, knitting punch card assistant
Shell: cloning favourite pair of pants
Chiney: new member, finishing a project of shutters
Mark: new Mays member, built Synthesiser modules
Glenn: brand new member, cut laser toy
Zach: textile tech, flying sound filters
Howard: director/ metaltech, in a middle of work atm
Maya: member for years, but haven’t been to the space much, metal window shutters
Alex: new, hack a fridge for beer brewing
Mark: woodtech, getting Arch done
Ryan: woodtech, cutting dovetails (not yet, planning to)
Elizabeth: making dollhouse jewelry,does a lot of laser cutting, member for 5-6 years
Matt: new member, custom electronics manufactured for SLMS new shutter control
Dermot: director, Camden Fixing Factory his new job as well as project
added by notetaker: Petra: note taker; laser/lathe tech, turning a lamp shade
Inductors topic and budgets for tech areas:
Kyle outlines the topic, hoping to get some process down and implement it, refers to a simple document Andy wrote up just before the meeting. Goal of which is to formalize techs and roles.
Petra’s question: How does it differ from an existing category(groups interface) on discourse?
Kyle’s answer: We are trying to establish that techs and roles are coming in 6months period commitments, it is for us to understand who are those people holding specific roles in the time frame. Kyle is aware there are people running textiles events and asks how do we move implementing processes forward.
Steve: How do you use it? Are we supposed to update it ourselves?
Kyle refers to Andy who made it but isn’t present so a goal is to answer that later on as it is still a proposal and how it works hasn’t been formalized. It is locked so no one else can update it yet.
Dermot: Looks like a good system to have it otherwise people crawl on discourse, and find things not making sense, so seems good enough for now, safe enough to try. Agrees with Steve pointing out the document is locked so it doesn’t become a nightmare. Locked document on a line of risk assessment so when it’s done it’s done. Can people suggest interest in that document? That is important but might have to be a separate thing.
Kyle: There is a concept of slots and people contacting techs if they’ve interested in volunteering for a role. Adding point of contact is worthwhile.
Mark: Once someone is inducted to be an inductor, directors have to give authorisation now. Because it used to be easier by techs doing it there and then. Can that be sorted out?
Kyle: Courty is starting a small internal systems group to get this off the ground and this is one of the biggest needs to figure out, the automation by anyone other than an inductor to give permissions. Working on automatising it.
Steve: It’s a Wordpress work, we need to formalize that and do a lot of inductions and should decentralize it. He does it himself because he can, but it is not the official way.
Kyle: What is the process for Tracy, Lauren and Amanda on a way to get an official approval of textile techs, how do we get them to be officially techs?
Dermot: Traditionally, as per laser area, there is an established group of techs that finds new techs, has them approved by directors who ask questions, then approves. Area that doesn’t have anyone active, it is more difficult. We can see a fantastic interest in the textiles area. Should formalise that and set up a meeting. Had a message thread with Lauren, but hasn’t solidified. Should get together with the new techs and people who are interested and give them an outline. There isn’t a great way of doing it in the situation that happened during covid. they’ll have a quick chat about the role and responsibilities and the scope of the role.
Lauren: Covered a lot of it, but there is a lot of work to do as the area was abandoned for a while. Would love to help, but is here only for a couple of months and can do everything she can and convince Tracy, Shell, Amanda, Julia or anyone else can do that work, but she now needs to know about budget and how it all works,sit down and work the textiles out. Looking for a 3rd tech.
Zach: Found it difficult like being stranded on an island, to be a textiles tech, didnt make the transition easy. Didin’t feel like a solid handover. When he was working with Sabrina and got a list from previous techs, covid decimated everything and he’d like to be able effectively handle a decision making and the process of getting tools and where they are going in regards of Arch2 expansion we were 3 years ago and nothingm uch changed, if we can find place on discourse to create a list for people to ask for consumables and reflect the vastness of the textiles place.
Julia: Can we make the list that Andy started correlating to the groups on discourse as well?
Kyle: included in the processes, they should be in synced according to the groups
Dermot: if you’re a tech and leaving, best is to plan for a handover,a succession (as per laser area), all areas get
- Set up budget: has to be reasonable
- Consumables budget: techs get a card for consumables with a nominal amount on their card, £50, it is not a target, you should (as a tech) discover how much is needed and should the area become too expensive, you should look for members separate contribution.
Dermot: Reflection to Andy’s list: Role list created is good, good to have things in one place.
Dermot: People in areas updated by techs, we should put a date on it to solidify it in a week or two.
Kyle: updating the list and going through process
Dermot: Techs officially or unofficially should fill that and we go from there.
Agreeing and pointing to the last meeting topic that covered it.
Ryan: Getting people to become techs and people who are techs not being techs and the process around that.
Kyle: look at the agreement document, some of the questions are laid out there, making sure the commitments come in 6motnhs time blocks - directors responsibility to check and reach out commitments are kept and adjacent tasks.
Embroidery machine proposal
Petra: Posted on discourse asking for interest regarding an embroidery machine, had a lot of positive responses. What is the textile tech’s opinion and directors take on financing?
Lauren: yes, we have to figure out monetarily and finding a place for it in small area of textiles and talking with textiles techs, Kyle figured out the software
Zach: dealing with space, haven’t got an idea of the layout yet, we should have a meeting, agrees to get the equipment and sort existing machines and possibly get rid of things that are not in use anymore too.
Dermot: not having space is a sign of success in the area of organic growth, slms can pay for the whole thing, especially as they did not spend any money anyway.
Way of pledge driving: for slightly unusual things, members put their money into it and them slms matches half of it. This specific one has consensus, isn’t too expensive and textiles haven’t spent anything by now anyways.
Arch2: Process and timeline, what happens with the existing space
Mark: Pretty close to being ready for a woodshop to move over. Compare it to a British Christmas predecessor of tetris toys. By next weekend Arch2 will be clear, next week itll clear out, week after Joe electrics, Ryan 14th-15th August move. Fire alarm system has to be in place first, and might have to block the two parts of Arch2 due to that.
- old woodshop moves to new one
- empty wood workshop in A1 takes everything that is in snugA1 - as per SNUG CLEAR OUT
- snugA2 moved to the second part of A2 so the back side is free, because floor has to be raised at the back of snug2
- snug1 needs to match snug2 roof - short build
- THEN we can continue a conversation on where the rest of the tools go.
Dermot: People made a good case for pottery, should organise another event of imagining the space. People should make a case for their areas. Is aware how vague it might sound, but supports organic growth and as textiles are suggesting they don’t have enough space, maybe they will need the space… We can know after we experiment. Areas might be moving around or moving somewhere else. He doesn’t know how to know before we experiment. We have to remember that it is productive to have combined workshops so not necessarily we should isolate them. On contrary to having big separated workshops. We should firm up things we know (woodwork, electronics, textiles, ceramics) and then experiment. Willing to take questions and ask for useful suggestions.
Steve: Likes what Mark said, goes over it and repeats what Mark said, but wonders about how to lift the thicknesser, thinking it will take time. Move in steps.
Mark: Hoping that Joe can do the electrics before the 14th/15th August, so there will be a call out for volunteers and canopy will lend us the moving machinery.
There won’t be any downtime in operation of the woodshop and many opportunities to make shelves etc for inductions.
Clearing out snug
(after move of woodshop to A2)
Lauren: has anyone talked about Marie Condoing the snug, so we are not just moving things around
Petra: organized clearing out last year, can do that again. Giving people notice as soon as possible will make it easier.
Steve: How about we move ALL of it to Arch2? Snug1 is too dark.
Mark: No to Arch2. Let’s get lights to snug 1.
Getting lights to snug 1 with an extension lead in the meantime.
New landlords and possible risks
We have a new landlord. A company that is a partnership of American company Blackstone and British company Telereal Trillium - two multi million property companies that bought 5200 arches from network rail, took over just recently, previously we were run by an intermediate landlord who was lenient, fair. New corporate overlords getting people to move things, got us to move Outer Space, Dermot pushing back for months. We are allowed to keep the bike parking.
Risk are unclear, they cannot raise rents too much, we can push back, we have been joining forces and had regular meetings with our neighbors and had a meeting with ArchCo last week and they tried to reassure us, but do want money. Dermots job is to hold them to account and treat us well, the situation is relatively stable. We are able to negotiate. Typical risk of a new landlord is having changes, but we want those that benefit everyone on the estate and hold them in account of treating us like fair customers. Landlords exercising their rights rather than being personal.
We had local councilors supporting us as well as being in papers.
There isn’t a risk to be removed from the Arches. Dermot outlines that the lease of Arch2 comes to renewal in October 2023, Arch1 expired 2 years ago, but we are protected by law.
Directors Election, formally laying out who directors are and how is it going to change
Dermot: Acting directors: Dermot, Howard
Courty : director at company’s house only for legal purposes (due to pandemic he’s still there, should have gone long ago but is a legacy through the pandemic, but stays silent on decisions). Once we get a new director, he’ll go short after that.
Dermot: We agreed in April and didn’t do it. What is the sensible and realistic time frame for elections? Is it okay having it in the middle of holidays?
Mark: We shouldn’t push the timescale as people have to get to know each other. I used to be a thriving community where people knew each other well and you could make a good decision by meeting people and we don’t have the interaction between members.
Kyle: It is problematic to keep pushing things, thinks we need to spread the load and there is a lot of events and people cooperating. Not aware of how it used to be, but personally thinks it is going well. Howard is supposed to step down in October this year.
Andrea: Hard to get to know people really well anyway. Let’s do it mid September so we are warm for October elections and have things in place ready. It’d be great if Dermot stick around as a support for the new director.
Julia: Clarifying with Andrea. Thinks theoretically it is not practically possible to replace all 3 directors. Is in favour for election for the first director as soon as possible. Thinks there are difficulties of handing over and people having different opinions and stuff like that. Think it would be years away how it was in February 2020. Thinks September is great for first director and then assessing the other ones to step in.
Petra: Doesn’t find it problematic to be voting for two or more directors at the same time as due to the previous directors staying for 6 more months to train as well as the amount of work directors are having at the moment. And capable people will be able to spread the load. Ideal to have election for as many directors as we can by the end of this year, because all of those elected would benefit from having the experience of Dermot’s knowledge transfer.
Steve: We should just get on with it and do the first election on two months scale and not do all at the same.
Andrea: We voted for two directors at a time in the past.
Dermot: Not going to analyse all arguments, finds Petra’s argument for transferring all knowledge at once interesting. Process is that directors, since last directors came in, we made fixed 3 term term plus an option to go another 3 year term. But have to check again, if a director has to re stand a second term or freely continue. Directors decided this it is healthy for organisation to have different people to do tasks. As we mature we should have systems.
Andrea: Asking for a personal experience to prepare psychologically new candidates.
Dermot: People can be scared, it is a nightmare sometimes, but making sure it is not like that. Happy to help with his experience of easily transitioning.
Kyle: find it difficult to run the election for a whole month from administrative point of view
Mark: agrees with Steve and only one director to start with, suggesting a video call with director candidates for members to have an idea about how things go forward and what things they would like to change in the space
Kyle: Thinks it’s a cool idea
Andrea: agrees with Mark
Kyle: Processes are distributed so members know who the candidates are.
Steve: Asking for clarification of the time scale. By the end of September we have a new director.
Kyle: A week before the election the candidate submission cut off.
Elizabeth: voting for 10 days instead of a week to give people time to think and more time.
Andrea: Sending emails to members regarding the candidates.
Kyle: Historically we didn’t allow campaigning on discourse or SLMS member channels, you can message and speak with your friends about though. Candidate statements are being sent via email.
Andrea: expressed that he meant that he would like members to have insured that members are well informed about the election is happening and about all the processes.
Dermot: Agrees with Andrea to make sure members are well informed in the right time frame we are working with.
Elizabeths proposal for 10 days on how long between the candidate cut-off and actually voting was accepted.
Vote for 10 days and 14 days for candidates to submit information to their candidacy :
- 10 days voted for in majority
5th September candidate sign up cut off
15th September voting starts
25th September results
End of Meeting + Post end meeting notes:
Julia: Did we speak about the budget ? There was talk about screen printing and different efforts.
Petra: That has been approved by Dermot two three months ago.
Kyle: Do we have a copy of the list?
Petra: I do have a copy. It is up on Jack and Gilbert to connect.
Mark: How about the equipment?
Petra: Jules, slms member offered to donate their festival UV exposure gear including an exposure table.
Kyle: Cutting off and offlining discussion.
Andrea: Running out of energy, we would like to be able to have a pool of people to chip in the last moment to organize electronics night and Crafts night. Noone wants to be a tech.
Mark: If no one is coming forward. Is the interest declining?
Andrea: We have 6 people there every time?
Petra: Has there been an official call out?
Andrea: Yes, but no one responded to discourse. It is just me at this point. It is not about me, it is about my colleague as well. (refers to Lauren)
Zach: Asking community, crowdsourcing to the entire community
Matt: Techs don’t have to do events, they can be delegated easily.
Andrea expresses attachment to being the only person organizing them.