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 Post subject: BCF v 4NCL
PostPosted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 1:58 pm 
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The attempt by the BCF to see off the 4NCL is documented in the archives of the SCCU.

So from http://www.sccu.ndo.co.uk/Bulletin1995-6.docx, a meeting in September 1995 noted

Quote:
(6) National League. The BCF is setting up its own National League, starting in January under the direction of Simon Brown, in direct competition with the 4NCL. Dates are to clash with 4NCL ones and it’s clearly meant as a hostile takeover. We’re not sure whether it already has the Management Board’s OK, but if not it seems to be a formality. It stems from deep dissatisfaction with the way the 4NCL’s run, and if your Editor tried to give details he’d be at risk of getting them wrong. Someone said, and no one dissented, that if we’re to have two rival leagues it is important that they clash with each other and not with county matches or other things. The BCF would obviously prefer it if the 4NCL just folded. Someone said the BCF seemed to be rushing things, given that the 4NCL season starts soon and the new League hasn’t been officially announced yet. Someone else said, with doubtful relevance, that it had been in the air for a year or more.


But in November
Quote:
The Management Board met on Saturday 18th November 1995
...
International Director Simon Brown is to resign if he hasn’t already. Pressure of work is one reason, but we gather he would have struggled on had it not been for differences with the President over the BCF’s submission to the DNH. We have no details. There was actually a motion of (?no) confidence in the President, the second one in a few months, and while none were unconfident there were a few abstentions.
The BCF National League, SDB’s pigeon, is now in some doubt. He will try to start it this season, but it won’t be before March and it depends on sponsorship coming through.


It was still going to take place (March 1996)
Quote:
The (SCCU) Executive met on Friday 22nd March 1996 at the Durham Castle
...
(3) National League. The President said that the BCF expects to start its National League “this year”, apparently well before September and could easily be May but details were scant. An unnamed sponsor is probably coming up with a substantial but undetermined sum over a five-year period. It is thought that the new league will (?eventually) stretch to quite ordinary players, but again information was limited.



One of the causes of the dispute
Quote:
BCF MANAGEMENT BOARD
Very selectively, some things from the meeting of 9th March 1996. Your Editor was only there by proxy so hopes he’s got it right.
4NCL has not paid game fee and won’t be graded by the BCF unless it coughs up. It is to be FIDE-rated, by the Welsh Federation, which seems to have raised the odd hackle because essentially it’s an English event and the BCF should have been asked first. Don’t think anyone’s making formal objections


But then
Quote:
The MB met on Saturday 15th June 1996 ..
(2) Game Fee. Practically all the fees due are in. The 4NCL has paid.


A BCM report suggested some sort of internal revolution in the 4NCL during the final weekend of 95-96. The BCF proposal of a rival league disappears without trace from then on.


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 Post subject: Re: BCF v 4NCL
PostPosted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 4:27 pm 
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Reading above, BCF V 4NCL could be subtitled Terminator vs. Predator. It seems that they realised they would have to coexist in the end.
What I'd say is the parent thread of this one - 'ECF Vacancies' in 'ECF Matters' - (eventually) reveals the latest casualty of a sequel, which might be called Terminator vs. Alien. The fight goes on...

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 Post subject: Re: BCF v 4NCL
PostPosted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 9:08 pm 
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How interesting - dredging up items from 17 years ago.

When a National Chess League was proposed by Chris Dunsworth in 1992, the BCF endorsed the proposal and gave Chris a grant towards the formation. The League began in October 1993.

One member of the BCF Board, who shall remain nameless, subsequently became disenamored with the running of the 4NCL, and proposed that a new League be set up run by the Federation. He was delegated to report on the matter and the matter was quietly dropped when no progress was made.


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 Post subject: Re: BCF v 4NCL
PostPosted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 9:47 pm 
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Neil Graham wrote:
How interesting - dredging up items from 17 years ago.


The item from 17 years ago may or may not be interesting. What's more interesting - and why it's being discussed now - is whether it shines a light on the structure of the ECF in general, and whether it's likely to always have disputes with events that report to it.

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 Post subject: Re: BCF v 4NCL
PostPosted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 10:16 pm 
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IM Jack Rudd wrote:
Neil Graham wrote:
How interesting - dredging up items from 17 years ago.


The item from 17 years ago may or may not be interesting. What's more interesting - and why it's being discussed now - is whether it shines a light on the structure of the ECF in general, and whether it's likely to always have disputes with events that report to it.


Unfortunately, or perhaps having read the relevant thread fortunately, I hadn't realised that the ECF Officers discussion had been broadened to discuss what happened in 1995. I have consistently pointed out on here that the Federation is always short of volunteers and it isn't any surprise that even when appointed some people simply haven't the time to do the job. Consequently there is a regular turnover of directors, officers and so on.

AFAIK, the 4NCL has never reported to the Federation and has always been run as an independent affiliated body. I attended all these meetings in 1994/5 when a member of the Board, not Simon Brown, made representations about starting a League in opposition to the 4NCL. It was a lot of hot air, the person concerned was deputed to investigate further and nothing ever happened. The structure of the ECF has changed since that time but as happens in all organisations crises, disputes and the like have always occurred.


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 Post subject: Re: BCF v 4NCL
PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 12:58 pm 
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Location: Sevenoaks, Kent, if not in Costa Calida, Spain
Hi Neil, I hope you are well.

I must admit that I hadn't remembered wanting to set up a BCF rival to the 4NCL, but it looks as if I didn't. It would have been odd as I was one of the 4NCL supporters. I didn't see Richard's comments back in 1995, but a BCF National League certainly wasn't my "pigeon". He is nearer the mark on my reasons for resigning though. If I recall correctly, I resigned in late 1995 so I wouldn't have been at the meeting in March 1996.

All the best

Simon


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 Post subject: Re: BCF v 4NCL
PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 4:40 pm 
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It would have been John Nunn who originally raised the issue in one of his books. This was quoted by the Giddins blog as an example of hostility by the BCF/ECF towards organisers. Perhaps the BCF director or official concerned should be named? From what I recall, it went a bit beyond just a feasibility study, although no firm proposal was ever submitted. In a way that's the point as well. If two years earlier the BCF board had supported the establishment of an independent national league, it should have stuck with it and overruled an attempt to set up its own rival.


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 Post subject: Re: BCF v 4NCL
PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 7:40 pm 
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I've been following this, and I think it's symptomatic of the structural problem of the ECF, and BCF as it then was.

If there had been a visionary within the BCF who proposed the 4NCL idea as a new format for the National Club, I am certain that Council would have rejected it in favour of retaining the National Club in its existing form. And so, the 4NCL set itself up independently.

The BCF of the day had the opportunity to overhaul the National Club, but Council would never have voted for it.

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 Post subject: Re: BCF v 4NCL
PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 8:04 pm 
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One of the bigger novelties with the 4NCL was that it totally removed the notion that you had to be a bona fide member or qualified in some manner to be allowed to play. Any league set up as a spin off from the National Club or Counties Championship would have been likely to retain these features. The link up with hotels came early on, but was an evolved feature.

The BCF had envisiged the possible creation of national league as part of a strategic planning report not so many years earlier. If it was going to be internationally rated, you couldn't have adjudications. Nor to fit in with the weekend concept could you have both adjournments and a civilised Sunday start time. So FIDE had to permit quickplay finishes which became allowed from about 1991 or 1992.


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 Post subject: Re: BCF v 4NCL
PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 9:58 pm 
Alex Holowczak wrote:
The BCF of the day had the opportunity to overhaul the National Club, but Council would never have voted for it.
This pushes my buttons of course :D .

As I tend to say, I think the ECF should find a role supporting and coordinating chess events, not trying to run them itself. Roger better on the history than me, but I imagine the moment when the BCF stopped being the main motor for new events was the 70s.


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 Post subject: Re: BCF v 4NCL
PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 10:18 pm 
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As far as the BCF giving up starting events, I wouldn't be sure it ever started. Stewart Reuben's events in the 1960's might have been considered revolutionary, but he didn't need the BCF's permission to run them. You could point to the grading system, but even there, restrictions were imposed. Quickplay finishes became legal, but not G/120.

Stewart has observed that the BCF facilitates like minded people getting together to organise things. Frequently they ran in parallel to the BCF. Events like the Lloyds Bank, a prototype for the Norm Swiss benefited not from the BCF's direct support but from the BCF not getting in the way.


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 Post subject: Re: BCF v 4NCL
PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 10:28 pm 
Roger de Coverly wrote:
As far as the BCF giving up starting events, I wouldn't be sure it ever started.
I was taking a view that up to the 70's, maybe the 60's per Roger, the majority of chess was played for a club or a county, and organised by a long established constituent of the BCF


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 Post subject: Re: BCF v 4NCL
PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 11:52 pm 
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Roger de Coverly wrote:
It would have been John Nunn who originally raised the issue in one of his books. This was quoted by the Giddins blog as an example of hostility by the BCF/ECF towards organisers. Perhaps the BCF director or official concerned should be named? From what I recall, it went a bit beyond just a feasibility study, although no firm proposal was ever submitted. In a way that's the point as well. If two years earlier the BCF board had supported the establishment of an independent national league, it should have stuck with it and overruled an attempt to set up its own rival.


I have copies of the BCF minutes for most of this period. Simon Brown's resignation was announced at the meeting of November 1995 and it was noted that "the idea of a National League remains on the table". Unfortunately I do not have the minutes of the two subsequent meetings (Feb & March 2006) but by the time of the April meeting the matter had clearly been consigned to the waste-bin; it was never mentioned again in any minutes of the Federation.


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 Post subject: Re: BCF v 4NCL
PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2012 9:50 am 
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Roger de Coverly wrote:
The BCF had envisiged the possible creation of national league as part of a strategic planning report not so many years earlier. If it was going to be internationally rated, you couldn't have adjudications. Nor to fit in with the weekend concept could you have both adjournments and a civilised Sunday start time. So FIDE had to permit quickplay finishes which became allowed from about 1991 or 1992.


How did other national leagues cope with that prior to the FIDE change that allowed quickplay finishes?


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 Post subject: Re: BCF v 4NCL
PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2012 10:16 am 
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Roger de Coverly wrote:
So FIDE had to permit quickplay finishes which became allowed from about 1991 or 1992.
QPF rules were approved by FIDE in 1985. Tempus fugit.


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