Snow Cancellations

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Mick Norris
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Re: Snow Cancellations

Post by Mick Norris » Tue Mar 06, 2018 9:41 pm

MartinCarpenter wrote:
Tue Mar 06, 2018 9:19 pm
David Sedgwick wrote:
Tue Mar 06, 2018 3:34 pm
Whatever "cultural" issues there may be, they don't seem to apply to the Union Championships.
I wonder a bit. The SCCU are quite happy yes and others OK but..... The NCCU obviously isn't and (I think?) the MCCU doesn't even have an open competition these days.
Nope, the MCCU is quite healthy; what it doesn't have (like the EACU and WECU often) is anyone wanting to compete with the big counties at Open (rather than Minor) level in the ECF national stages

Fixtures
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Alex Holowczak
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Re: Snow Cancellations

Post by Alex Holowczak » Tue Mar 06, 2018 9:45 pm

Mick Norris wrote:
Tue Mar 06, 2018 9:41 pm
MartinCarpenter wrote:
Tue Mar 06, 2018 9:19 pm
David Sedgwick wrote:
Tue Mar 06, 2018 3:34 pm
Whatever "cultural" issues there may be, they don't seem to apply to the Union Championships.
I wonder a bit. The SCCU are quite happy yes and others OK but..... The NCCU obviously isn't and (I think?) the MCCU doesn't even have an open competition these days.
Nope, the MCCU is quite healthy; what it doesn't have (like the EACU and WECU often) is anyone wanting to compete with the big counties at Open (rather than Minor) level in the ECF national stages

Fixtures
The issue in Warwickshire's case is that its strong players don't seem to want to play county chess. The 4NCL team doesn't seem to have that problem though.

Andrew Zigmond
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Re: Snow Cancellations

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Tue Mar 06, 2018 11:13 pm

David Sedgwick wrote:
Tue Mar 06, 2018 4:45 pm
Roger de Coverly wrote:
Tue Mar 06, 2018 4:26 pm
David Sedgwick wrote:
Tue Mar 06, 2018 3:34 pm
However, I stand by my suggestion that it would be in the best interests of the ECF Counties Championships if the responsibility for the National Stages were transferred from the Director of Home Chess to a Committee of the five Unions.
I had the idea one of the proposals involved moving the Union stages to being the responsibility of the ECF, or equivalently with the National competition running during the same time period, and allowing every county to enter.
I was referring to what, in my view, needs to happen once the proposals to which you refer have been withdrawn, or rejected at the forthcoming ECF Council Meeting.
I'm echoing comments I made on the consultation thread but two points spring to mind.

a) Two key words are `proposal` and `consultation`. The ECF instigated an open consultation and as a result a document was produced putting forward proposals; presumably from suggestions that arose. If some of these were radical it is because some players (the `ordinary` paying membership of the ECF who many of us are routinely accused of ignoring) may have had radical ideas. Why should their voices not be heard? As you say council will have the final word.
b) Alex is being criticised for putting radical proposals forward. If he simply defended the status quo I'm sure he would get a fair amount of stick for that. Can he win? I think we both know the answer.

Moving on to a personal note; in my four year tenure as controller I roughly dealt with one dispute and/ or controversy a year. In all cases I tried to deal with the points raised as even handedly, in good faith and as timely as I could manage (not always easy when working shifts). Unfortunately this was not good enough for a number of county captains/ associations who seem to like petty minded bureaucracy when it is on their side but think an exception should be made when it isn't.

With regard to the `committee of county unions` proposal I'm afraid I still find this idea ridiculous, particularly with regard to a certain county union and their likely representative. Never mind what might happen if a certain forty year old dispute came under the committee's remit as it might have done last season.
Controller - Yorkshire League
Chairman - Harrogate Chess Club
All views expressed entirely my own

Nick Grey
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Re: Snow Cancellations

Post by Nick Grey » Wed Mar 07, 2018 12:01 am

This has moved on a bit from snow cancellations. There was little choice because the following weekend was Easter.
Either way I will wait until selected for the U180 match and then will have to sort out a lift. The venue is nice where I have played recently.
We appreciate our organisers and captains and controllers and the consultation about next season is whatever goes to the next meeting.

I cannot recall a season ever where I have played 6/8 matches for the U180s/U175s or U160s/U150s where I have scored 0. 30 years?
This week or final U160 match at home v a local rival where I'm on 0/5 and trying to avoid 0/6. So will try not to wear myself out with lifting or refreshments.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Snow Cancellations

Post by Roger de Coverly » Wed Mar 07, 2018 1:56 am

Alex Holowczak wrote:
Tue Mar 06, 2018 9:45 pm
[The issue in Warwickshire's case is that its strong players don't seem to want to play county chess. The 4NCL team doesn't seem to have that problem though.
Which in a nutshell is the ECF's problem with the County Championship at the Open level at least.

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Michael Farthing
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Re: Snow Cancellations

Post by Michael Farthing » Wed Mar 07, 2018 9:25 am

Andrew Zigmond wrote:
Tue Mar 06, 2018 11:13 pm

Two key words are `proposal` and `consultation`. The ECF instigated an open consultation and as a result a document was produced putting forward proposals; presumably from suggestions that arose. If some of these were radical it is because some players (the `ordinary` paying membership of the ECF who many of us are routinely accused of ignoring) may have had radical ideas. Why should their voices not be heard? As you say council will have the final word.
This is a very fair point. However, it is not fair to criticise those who then spoke or wrote criticising the proposals. That too is part of listening to the 'ordinary' membership and a proper part of public discussion. It is sad that because proposals are opposed this should be seen as an attack on Alex. It may be that some of the criticism was made in an over-aggressive manner. If so that is regrettable but inevitable. Voices rise when people are upset or concerned: it is important that we all recognise and accept this and be ready to move on without taking it too personally. Equally those who have got a little excited can usefully make overtures to right matters: I think that has actually happened recently, hasn't it?

My part in all this centred on the viability of finding younger players in Yorkshire and perhaps I presented my evidence in too mocking a manner. I hope Alex knows me well enough to know that I respect him and support him, but if I went too far, or if others perceive that I did, then I certainly apologise for this.
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Mike Truran
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Re: Snow Cancellations

Post by Mike Truran » Wed Mar 07, 2018 10:10 am

I’m not really sure how a proposal to remove Alex from involvement in the Union stages can easily be construed as anything other than an attack on him.

NickFaulks
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Re: Snow Cancellations

Post by NickFaulks » Wed Mar 07, 2018 10:25 am

Mike Truran wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 10:10 am
I’m not really sure how a proposal to remove Alex from involvement in the Union stages can easily be construed as anything other than an attack on him.
Of course it can. I wasn't involved in this, but the suggestion was quite clearly not that Alex was the wrong man for the job, but that Home Chess was the wrong place to put it.

David Sedgwick
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Re: Snow Cancellations

Post by David Sedgwick » Wed Mar 07, 2018 12:27 pm

Firstly, I have just suggested that the posts in the last two and a half pages should be moved to the Counties Championships thread.

Mike Truran wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 10:10 am
I’m not really sure how a proposal to remove Alex from involvement in the Union stages can easily be construed as anything other than an attack on him.
I think you meant to refer to my proposal to remove Alex from involvement in the National stages.

Let me try to explain my reasoning.

In an employment situation, you have to do things of which you don't approve, or give up the pay cheque at the end of the month.

In a voluntary organisation you don't. You can always walk away.

For this reason, voluntary organisations normally have provisions that enable them to step outside the strict terms of the job description in order to ensure that particular functions can be run by people who have an interest and a belief in, and a commitment to, the function in question. The ECF Directors and Officers Responsibilities Regulations contain provisions of this kind.

I make no secret - how could I? - that I am passionately committed to retaining the link between the Union Qualifying Stages and the National Stages of the Counties Championships. I don't think that it can be disputed that that view is widely held, albeit not universally held. As things stand, Council will decide next month.

Alex does not share my opinion and has long taken a different view. Back in 2010 he advocated a system very similar to that which he is proposing now. See viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1801&start=120 and the subsequent discussion (including ferocious criticism from me).

Alex seems to have a particular talent for devising and implementing new ideas. The British Blitz Championship looks tremendous and I also like his suggestion of an online National Club Championship.

On the Counties Championships, Council may agree with Alex. In that event I am sure that he will bring his energies to bear on seeking to make a success of the new arrangements.

On the other hand, Council may agree with me. In that scenario I think that it would be better for the ongoing responsibility for the Counties Championships to rest with people who approve of the decision. That would be almost certainly be true of a Committee of the five Unions. It would not necessarily be true of ECF Directors of Home Chess, now and in the future.

I don't accept that my proposal constitutes a personal attack.

However, there is one respect in which I owe Alex an apology.

The similarity between Alex's ideas in 2010 and his current proposals let me to suspect that at least some of the latter might have been predetermined ahead of the consultation. Both Alex, on this Forum, and you (Mike), in a private message which I hope that you won't mind my now disclosing, have categorically stated that that was not the case.

I entirely accept those assurances and I should like to take this opportunity to withdraw my earlier suspicion and to apologise to Alex.

Mike Truran
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Re: Snow Cancellations

Post by Mike Truran » Wed Mar 07, 2018 7:19 pm

Your comments are very helpful - many thanks. Of course I meant the National stages - sorry!

Just two brief thoughts if I may:

1. I suspect an even run by a committee of the five unions might be a recipe for disaster, but others will of course disagree.

2. I am sure that whatever the outcome of the Council deliberations Alex would continue to do his very best for the county championships whether or not he agreed personally with the outcome. Again, others may well take a different view.

Mick Norris
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Re: Snow Cancellations

Post by Mick Norris » Thu Mar 08, 2018 9:49 am

Snowing here again today; had enough of it now
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Roger de Coverly
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Re: Snow Cancellations

Post by Roger de Coverly » Thu Mar 08, 2018 12:04 pm

Mick Norris wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 9:49 am
Snowing here again today; had enough of it now
Blackpool is this weekend. Any danger of a cancellation?

NickFaulks
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Re: Snow Cancellations

Post by NickFaulks » Thu Mar 08, 2018 12:15 pm

There's presumably no snow in Reykjavik, or that would have had to be cancelled.

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Matt Mackenzie
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Re: Snow Cancellations

Post by Matt Mackenzie » Thu Mar 08, 2018 1:17 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 12:04 pm
Mick Norris wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 9:49 am
Snowing here again today; had enough of it now
Blackpool is this weekend. Any danger of a cancellation?
Milder weather forecast from later today, so no.

(that's if there is any snow in Blackpool anyway, there famously was on the final day of the 2006 congress)
"Set up your attacks so that when the fire is out, it isn't out!" (H N Pillsbury)

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John Clarke
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Re: Snow Cancellations

Post by John Clarke » Thu Mar 08, 2018 11:54 pm

Neil Graham wrote:
Fri Mar 02, 2018 10:07 pm
I can't remember anything as bad as this in March.
The 1962-3 "Big Freeze" lasted well into March. Several boys in my year at school who were reasonably good chess players lost interest in the game around that time. One possible reason was that they'd played so much of it when penned up indoors while the playground was unusable.
"The chess-board is the world ..... the player on the other side is hidden from us ..... he never overlooks a mistake, or makes the smallest allowance for ignorance."
(He doesn't let you resign and start again, either.)

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