My Resignation

Debate directly related to English Chess Federation matters.
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Alex McFarlane
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My Resignation

Post by Alex McFarlane » Mon Jan 23, 2012 11:05 am

As many of you will be aware there has been an ongoing dispute following the ECF President running to the press following his self imposed non-participation in the prizegiving at the 2011 British Championships.

Sean Hewitt offered to mediate in the hope that some sort of agreement could be reached. After over 1 month the ECF Board has rejected his offer.

As result of this and the President's refusal to confirm or deny the accuracy of the Sunday Times statement that whilst he did not use the word homophobia he had left their reporter in no doubt that was the nature of his allegations against us I have no alternative but to withdraw my services from all ECF activities.

As such I resign as Chief Arbiter of the British Championships. Nor will I be helping Lara behind the scenes.

I will issue a fuller statement within the next day or two.

Alex McFarlane

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IM Jack Rudd
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Re: My Resignation

Post by IM Jack Rudd » Mon Jan 23, 2012 11:24 am

Thank you for letting us know.

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Carl Hibbard
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Re: My Resignation

Post by Carl Hibbard » Mon Jan 23, 2012 12:09 pm

A shame, it did seem inevitable you would be hung out to dry Alex :oops:
Cheers
Carl Hibbard

John McKenna
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Re: My Resignation

Post by John McKenna » Mon Jan 23, 2012 12:35 pm

I for one will miss Alex M's stentorian announcements prior to the start of play and his arbiting skills therafter.
To find a for(u)m that accommodates the mess, that is the task of the artist now. (Samuel Beckett)

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IM Jack Rudd
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Re: My Resignation

Post by IM Jack Rudd » Mon Jan 23, 2012 12:41 pm

Alex McFarlane wrote:Sean Hewitt offered to mediate in the hope that some sort of agreement could be reached. After over 1 month the ECF Board has rejected his offer.
<Board Member Hat>
It might be more accurate to say that while both parties were in principle open to the idea of a mediation, no mutually satisfactory terms could be found for it to take place under.
</Board Member Hat>
<Player Hat>
I, like John McK, will miss Alex's arbiting.
</Player Hat>

Roger de Coverly
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Re: My Resignation

Post by Roger de Coverly » Mon Jan 23, 2012 1:26 pm

IM Jack Rudd wrote: <Player Hat>
I, like John McK, will miss Alex's arbiting.
</Player Hat>
It did strike me that he wrote ECF as opposed to English, thus not ruling out Hastings, Scarborough, London Classic etc. as these are not ECF events in the sense of being run for or by the ECF.

Jonathan Rogers
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Re: My Resignation

Post by Jonathan Rogers » Mon Jan 23, 2012 1:40 pm

IM Jack Rudd wrote:
Alex McFarlane wrote:Sean Hewitt offered to mediate in the hope that some sort of agreement could be reached. After over 1 month the ECF Board has rejected his offer.
<Board Member Hat>
It might be more accurate to say that while both parties were in principle open to the idea of a mediation, no mutually satisfactory terms could be found for it to take place under.
....
Might it? To uninformed eyes such as mine, there is precious little to suggest that CJ has been open to any kind of revision of the events of last August, and this has been the case since ... last August.

Alex McFarlane
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Re: My Resignation

Post by Alex McFarlane » Mon Jan 23, 2012 1:44 pm

IM Jack Rudd wrote:Alex McFarlane wrote:
Sean Hewitt offered to mediate in the hope that some sort of agreement could be reached. After over 1 month the ECF Board has rejected his offer.

<Board Member Hat>
It might be more accurate to say that while both parties were in principle open to the idea of a mediation, no mutually satisfactory terms could be found for it to take place under.
</Board Member
The ECF Board offered no alternative!!! I have reason to believe that my position in regard to this may have been misrepresented.
The point of mediation is to find a common ground surely!!!
What attempts were made to find mutually satisfactory terms for mediation to take place? I know of none. Nor do I believe Sean has hidden anything from me. The only thing I am aware of is confirmation from Mr De Mooi that he will not say anything further. I assumed his statement was the reason for the rejection of mediation, not any intransigence on my part.

In answer to Roger I am still considering my position with regards to other English events but will honour my commitments for the remainder of the season.

E Michael White
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Re: My Resignation

Post by E Michael White » Mon Jan 23, 2012 2:41 pm

In this post :- http://www.ecforum.org.uk/viewtopic.php ... 178#p78178 I invited Andrew Farthing to answer the question - .. if the existence of the FIDE dress code was pointed out to the PCC in his note to them.. It seemed to me to be an important part in assessing the action taken and press reporting.

He chose not to answer. So there seems to be form for non communication. No doubt the usual information blackout guys will be along soon to try to get this thread locked.

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Paolo Casaschi
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Re: My Resignation

Post by Paolo Casaschi » Mon Jan 23, 2012 3:03 pm

IM Jack Rudd wrote:It might be more accurate to say that while both parties were in principle open to the idea of a mediation, no mutually satisfactory terms could be found for it to take place under.
This statement calls for the following question: what terms would have been satisfactory for the board?

Alex McFarlane
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Re: My Resignation

Post by Alex McFarlane » Mon Jan 23, 2012 3:11 pm

Michael,

I doubt that Carl will allow this thread to be locked but in all other respects I have some sympathy with your view. Mr Farthing has given us further information today which would reinforce your theory of gagging. Lara has asked his permission to publish his email of today. It would certainly have allowed us grounds to appeal the PCC decision had we been aware of it. But then I was banned access to all such info despite numerous requests.
I won't detail it at this point but yet again it reflects badly on Mr Keene and ALL those associated with him.

Paolo,
I have asked the same question!!! Especially since it is stated that the President would not make any further statement.
Is it too much to expect to know if he went to the papers and claimed he had stated he was banned because of his t-shirt (end of story) or did actually make some form of allegation? Closure requires an answer to this.

Andrew Zigmond
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Re: My Resignation

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Mon Jan 23, 2012 5:14 pm

Alex - I applaud you for taking this decision. Rest assured I will continue to spread the word amongst my colleagues in Yorkshire as to the disgusting way you and Lara have been treated.

I for one hope you will continue to organise the Scarborough congress which goes from strength to strength while the ECF continues to condemn itself to irrelevance and schism.
Controller - Yorkshire League
Chairman - Harrogate Chess Club
All views expressed entirely my own

Jonathan Bryant
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Re: My Resignation

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Mon Jan 23, 2012 9:27 pm

Very sorry to hear this news Alex, but I can understand why you've made your decision.

David Pardoe
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Re: My Resignation

Post by David Pardoe » Mon Jan 23, 2012 11:26 pm

Hi Alex,
Many players I`m sure agree with the concerns you have raised and support your position.
The fact that no satisfactory responces have been forthcoming from the ECF is probably not a surprise.
Put simply....`they have no answers`..... so it would appear.
Similarly, Ray Keene`s article, about which you feel aggrieved, has been given the usual `sweep it under the carpet treatment`, so it would appear. Regulatory bodies are not noted for taking `heavy handed action` against the big guns...so to speak.
So, almost by default, you have won the case. No... these people dont usually perform public acts of humble pie eating... its not the convention (but would be nice occasionally).
I`m wondering whether there is some other options, apart from resigning.....that might make the point, without jumping overboard.
Having `made your points` very clearly you might even just credibly `take the high ground` and turn the other cheek, so to speak. In the fullness of time, some positives and `paybacks` might well emerge, not least in the `thankyou`s and appreciation for the good works you have done for chess UK, from a grateful chess community.. It would certainly be disappointing to loose this.....
I`d like to think that British Chess could continue to benefit from your contributions...not least because British Chess is bigger than a few `big shots`, who just happen to be temporary custodians of office....and from time to time, fall short of expectations.
BRING BACK THE BCF

Lara Barnes
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Re: My Resignation

Post by Lara Barnes » Tue Jan 24, 2012 5:32 pm

David,
How well put!
We really need Alex to continue as if he, and people like him (hard working, selfless, only in it to support the players) do 'jump ship' the sooner we will be left with no-one to run our events and train our replacements. People are resigning like mad from ECF based volunteering / organising due to the attitude that has been shown towards them by some members of the board.

Alex takes the toll to 4 of my close colleagues in the Chess Arbiters' Association who have resigned ECF voluntary posts in the last 6 months.
The people who are left are no doubt considering the same.

The only reason I have not joined Alex is that I am truly torn apart at the moment and don’t want to make any decision until every possible avenue is looked into to get him back.

I believe that by me resigning I would be letting down the players who want to go to The British in the North East. I, and others in the Northumberland Chess Association, have worked very hard for some time to bring The British up here and we intend to give an event to remember.

Please, as many people as possible, need to persuade the ECF board to join the mediation process. I personally have been told not to publish the board’s decisions and comments to me regarding the CJ De Mooi affair or I would do so in order to support Alex’s position.

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