ECF membership & clubs' internal games.

Debate directly related to English Chess Federation matters.
Sean Hewitt
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Re: ECF membership & clubs' internal games.

Post by Sean Hewitt » Wed Oct 10, 2012 10:54 am

John Townsend wrote:Fair enough. But inflation increments are not the only form of increase the ECF is capable of introducing. Last year's increase, described as "a fundamental change to the ECF funding model", clocked in at 244.8%.
As I said, the increase in game fee was £1.42 per result. That increase must be viewed though in the context of the overall impact of universal membership. Membership rates have remained static or, in many cases, reduced by comparison. For example, it is now possible to play an unlimited number of internal club, league and county matches for just £12 per year. I think that's a bargain.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: ECF membership & clubs' internal games.

Post by Roger de Coverly » Wed Oct 10, 2012 11:02 am

Mike Truran wrote:Losing the DCMS grant, which I believe was originally in the order of £120k (but someone please correct me if I'm wrong)
That's two years worth. It was £ 15,000 a quarter.

The estimate of Game Fee was of the order of 70p to 80p. A reform of Game Fee could have included removal of some of the many exemptions, or at the very least a proper costing of them.

Existing Direct members outside of MOs have not contributed any additional revenue to the ECF. In fact they have triggered a loss of revenue to the ECF by the extension of Game Fee exemptions to leagues.

Mike Truran
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Re: ECF membership & clubs' internal games.

Post by Mike Truran » Wed Oct 10, 2012 11:18 am

My mistake. I thought it was reduced in two tranches of £60k.

But the general point is still that there was a substantial loss of revenue which needed to be recouped regardless of whether the regime was game fee or membership.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: ECF membership & clubs' internal games.

Post by Roger de Coverly » Wed Oct 10, 2012 11:36 am

Mike Truran wrote: But the general point is still that there was a substantial loss of revenue which needed to be recouped regardless of whether the regime was game fee or membership.
Yes there was a shorfall. But instead of attempting to raise it directly or indirectly from the most committed players, they chose to try to raise it from juniors and the less active whilst reducing the cost of chess to the most active.

Mike Truran
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Re: ECF membership & clubs' internal games.

Post by Mike Truran » Wed Oct 10, 2012 11:47 am

Groundhog Day.

Bill Porter
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Re: ECF membership & clubs' internal games.

Post by Bill Porter » Wed Oct 10, 2012 11:58 am

Mike Truran wrote:Groundhog Day.
Pots and kettles.....

Mike Truran
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Re: ECF membership & clubs' internal games.

Post by Mike Truran » Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:10 pm

:lol:

Last time I looked I wasn't the one who has made close on 7,000 posts, most of them on the same topic.

Anyway, good to see that Roger has found a useful idiot to help him out.

Mike Gunn
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Re: ECF membership & clubs' internal games.

Post by Mike Gunn » Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:12 pm

Originally the govt said that they were going to reduce the grant from £60,000 at a rate of £15,000 per year. We suffered one such cut and then (in a 2nd round of cuts) they removed it all in one go.

Martyn Harris
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Re: ECF membership & clubs' internal games.

Post by Martyn Harris » Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:38 pm

My position on changing the funding of the ECF is that moving towards a structure that demands more from less active players and less from more active ones is far from my first choice. However the decision has been made, and I doubt that there is the appetite in most quarters for another change, so lets get on with making the best possible implementation. To me that doesn't include special pleading for reductions and exemptions, as these rapidly become loopholes and sources of resentment to those not receiving them.

With respect to the problem of those who play little or no chess beyond club internal events it would be interesting to know what discount their club gives them on club membership fees. If the club is willing to make little or no financial concession to these players, why should other organisations?

As far as implementation is concerned I hope someone is working to streamline the process at the office end - for example do we really need hand written laminated membership cards or indeed membership cards of any sort?

Do MOs bring anything useful to the party; they certainly serve to obscure the membership status for part of the season of those joining via the MO route. Outside of MOs there is evidence of clubs enrolling players en masse via the paysubsonline website, so abolishing MOs wouldn't push everyone into individual enrollment.

It is claimed that with universal membership people will be encouraged to play more graded chess. One way for this to happen is for organisers to put on more events, possibly with different formats. It would be useful to have a more clearly defined division between bronze and silver events. In the previous mixed membership/game fee environment definitions in terms of membership and by implication bona fides was sensible, but with universal membership this does not need to be the case, and I'm not convinced that a stray outsider should be enough to trigger a change in an event's status from bronze to silver.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: ECF membership & clubs' internal games.

Post by Roger de Coverly » Wed Oct 10, 2012 2:40 pm

Martyn Harris wrote:M However the decision has been made, and I doubt that there is the appetite in most quarters for another change
There's considerable appetite for more change, starting with the proposal to cut the ECF in two.

In outline the proposal is that the ECF seeks charitable status whilst retaining current voting rights and the FIDE affiliation. Anything to do with professional chess, interpreted as being at least the British Championships and the International teams would be hived off into a new body. There are, as one would expect, a number of unanswered questions, the membership and governance of the new body being amongst them. One outline had the BCF brought back to life to become the professional body.

Paul Buswell
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Re: ECF membership & clubs' internal games.

Post by Paul Buswell » Wed Oct 10, 2012 6:39 pm

Martyn Harris wrote:With respect to the problem of those who play little or no chess beyond club internal events it would be interesting to know what discount their club gives them on club membership fees. If the club is willing to make little or no financial concession to these players, why should other organisations?
The Hastings Club does not, in its membership subs, make such a distinction between players active externally and those playing only internally. We are in the unusual position of owning our own premises which are open equally to all regardless of the extent of their competitive activity.

We do - indirectly - charge more to players in our League teams by taking a £2.50 match fee from them. And for this year the ECF Game Fee will be passed on to League players if they have not taken out ECF membership for themselves.

PB

Martyn Harris
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Re: ECF membership & clubs' internal games.

Post by Martyn Harris » Wed Oct 10, 2012 6:55 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Martyn Harris wrote:M However the decision has been made, and I doubt that there is the appetite in most quarters for another change
There's considerable appetite for more change, starting with the proposal to cut the ECF in two.
Whilst I am well aware of plans to split the ECF in two I very much doubt that the average grass roots player is champing at the bit waiting for it to happen. Indeed given the Charities Commission's ability to move goalposts and for the government of the day to encourage them to do so, I'm not at all sure that this is the right route for the ECF to go down. Apart from anything else every decision that the amateur section takes would have to be checked against the possibility of invalidating charitable status. There seem to be enough barriers to the ECF doing things as it is without adding another spanner.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: ECF membership & clubs' internal games.

Post by Roger de Coverly » Wed Oct 10, 2012 7:05 pm

Martyn Harris wrote:[ I'm not at all sure that this is the right route for the ECF to go down.

The current plan is to write more papers and have an EGM to approve it all next January. As you suggest, it rather presupposes charitable status is good for the national chess body. With the constraints placed by this status, there are downsides as well. I'd agree players aren't demanding it, so this is very much a top down initiative, the ECF telling players and organisations what's good for them.

Off topic, but the thought struck me. As a professional player and organiser, could Stuart Conquest, or any active GM, be the President under charity law of a purely amateur body?

John Philpott

Re: ECF membership & clubs' internal games.

Post by John Philpott » Wed Oct 10, 2012 7:15 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote
Off topic, but the thought struck me. As a professional player and organiser, could Stuart Conquest, or any active GM, be the President under charity law of a purely amateur body?
I do not believe that there would be anything to stop this.

John Townsend
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Re: ECF membership & clubs' internal games.

Post by John Townsend » Thu Oct 11, 2012 10:13 am

Sean said:
Absolutely right though interestingly, the only congress Mr Townsend seems to play in is the Kidlington Congress. To the best of my knowledge that's not FIDE rated so it wouldn't cost him £27 for membership.
Just for the record, Sean has made an incorrect assumption. I said "my local congress", meaning the Berks. and Bucks., which I had supported fairly regularly since about 1970, until I was prevented from playing when even the "Challengers'" section became FIDE-rated and ECF membership was needed. As I correctly said, that would be £27.

I played some years at Kidlington but have recently not played there either, as it is my understanding that ECF membership is now required - perhaps only £12 in that case.

The only congress I have played at this year was Millfield, which I found excellent.

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