Peter Hornsby for ECF : Tomorrow's Candidate Today!

Debate directly related to English Chess Federation matters.
Roger de Coverly
Posts: 17304
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:51 pm

Re: Peter Hornsby for ECF : Tomorrow's Candidate Today!

Post by Roger de Coverly » Mon Oct 02, 2017 12:33 am

Andrew Zigmond wrote: but I share his concern about the missing 18-30 demographic in chess
That's been missing since the 12-18 demographic became seriously reduced and that goes back to the last hurrah of the 1993 match.

One current noticeable feature of university level chess is that the participants aren't always from the UK, so the 18-24 demographic is influenced by how chess is doing at a world level, or to be more specific, how it's doing in countries whose students would come to the UK.

Peter Hornsby
Posts: 26
Joined: Sat Sep 10, 2016 12:32 am
Contact:

Re: Peter Hornsby for ECF : Tomorrow's Candidate Today!

Post by Peter Hornsby » Tue Oct 03, 2017 2:25 pm

Alex:

My recollection slightly differs, I believe I said that I wasn't too sure about it and didn't want to over-promise/commit to anything at that stage but can understand why you thought I was saying no, though that wasn't the case. It was the end of a long day so perhaps I didn't express myself as I'd like, however I do recall strongly stating my willingness for a role to a couple of others on the day, who I will name later if appropriate.

I only wish that was true about Durham! As an aside I had been pushing for internal qualifiers for years but was voted down, anyway the society president said before Christmas that it was 90% likely I wouldn't be picked because on the basis of my grade I was circa the 15th best player and we were only sending three teams. As it turned out a load of people dropped out and I was in relatively good form so made the team on that basis.

Again I re-iterate my apology about Durham's change of circumstances, and needless to say I thank you and your colleagues for organizing BUCA so efficiently!

Andrew and Mick:

I could talk happily for hours on end about this! 2020/NUCC was founded because we were surprised how few inter-university events there are across the year. This is in no way a slight on Alex or BUCA, it is a fantastic tournament (which I've played at four times) but it only takes place once a year. If you look at other sports/activities at university levels the events are much more frequent.

2020 lifted off because it got young people playing together at university locations that were convenient and only lasts for one day on a weekend. Many players there are at my level, rusty but enthusiastic. They do not care about whether the games are graded or not. This enables us to attract many people because the entry fee prices are so low at only £5 per player (it was originally £2.50 or £1 at the first ever event). We also get some outstanding players coming along too with grades 200+ , I can only think of a handful of people who decided not to play for their university because it wasn't graded.

The majority of major tournaments in the UK as far as I can see have high entry fees relative for students partly because of the grading fee (and students are reluctant to become ECF members for various reasons) and are over a weekend/few days requiring staying in a hotel in an unfamiliar location. People like me do not have the time and resources to commit, and even if 'we' did we are not at the ability to win prizes and don't know many people at these tournaments.

I'm not bragging but 2020 does this rather well, so much so that teams enter again even if they've already qualified for the Grand Final, and at the Grand Final itself you can see that there are some fine players that the ECF has no record of who travel great distances to go there so it is possible http://2020chess.com/superfinal.html

Short term non-graded events are problematic as the ECF can't 'make' money off it which they need to diligently spend on important issues, however I would argue that in the long term it will bring people in and pay great dividends. Its a balancing process of course, but its great to get the conversation flowing!

I think for a start the ECF should officially approach every university that does not have a Chess society and make a proposal: That one (kind!) volunteer will attend their fresher's fair and collect lists of names and run/set up the first session and take things from there. I've already successfully done it with St. Mary's and Southbank (out of my own pocket) but others are reluctant because I appear like a 'one man band' and not in an official capacity. Worst case they say no, but it is absolutely unacceptable in my mind for a university not to have a Chess club. This is an example of radical thinking that I could offer at board level.

----

The difficulty with this forum is that its impossible to go into full details unless one takes a ridiculous amount of time, and the AGM is challenging as there is no debate just five minutes to make your case and most people have already decided how they are voting before it takes place.

So with that in mind...

*ANNOUNCEMENT*

This Thursday evening at 8pm I will be running a 'Question Time' Chess special broadcast live on Facebook!!!

If anyone would like to submit anything either comment on here or email me at pbhornsby@gmail.com , and I will put the link on here shortly. I will also be expanding on the issues that have already been raised concerning why I would be a suitable non executive director candidate :)
Founder and Director of 2020 Chess
www.2020chess.com

Alan Walton
Posts: 1216
Joined: Mon Nov 02, 2009 8:33 pm
Location: Oldham

Re: Peter Hornsby for ECF : Tomorrow's Candidate Today!

Post by Alan Walton » Tue Oct 03, 2017 2:40 pm

Is the problem with University chess the cyclical nature of the societies with players normally only around for a few years

Oxford & Cambridge are better designed to cope with this due to the varsity matches

Historically Manchester University was very active in the Manchester league, but once they lost a good organizer then it folded very quickly in terms of playing league chess, though the society continued to meet; more recently university players moved to another club due to a local player at the university already playing for them

It is very difficult for the ECF to coordinate with organizations where their is a lot of instability within the system, maintaining contacts which frequently change can be a headache

Perhaps a University post needs to officially be created whose sole aim is to maintain contacts with all universities and organize more directly, there is already a manager of prison chess

Mick Norris
Posts: 7006
Joined: Tue Apr 17, 2007 10:12 am
Location: Bolton, Greater Manchester
Contact:

Re: Peter Hornsby for ECF : Tomorrow's Candidate Today!

Post by Mick Norris » Tue Oct 03, 2017 6:23 pm

Peter Hornsby wrote:Andrew and Mick:

I could talk happily for hours on end about this! ----

The difficulty with this forum is that its impossible to go into full details unless one takes a ridiculous amount of time, and the AGM is challenging as there is no debate just five minutes to make your case and most people have already decided how they are voting before it takes place.

So with that in mind...

*ANNOUNCEMENT*

This Thursday evening at 8pm I will be running a 'Question Time' Chess special broadcast live on Facebook!!!

If anyone would like to submit anything either comment on here or email me at pbhornsby@gmail.com , and I will put the link on here shortly. I will also be expanding on the issues that have already been raised concerning why I would be a suitable non executive director candidate :)
I don't do facebook, so I'd repeat myself for a final time:

Peter, I don't doubt that you could be an asset for the ECF, but I still want to know why you would be suitable for the specific role of NED?

You don't have to answer; after all, I don't have a vote, just part of deciding who gets the MCF votes
Any postings on here represent my personal views and should not be taken as representative of the Manchester Chess Federation www.manchesterchess.co.uk

LawrenceCooper
Posts: 4826
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2011 8:13 am

Re: Peter Hornsby for ECF : Tomorrow's Candidate Today!

Post by LawrenceCooper » Tue Oct 03, 2017 7:23 pm

Mick Norris wrote:I don't do facebook
:shock:

Andrew Zigmond
Posts: 1566
Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2011 9:23 pm
Location: Harrogate

Re: Peter Hornsby for ECF : Tomorrow's Candidate Today!

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Tue Oct 03, 2017 7:28 pm

In response to Mick's post I think that his question has been answered. While his ambitions for English chess go a little bit above the strict remit of being a NED there are precedents for having an entrepreneur in the role; Sean Hewitt is a recent example and Mike Truran was a NED on the Regan board.

Returning to the missing demographic; if we consider that to be 18-35 then university only covers up to age 22 in most cases. How can we keep younger players involved in chess after they graduate and I'm sure Peter would agree that not every young person goes to university.
Controller - Yorkshire League
Chairman - Harrogate Chess Club
All views expressed entirely my own

Roger de Coverly
Posts: 17304
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:51 pm

Re: Peter Hornsby for ECF : Tomorrow's Candidate Today!

Post by Roger de Coverly » Tue Oct 03, 2017 7:49 pm

Andrew Zigmond wrote: How can we keep younger players involved in chess after they graduate
For the stronger players I think the 4NCL has helped by them being able to socialise with their contemporaries who might otherwise be scattered. Players who perhaps first met playing in the earlier years of Basman's Chess Challenge still meet as part of 4NCL teams.

Alex Holowczak
Posts: 8495
Joined: Sat May 30, 2009 5:18 pm
Location: Oldbury, Worcestershire
Contact:

Re: Peter Hornsby for ECF : Tomorrow's Candidate Today!

Post by Alex Holowczak » Tue Oct 03, 2017 10:58 pm

Alan Walton wrote:Perhaps a University post needs to officially be created whose sole aim is to maintain contacts with all universities and organize more directly, there is already a manager of prison chess
The BUCA Secretary does a trawl every year to get contacts for all the University chess clubs he can find. Then when I clear my to-do list enough to get an entry form out, he sends it far and wide. I'm not sure which hat I'm wearing when I say this, but it isn't entirely clear to me why the ECF would want or need access to this list. Marketing? Well, the people who have always played will be on the membership list anyway, so newsletters will get to them anyway. The people who play for fun are only playing for fun, and will only play chess for their University.

On the wider question - why don't clubs retain or attract players into their 20s? Because they often meet in dingy venues, and the clubs are almost exclusively the domain of men two or three times their age, and because hardly any of them will have played for clubs in their youth because the vast majority of chess clubs aren't interested in doing anything to bring juniors into their clubs. It can hardly be surprising that with "junior chess" and "club chess" existing as separate silos that when "junior chess" ends, very few migrate to clubs, but tend to remain active in things like the 4NCL - where league rules force squads to recruit them to play for their teams.

Roger de Coverly
Posts: 17304
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:51 pm

Re: Peter Hornsby for ECF : Tomorrow's Candidate Today!

Post by Roger de Coverly » Tue Oct 03, 2017 11:13 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote: Well, the people who have always played will be on the membership list anyway, so newsletters will get to them anyway. The people who play for fun are only playing for fun, and will only play chess for their University.
What about foreign students then? Even at school level, there are some seriously strong players coming to the UK for education and presumably they would not just be 'fun' players.

John McKenna
Posts: 3346
Joined: Tue May 17, 2011 2:02 pm

Re: Peter Hornsby for ECF : Tomorrow's Candidate Today!

Post by John McKenna » Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:19 pm

Andrew Zigmond wrote:In response to Mick's post I think that his question has been answered. While his ambitions for English chess go a little bit above the strict remit of being a NED there are precedents for having an entrepreneur in the role; Sean Hewitt is a recent example and Mike Truran was a NED on the Regan board...[SNIP]

There may well be great predecessors (and very capable incumbents), but Peter Hornsby (Peter H) has still not really and directly answered Mick's question, here (though he has said, above, he will do so via facebook on Thurs.) as to - why he (Peter H) should be a Non-Executive Director (NED)?

In fact Peter H hasn't even come close to answering it indirectly, either, despite saying a fair deal of laudable things about his achievements so far.

[The nearest Peter H came to it was -
My scrutiny and oversight is concerned with this central point, why are there so many people who can play Chess staying in the shadows and what can we do to bring them out?
Another laudable aspiration, but should it be the "central point" of a NED, or that of another director?]

Those achievements are mainly in the area of organisation - where Peter H has demonstrated an energetic and successful track record.

However, the position of NED is one that requires a different skill set - like the difference in skills between, say, a CID detective and a frontline police officer.

NEDs should be the human equivalent of both a watchdog and a sniffer dog, not an attack dog. They should (non-executively) sniff and bark when they find something suspicious, but leave the (executive) biting to others.

My concern, as a paid-up 'member' of the ECF, is that Peter H is most probably seeking the wrong seat at the right board. What and how he would do in that position remains unclear, at least to me.

I think that Peter H can be an asset to the ECF, either inside or alongside, but that at present in the NED position he'd be in danger of drifting offside and unable to fulfil the role to requirements.

Those are my comments here. And that's as far as they go since I, also, do not 'do' facebook and have no direct vote to cast at the coming AGM. (Where my gold-reps' votes are who knows? And before anyone asks why I didn't garner them personally - there are currently not enough of them to make it worthwhile, and that could help explain why there are apparently at present no gold reps.)
To find a for(u)m that accommodates the mess, that is the task of the artist now. (Samuel Beckett)

Kevin Thurlow
Posts: 2531
Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2008 12:28 pm

Re: Peter Hornsby for ECF : Tomorrow's Candidate Today!

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Wed Oct 04, 2017 6:45 pm

"NEDs should be the human equivalent of both a watchdog and a sniffer dog, not an attack dog. They should (non-executively) sniff and bark when they find something suspicious, but leave the (executive) biting to others."

That seems a fair assessment.

I don't do Facebook either.

Jonathan Bryant
Posts: 3100
Joined: Sun May 11, 2008 3:54 pm

Re: Peter Hornsby for ECF : Tomorrow's Candidate Today!

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Wed Oct 04, 2017 6:50 pm

John McKenna wrote: ... Peter Hornsby (Peter H) has still not really and directly answered Mick's question, here
Agreed

John McKenna wrote: In fact Peter H hasn't even come close to answering it indirectly, either, despite saying a fair deal of laudable things about his achievements so far.
Agreed (both points).


John McKenna wrote: (Where my gold-reps' votes are who knows? And before anyone asks why I didn't garner them personally - there are currently not enough of them to make it worthwhile ....
Indeed.

In two fairly lengthy posts thus far I see nothing from the candidate that indicates what if anything he would bring to the specific role of NED. Clearly his efforts to popularise chess are A. Good. Thing. These efforts say nothing about whether he would make a good NED, however.

That said, Peter is entirely at liberty to completely ignore this post given that I don’t have a vote either.

Peter Hornsby
Posts: 26
Joined: Sat Sep 10, 2016 12:32 am
Contact:

Re: Peter Hornsby for ECF : Tomorrow's Candidate Today!

Post by Peter Hornsby » Thu Oct 05, 2017 10:45 am

It would have been near on impossible for 2020/NUCC to have had any levels of success without Facebook. The same is probably true with all the university Chess societies, Facebook is invaluable if not indispensable for organizing student tournaments/events.

This has been achieved by finding other people's Chess pages and posting on them spreading information, seeing who responds and adding them as friends which lets them easily message you in a quick user-friendly way unlike emails. Then you can add fellow Chess enthusiasts onto a 'group chat' where they can discuss plans and meeting up etc which really helps to build things.

Three people on this thread (I'm not picking on them and applaud their honesty) say that they 'don't do Facebook', so is it any wonder that we are not where we would like to be with the 18-30 demographic? Because I imagine that they are not alone and this is something Chess organizers etc need to engage with going forward if they don't do so already.

Andrew astutely raises the point regarding what happens after students leave university at 22. Again this is something that 2020 has started to tackle (remember it was only founded 15 months ago!) by allowing alumni teams to enter the competition. Last season both York and Durham sent alumni teams with the latter actually winning the Yorkshire qualifier. It was really great from a social point of view to see old friends return back into the Chess environment and we will look to build on it this year.

Facebook enables us to do this as all their records are easily accessible so we can contact them again, indeed Durham has a group chat for former students so we can arrange to meet up for social events which in fact we did at Purling London's promotional launch in Covent Garden over the summer holidays where many of games and headed out to dinner afterwards.

That said I'm not going to pretend that this is something easy, and we also have to consider those who don't go to university as Andrew also notes. So I'd agree with much if not all about what Alex says, the trick is that young people will go to things if there is someone like-minded they know is going there as well.

I'm particularly interested in those as he puts 'are only playing for fun', these are the sorts who don't care about their grades (like myself) and have limited time/resources and will only go to something if their friends are. They won't win any prizes (for the most part!) but are vital as they have the potential to become organizers and coaches etc out of the love of the game in the same way I have, which is why 2020 has been well so well received.

Roger talks about strong foreign students and he is quite correct, have a look at this: http://2020chess.com/superfinal.html and you'll see that many players scored highly but the ECF has (understandably) no record of them. 4NCL is a fantastic competition needless to say for strong players, however one could say its almost 'too professional' so those who 'are only playing for fun' are likely to overlook it so then you're asking what other tournaments/events are there? Plenty for sure but are they really successful with this 18-30 demographic?

---

The next set of ECF elections are in (ironically!) 2020 so I felt that I had to make a stand to raise these issues and try to move things forward by attempting to get on the ECF board rather than wait. I'd like to build on the 55 votes (for almost a complete unknown relatively respectable) and 3rd place I got last year by running for the NED position last year by running again.

My track record shows that when given a Chess related task I can execute it extremely well (for the most part!). Almost everyone agrees that I am a 'different' candidate and that I can be an asset for the ECF , so being on the board is the best place for me to do that. I won't deny that this NED is a challenging undertaking if I was successful, and if in the unlikely event I wasn't successful in the role if elected I would always do what I always do; what's best for English Chess, and would stand aside.

I've set out how I could develop/advise the board's strategic proposals and I assert my commitment to scrutinizing how well the board are executing their tasks accordingly, but you can only go so far on this forum which is why I will publish a link on here later (viewing Facebook doesn't require membership for the most part) which everyone can access where I can be interactively asked questions and can outline my vision on video :D
Founder and Director of 2020 Chess
www.2020chess.com

Roger de Coverly
Posts: 17304
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:51 pm

Re: Peter Hornsby for ECF : Tomorrow's Candidate Today!

Post by Roger de Coverly » Thu Oct 05, 2017 10:53 am

Peter Hornsby wrote:but the ECF has (understandably) no record of them.
The reason for that is that the 2020 events aren't graded. I presume the reason why not, it's to avoid membership requirements. The earlier system where the organisation became the ECF fee paying member was much better, and still is, if you want to promote the game amongst new players. The ECF seems to believe otherwise.

Roger de Coverly
Posts: 17304
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:51 pm

Re: Peter Hornsby for ECF : Tomorrow's Candidate Today!

Post by Roger de Coverly » Thu Oct 05, 2017 11:23 am

Peter Hornsby wrote:I'd like to build on the 55 votes (for almost a complete unknown relatively respectable) and 3rd place I got last year by running for the NED position last year by running again.
The problem you face is that the electorate, by which I mean chess organisations and their representatives "don't do Facebook". You could validate this by checking for Facebook entries for the organisations and their representatives. I doubt there's a Facebook group for "ECF Council" for example.

Locked