2016 draw

Discussion about all aspects of the ECF County Championships.
David Pardoe
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Re: 2016 draw

Post by David Pardoe » Tue Jun 14, 2016 6:11 pm

Mick Norris wrote:
David Pardoe wrote:As for Manchester in this North/ Midlands equation, it might well be that Manchester's Open squad joins the Northern titans and the U160 squad remains with the Midlands, where we have had years of good chess competition.
Manchester's Open team needs a captain before it can play anywhere at all

The U160 played this season at Newcastle-under-Lyme v Notts & Warks; Lancaster v Cumbria; Halifax v Yorks - those of us living on the north side of Manchester (i.e the last 3 team captains) prefer the latter - the NCCU would give us 3 teams to play against, rather than the (very pleasant) 2 in the MCCU
Mick,
Can you explain how this squares witb your previous statements that you have been keen to invite Staffordshire to play an Open team match v Gman? In fact, despite not having a county captain, you have issued specific invitations to play Staffs, so you said previously?
Given that you`ve said that North Man clubs would prefer to play NCCU counties... should the MCF not be being more even handed and considering the wishes of all MCF clubs, including South Man clubs, who do provide good support for our county events?
You say that our County U160 team would prefer to travel to places like Lancaster to play Cumbria rather than travel to Newcastle-U-Lyme to play teams like Notts & Warks ? Are you sure about that. Notts are regarded as one of the top U160 counties, and really have provided us with some great match opposition for many years.
Maybe some of this needs some detailed discussion at the next MCF AGM, to try to establish what the membership really do want.
Bearing in mind that the NCCU has a block on Gman membership currently, as I understand it, how are we going to get acceptance to play these counties? And who are the three counties that you think the U160 team might play..?
Unless you mean we should downgrade our interest to purely `friendly matches`, and give in to those who want us out of the counties events altogether?
I really think this needs some comprehensive open discussion at the AGM, rather than in the rather confined secretive gatherings of a select few MCF Council Reps, whose views might not quite reflect the majority view of clubs across Manchester, in many instances.? But I know the politics are very tricky in that region.

Finally to Neil Graham... you`re right that many counties should pull there fingers out and get stuck into these county events. But, for various reasons, I think you might find it a good deal more challenging to run several Manchester county teams than to run your Notts County teams?
That said, I applaud your efforts in county chess... they have been outstanding.
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Mick Norris
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Re: 2016 draw

Post by Mick Norris » Tue Jun 14, 2016 6:21 pm

David Pardoe wrote:
Mick Norris wrote:
David Pardoe wrote:As for Manchester in this North/ Midlands equation, it might well be that Manchester's Open squad joins the Northern titans and the U160 squad remains with the Midlands, where we have had years of good chess competition.
Manchester's Open team needs a captain before it can play anywhere at all

The U160 played this season at Newcastle-under-Lyme v Notts & Warks; Lancaster v Cumbria; Halifax v Yorks - those of us living on the north side of Manchester (i.e the last 3 team captains) prefer the latter - the NCCU would give us 3 teams to play against, rather than the (very pleasant) 2 in the MCCU
Mick,
Can you explain how this squares witb your previous statements that you have been keen to invite Staffordshire to play an Open team match v Gman? In fact, despite not having a county captain, you have issued specific invitations to play Staffs, so you said previously?
We discussed it at MCF Council, and I volunteered to see if Staffs wanted to play a friendly, in order that we might avoid our Open team disappearing off the map

It was an invitation from Greater Manchester, and it was all official
Any postings on here represent my personal views and should not be taken as representative of the Manchester Chess Federation www.manchesterchess.co.uk

Mick Norris
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Re: 2016 draw

Post by Mick Norris » Tue Jun 14, 2016 6:38 pm

David Pardoe wrote:Mick,
Given that you`ve said that North Man clubs would prefer to play NCCU counties... should the MCF not be being more even handed and considering the wishes of all MCF clubs, including South Man clubs, who do provide good support for our county events?
Even handed would be not expecting our North Manchester players to travel further for every match, which is what the MCCU offers - getting past the Trafford Centre on the M60 is never easy for those of us in Bolton (where most of the recent county captains live) :roll:
David Pardoe wrote:You say that our County U160 team would prefer to travel to places like Lancaster to play Cumbria rather than travel to Newcastle-U-Lyme to play teams like Notts & Warks ? Are you sure about that. Notts are regarded as one of the top U160 counties, and really have provided us with some great match opposition for many years.
Yorks and Lancs are stronger than Notts & Warks - I went by train to Lancaster, I can't do that to NuL as it hasn't got a train station :lol:
David Pardoe wrote:Maybe some of this needs some detailed discussion at the next MCF AGM, to try to establish what the membership really do want.
We did that previously, and agreed we wanted to join the NCCU, it was unanimous :D
David Pardoe wrote: Bearing in mind that the NCCU has a block on Gman membership currently, as I understand it, how are we going to get acceptance to play these counties? And who are the three counties that you think the U160 team might play..?
Yorks, Lancs & Cumbria - we could play if we got to join the NCCU, we are continuing to try and gather enough support to overturn a handful of Lancs officials who don't want us to join, even though quite a few of their players do :roll:
David Pardoe wrote: I really think this needs some comprehensive open discussion at the AGM, rather than in the rather confined secretive gatherings of a select few MCF Council Reps, whose views might not quite reflect the majority view of clubs across Manchester, in many instances.? But I know the politics are very tricky in that region.
Been there, done the consultation, got the agreement, been following the instructions of the AGM and wishes of MCF Council for the last decade

You're the second person today who has tried to tell me what to do when I give up my Saturday to go the MCF AGM, away from my 11 year old daughter, my seriously ill 83 year-old father, revising for my exam etc - like him, you are wrong to think your views represent others (he wants us back to adjournments), any more than mine do, which is why I go through the proper channels, always
Any postings on here represent my personal views and should not be taken as representative of the Manchester Chess Federation www.manchesterchess.co.uk

Martyn Harris
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Re: 2016 draw

Post by Martyn Harris » Wed Jun 15, 2016 12:14 am

Mick Norris wrote: I went by train to Lancaster, I can't do that to NuL as it hasn't got a train station
Though it is only a short bus ride or moderate walk from Stoke-on-Trent station from which there is a frequent bus service. Or use Crewe (or Stafford) from which the busses are less frequent and take longer.

Must admit if I lived in Bolton and wanted inter-county chess I'd probably regard it preferable to be playing against Northern Counties regardless of how friendly and supportive the Midland ones have been.

David Pardoe
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Re: 2016 draw

Post by David Pardoe » Wed Jun 15, 2016 12:47 am

Martyn Harris wrote:
Mick Norris wrote: I went by train to Lancaster, I can't do that to NuL as it hasn't got a train station
Though it is only a short bus ride or moderate walk from Stoke-on-Trent station from which there is a frequent bus service. Or use Crewe (or Stafford) from which the busses are less frequent and take longer.

Must admit if I lived in Bolton and wanted inter-county chess I'd probably regard it preferable to be playing against Northern Counties regardless of how friendly and supportive the Midland ones have been.
Martyn, your first point is correct, and some of our players have actually gone via Stoke, as you suggest, but the vast majority prefer to go by shared transport...saving time and money.
Yes, you`re probably right about those who may live in Bolton..
Two problems.. firstly, certain Lancs officials have put a block on Manchester joining the NCCU, which has severely limited our county development for the past 40 odd years.
Second... the NCCU offer a very limited choice regarding county competitions, with only Yorks and Lancs playing out a series of almost meaningless qualifier matches. Then there is Cumbria.. ? Every other county in that region has been sidelined, and are just spectators, put off by the prospect of being smashed by the `big two`, and maybe travel + player selection issues. Its a familiar tale..
We have the prospect of a 100+ mile round trip to face Cumbria with our U160 team?
Do we really want to make such trips just to play in a group that has rejected us for so long..
I think if the MCF put these points clearly to the membership, they might think twice about where (which Union group) they play in...and any merits that the NCCU may or may not offer v the MCCU offering.
Do we really want to make such journeys in the winter months, in preference to the fairly easy trips to Newcastle-U-Lyme.where our U160 teams have enjoyed some real cracking matches over the years?
For me, its not about the travel, its about the chess.? ie, Do I get some good chessing experiences for giving up my Saturday.
Bear in mind too, that many of our regular county U160 players are actually South Manchester based... so its not just a question of what the players from Bolton want?
Then there are some other subtlties which probably go over the heads of many.. like Newcastle is a very good venue, that provides good facilities and playing conditions. I don`t need to tell you that because you actually run the place..!!

And, if GMan continue to play in the MCCU and qualify for the National Stages of the counties events, we get the added bonus of then playing (possibly) our local neighbours from Lancs, Yorks, in what are usually fine encounters... even though Manchester still often struggles to raise a team for these (so called block buster top attractions), and many of the team players who turn out still come from the South Manchester area.
Then you have to ask some questions... like, if we did join the NCCU, and get excepted, would we really be any better off with there enemic county competitions. I`ve made my suggestions as to how things might be improved, as have others.

And also...if these players really can`t be assed to travel further than the Cheshire boundaries, what hope is there for us raising teams that might need to travel to Birmingham, Worcester, Leicester, etc, to meet other teams in the National Finals stages..?

Of course for counties like Notts based in central midlands these travel issues are often significantly reduced.
But these are the challenges of this competition. Thats what you sign up for if you enter. Its not about players who can`t be assed if they have to travel more than 30 miles....that's totally wrong headed... But nevertheless, travel is a problem/challenge for many.
Incidentally, similar issues exist even for the much acclaimed 4NCL chess.. ie players who will only play if its a local match, but wont travel when any serious distances are involved.
Its fair enough, I guess...horses for courses. My particular achilles heel with these matches is `getting lost` enroute, and ending up with high blood pressure and arriving amost late for the match...and not in a good state of mind to play chess.
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Mick Norris
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Re: 2016 draw

Post by Mick Norris » Wed Jun 15, 2016 8:32 am

Martyn Harris wrote:
Mick Norris wrote: I went by train to Lancaster, I can't do that to NuL as it hasn't got a train station
Though it is only a short bus ride or moderate walk from Stoke-on-Trent station from which there is a frequent bus service. Or use Crewe (or Stafford) from which the busses are less frequent and take longer.

Must admit if I lived in Bolton and wanted inter-county chess I'd probably regard it preferable to be playing against Northern Counties regardless of how friendly and supportive the Midland ones have been.
Martyn

I like trains not busses :wink:

We used to play at Stoke, but walking from there to NuL and back in whatever the weather in the winter isn't my idea of fun

Yes, the NCCU would give the U160 team matches against Yorks, Lancs & Cumbria - so one more than Notts & Warks (for those like Dave who can't add up :lol: )- we would also get to play a home match, which we haven't had for a decade now I think (and they wonder why we struggle for players :roll: )

The Bridge Club at NuL is a good venue though, I get along well with Neil & John the Notts & Warks captains too
Any postings on here represent my personal views and should not be taken as representative of the Manchester Chess Federation www.manchesterchess.co.uk

David Pardoe
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Re: 2016 draw

Post by David Pardoe » Wed Jun 15, 2016 11:17 am

Mick Norris wrote:
Martyn Harris wrote:
Mick Norris wrote: I went by train to Lancaster, I can't do that to NuL as it hasn't got a train station
Though it is only a short bus ride or moderate walk from Stoke-on-Trent station from which there is a frequent bus service. Or use Crewe (or Stafford) from which the busses are less frequent and take longer.

Must admit if I lived in Bolton and wanted inter-county chess I'd probably regard it preferable to be playing against Northern Counties regardless of how friendly and supportive the Midland ones have been.
Martyn

I like trains not busses :wink:

We used to play at Stoke, but walking from there to NuL and back in whatever the weather in the winter isn't my idea of fun

Yes, the NCCU would give the U160 team matches against Yorks, Lancs & Cumbria - so one more than Notts & Warks (for those like Dave who can't add up :lol: )- we would also get to play a home match, which we haven't had for a decade now I think (and they wonder why we struggle for players :roll: )

The Bridge Club at NuL is a good venue though, I get along well with Neil & John the Notts & Warks captains too
As I`ve said, most players go by shared transport/car to these county matches. But public transport is available.
On what basis do you envisage our U160 team playing Lancs, Yorks, and Cumbria..... as part of the counties competitions, or purely as `friendly matches`?
You mentioned us struggling to raise a team for our MCCU county U160 matches. I seem to recollect our recent match with Cumbria was a 12 board only match...and that looked a struggle....in the NCCU
And our recent U160 match with Yorks in the National Counties Quarter Finals at Halifax was also a struggle.... in the NCCU.

Raising county teams is never an easy matter, but some, like Notts do better than others.
Neil says the main problem is apathy...
Incidentally, if we wanted `home matches` under the MCCU events, that was indeed possible if counties so agreed.

As for playing 3 matches Mick, ...that is another of your red herrings.. :roll:
We have played three or even four very good county matches in the U160 section in the MCCU competitions for years.. as you well know.
It was only because of a late withdrawal this year by Staffordshire that we only had two matches. One of our boards was defaulted, I grant you, but that was because one player forgot to turn up, and was out of comunicardo, I understand.. ie hadnt checked has emails..apparently? These things do unfortunately happen in county chess at times..
Meanwhile, you think its a good idea to join the NCCU exclusion zone, where most of the counties there have been sidelined out of counties competition by various factors, not least, travel issues.. and the prospect of getting battered by the big two mega counties. In fact, Yorks almost rates as a `state` in its own right, being an amalgam of three large Ridings :)
And just imagine if Yorks haggled about there playing base, like you do about Bolton..and North Manchester
Would they play at Bradford..if so would that upset players from York, Scarborough, Humberside, or other areas :roll:
I know that Staffordshire suffered from this issue, which is why they used to insist on playing there home games in WOLVERHAMPTON. But then again, they are a much bigger county than Gman.. Its all part of the fun in county chess, I guess
Common sense does help... and thankfully they don't all resort to jumping ship.. :)
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MartinCarpenter
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Re: 2016 draw

Post by MartinCarpenter » Wed Jun 15, 2016 12:15 pm

What do you mean almost?

Yorkshire county chess is easy enough - Leeds/Bradford/Sheffield all close to each other, and York which is very well connected in to those places by train. Train to Leeds then pick up is normal. Scarborough/Humberside essentially go by the wayside for travel reasons.

GM to Bradford/Sheffield is not a long trip and an even shorter one to Heywood, presuming that is that Lancashire didn't pick somewhere like Ulverston instead :)

Mick Norris
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Re: 2016 draw

Post by Mick Norris » Wed Jun 15, 2016 7:09 pm

MartinCarpenter wrote:GM to Bradford/Sheffield is not a long trip and an even shorter one to Heywood, presuming that is that Lancashire didn't pick somewhere like Ulverston instead :)
Ulverston has not been in Lancs for county chess purposes since 1953 as far as I know

Like we did in the friendly, Lancs play Cumbria at Lancaster, but play Yorks in Greater Manchester :wink:

I have played Lancs at Heywood, horrible venue, and Oldham, not great either but not used since; Staffs & Leics at Chorlton, not good venue either, and Worcs a very long time ago in Bolton, not good venue either, and a couple of games at Cheadle Hulme, not good venue either (you get the drift)

I may have blotted out a few venues, but as far as I can remember, I've played at Holmes Chapel a few times, NuL frequently, Brewood a couple of times, Redditch, Worcester (v Devon), Alwoodley a couple of times (best venue, great hospitality), Bradford, Sherwood, Bushbury, Uttoxeter, Syston quite a few times, Thurmaston (?), Edgbaston twice, a village I can't remember the name of near Hinckley Island, Water Orton, and the finals day at Leicester
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Sean Hewitt
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Re: 2016 draw

Post by Sean Hewitt » Wed Jun 15, 2016 9:13 pm

Seems to me the north Manchester lot should join Lancs in the NCCU and the south Manchester mob play for Cheshire, switching to MCCU.

Problem solved :lol:

Mike Truran
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Re: 2016 draw

Post by Mike Truran » Wed Jun 15, 2016 10:06 pm

Jarndyce v Jarndyce solved after all these years. Who would have thought it? :shock:

MartinCarpenter
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Re: 2016 draw

Post by MartinCarpenter » Wed Jun 15, 2016 10:09 pm

It would even have some logic, what with GM not having an open county team and Lancs struggling ;) They are of course very happy working together with the Manticores in the 4NCL, making the NCCU hang up even sillier.

As for these new fangled counties/boundaries, well, the Northern bridge league has a Westmorland team in it!

Roger de Coverly
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Re: 2016 draw

Post by Roger de Coverly » Wed Jun 15, 2016 11:57 pm

Sean Hewitt wrote:Seems to me the north Manchester lot should join Lancs in the NCCU and the south Manchester mob play for Cheshire, switching to MCCU.
In the SCCU there was a general acceptance of the notion that the 1974 County Boundary changes didn't change anything as far as chess eligibility was concerned. In the NCCU, on the other hand, there was the notion that a new Cleveland county could be carved out of Durham and Yorkshire and that four counties, namely Greater Manchester, Merseyside, Lancashire and Cheshire (including North Wales) could be carved out of Lancashire and Cheshire and North Wales.

Quite why personal conflicts derailed this is still unclear or at least not neutrally documented, but given the withdrawal of most of the teams from national county competitions, the original dispute over who plays for who becomes somewhat irrelevant.

David Pardoe
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Re: 2016 draw

Post by David Pardoe » Fri Jun 17, 2016 9:10 am

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Sean Hewitt wrote:Seems to me the north Manchester lot should join Lancs in the NCCU and the south Manchester mob play for Cheshire, switching to MCCU.
In the SCCU there was a general acceptance of the notion that the 1974 County Boundary changes didn't change anything as far as chess eligibility was concerned. In the NCCU, on the other hand, there was the notion that a new Cleveland county could be carved out of Durham and Yorkshire and that four counties, namely Greater Manchester, Merseyside, Lancashire and Cheshire (including North Wales) could be carved out of Lancashire and Cheshire and North Wales.

Quite why personal conflicts derailed this is still unclear or at least not neutrally documented, but given the withdrawal of most of the teams from national county competitions, the original dispute over who plays for who becomes somewhat irrelevant.
Neil Graham has touched on one of the key problems for chess bodies up and down the country.. namely `apathy`..
We are reaching the peak time of the season for AGMs in a number of chess bodies.. County, League, Union, Club, etc..
So the single most important thing that our membership need to consider is `what they can do to help`. Turning up for these AGMs is top priority to find out what is happening. Volunteering for any vacant posts really can make a difference...!!

My club AGM takes place next week.
The MCF AGM takes place on 9th July in Manchester, I believe. Hot off the press... Manchester urgently needs a new Web Master..
And the MCCU AGM takes place on Sunday June 26th, I believe, near Derby.

Sean, who hails from Leicestershire, but currently plays his chess in Manchester, I believe, suggests disbanding GMan...??
Mick has said they need a County Open team captain. Someone like Sean could make an excellent choice.
Mick says that venues in the MCCU area are poor, except for Newcastle-U-Lyme. But then says it has no local train station..???
Ironically, Leicestershire are also not keen to play at Newcastle, citing that it is too far from Leicester (by about 6 miles)??
But its fine for Warks & Notts, I believe....
If Staffs could except this as a `home` venue, then the return leg could possibly be played at Manchester.
Mick also says that Manchester county venues are equally bad, as are those near Heywood apparently..
Maybe the topic of venues needs some airing at the MCCU AGM? Is anyone from Manchester going to that..?
Maybe this also needs airing at the MCF AGM... along with other related `County` matters.

Meanwhile, Mick says his top venue pick is Alwoodley, North Leeds. Not sure if this is served by local trains, but that hardly seems preferable to Newcastle-U-Lyme for most Manchester players, I don't believe.

Meanwhile... on the subject of `apathy`, this also leads to chess bodies attracting some folk with dubious personal agendas, who can so easily `fix things` (often by fixing or bending procedures), to suit there personal ambitions, which might not align well with the wider best interests of players and the membership. These folk will often claim they are `following procedures`, and some will even use these to `stop progress` on any motions that run counter to there agendas.... even when some of these might well serve to improve things.

Hence, the other reason why it is important for members to get involved....and not let shadowy figures with dubious motives hide away in dark rooms to secretly decide what should happen for the membership.
Some openness, and a more welcoming approach could definitely help many chess bodies., along with allowing the membership a full say in what is going on... and not chopping motions for `time out` purposes, if it can possibly be avoided....leading to many potentially important and valuable discussions failing to take place, or being deliberately `chopped`.
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Kevin Thurlow
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Re: 2016 draw

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Fri Jun 17, 2016 12:53 pm

Most members attended the latest club AGM. Three of the committee members attending hold more than one post. The non-committee members attending included one who had left the committee after 40 years of holding multiple posts (me), one who had been a match captain and hosted committee meetings for years, one with a demanding job and two young children, one member aged 13 -14, and one older member recovering from illness.
So apathy does not come into it.
Back to reading Les Miserables, already on page 627 - nearly halfway!

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