NCCU AGM Minutes 2010

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Alex Holowczak
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Re: NCCU AGM Minutes 2010

Post by Alex Holowczak » Tue Jul 06, 2010 4:27 pm

David Sedgwick wrote:
Number of Divisions: 2008 - 6; 2009 - 6; 2010 - 7
Number of Nominations for the National Stages: 2008 - 43; 2009 - 58; 2010 - 58
Number of Defaulted Matches in the National Stages: 2008 - 3; 2009 - 7; 2010 - 4

I consider that to be a success. Moreover, it's the exact opposite of what you were predicting a year ago.
The number of nominations for the national stages has remained the same, even though there are more divisions?

That doesn't seem to be a success or failure.

Sean Hewitt

Re: NCCU AGM Minutes 2010

Post by Sean Hewitt » Tue Jul 06, 2010 4:52 pm

David Sedgwick wrote:
Sean Hewitt wrote:
David Sedgwick wrote:Meanwhile, unless there are any defaults, 208 people will be assembling in Leicester next Saturday for the National Finals of these supposedly broken events.
On that basis, you would consider 14 entries in total (2 in each of the 7 divisions) a success. I wouldn't.
Some statistics:

Number of Divisions: 2008 - 6; 2009 - 6; 2010 - 7
Number of Nominations for the National Stages: 2008 - 43; 2009 - 58; 2010 - 58
Number of Defaulted Matches in the National Stages: 2008 - 3; 2009 - 7; 2010 - 4

I consider that to be a success. Moreover, it's the exact opposite of what you were predicting a year ago.
Oh dear. A great example of what can happen if you look at the wrong statistics.

Let's look at the right ones instead, which is the number of nominations broken down by division:-

2009 2010
Open 10 9
Minor 8 8
U180/175 8 8
U160/150 11 10
U140/125 11 10
U120/100 10 9
U100 - 5

So in fact, every graded division with the exception of the U180 division (which has stayed static) has seen a reduction in the number of nominations - EXACTLY as I predicted a year ago. :oops: :oops: :oops:
David Sedgwick wrote:If people feel that they are problems with the Counties Championships within their Union, they should seek to address them at that level.
Not practicable at the moment I'm afraid David. The Union stages dictate the number of qualification places a Union gets so adopting different grading bands would adversely affect the number of counties that Union could nominate, thus further damaging the event. Now that would be chess prevention. Of course, this would not be the case if qualification were not dependent upon performance in the Union stage. :D

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Re: NCCU AGM Minutes 2010

Post by David Pardoe » Sat Jul 17, 2010 11:05 am

Alan Walton wrote:I do agree with David that the a better regionalisation of the zonal competition could be beneficial

Maybe having areas like the following

1) SCCU would keep the same format as it work perfectly well (3 entries)
2) M62 Corrider - Lancs/Yorkshire/GMan/Cheshire/Merseyside (2 entries)
3) WMidlands - Shropshire/Staffs/Worcestershire/Warwickshire (2 entries)
4) EMidlands - Notts/Lincs/Leics/Derbyshire/Northants (1 entries)
5) North of England - The rest of the NCCU (1 entry)
6) Suffolk/Norfolk/Bedfordshire/Cambridgeshire/etc. (2 entries)
7) Devon/Cornwall/Somerset/Dorset/Hampshire (1 entries)
8) Gloucester/Hereforshire/Wiltshire/Berkshire (1 entries)

These have been quickly done so pardon some of my geography, but this should significantly reduce the travelling at zonal level which is the main problem at the moment, it also means there could be a better presence at the national stages

But we shouldn't allow counties to merge with other counties, or ask counties to split up, as this defeats the object of the current system of a county championship

Thoughts?
Its well worth looking at the counties structures, but for me the key thing is greater particiption....and more particularly, encouraging the participation of more genuine `local` based players in local county teams....and not just bussing in `top guns` from all corners.
Too many counties feel `excluded` because `big brother` dominates to the point where its not worth entering....at least thats how I see things in the NCCU, where currently you have Cumbria, Cheshire, Merseyside, Cleveland, Durham, Northumberland....Tyne & Wear, etc..all sitting on the touch lines, reduced to the role of passive spectators. And then you already have the biggest county merger possible..ie, West Yorks, South Yorks, & East Yorks...all merged to form that giant county called `Yorks`...
So yes, some `merging` of teams (not counties), could be good to enable those counties that are too small to raise teams, to have a better chance to participate.
For example, take counties like Northants, Herefordshire, Cumberland...and others...who have little or no chance of raising a team(s).
The current rules are so lax as regards qualification that many county teams are a mish mash of players from all over the place, so allowing more mergers is just a logical extention.
Take, for example Lancs (and well done to them on winning this years Counties Open section). I see they get a mention in todays Telegraph chess section...!!
How many of those players satisfy the core criteria of currently (a) Living in Lancs, (b) Working in Lancs, or (c) paying council tax to a Lancs council (d) actively playing chess for a genuine Lancs based club....?
Some might even see the Lancs team to a variant of NCL type teams...a collection of players from here..there..and anywhere...?
Yes, people debate these issues...and yes, a little give & take is needed...but the second tier qualifications I think need looking at. Particularly those rules regarding `Leagues`which spread into neighbouring counties.

And allowing long lost soles, who never set foot in a county from one year to another...not good? At least, not good from the purist `county` perspective where `locals` should be given centre stage.
Note also, if you take the current county boundaries, Lancs actually play most of there `home` matches in GMan. Such are the querks of history, and some might say its good to have two counties based in our area.
But the key issue isnt to squabble endlessly over bygone history, but too move forward in a constructive manner. Incidentally, this situation isnt just unique to Lancs & the NCCU, there are many cases across the other Unions? Its not simple to change this and find agreements that counties would buy into.
Yes, I agree the `counties` scene is not bust by any stroke of the imagination, but that does not mean we should not look for improvements that would encourage more counties to participate.
No wonder Alan clears off to Canada to play his chess....very good luck to him.
Some `improvements` have been suggested...hopefully those with an interest will move things forward in a positive manner....

Incidentally.... I wonder if we need a `check-point` on all these threads, where a summary of the best ideas is compiled for action by those with the clout to do something..otherwise such threads just become `hot air`, and nothing gets done. Another summary of actions taken might be useful, to highlight where such threads have resulted in actual positive improvements. Maybe some of these need to appear on the agendas of key chess bodies...
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Sean Hewitt

Re: NCCU AGM Minutes 2010

Post by Sean Hewitt » Sat Jul 17, 2010 11:24 am

David Pardoe wrote: Incidentally.... I wonder if we need a `check-point` on all these threads, where a summary of the best ideas is compiled for action by those with the clout to do something..otherwise such threads just become `hot air`, and nothing gets done. Another summary of actions taken might be useful, to highlight where such threads have resulted in actual positive improvements. Maybe some of these need to appear on the agendas of key chess bodies...
The check point is council. If you feel that something should be changed you formulate the change that you are suggesting and then get sufficient council members to back it. If you can't get sufficient support to do that, then your change would have no prospect of being adopted in any case.

Ben Hague
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Re: NCCU AGM Minutes 2010

Post by Ben Hague » Sat Jul 17, 2010 11:47 am

David Pardoe wrote: Take, for example Lancs (and well done to them on winning this years Counties Open section). I see they get a mention in todays Telegraph chess section...!!
How many of those players satisfy the core criteria of currently (a) Living in Lancs, (b) Working in Lancs, or (c) paying council tax to a Lancs council (d) actively playing chess for a genuine Lancs based club....?
Some might even see the Lancs team to a variant of NCL type teams...a collection of players from here..there..and anywhere...?
Yes, people debate these issues...and yes, a little give & take is needed...but the second tier qualifications I think need looking at. Particularly those rules regarding `Leagues`which spread into neighbouring counties.
I make the numbers:
7 who are Lancastrian by any criteria
2 I'm not sure about but I believe would qualify as Lancastrian as above
3 who were Lancastrian and have left the county, two of whom have no other county to play for, and
4 who could count as Mancunian, three of whom play for a Lancashire affiliated club.

Of the players you're supposedly losing I think I'm the only one you could have a reasonable argument about as I live in Manchester and play for a Manchester registered team. However I would never play for a Manchester county team so it seems irrelevant.

For what it's worth I consider that I live in the city of Manchester and the county of Lancashire.

As far as I can see there is a case that players who have moved away from a county should no longer play for it, but I'd imagine that no-one is playing county chess for the glory so it's more likely they'd give up county chess rather than switch counties (as if they wanted to switch they'd have done so).

David Pardoe
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Re: NCCU AGM Minutes 2010

Post by David Pardoe » Sat Jul 17, 2010 12:10 pm

All fair points Ben....thats why I say there needs to be some give and take.
I guess that the breadth of choice that the current rules give means that you can put together some pretty impressive teams, as Lancs did for this years finals...and its great to see a top lineup of players for these events.
My concern is that many counties can get squeezed out by the heavyweights and forced onto the sidelines...hence the situation in the NCCU where only Lancs & Yorks bother to play in the qualifiers.
To give Yorks credit, they do currently field two teams in the qualifier events. This might be geographically based, giving players from across that region a fairer chance of competing. Its a long way from sunny Scarborough to Bradford to play a home match......
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Joey Stewart
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Re: NCCU AGM Minutes 2010

Post by Joey Stewart » Sat Jul 17, 2010 11:59 pm

When I was at the county final I got the chance to talk to the Lancashire county captain and he had quite a different tale to tell. Apparently, when the split originally happened, Manachester were very aggressive in their player collection and put pressure on people to force them to either play for them or be disaffiliated from the league - even if they were not of open team quality, it was still a punishable offence to play for Lancashire.

I dont know quite how much of it was true or whether the story has been embellishd over the years, but it did seem to explain why there are such strong anti manchester feelings up north.
Lose one queen and it is a disaster, Lose 1000 queens and it is just a statistic.

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Re: NCCU AGM Minutes 2010

Post by harrylamb » Sun Jul 18, 2010 4:04 am

Joey Stewart wrote:When I was at the county final I got the chance to talk to the Lancashire county captain and he had quite a different tale to tell. Apparently, when the split originally happened, Manachester were very aggressive in their player collection and put pressure on people to force them to either play for them or be disaffiliated from the league - even if they were not of open team quality, it was still a punishable offence to play for Lancashire.

I dont know quite how much of it was true or whether the story has been embellishd over the years.
None of it is true. There has been so much rubbished talked on this thread about what happened in 1975 that I have finally been goaded out of my silence. Joey talks about GMCCA punishing people that played for Lancashire. How could GMCCA (Greater Manchester County Chess Association) punish anyone. Name one player who suffered any punishment. No punishment was possible or ever has been possible, If a player did not want to play for GMCCA, they could always play for Lancashire.

Furthermore people living outside GMCCA were not eligible under GMCCA rules to play for GMCCA. We turned down some good people because of that rule.

You talk about “the league”. I presume that you mean the Manchester and District Chess Association. About 7 clubs in that league remained affiliated to Lancashire, (all the Cheshire clubs joined GMCCA). The players of the clubs remaining affiliated to Lancashire in the main continued to play for Lancashire and none of those clubs disaffiliated from the MDCA. So again I ask, name clubs forced to disaffiliate from the League. It is not possible because none were.

Also remember about 1/3rd of Greater Manchester was previously Cheshire. Cheshire’s fully supported GMCCA. Cheshire’s next president Richard Furness put GMCCA’s case to the NCCU AGM to join the NCCC in 1975. Cheshire voted at that NCCU AGM for GMCCA to join the NCCU and Cheshire have supported GMCCA ever since.

From a GMCCA point of view if a player did not want to play for us they have always been very welcome to play for Lancashire or Cheshire or Yorkshire or Derbyshire. All of which gave “territory” to form Greater Manchester. And they still are welcome to play for these counties. Alan Walton a forumite is a good example. He now plays for Yorkshire. Ben Hague another forumite who lives in Manchester played in the counties final for Lancashire this year. So where is the punishment

May I say hard luck to Alan on Yorkshire not winning the counties championship. Congratulations to Ben on drawing in the final and congratulations on Lancashire on winning the Counties championship. I played for Lancashire for 12 years and I was secretary of Lancashire Chess Association for 11 years. I was a member of two Lancashire teams that won the Counties championship. You do not have this service record without a large amount of loyalty for a county. I wish Lancashire well.


Harry Lamb

President GMCCA 1975-1983 and 1989-2002
President MCDA 1973-1975
Secretary Lancashire Chess Association 1964-1975
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Re: NCCU AGM Minutes 2010

Post by Neil Graham » Mon Jul 19, 2010 11:52 pm

Joey Stewart wrote:When I was at the county final I got the chance to talk to the Lancashire county captain and he had quite a different tale to tell. Apparently, when the split originally happened, Manachester were very aggressive in their player collection and put pressure on people to force them to either play for them or be disaffiliated from the league - even if they were not of open team quality, it was still a punishable offence to play for Lancashire.

I dont know quite how much of it was true or whether the story has been embellishd over the years, but it did seem to explain why there are such strong anti manchester feelings up north.
All this happened 35 years ago - well before the birth of Mr.Stewart. Most people have moved on since then! :roll:

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Re: NCCU AGM Minutes 2010

Post by Neill Cooper » Tue Jul 20, 2010 7:28 am

David Pardoe wrote: Derbyshire have run the U18 & U13 National competitions in recent years...very good efforts from Derbyshire organisers, but not great support or recognition from the MCCU as a whole. Communications need to be improved...both ways.
In 2009 entrants included Derby, Northants, Notts, Leics, Cheshire and NW, Staffs, Lincs, so there was good MCCU support.

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Re: NCCU AGM Minutes 2010

Post by Neill Cooper » Tue Jul 20, 2010 7:33 am

Alex Holowczak wrote:
David Sedgwick wrote: About ten years ago, similar arguments, and similar problems in one or two Unions, resulted in the then BCF turning the U18 Counties Championship into an open competition. The Union events could continue (and the SCCU one has done), but they ceased to be qualifying competitions.

Does anyone now believe that either the Union U18 Championships or the ECF U18 Championship are in better shape than they were before the changes were made?
I put this down to the general decline of junior chess in that period, rather than the changing format. The emergence of the NYCA (I don't know when it was founded) has also given it competition.
Alex is right - just look at the numbers taking part in the National Schools event - it fell from 246 in 2000 to 93 in 2005. The NYCA has been going for about 25 years but getting teenage teams to travel long distances (over an hour!) to multiple events is now a challenge.

I think the only 'successful' inter-county team event in terms of number of entries is the grade limited SCCU U14/U130 event, but even that was down to 6 teams this season.

A total of 200 juniors did play at the ECF U18 Jamboree this year, but due to the location it was mainly SCCU teams.

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Re: NCCU AGM Minutes 2010

Post by David Pardoe » Tue Jul 20, 2010 12:12 pm

Neil Graham wrote:
Joey Stewart wrote:When I was at the county final I got the chance to talk to the Lancashire county captain and he had quite a different tale to tell. Apparently, when the split originally happened, Manachester were very aggressive in their player collection and put pressure on people to force them to either play for them or be disaffiliated from the league - even if they were not of open team quality, it was still a punishable offence to play for Lancashire.

I dont know quite how much of it was true or whether the story has been embellishd over the years, but it did seem to explain why there are such strong anti manchester feelings up north.
All this happened 35 years ago - well before the birth of Mr.Stewart. Most people have moved on since then! :roll:
Neil,
You`d need to be here to see that issues remain....there are things that need tidying up to bring us a stronger framework for northern chess.....
Neill Cooper wrote:
David Pardoe wrote: Derbyshire have run the U18 & U13 National competitions in recent years...very good efforts from Derbyshire organisers, but not great support or recognition from the MCCU as a whole. Communications need to be improved...both ways.
In 2009 entrants included Derby, Northants, Notts, Leics, Cheshire and NW, Staffs, Lincs, so there was good MCCU support.
Thats good to see Neill. I know Manchester were somewhat `reluctant` because they felt that in previous years the event had been somewhat under resourced...maybe things have improved. I know the organisors were struggling for support at one stage...not enough helpers to run things, leaving `the few` to fight the battle. Also, no mention of this event in the MCCU AGM minutes/reports, as far as I know. Maybe things were said, but more PR for these events might raise the profile. Quite a `plus` for the Derbs chess scene....
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Re: NCCU AGM Minutes 2010

Post by Alex Holowczak » Tue Jul 20, 2010 12:20 pm

David Pardoe wrote: Thats good to see Neill. I know Manchester were somewhat `reluctant` because they felt that in previous years the event had been somewhat under resourced...maybe things have improved. I know the organisors were struggling for support at one stage...not enough helpers to run things, leaving `the few` to fight the battle. Also, no mention of this event in the MCCU AGM minutes/reports, as far as I know. Maybe things were said, but more PR for these events might raise the profile. Quite a `plus` for the Derbs chess scene....
Several reasons why this event wasn't included in the MCCU AGM minutes or report. The MCCU has no Junior Director, so there would have been no one to give the report. Since I was responsible for the Warwickshire teams, I would have happily submitted a report in writing to whoever I was supposed to send it to, had I been asked to. I didn't even know about the MCCU AGM until two days beforehand, when my club's outgoing secretary mentioned it.

I also offered to run this event on behalf of the ECF, under a different format, next year. The ECF's Junior Director and Alternate declined this offer. Perhaps they plan to run it next year; they didn't this year.

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Re: NCCU AGM Minutes 2010

Post by Mick Norris » Tue Jul 20, 2010 3:04 pm

Alex

The MCCU has had a Junior Director, but for health reasons he has been inactive, and stood down at this AGM

Your name was mentioned at the AGM as a possible replacement, as well as a couple of others who also were not present and therefore we felt we couldn't appoint someone who hadn't been asked if they were interested - hopefully, the MCCU will appoint someone soon

I'd suggest you speak to your county delegates
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Re: NCCU AGM Minutes 2010

Post by Alex Holowczak » Tue Jul 20, 2010 3:13 pm

Mick Norris wrote:Alex

The MCCU has had a Junior Director, but for health reasons he has been inactive, and stood down at this AGM
I have been aware of this; the same person has been inactive in the BDCL for the same reason.
Mick Norris wrote:Your name was mentioned at the AGM as a possible replacement, as well as a couple of others who also were not present and therefore we felt we couldn't appoint someone who hadn't been asked if they were interested - hopefully, the MCCU will appoint someone soon

I'd suggest you speak to your county delegates
Would have been good if this had been mentioned to me before now... The meeting was four weeks ago. Given I play for Worcs and do stuff for Warks, contacting the appropriate delegate here is a non-trivial task... :?

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