Executive Summary – Federation AGM – Sat 14 Nov 2020
Via Zoom and You Tube
Yet again our Federation rose to the challenge by holding the AGM as scheduled and with a very high attendance – twenty voting members accessed the Meeting via Zoom with another twenty members attending virtually via Youtube. Despite the difficulties caused by the Coronavirus there was a lot of positive news from clubs, several kept their tournaments going, some increased their membership and good news of members winning national trophies and receiving awards.
Prior to the formal AGM there was a Special General Meeting to discuss changes to the Federation Constitution (parts 3.1 and 3.2). This resulted in the Term of Office for the Chairman being extended from three consecutive years to five (dependent on annual re-election) and also a modernisation of gender wording. Both proposals were passed nem com.
Chairman Paul Rigge welcomed everyone to the AGM and reported on a difficult year but was delighted all five Federation Millenium Tournaments were contested and in the light of this experience hoped ways could be found, if the Covid restrictions continue, of hosting more events next year. League Manager Ivan Wheatley reported that despite the League being cancelled this year, he was planning a full programme for 2021 and clubs were requested to ensure team entries were submitted by 31 December. Coaching Officer Paul Rigge organised two coaching sessions in January and February before Covid restrictions ended all further plans for the season.
Sarah Andrew, Development Officer, is encouraging clubs to apply for CA financial awards (Townsend, Apps Healey, Millenium), several clubs have gained these awards in recent years to help with their development costs – the closing date is 31st December. The CA shop is also promotong a nice line in Face Masks, suitably emblazoned with the CA Logo – ideal stocking fillers for Xmas!
Don Williamson, Federation Handicapper updated the meeting on the development of combining Short AC and Full AC Handicaps. After many meetings it has been decided not to pursue any changes to the current system. Tony Thomas , Website Manager, reported several pages have been redesigned to make the website more user friendly for mobile devices. John Dawson, CA Council Member, thanked Jean Hargreaves for her work at national level on Safeguarding – this is a complex and important topic, especially with more younger players entering the sport – it will be important that Clubs buy into the CA policy.
Ivan Wheatley, League Manager, explained the rationale for some minor changes to our League Rules making them more compatible with Tournament Regulations and will be presenting a draft 2021 League Rules for the Spring Meeting. Ivan is also planning to manage the North West Festival (26/27 June 2021, covid restrictions allowing) and a working party will be set up to oversee the event.
The CA have changed their definition of Club Affiliate membership and this is not in accord with our Federation philosophy. We need to redefine the role of affiliate clubs e.g. can play in Millenium competitions and Festivals but not the Leagues. This will be discussed further at the Spring Meetyng and may need a change to our Constitution.
Most clubs were able to play this year albeit with Covid restrictions in place, many developed Lawn Booking systems successfully. Bowdon had players in three national finals and several junior players in the CA national programme. They also featured in a TV programme about playing Croquet in ‘lockdown’. Bury played mainly at Coronation Park and gained much publicity when 14 year old Jack Good won two internal tournaments. Chester hosted a successful evening for hospital staff. Crake opened their new Clubhouse, held two Millenium Tournaments, a national C level GC qualifier, their normal open tournaments and had players in three national finals.
Criccieth hired portable toilets to overcome restricted access to their pavilion. Culcheth had increased access to their shared lawns since other Sports Club Sections reduced their activities and this may have consequences for the future viability of the Sports Club. Fylde ran a complete programme of internal competitions and were visited by Westmorland for friendly matches. Llanfairfechan had a huge increase in membership as the health benefits of Croquet were promoted during lockdown. Pendle completed all internal competitions, hosted five weekend tournaments in a safe environment and attracted new members.
Southport started the season late and lawns were fairly well used. Highlight was hosting two national tournaments – Treasurers Tankard and Ascot Cup Final. The club has purchased 200m of plastic piping which has been successfully used as ball guards. Tattenhall have increased their membership and had a good season. Westmorland attracted ten new members despite a reduced season.
The Meeting congratulated Howard Bowron (Penrith) and Don Williamson (Southport) for being awarded CA Diplomas recently. All Officers were re-elected and Robert Essler was appointed as the new Independent Examiner.
The meeting ran very efficiently, excellently chaired by Riggey and well organised with expertise from David Walters and Liz Wilson. We also acknowledge the great support of Eugene Change on behalf of the CA.
The next meeting will be the Spring Club meeting on 6th March 2021. This AGM closed at 12 noon.