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Minutes of Last Committee Meeting
Committee meeting 11 November 2019


Minutes of the Committee Meeting held on 11 November 2019



Present 7 :

Liz Perry, Chris Bickerdike, David Stone, Jim Barker, Ian Marriott, Rob Mabley, John Golding

Apologies 2 : Heather Upton, Mike Booth

The Chairman, Liz Perry, opened the meeting at 6.58 pm.

1. Minutes of the Last Meeting

The minutes of the last committee meeting in March were read briefly and accepted as being a true record.

2. Cornwall Congress 2019

John Golding indicated that, under the new committee’s stewardship, the Congress had been a success – everyone seems to enjoy the venue and the friendly ambiance of the weekend. Small negatives are the parking and slightly smaller tables used. With better planning of the peripheral tables and equipment around the perimeter of the room, it is hoped to get more card tables into the playing area. This, together with better marketing, could allow the Congress to attract more players and to generate a profit next year.

Final accounts were presented showing a loss of £339.64 and a bank balance going forward of £3754.85. Reasons for the loss included – increased daily room hire charge, employing two caddies this year (back to one next year), more free entries for pairs to make up movements, increased accommodation/meal costs (John & Heather stayed in the hotel; last year only Chris Bickerdike).

The desire to give a prize each day to the leading Cornish pair/team is still an aspiration. A final decision will be made closer to the event when numbers attending becomes clearer.

3. Duplimating

John Golding and Heather Holder-Powell were thanked for fulfilling all the CCBA duplimating requirements for which they were recently paid £154.40. They are also preparing boards weekly for three clubs – Bodmin, Newquay and Wadebridge – for which each club is being charged £3.00 per set by the CCBA for the use of the duplimator. Invoicing the clubs is being done every six months.

John bought 200 sets of duplimating playing cards as agreed at the last meeting, from David Stead, the Jannersten rep, as he guarantees to undercut the EBU. John was given the authority to buy more as and when required.

John and Heather have also just bought some more boards in order to make up full sets of 49 boards of the same colour. This was requested by the Congress directors in order to avoid the confusion currently caused by mixed colour sets. The Congress accounts has paid for them.

4. Equipment/Accessories

The duplimator is performing reliably, and it was decided not to undertake a preventative service, but to wait till something goes wrong. It was agreed to continue using the 30 Bridgemates (15 of which are on permanent loan to Bodmin and Wadebridge) rather than switch to Arcscorer tablets which are becoming popular in Cornwall.

Bill Thomson was thanked for washing all tablecloths, and for sorting out the bidding boxes and cards. No replacements needed currently.

5. Directors Course

Jim Barker reported that seven Cornish players have recently successfully completed the Club Directors’ course (plus a few from over the border in North Devon). Because the syllabus has changed to include the difficult subject of “comparable calls”, there was not sufficient time to teach other topics, particularly hesitations. As a result, Jim is considering running an extra day for the new directors to go through these topics. This day will also be open to all existing club directors to join in a one-day refresher course. This will probably be held in Falmouth some time in the New Year.

6. Schools Bridge

Jim is pulling back from his involvement in trying to encourage primary schools to play mini bridge. Liz Perry, similarly, has found it too time consuming to continue being involved in her lunchtime session in Falmouth.  

Heather Holder-Powell, on the other hand, has made contact with her small local primary school, and as a first step, is about to see whether a mix of several different card games appeals to them and their teacher.

7. Constitutions

As agreed at last month’s AGM, Chris Bickerdike has now written to all clubs in the county advising them to ensure that their Club Constitutions cover the topic of Conduct & Disciplinary procedures.

Whilst on the subject of  constitutions, he pointed out that a couple of changes were necessary to update the CCBA Constitution.

Firstly, a change in wording to permit the chairperson to serve another term as Chair immediately after completion of his/her first term of office, and secondly, to delete reference to committee positions for the two secretaries of the West and East League, as these leagues no longer exist. A short extra-ordinary meeting will be held during the tea interval at the Club Teams of Eight in March to pass these changes.

8. Charity Simultaneous Pairs

The total amount raised for “Penhaligons’ Friends” in June was £1210 which was by far the biggest amount donated in this our fourth year running a Charity event. The meeting agreed the adoption of Cornwall Blood Bikes as the chosen charity for the 2020 Sim Pairs to be held on Tuesday 23 June.

9. Other Business

Liz Perry reported that a South West calendar of bridge events is being proposed, and Cornwall has been asked if it wants to join the project and to advertise those events in Cornwall that are open to out-of-county players.  It was agreed to do so, and the three events that were considered appropriate were – the Cornwall Congress, the Liskeard Swiss Teams, and the Charity Simultaneous Pairs. It was agreed that the latter event would be opened up to any club in Devon that would like to hold a heat, on the understanding that their donation goes totally to the chosen Cornish charity.

On behalf of his wife, Frances, Jim Barker pointed out that not enough people were helping in the kitchen at Ladock, not only during the tea break itself, but particularly setting up before play starts. More helpers will be sought at the next event. Chris Bickerdike pointed out that he has taken over from Elaine Relton buying tea, coffee, sugar cubes, milk, chocolate digestive biscuits, jaffa cakes, shortbread biscuits, custard creams, bourbon biscuits, etc. To spread the county workload more evenly, this job ought to be allocated to someone else.

As Falmouth does not have a trophy engraver in the town (other than Timpsons who will not undertake engraving with any curvature) Chris asked whether Ian Marriott could take the task over.  There is an excellent engraver in Goonhavern not far from where Ian lives, who already engraves trophies for two bridge clubs. Ian agreed to take the job over with immediate effect.

The Treasurer, David Stone, thought we gave an over-generous tip to the hotel at the Swiss Teams event at the Queens Hotel, Penzance. Despite this, a small profit was made at the event. Hall rental at Ladock has also increased significantly in the last year.  Although the CCBA main account has over £5000 in reserves, entry fees may have to increase from Autumn 2020.

There being no other matters raised, the meeting was closed at 8.34pm.

CJB 16/11/2019