Minutes of the Meeting on Tuesday 24th February 2009 at 8.pm
– MORAY PROVINCE –
Golfview Hotel Nairn
Present: Gavin Nicol, Douglas Macarthur, Alister Asher, Sandra Maciver, Alastair Maltman, Douglas Howie, David Torrance, Colin Macgregor, Janet Burns, Ken Greenwood, George Macarthur, Ian Macphail, Hugh Robertson.
1. Apologies for absence.
Stuart Mackenzie, Alan Campbell, Fay Coutts, Brian Cantlay, Willie Cameron, Alistair Robertson, Graham Grant. Mike Watt.
2. Adoption of Minutes of the Province Committee Meeting dated 04/11/2008.
Proposed by Colin Macgregor.
Seconded by Alister Asher.
3. Matters arising from these minutes not covered in the Agenda.
The Chairman reminded the meeting of the Curling Development Groups generous offer to present to Moray Province the Ice Diamonds award which had been won at last seasons RCCC award dinner by Bill Nicol. And the Moray Province Development Group
He asked the meeting to consider nominations for this year’s winner which would be covered later in AOCB.
4. President’s report.
The President submitted the following report.
“Things seem to be going well in all competitions, some of which are now finished and some very close to the wire. I hope that the spirit of the game is always there for all to enjoy.
As you know, Moray Leisure Centre had problems at the start of 2009 with burst pipes. Thankfully this was addressed very quickly as far as curling was concerned. The ice staff and management pulled out all the stops to get the Strathcona cup played. I am glad to say that the match secretaries did a superb job of rearranging the missing matches.
Bill is settling in to the Webmaster post with the help of those giving him all the information. Well done.”
5. Secretary’s report.
The secretary had very little to report other than the fact that he had very much enjoyed his involvement in arranging the Tour match against the Canadians and would now be busy arranging the A G M and presentation of prizes in May.
6. Match Secretaries reports.
West: Colin Macgregor
Colin reported that everything was going well in the West of the Province and that next Wednesday would see the conclusion of all Leagues at which point the final title (Division 1) would be settled.
East: Graham Grant:
The secretary reported to the meeting that Graham had spoken to him last night to tender his apologies and asked if he would inform the meeting on his behalf that all was well in the East of the Province and that all fixtures had been rearranged following the closure of the Moray Leisure Centre.
Graham also suggested that consideration should be given to future committee meetings being held on a Thursday to accommodate those members in the East who curl on a Tuesday night.
7. Treasurer’s report.
Treasurer Alastair Maltman reported to the meeting that the Provinces finances were in a “fit” state with very little outstanding in terms of income due or accounts to pay.
At today’s date the ordinary account was showing a balance of £2338.00 and the development account a balance of £1600.00 these balances would be further boosted by the share from Area 10 for hosting the recent Canadian Tour match which was approximately £400.00.
Alastair asked the secretary for contact details for Area 10 to enable him to make his claim.
Ian McPhail complimented Alastair on his report and his management of the Provinces finances in general.
Action: Douglas Macarthur to Contact Alastair Maltman
8. Area 10 report.
The chairman intimated that was nothing to report from Area 10 at the moment as the past meeting had been dominated by arranging the Canadian Tour.
9. Web site report / Curling Development report (if applicable).
The secretary read out the following report submitted by Bill Nicol.
Following on to our last report to you at your November 2008 meeting The Group has progressed through a very busy playing season with great enthusiasm from those taking part.
As you may well have seen on the Web site Barbara King has successfully sat her practical and theory to become a level B coach and was awarded her certificate from The RCCC earlier this month.
Barbara was also runner up in SPORTS MORAY Recognition awards. The award is presented to an individual sports person who has made a valuable contribution at club level Barbara was selected for her commitment to coaching and her input to Elgin Curling Club and also Moray Firth Ladies Curling Club
On the ice it has been very busy with schools on 4 week blocks taking up every Wednesday over the season for Barbara and her coaches / helpers, numbers vary from school to school but Barbara and her team adjust to cope with varying numbers.
Feed back from the schools is excellent but it is very difficult to quantify immediately as to how many will take up curling in some shape or form however letting kids participate in the game keeps the sport on the schools agenda and also highlights it to the parents.
Later this month Aberlour have included curling in there “Sports for all Project” for the first time and Barbara and her team are taking different groups over a four week period and the kids will be assed and marked on their ability on the 4 sports they participate in.
Alan Campbell continues to co-ordinate this group again the coaches that turn out are dedicated to the cause and certainly have had to be this season as there has been a considerable increase in participants but unfortunately not in available coaches.
The junior numbers on a weekly basis can go as high as 29 and as low as 18
The retention figures are high which is very encouraging with the youngest 8 and oldest 14 but the age ratio weighs heavily towards the younger age how ever Allan and his team are never despondent but we do require assistant here rather urgently.
Our thanks go to Lynne Fraser ADO for Highland who arranged for two teams to come through to Elgin for a mini bonspiel in the back end of 2008 and the return match is on 27th February.
Monday Night Adult Sessions
Les Morgan continues to be coordinator here although unfortunately he had a spell in hospital + recuperation time but I am pleased to report he is back curling but still using a whistle when skipping.
During the time Les was off Campbell Ross has taken on the responsibility and has done a great job and we thank him for that.
Numbers wise we have not as many as last year but again the retention figure has been good with weekly numbers ranging from 10 to 12 however we hope as last year to see them all placed in clubs at the end of the season
Other Relevant Points
The Moray Leisure Centre had a free Christmas Bonspiel in late December which the MPCDG organised and in return they kindly allowed us to run fundraising for The Group.
This was a very well received bonspiel both by the curlers and the MLC management and it is a proposal to repeat it in December 2009.
I would class this bonspiel as part of the Development side of our group as we ran it with new curlers in mind mixing them in with existing curlers and it proved a great success.
Possible the only unfortunate thing about it was we had no teams from the West clubs although again Lynne Fraser arranged for some juniors to come through.
I had hoped this bonspiel may have gone some way in building bridges with the West clubs and the Leisure Centre, bridges that had been damaged with poor ice over a long period the season before however I hope I am not tempting fate by saying we are enjoying very good ice this year over the season so far!
Assistance is still required with in the group and you do not necessarily need to coach it would help us tremendously if we could have volunteers to join us for the following
Fund Raising organiser
Publicity for both the Group and I am sure The Moray Province leagues, KO, etc could benefit from more publicity.
General Duties (Scary as I am not sure what all that might entail)
Bill Nicol continues as a member of the RCCC Club and Development Committee and would recommend that you keep having a look The RCCC site “LEARN & PLAY” and “Development”
Relationships with the Elgin Leisure Centre continue to improve but the curlers and the management are still a bit edgy with each other due to previous experiences with the quality of the ice how ever we as a group see a big improvement on both sides and we will continue to liaise as much as is practical.
Dates for your Diary Thursday 26th March and 16th April
Gordon Kennedy has been gently persuaded to come out of retirement and will run two events for us.
A Basic Strategy & Tactics session for (Approx 16-20 participants) with off ice video and presentation, topics covered will be
How to decide on your rinks best Strategy
How to manage the ice
How to manage your opposition
How to structure a game”,
When to attack and when to defend
Plus any other questions that come up on the night.
It will be an informal night with plenty of space for discussion and will be run on 26th March from 19.00 to approx 22.00. At a VENUE TBC
Club Development Workshop
Delivery to interested clubs on how to run recruitment sessions and how to expand membership based on one which is delivered by the WCF and the Canadian Curling Association.
This will be an informal workshop to try and stimulate ideas on where and how to recruit new members to clubs.
There will be plenty of time to share projects you have been involved in at your club on the evening and to share ideas and views with the other participants and will be run on 16th April from 19.00 to 22.00. At a VENUE TBC
If you think the Group can help your club in any way with Coaching or Development then please fell free to approach any one involved with the group and if we can we will if not I am pretty sure we will know someone who can.
Web Site Report
Basically I think for a first year the web site has gone not to badly a couple of hick ups but no major upsets, but I think feed back is the only way to assess the web site and I look forward to that for better or worse.
I must say I have been disappointed in my request in my last report for information on our elite curlers and for a ghost writer from both East and West for gossip and goings on in respective ice rinks.
I did manage myself to do a bit on the elite curlers but as for the gossip and going on in the ice rinks it’s just dead in the water. (SHAME ON YOU GOSSIPS) I know who the ghosts could be and so do they.
10. 2009 Canadian Tour.
The chairman informed the meeting that in the opinion of him self and all the Curlers who had taken part the day had been a tremendous success. So much so that the feedback from the Canadians was that their day spent with Moray Province had been one of the highlights of their tour.
The Moray Leisure Centre had excelled themselves under very difficult conditions to provide excellent ice and the Eight Acres Hotel had made a first class job of the dinner in the evening.
Gavin paid special tribute to the sponsors who had made the day possible at a reasonable cost to the Province, namely:
• Moray Leisure Centre for the donating the ice.
• Howard Anstruther for donating the menus for the dinner.
• Alister Asher for donating gifts of Whisky Cakes to each of the visiting Canadians.
• Diageo for donating miniatures of whisky on the day.
• Graeme Archibald for arranging the donation of the Lunches at Johnston’s Woollen Mill.
And finally to the sixteen curlers from Moray who had each paid £70.00 towards entertaining the Canadians on the day.
George Macarthur suggested that both the Chairman and the Secretary should be thanked by the rest of the committee for the excellent job they had done in making the arrangements for what he felt was an excellent day.
These comments were endorsed by Ian McPhail who due to injury was unable to play but had been very impressed by the sponsorship that had been secured by the Executive Committee which had resulted in a very minimal cost to the Province.
The secretary then informed the meeting that during his conversation with Graham Grant the pervious night, Graham had intimated that he had heard it said that certain members had felt that there had been a lack of press coverage and advertising for the event.
These comments were taken on board by the committee and would be implemented where possible for the next incoming tour.
The secretary informed the meeting of an email concerning the Canadian Tour which he had received from Stuart Mackenzie from Ballindalloch which would be dealt with under correspondence.
The secretary informed the meeting that three items of correspondence had been received.
• The fore mentioned email from Stuart Mackenzie.
• A letter from Gordon Kennedy addressed to the Chairman.
• An email from Forres Curling Clubs Sandra MacIver.
First item of correspondence
The secretary read out the attached email from Stuart Mackenzie.
Unfortunately I and several other members of Ballindalloch will be curling tomorrow night and will be unable to attend the Meeting, and I request you tender my apologies. There are two points that we would like to raise under AOCB and they are as follows;
1. How can a named Skip for a rink be knocked out at the first hurdle yet continue to play (and Skip) for another rink and win the competition?
2. What is the criteria for selection to a rink for the Canadian tour in Elgin, since there were many from the East Province, who refuse to curl in Elgin in the leagues, representing us, yet there were no invitation to any member of Ballindalloch, and I am sure other clubs, who have always supported the Elgin Ice Rink and continue to do so in all competitions?
Looking forward to reading the minutes in due course.
Ballindalloch Curling Club
In discussing the above the chairman intimated that Stuart’s first point would be discussed at the same time as the letter received from Gordon Kennedy as it referred to the same incident.
As regarding his second point, Criteria for selection to a rink for the Canadian Tour in Elgin.
The wording of Stuarts email met a surprised response from the members present, especially when he referred to the “many in the East who refuse to curl in the Elgin Leagues.
Alister Asher pointed out that he was surely referring to the members from the West who incidentally do not refuse to play in Elgin but play in Inverness Ice rink where the West Leagues are based, it was also pointed out that the curlers from the West support Elgin Ice Centre for the Province Knock out Competitions.
The Chairman reminded the meeting that the Canadians were not playing curlers from Elgin Ice Centre but curlers from the Moray Province.
As regards selection criteria Alister Asher suggested that the committee should not get bogged down in a set criteria and the selection of rinks to face incoming touring teams should be left to the Executive Committee of the time. This was seconded by Douglas Howie.
The Secretary reminded the meeting that the Province were only asked to provide 16 players to face the Canadian Tourists and that eight players had been selected from the West and Eight from the East of the Province.
Of the eight players selected to represent Moray from the East of the Province, two were sponsors of the event, one was the Province President, one was Area 10 Vice Chairman, two were on the Province Executive Committee, and the eighth came in at very short notice after Past Province President Bill Stephen had called of due to ill health.
Second item of correspondence
The Chairman read out the attached letter received from Gordon Kennedy.
After a lengthy period of discussion the committee present did not feel as though any infringement had been made nor that a rule change was required as the player in question (A Cameron) had not played in the first round although his name had appeared on the draw and that the matter should be taken no further.
Third item of correspondence
The secretary read out the attached email received from Forres Curling Clubs Sandra MacIver.
I have been asked to raise the following points under AOCB, if they are
not discussed at other points in the meeting.
1 The ice at Elgin is much improved.
2 With the problems of the MLC closures, finding alternative dates
for problematic dates is difficult. Should the non offending side be
punished equally with offending side when alternative dates have been
offered but found unsuitable? At present rule six says yes. Is this
3. Points markings should be circles. Why has MLC opted for dots?
They are inaccurate!!
4. Curling markings need to be sharp but the blurred markings which
exist allow for poor decision making and unfair scoring.
5. Please mention the poor lighting at the bottom end ,as well as the
6. The only other thing that comes to mind is “What has happened to
the Bar”. Last night (16 Feb) when we had our pairs comp and they
could have had a fair amount of trade, it seems to have been used for
some kind of training or seminar event! If Bonspiels or major events
are to be played at Elgin this venue then it is fairly important that
they have this facility.
Sandra’s points were discussed by the members present.
Point 2, was agreed to be referred to Graham Grant for clarification on this particular game.
Action Graham Grant
Points 1,3,4,5 & 6
It was agreed that Gavin Nicol would raise these points with the management of Elgin Leisure Centre.
Action Gavin Nicol
12. AGM & Prize giving.
It was agreed that the AGM and prize giving would be held in the Golfview Hotel, Nairn on Wednesday 6th of May at 7.30pm.
The secretary asked for clarification on who was responsible for updating the Province prize boards in both Elgin and Inverness Ice rink this season. The Chairman intimated that the Chairman was responsible.
Action Gavin Nicol
The secretary then asked the treasurer what he should be charging for Province lapel badges. Ian McPhail advised that they should be sold for £2.00 each.
George Macarthur asked for clarification on the rules regarding an outstanding Province League game that had to be recently cancelled due to what he felt were exceptional circumstances as some of the players involved had qualified for the Scottish Finals, Youth Olympics in Poland and a fourth player was in Canada coaching the National wheelchair curling team.
After some discussion the committee voted (split decision10-2) that these were exceptional circumstances and that the game could go ahead on rearranged ice as long as it was played before the following round of games, failure to play the game prior to the next round of league games would result in neither team being awarded the points unless the other conceded.
Finally, The Chairman asked for nominations from the committee for this year’s Ice Diamond Award.
The four nominations were:
• Ally Fraser, for winning this year’s Scottish Junior title and representing Scotland in the forthcoming Junior World Championship in Vancouver.
• Barbara King for her services to coaching at Elgin Ice Rink.
• Bill Nicol for his many hours of dedicated service to Moray Province both as Webmaster and administering the Curling Development Group.
• Blair Fraser for being selected to represent Great Britain at recent European Youth Olympics where he won a silver medal.
The above four nominations were voted for by the committee present resulting in Ally Fraser being selected as the first winner of the award.
Next year it was decided that nomination forms be placed on the Province Website early in the season to ensure that all members had the opportunity to nominate a player/member of their choice.
14. Date of next meeting.
It was left to the Secretary and incoming chairman, Ali Asher to make a date for the October/November meeting on an appropriate Thursday night after next seasons fixture lists had been issued.
Ali Asher proposed a vote of thanks to the Chairman and the meeting closed at 9.45pm.