SBU AGM – 28th May 2013
Report from the Mike ASH, SBU President, to members.
I am pleased and very proud to report back to members at the end of my first year as your President. I believe that the year has been very successful and that we are laying down the foundations for more improvements year on year.
At last year’s AGM I set myself a target to visit every District and as many clubs as possible. This I have now done, meeting many people who normally would have no contact with the SBU Council. I also met players from clubs not affiliated to the SBU and one club that has decided to leave us. I am very grateful to all the people who helped to make these visits possible and also to all those who took part in the ‘Your SBU’ survey. From the results of this survey we held a workshop in April for Council members and others involved in the follow up work, resulting in a number of action points to take this initiative forward.
At the last AGM the Council identified a number of priorities for this year. These included:
- Unify the membership and masterpoints databases, make accessible it by members and allow clubs to register MP’s directly. This project is progressing well and should be available for next season.
- Produce a new upgraded website, allowing registered people the ability to keep the site up to date, including uploading results from competitions as they produced and for members to enter events electronically This will go live at the July Peebles.
- Establish a more formal basis for training and developing junior players. This is now well established.
- Update and promote the SBU teaching materials, available to clubs and teachers free of charge.
A PowerPoint version has been produced and it is proposed to appoint a new Training Co-ordinator.
- Produce a high quality magazine and look at other ways of communicating with all members.
The magazine is well regarded. Other ways of communicating will be apriority for next year.
- Establish our own simultaneous events, in partnership with other small Unions, Celtic Sim Pairs doing well.
- Establish a National League and produce consistent guidelines for the various trials. 15 teams entered in NL! Trials continue to be well supported.
- Prepare for the Commonwealth Games, which will be held in Glasgow 2014.
Continued progress but an important priority for next year.
- Continue to improve the way the Council works. Ongoing.
As you can see we have made considerable progress but much remains to do. We will continue to develop a service for members that combines outstanding value for money with efficiency, utilising technology where appropriate, and maintaining that unique element that make bridge in Scotland the envy of many other countries.
Next year will be a time to ‘bed down’ the IT systems and major new events – the National League, Celtic Sim. Pairs etc – but we are also determined to drive forward an initiative to help clubs recruit more players, in particular looking at how we can convert the very many new players into regular tournament players. We will review our complete programme of National and International events to make sure that we respond to demand and new types of life styles and, top of our agenda, we will ensure that we are able to communicate regularly and directly to as many members as possible. To achieve this we will continue to need the active support of Districts and Clubs –
I thank all club and district officers for what you have been doing and in anticipation of even more next year.
May I end this report by thanking my Council members for their work this year – often demanding, mainly unpaid and sometimes unappreciated – and wishing the very best of luck to our Senior team which represents Scotland in the World Championships in Bali this September. They have put Scottish bridge on the map and we are very proud of their bronze medals, achieved at the European Championships in Dublin.
A number of people who have contributed a great deal are either retiring or having a break from Council next year.
I would like to thank them all but in particular mention David Liggat who is retiring after being our Secretary for 10 years and also Peter & Helena Cohen who have done such a wonderful job running our Congresses. Also thanks to John Wilson who has been Chief TD for many years. A well deserved “Thank You” from us all.
Enjoy your bridge in 2013/14 –
If you think we do well – please tell others, if we don’t – please tell me!