Those attending :- Fred. Swarbrick, Reg. Robinson, John Powell, Ian Cosens, Greg King, Andy Thompson, Tommy Hughes, Craig Hine, Jon Daldry.
Apologies for absence :- None
Not Attending :- Alan Johnson, Howard Hughes, Peter Rhodes.
Meeting opened 1935hrs.
Matters arising. None
Finance. John Powell reported a healthy balance in the league’s current account with an additional £5789.49 in the separate account dedicated to the benevolent fund. Anticipated expenditure and receipts during the current season indicates that a reasonable balance should be available at the season’s end.
Finals. In spite of interest from several clubs only 3 bids to hold the finals of our cup competitions had been received. The clubs concerned were Aspull, Preston Grasshoppers and Burnage.
Members of the committee had visited all 3 clubs and met with officials and organisers present.
All bids were considered to be of exceptional high quality but after much discussion it was decided the Preston Grasshoppers and Burnage were best placed to hold these prestigious events.
Reg. Robinson will write to all concerned explaining the decision. It was noted that Aspull had bid for these finals for a second time and it was hoped that with certain changes to their set up they could be our hosts in a future season.
Fred Swarbrick reported that he had identified a new supplier and engraver of our 6 trophies at an advantageous price and this was in hand bearing in mind the new cup sponsors. This year we will not be supplying unique shirts to referees and other officials as previously these had been provided by Raging Bull who were no longer involved in cup sponsorship this year. It was also decided to revert to the traditional system of awarding medals to winners and finalists and a quality bottle of spirits to officials.
Dinner. The Presentation Dinner is confirmed to be held at Preston Grasshoppers on May 9th 2014 at 1930hrs. Mark Ashley will once again be M.C. for the evening. Invitations will be sent to relevant Bob Reeves (RFU President) and to Presidents of Lancashire and Cheshire RFU’s and to league sponsors and senior officials of other organisations necessary for our sport to function efficiently.
It was also decided to raise the price to players to £15 as the price had been held at £10 for the last 9 years. However this increase will include a contribution to the Benevolent Fund and a free entry into a prize draw with a cash prize on offer. John Powell will liaise with the catering staff at PGH regarding menu and costs.
Postponed Matches. Reg. Robinson reported that at the time of the meeting he only had 37 matches to re-arrange which was far fewer than at the same time last season and should be very manageable. It just remains to be seen how the weather behaves for the remainder of the season.
Cumbria. It was noted that the 2 year period for teams based in Cumbria, to only play in Cumbria, was due to expire at the end of this season. 2 applications had already been received from Cumbria based teams to re-join NOWIRUL. The first consideration is that any team based in Cumbria needs permission from the Cumbria RFU to join NOWIRUL and it is felt unlikely that this will be granted.
The committee received a report from Craig Hine who is closely involved with Cumbria rugby. Craig is running the Cumbria 2 league virtually single-handed along the same lines as NOWIRUL. He states that it appears to be running well with a high proportion of games completed.
Cumbria 1 is the RFU league in the area and still appears to have some problems and is not currently a full league.
Other committee members thought that if Cumbria teams were re-admitted some resistance would be felt from certain Lancashire teams who think that excessive travelling would be involved. After much discussion it was decided to leave the status quo for the time being but give as much support to Craig as possible to make Cumbria rugby successful in its own right.
A.O.B. Reg. Robinson gave all committee members a lesson on entering cup results on the web site as it was not being done satisfactorily.
The committee has known all season that Reg. Robinson wishes to reduce his work load as Secretary to the leagues.
The identified replacement is now unable to join us at this time so a proposal will be put to the members at the next A.G.M. as follows. Reg. will continue as Admin Secretary but will relinquish responsibility for making and re-arranging of fixtures.
The new Fixture Secretary will be John Powell who will hand over the Treasurers duties to Greg King who has acted in this capacity elsewhere. It is hoped and anticipated that the A.G.M. approve these measures.
Tommy Hughes expressed concern about the disciplinary record of certain teams. Then committee is aware of this but once again felt that discipline is a matter for referees and county disciplinary boards. They were also pleased to note that the teams in question seem to have improved in recent weeks.
MEETING CLOSED 21.15 HRS.