Minutes of 2009 AGM for Miller Homes Leagues held at Vale of Lune on May 18th 2009 Present: -
FW Swarbrick, R Robinson, J Powell, H Hughes, A Thompson, C Hine,
Apologies: Ian Cosens,
From The Clubs:
Barry Jubb Lostock David Burrows Colne & Nelson
Bert Lambert Colne & Nelson Paul Quare Burnage
Ron Hall Liverpool SH Barry Allen Broughton Park
Martin Griffiths Widnes Steve Clark Widnes
Lou Kwaswicki Ruskin Park Stuart Fisher Ruskin Park
Neil Hawkley Marple Eddie Wallbank Tyldesley
Mark Johnson Tyldesley
Apologies: Les Briers Crewe & Nantwich, John Jeskins Heaton Moor
The Chairman opened the meeting, introduced himself and welcomed everyone and thanked them for supporting us by coming to the AGM. He also apologised for bringing the meeting so far North, especially when NO Northern Clubs were attending. He then asked for any apologies and then commenced his report.
I’ve got to welcome you all this evening to our 6th AGM. Held for the first time at my own Club. It really is great to see you all here.
Last season was possibly the most dramatic since the formation of the Leagues. After a first Saturday wash out we were met with mass postponements in January and February culminating in 200 fixtures needing re-arranging. No problem to Reg and Barry, by the way its great to have Barry with us tonight, they got stuck in, Reg identifying dates where the fixtures might be played and Barry checking these out and offering his own proposals when he found any discrepancies. Between them dates were found for every postponed fixture. We in fact were more successful in getting games played than the National Leagues, ours were finished in April I think the Nationals have still one or two to play.
We must thank both Barry and Reg for the enormous amount of work and hours work they put in to get all these games arranged.
The task of informing all the Clubs of their dates agreed mutually between them started. Games under lights, mid-week games when possible and Easter dates were all used. Gentlemen to my knowledge only a handful of fixtures were unfulfilled and these only when there was no bearing on the fixture.
We must thank all the Clubs, Players, Officials, Referees and everyone for their co-operation in completing this seasons’ fixtures. In fact once again we’ve managed under all these circumstances to run at once again a 5% concede rate. Better than the National 1st XV Leagues.
We’ve got to congratulate all out Champions and Promoted sides ( some reluctantly promoted ) this season, particularly Sedgley Park 2nds who were the first side to win the Bateman BMW Premier League 2 years in succession. They were suitably applauded at our Presentation Dinner last week held at Preston Grasshoppers. Broughton Park 2s won the John Smiths Division 1 League and will return immediately to the Premier after one season. Thanks to the Hoppers, I think it was probably the best yet and I think everyone filled themselves with what was one of the best steak pies I’ve ever had.
We completed our Halbro Competitions with the Finals at Birkenhead Park. Birkenhead provided a terrific day for the Finals. Congratulations to all the Finalists win or lose. Particularly to Fylde who completed a Cup and League double. It is fantastic to see the players enjoying what is the culmination of a seasons Cup rugby. Thanks to Birkenhead Park for allowing us to use their facilities.
Once again we must thank our Sponsors, The Miller Homes Company, Bateman BMW, Halbro and joining us during the season John Smiths. We’ve got to hope that during these difficult times in the business world they can continue to support our Leagues which are renowned for being the best outside the Rugby Football Union National Leagues. John Adams our commercial Manager is in close contact with all of them working hard to maintain their further support.
Finally Gentlemen I must thank our various Referees Societies for their support during the season particularly during the re-arrangement period. I’ve got to thank our four Associations and the Managers of them along with the Gents refereeing in them. They are most valuable in providing us with neutral cover where our societies can’t provide cover.
Now we look forward to next season !!
The Secretary reported that this season 12 teams had been expelled, the highest ever. However there had been a couple of cases where a higher League side had gone out so taking a lower one with them.
He also reported that one team had taken more time to deal with than the rest of the teams in the league due to their abuse of referees. This same team had affected the Leagues for the last two years and had escaped expulsion because of a loophole in the Rules.
Because of this the Rules Committee had met with the Lancashire Disciplinary Committee in the last few weeks and had received support and extremely good advice, especially from Clif Barker, the Chairman. This advice had been passed to Peter Rhodes, the Leagues Solicitor, who had disected the advice and come up with recommendations for the Committee. These will be included in the present Rules ready for next season. Copies of these Amendments had been circulated prior to the meeting for approval.
This, the Committee hoped would now serve as a real deterrent to any Referee abusers. The Secretary thanked Peter Rhodes for all his help.
Again there would be a “Code of Conduct” sent out to all Clubs to be signed by the Secretary or Chairman of all Clubs which would again help discipline in the Clubs.
The Secretary then stated that he hoped all Clubs were enjoying the new website. However, he thanked Barry Allen for his contribution in providing the previous website since 2003 when he had volunteered at a meeting in March to provide one for free. It was much appreciated.
The Secretary announced that we were reverting to byes in the first round for the new season in the Halbro Cups, no 1st round losers coming through. It had been a very close thing that such a loser, Preston 2nds, had come to being the 1st team to win a final after being beaten in the 1st round.
In addition all Cup games would be on designated Saturdays next season. The arrangement that Barry Allen had supplied with postponing League games had not been a success so we were reverting to the tried and tested methods.
He also announced that NO teams had been expelled in April this season. Was it a coincidence that the new Rule giving 2 concedes instead of 1 per game in April being introduced had made any difference!!
He thanked all Clubs for accepting all the re-arranged games and especially the Clubs who had agreed to play under lights. Sale and Burnley had been at the forefront of this venture, which was without doubt a definite success. The Chairman and Secretary had travelled to see a number of games played under lights and had enjoyed some very good games whilst meeting quite a number of people, a good experience.
This next season the Secretary would be setting the fixtures. Barry Allen was standing down from this task but already he had passed on quite a lot of helpful tips which were much appreciated.
The Secretary asked the Clubs to be patient re the fixtures. He explained that the Miller Homes Leagues were always dependant on the RFU getting their structured season and fixtures out in order that we could try and match up lower teams to 1st Teams in National Leagues. The only fixtures out so far were National 1 and 2(N) and 2(S). This only covered 8 teams in our Leagues. We were hoping these would be out very soon.
The Treasurer presented the Balance Sheet. He explained that we had two accounts with over £3000 in the Benevolent Fund. He explained that the main increases in Income had come from the RFU’s increase in the amount per League due to Miller Homes providing fixtures for the RugbyFirst website and updating the results weekly. There had also been increases from all the Sponsors and the additional one from John Smiths.
It was hoped that in this difficult period all our Sponsors would stay with us, even John Smiths who had only signed up for twelve months.
He explained that expenditure had been about the same as previous seasons apart from the new Website which had cost the Miller Homes over £7500.
John also explained that the Association referees had been provide with a couple of jerseys each and other items which had come from the RFU had also been subscribed to. Other items like whistles etc were also being supplied. At the Halbro Finals each Referee had received a tankard which again had cost a few hundred pounds but all the Committee thought this was a well deserved token of thanks.
Questions from the floor were invited. Barry Allen questioned the item “Purchases”. John explained that this was exactly what he had been talking about and was for items for Referees.
There were no other queries.
Election of Officers:
Fred Swarbrick said that all the Officers in post had agreed to stand again. When this was announced Barry Jubb proposed that all the Committee be elected enbloc. This was seconded by David Burrows and passed unanimously by the meeting.
Barry also proposed a vote of thanks for all the Miller Homes Committee.
All proposals were read out in turn by the Secretary. The proposers who were all in attendance explained their reasons for the proposals.
The first motion proposed by Andy Thompson and seconded by Reg Robinson is as follows:-
Rule 13: From “Failure- - - - “ the following was to be inserted.
“Failure to do this will result in all opposition teams being awarded the winning points and ALL teams from the offending Club losing ALL POINTS (winning or losing) from their respective matches. In addition another TWO points will be deducted from all the offending Club’s teams.”
This was voted on and was PASSED unanimously.
The second motion proposed by Ron Hall and seconded by Roger Flashman is as follows:-
Rule 19: To be altered to include the following:-
“Teams in Division four and below shall be permitted FOUR Concedes before expulsion – one more than at present. No change in number is advocated for Divisions above Division 4”.
This was voted on and the result is as follows:- For 1, Abstensions 1, Against 14.
The motion fell.
The 3rd motion proposed by Ron Hall and seconded by Roger Flashman is as follows:-
New Cup Rule:- “Cup Match Dates”
Nowirul shall revert to the generally observed custom and practice of playing cup matches on dates reserved for the purpose and abandon playing them on league dates.
This was voted on and was PASSED unanimously.
The 4th motion proposed by Barry Allen and seconded by Chris Smith is as follows:-Amendment to Rule 16:
16. During the course of a season the final position in the league will be based on the following:-
1. League points awarded.
2. Points difference.
At the end of the season in the event of a tie between teams involved in promotion or relegation.
Where the League points between teams are tied, and the tied teams have had Walkovers against some teams, then only the games against the teams who they had Walkovers against should be excluded from the fixtures of all tied teams. The points difference should be calculated and the tied teams should then be put in order of these newly calculated points differences.
If the points differences are then level then the head to head results should be the deciding factor.
If a team is involved in a tie on League points but has also conceded some games then these games are still included in the points difference calculation for the other tied teams. The concedes are their own fault so should still be included.
This was voted on and the result is as follows:- For 12, Against 5.
The motion was passed.Halbro Cup Draws.
The Draws were carried out in reverse order with the Plate being drawn first.
Vale of Lune members Anne Marie Booth, Brian Lister and Barbara Nisbett were invited to make the draw for all Cups.
These were made and will be put on the Miller Homes website as soon as possible. The first round dates will be announced as soon as the RFU announce the Structered Season.
There was no other business and the Chairman thanked the Vale of Lune Club for hosting the AGM.
The meeting then closed at 10.06pm.