MINUTES OF THE BEOA COMMITTEE MEETING  9th April 2019  London River and Canal Museum

PRESENT Livy Agnew, Jan Cottam, Josie Brettell, Nell Stourton, David Sayer, Andrew Chadwick, Rachel Cory, Simon Bates, Nicky Helyer

In attendance – Robert Sayer

1. APOLOGIES Tina Ure, Karen Bartlett, Pete Collins, Laura de Wesselow, Helen West, Shelly Bacon, Heidi Davies, Kim Knightly, Hannah Matthews, Sarah Taylor, Jo Verey




  • HW agreed to represent BEOA at the International meetings.
  • Ambulances – JC to follow up on rule 9.6.5 where it states an ambulance with suitable equipment must remain on for 30 mins. JC to ask the wording be changed to ‘vehicle’.
  • Photos – RC to encourage Event photos/videos to be sent to her.
  • Entries – JC reported disappointment with not allowing hidden entries. BE will monitor entries of Events that used to hide them over the season.
  • BE Vouchers for PrizesWendy McGowen has stated that training vouchers are priced as competitively as possible for the benefit of the members. The maximum discount that could be offered to Organisers is 15%. JC to request 15% for BE Organisers and encourage BE to award as prizes for unaffiliated events.
  • Social Media – Concern expressed again about the lack of support for events from the BE social media systems.  There has also been a request for more branding plus publication of news comment on the BE front page website. BE’s Olivia Szajna stated, where possible, there was update on socials at all times but only a small SM team. More resources are sourced around championships. BE are looking to see how they can do more for 2019.
    OS has asked to contact Marketing if we want more banners & boards but some events have been asking for a long time.   JC to go back to BE about this.   It is a requirement of the Affiliation Agreement (7.7)
    News -All items are posted & will be more visual on the new website. JC to find out who the News contact is.
  • Photography Policy – RC has supplied Wellington & BD’s media rights policy. Wellington’s photography policy covers riders and public. Should all events be doing this? JC has asked BE the level of permission that is given at registration of membership and what about public?Rule 11.6.4 relates a bit to photography at events but is not very obvious. JC to go back for more information on this. JC to circulate Wellington’s policy.
  • Media Official Car Passes – There is a new process for distributing BE Official Car Passes to journalists & photographers. JC spoken to BE as Organisers should have be consulted about this. Awaiting a response. RC noted concerns about this as affects Health and safety, different processes events have on the day and possibly insurance.
  • Website – Not possible to access competitors via their numbers
  • Criteria for Qualifiers – These are shared around. Well run events & geography a factor
  • Changing Officials – JC passed on BEOA’s view that it would be good practice to change one official every 5 event for the duration of one event. Debbie Pritchard stated there needed to be an Officials’ review. BEOA are not happy about the expense of officials staying. RS local stewards know the event and, most importantly, the ground. SB BE gets a levy for both days but does not pay accommodation. JC to ask if organisers can claim for Officials’ expenses.
  • Equine Flu – Organisers are not insured unless there is a legal obligation to shut an event down. In September, the 6/12 vacs will be due again. Could BE allow a 3 week window as with the FEI? JC to ask BE about the 7 day rule. BE are the only discipline to allow vaccination 1 day prior to competition. JC to take both these points to the next sports committee meeting. AC reported that the BEF are currently holding meetings to standardise Flu Rules. AC to find out more.
  • BEOA representative attending Board meetings – An invitation to attend part of a Board meeting had been extended to the BEOA, EHOA & ERA.Due to recent developments it was felt by all stakeholders that the Board’s time would be better spent resolving current issues. BEOA will be invited to another Board meeting in due course. Each stakeholder now has own Board Liaison Member. BEOA – Jude Matthews. EHOA – Chris Tattersall. ERA – Nigel Taylor. DS would like a member of each stakeholder group on the board and feels this should be proposed at the next AGM. JC will continue to ask for this
4. Chairman’s Report Committee – LH has resigned as no longer running an event. The BEOA will ask for nominations when appointing new Chairmen. AC has already been put forward. JC to check constitution re quorum. SB Could we do proxy votes if needed
The Chairman is elected by the committee & 5 committee members shall form a quorum

Conference call with BE –Following David’s Holmes resignation. JC, Cathy Butler, Bruce Haskell, Fiona O’Hara and Jude Matthews. Too early to know what is going to happen but this will be discussed at the Board meeting on 09/04/19. JM has said she will feed back. AC stated that other disciplines are splitting the CEO role (Business & Sport) as this links into Government guidance. Stakeholders pointed out that the Sport part of BE is weak & commercial has become too important. There is a feeling that BE are starting to listen. Another call has been asked for in 4-6 weeks.

AGM – This is to be held at Badminton, in the Danco Marquee, which is next door to the Event office. Voltaire had offered their marquee but it was considered too small. JC suggested following the AGM, BE are invited to run a discussion. JC to speak to BE.

Les Smith – JC invited Les, as Sports Committee Chair, to attend a BEOA Committee meeting in an attempt to aid his understanding of what BEOA do.

Unaffiliated v Affiliated Competitions –JC, LA, RF Mark Corbett & Helen White met. It was concluded that UA are not going away. This format is part of our sport and should not be seen as a threat. There is a need to keep BE Special – the aspirational sport. It is also the stepping stone to the increasingly popular International.
The BE brand needs strengthening. Keeping these standards universal comes back to officials. Organisers need to be confident that officials are monitoring events adequately and insisting on maintaining standards. Ideas previously floated about appraising Officials’ performance. JC suggested getting a group of Officials together to decide what is good practice and how this can be universally achieved. The only way to ensure BE continue to step above UA standards.

RC noted that there is currently no chance for Organisers to report/respond to the evaluations. SB noted that they are still not getting reports.

Committee members noted that they have no BE branding on Event. Some have been provided their own. This is not as per affiliation agreement.

5. Treasurer’s £3926.86 after receiving funds from BE

Entry Fees – Sports Committee didn’t accept the BEOA request to follow CPI. BEOA felt this was easy to understand by Organisers, Owners & Riders. The indices that Bruno uses are hard to find and his categorisation anomalous. Following a further letter & phone call with LS, Bruno has sent a further paper to explain his proposed formula. There was very little change. Committee feels we have made it clear this is not our preferred option. They have agreed to include Start Fees within the EF

JC to ask for a rule that

  • EF’s to be published by 1st September so Organisers can budget
  • Once the decision is made in July, no additions with financial implications can be added to rules
  • EF’s can never go down

RC asked that BE publish a document to explain increases

All Organisers to keep note of increases in operating expenses.

6. Fixtures   Calender Stuart Buntine produced a paper asking for the fixtures calendar to be published earlier. BB and DP have discussed SB’s proposal with the fixtures team and they believe it is possible. This means changes must be decided in the June/July fixtures meeting, which impact on events running later in the year. BB drafted a fixtures timeline with proposed dates from SB.

SB noted that the International calendar cannot be fixed for 5 years as Badminton and Burghley move so there will be a ripple effect. All agreed that 1st October – final draft. Confirmation by 1st November.

Week numbers relate to the BE season. SB suggested using week numbers starting from 1st Jan. All agreed this would be more helpful

Tendering Process National Events 2021 – JC spoken to fixtures team. There will be no tendering for National events unless a date comes up. AC asked why he is being asked to drop certain classes. NH and RS also asked to drop class and dates (NH). JC to investigate

Strategic Review Process – A discussion on how the process is to be reviewed being held at the Board meeting 09/04/19. JC noted that the review needs to be undertaken by people that understand the whole process. BEOA’s input was in the initial stage where standards expected of Events were discussed. This information was used to generate the tender document. There is a feeling among some that the process was flawed and that BE should have involved a Tender Lawyer. It was agreed that with more applicants than slots available there was always going to be disappointment. BE have independently reviewed the SR process. BEOA have been assured that Organisers will have input for the future.

All were disappointed that Events who failed to get the dates tendered for had not been sufficiently spoken to by BE.

JC asked what BEOA can do to help those feeling aggrieved. DS asked that the BEOA release the following statement “The BEOA expresses its view that the tender process was seriously compromised and was lacking in integrity. We, the BEOA, recommend that the 2020 tendering process is cancelled and BE, in consultation with the BEOA, formulate a tendering process that is transparent fair and impartial”.

Members of the committee felt that releasing this would only be detrimental to the sport and there would be legal consequences. BEOA represents all members, many of whom were happy with the process.

Tendering for Events will continue. BEOA need to consider how to help improve an efficient and transparent process. Some Organisers are better at filling out forms than others. Our sport is becoming more centralised. BE needs to encourage the peripheral events. AC feels the Sport is not sufficiently future proofed. There appears to be no way to bring in new dates.

RC’s must talk to all Events, giving a genuine and meaningful debrief, both verbal & written, so each can see where improvements can be made. Organisers need to know who to go to if still unhappy. Events would like to see their own scored copies of applications and notes on discussions and, where willing, would like to compare with other results to help understand their own outcome.   This highlights the importance of post event reports. If we are going to keep BE Standard high then this is imperative. Going on from this it would be useful to know how many people applied for each slot and who got which choice. LA suggested that organisers all get together and bash it out first.

RS is there a reason that the start date for the FEI calendar has shifted? JC to ask

CEO Resignation – BEOA important to us that we have a strong interim plan so that we are not forced into a decision about the CEO. The Board must not undervalue the importance of strengthening our Sport

7. Health & Safety Signing off Field of Play Areas – AC stewards and TA are not producing paper work for field of play. We are still waiting for WMcG to produce paper. Stewards and TA have 6 risk assessments that they should fill out. AC to send to JC to send out. JC to speak to BE about other officials knowing about these.

Public entertainment licence is out of date. Organisers still do not have new sticks. JC to remind to ask for new sticks

8. Working Groups ITTP – Working group had an internal conference call to discuss concerns over EARS. It was decided that BE should be asked for a timeline so that we can be confident EARS will be achieved. All felt that should testing on EARS not have begun by June 1st Organisers will be forced to look elsewhere.

Conference call on 4.4.19 with Wendy McGowan & Nisha Punji. Work on EARS has been progressing and Project team are going to invite a couple of Entries Secretaries to view this in early May, with the idea of testing in July. ITTP group asked that the invitation to attend was extended to other Entries Secretaries and members of the ITTP Working group. TU noted that the entries program is clunky, taking 10 clicks to get to the entries point. LA agreed.
Fixes were taking place all the time & the website was improving but all Organisers to report frustrations with the website to BE in order that these can be addressed, especially with issues around the BE entries system, which is considered to be finished.

Nothing to report from the Entries Secretary Group, Commercial & Marketing & Sustainability Group

Fact Sheet Group – Reconvening at some point!

9. AOB Car Pass Money Account – DS spoke about a ‘ring fenced fund’ set up for Organisers when members were given car passes with membership. £30,068.94 is due to Organisers that ran in 2001. £6723.49 was transferred to development fund in 2004. Where has this money gone? JC to ask KB if she knows.

Volunteer’s over 75 not insured – apart from losing an arm or leg.

Controllers – Controllers are going through a more formalised education process. BE is proposing a rule change so that 3 people commentator, plotter and controller should be present at all times. Many events don’t have this. JC to question again.

13. Dates of Next Meetings AGM

2nd May Badminton

Committee Meetings

2nd May Badminton

18th June 2019 Edgecote

8th October London

26th November Edgecote

Open Meetings

6th June Bramham
It is also hoped to hold an Open Meeting at  Blenheim

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