Friday, May 01, 2015

This is not a folk song III

You'll recall from the original posting that what first sparked my interest in the Sunningdale fiasco was a forum comment - indeed, a (later rescinded) resignation - from the ECF's Commercial Director, of which the part below was the part that struck me most.

In the English Chess Federation Handbook for August 2013 there's a section (begins page 55) on the "financial bye laws" governing the conduct of ECF officials in financial matters. This has a potentially relevant* section F5

and another potentially relevant section F8, on the Bids Regulations.

The Bids Regulations, on which this posting will concentrate, are just lower down in the same document (page 58) or are available separately here. (So far as I can see there's no difference in the wording of the two sources although the points are numbered differently. Reproductions are from the separate version.)

To what do the Bids Regulations apply?

to the provision of chess-related services by third parties to the Federation
of which, one would have thought, an obvious example would be
(c) an official ECF event outsourced to another organisation.
Such as, for instance, the 2014 English Seniors Championship at Sunningdale Park, outsourced to e2e4.

Although this seems clear to me, it does not seem to have been quite so clear to all the ECF Board, which Board included both those who awarded the event and those to whom that event was awarded. In the minutes for 19 January 2014, although (as we have seen) there is nothing about the award of the event as such, there is the following item:

of which the part that interests us is the first one
When awarding organisations the right to run ECF tournaments or tournaments where ECF titles are awarded, Directors shall follow Bids Regulations, regardless of how many organisers express interest.
which motion was withdrawn "due to time constraints".

Now I don't really understand, though I'm curious to know, why such a motion was required, and whether this had any direct relation to the Sunningdale Park event. Still, seeing as it was Phil Ehr who withdrew the motion, he's presumably well placed to say whether the Bids Regulations were followed and to explain why or why not, which is why I emailed him on January 17 to ask:
Were the Bid [sic] Regulations followed when tenders were invited for the event? If not, could I ask why?
Just to tediously re-iterate, fifteen weeks later this question is still awaiting a reply.

But as we already know from yesterday, tenders had been invited for the organisation of the event:

and as we already know from higher up this posting, the ECF Handbook is clear on the matter:

Really, nothing could be more straightforward, could it? All work put out to tender. The Bids Regulations had to be followed.

So were they? If they weren't, why not? And why is it difficult to say so?

[* by "potentially relevant" I mean "this may be the sort of thing Mr Kane had in mind", though he did not specify.]

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This post from the ecforum indicates that the 2014 English Seniors was announced as being at Sunningdale at the end of January 2014.

I would doubt whether there was much of a competitive tendering process, rather more a case of the ECF trying to find an organiser willing to run an English Seniors championship either as a standalone event or as an add on to an event already scheduled. With Easter a popular time for participation in Congresses, it had to be announced by January, or not bother to run it. As we know, in the event it only attracted a small but strong field, lower graded Seniors perhaps being put off by the strength of their potential opponents and electing for the grading restricted events running alongside.

There's only one other event of the one round a day five round format used by the ECF. This is a well established event running in October in Exmouth. I do not know if they have ever been offered the upgrade to become the official championship, if so, they turned it down.