Brewood Chess Circle

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Paul Guest steps down from committee and as B team captain

Posted on May 5, 2014 at 12:30 PM

Paul Guest has stepped down from being on the club committee and as the Wolverhampton League B team captain, due to work reasons, but nevertheless will still remain a member of the club and will continue to participate in playing chess.  The club thanks him for his hard work in performing the two roles as the Wolverhampton League B team captain and as a club committee member. 


Paul Guest statement: 

"Having found it increasingly difficult to get down the club regularly over recent months due to pressures of work, I have reluctantly taken the decision to stand down as B team captain, and from the committee. 

I wish to remain a full member of the club and participate as much as possible in club and league chess. 

Hopefully at some point I can again put myself forward for greater participation, but for the time being I feel I have to stand down. 

Sorry for the reorganisation this leaves you with." 


John Fenby has already thanked Paul Guest for his contribution to the running of the club: 

"Thanks Paul,

I appreciate you letting us know.  Many thanks for your contribution in what at times has been a difficult period for the club. 

Hoping that work pressure eases and we are soon able to see more of you." 


David Blower has also thanked Paul Guest: 

"Hi Paul, thanks for your hard work and being a committee member as well as the B team captain for the club.  

See you soon at the club." 


Further reaction will follow from other chess club members as and when the webmaster is aware of it. 


As Paul Guest himself noted this does leave the club with some reorganisation to do.  The chess club's AGM is on Tuesday 17th June 2014 at 7:30pm at the club.  A further and more detailed update about some of the proposals for this AGM will be put onto the website in the near future. 


As a result of Paul Guest stepping down as the B team captain and as a committee member we are now looking for someone to volunteer to be on the club committee.  Furthermore there also needs to be a captain for the B team.  If anyone wants to be on the club committee and/or captain the B team they should make the existing club committee members aware of this. 


Alternatively if anyone wants to captain the Cannock League team, John Fenby has already said by email that he would be happy to be the non playing captain of the B team.  It should be noted that no one has to do both the committee membership and be a team captain, just because Paul Guest did.  


Being on the committee


In a nutshell the main duties of the committee members is to welcome any potential new members to the club, and to bring milk!  Most of the time the committee members remember the milk!  The duty rota is structured so that you will only be on committee duty on an evening where you are not playing against another club.  A committee member also attends the club committee meetings. 


The committee meetings sound very grandee but they are in reality where the proposals are made for the club.  Following this the proposal can be took to the membership to be voted on at the AGM, or just be decided at the committee level.  For example the recent purchase of the club's own digital clock was agreed at the club committee meeting on Tuesday March 4th. 


Whilst some of you might have nightmares of the chess club committee recreating the scenes from a Vicar of Dibley parish council meeting with everyone being as pedantic as Frank Pickle, the truth is that all of the committee meetings last only about an hour.  All of the important stuff about the club is discussed within that time and usually done with a bit of a sense of humour as well. 


There are only usually 2 committee meetings a year, so it is not a huge commitment.  Most items can be discussed between committee meetings via email, if something important comes up.  If you would like to be a committee member you need a seconder.  A nomination paper for your committee and officers will shortly be placed on the notice board at the club. 


If anyone would like to be on the committee and would like to know more of what it involves they only need to ask any of the present members on the committee.  Current committee members are: 


  • John Fenby (club chairman, club captain, Wolverhampton League A team captain, Cannock League team captain, and Wolverhampton Summer League team captain)
  • Peter Crozet (club treasurer)
  • Andrew Davies (club secretary, and a qualified chess arbiter)
  • David Blower (the webmaster and Dudley League team captain) 

We will be happy to answer any questions you have about the role of being a committee member. Although I might be a bit biased, I am being truthful when I am saying it really is not that much of a huge committment. 


The committee is also not a "closed shop" and non committee members have put forward proposals in the past to be considered at committee meetings and then attended the committee meeting themselves to explain the proposal.  The most recent example of this was also on Tuesday March 4th when Mark Binfield proposed that we should enter the Shropshire Rapidplay Chess League. 


If anyone has any ideas about how to improve the club, they can always contact any member of the club committee to explain their idea, regardless of if they are an existing member of the committee or not.  We welcome all ideas from all members of the club.  With this in mind we hope that club members consider putting themselves forward to be a club committee member. 


Team captain


As I am the club's Dudley League team captain, I will say the main duty is to select the team for all matches within the league rules and to give players as much notice as possible of the arrangements, especially regarding transport to the away matches. 


On a practical note you should probably start arranging your team 3 weeks before the match, with it confirmed 1 week before the match starts, ideally with a standby should someone phone up to say they can not make it at short notice.  However turning up on the night and saying:  "your playing now" is something I have being guilty of!  Sorry Mark Binfield!  I did learn from the experience! 


Things will go wrong, and the important point is to try and stay calm.  If every phone call you make ends up with another person saying:  "no" you can console yourself with the knowledge it has also happened to me! 


Do not be afraid to ask any questions you need to.  Every member of the club has an interest in the club doing well, and therefore members will be happy to help out if possible.  And if a fixture has totally slipped your mind there will usually be a discussion at the club the week before the fixture about the team you are likely to pick for it, to remind you! 


John Fenby and I will be happy to help with giving advice about being a team captain as we have both have experience of doing this job.  As John Fenby has noted:  "What is needed is flexibility, common sense, humour and an awareness of the needs of  the individuals involved and the context within which games are played."  This probably involves 90% of the skills of being a captain. 


Knowledge of the chess rules is also needed but resolving chess disputes is a very rare occurance.  It is something to be aware of but whilst I did have to resolve a chess dispute at Warley Quinborne it did not put me off being the captain.  Overall I have enjoyed being the captain of the Dudley League chess team and can't wait to do it for next season. 


Finally I have not yet said the best part about being a team captain.  That is lifting up the trophy should we win something.  With this in mind hopefully you will know some of what is involved in being a chess team captain and also know help will be available from other chess team members should you need it.  Your are not on your own by any means.  Hopefully you will consider it. 

Categories: Brewood B team, Other news

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