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North East Sports Quiz League AGM Thursday 1st June 2017 Key Club




Present                  East End Liberal Club, Byker, The Bene, Saltwell SC, St Teresas, East End Nomads, Key Club,  The Wolsy, Northern Rock, Darlington Snooker, Heaton Rifles, Britannia Inn, Philadelphia CC, Washington CC




Apologies             Winlaton Vulcans               




                The Chairman welcomed everyone and asked if everyone had read the Minutes of last years AGM and if they had were there any matters arising. There being none the acceptance of the minutes was proposed by St Teresas and seconded by Key Club and carried unanimously.




Secretary’s Report            




                The Secretary thanked the Chairman and opened his report by informing everyone that the Trophies would not be able to be presented after the meeting as in previous years. The Committee had decided to try a new engraver who was located closer to the Key Club who arranged to deliver the engraved trophies to the club at 4.30 that afternoon. This hadn’t been done and as the shop closed at 5 o’clock there was no way of getting in touch with them. The Secretary apologised on behalf of the Committee and this was accepted as “one of those things that happen”. He went on to report that sadly Morpeth Harriers had decided to withdraw from the League with immediate effect and would not compete next season. This had only become apparent last Thursday but the Committee had worked on a revised League Structure which would be presented to the meeting later on.


On the playing front the Secretary reported that once again all League Games during the season had taken place and also the four Table Top Quizzes had been fully attended by the B and C League teams, with no fixture being unfulfilled. This, he said, was a great testament to all of the competitors and the regard in which the League was held and he thanked all teams for their commitment to the League. There had been one or two fixtures re-arranged but as usual this had been done with the cooperation of both teams and the Committee and the Secretary again praised the generosity and flexibility of all teams without which trying to fit everything in without having to cancel games would be impossible. There had unfortunately been an issue with the scoring method for the Table Top Quizzes which did have a bearing on the outcome of the C League and for which the Committee had had no mechanism in place to sort out. The Secretary stated that there would be a proposal later in the meeting which would, hopefully stop this happening again. 


He went on to say that once again the leagues were very competitive with some very close and also high scoring games with the C League only being decided on the last game of the season. He said It was good to see that once again all teams average score was high with every team in the league recording an average over 44 points, which he said was a good indication that the quizzes were being pitched at the right level and to that end he thanked the question compilers for their work during the season. He also thanked the Chairman for his work in running the League and for keeping the website up to date and also thanked the Publicity Secretary for his work as well in collating and publishing results.


Finally he thanked the Committee for the work they did during the year, stating that without all their help and support the League could not function. 


Chairman’s Remarks




                The Chairman thanked the Secretary and endorsed all his comments particularly pertaining to the question Compilers without whom the League would not exist. He also thanked the Committee for their work during the season. He reiterated what the Secretary had said in relation to the Trophy fiasco and also apologised to everyone for the lack of a presentation but said that the League had been let down by the new engraver.. He ended by again thanking all participants for making this year so enjoyable.




Treasurers Report




The Treasurer was not present but the Chairman asked if everyone had seen a copy of the balance sheet and if so were there any questions. He stated that one of the issues which had arisen from last years AGM was the possibility of a subscription free year to use some of the League money in the bank. The Chairman reported that this had been discussed at the last Committee meeting and it had been decided to leave the subscriptions in place. The Chairman reasoned that it was no bad thing for the League to keep a sum of money in hand in case it was needed and also that £20 for the whole season, which equated to £5 per team member for ten quizzes was not bad value for money. Martin Robinson asked why the Income from subscriptions this year only amounted to £260 which equated to 13 teams subs not 16. The Secretary told Martin that he had been advised by the Treasurer that this was because three teams had paid this seasons subscriptions before last years AGM and that their 2016-17 subs had been included on last years balance sheet, hence only thirteen teams appeared to have paid this years subscriptions. The balance sheet was unanimously accepted by the meeting.




Web Master’s Report




                                                The Web Master reported that the new website had been running for about a year now and was much better and easier to update than the old one. He said there had been some reluctance and trepidation on his part to update the website as Paul Davison had created and put so much work into it but that having made the change, he felt it was for the better. This was agreed by the meeting with Kevin Turner reporting that he had found the new website much easier to get into and navigate around than the old one.




Election of Officials




                                                All the current officials of the League, Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer and Publicity Secretary had indicated that they were happy to carry on and there being no applications from the floor, they were re-elected unanimously.




Election of Committee




                                                Malcolm Hodgson and Mick Groves were stepping down from the Committee and the Chairman asked if anyone wanted to join the Committee for the upcoming season. John Swan volunteered to sit on the Committee for 2017-18. All of the other current Committee members had indicated that they were happy to carry on and all were unanimously accepted by the floor.




League Structure




                                                The Chairman announced that, as had previously been reported by the Secretary Morpeth Harriers had withdrawn from the League and would not be competing in the 2017-18 season. He stated that the Committee had discussed the League structure at length at last week’s Committee meeting and two possibilities had been discussed. A two Division format based on a 7-8 or 8-7 League split or a three league format, similar to the existing format based on three Leagues of five teams with two Table Top Quizzes in each League. The Chairman reported that the Committee’s preference was for the three League format due to potential problems with question compilers for the Premier League in a two tier setup. All current question compilers would be in the top Division which would mean trying to get someone to compile the Premier League quizzes who may never have set a quiz before. The Secretary also pointed out that there was a logistical problem  with two Leagues as trying to incorporate home and away fixtures would require fourteen weeks for each League, which would have to be held on separate nights and would be extremely difficult to fit into the current schedule. The following League structure was, therefore, proposed by the Committee for the 2017/18 season:-




Premier League




East End Liberal Club


Britannia Inn


East End Nomads


Key Club


The Bene


Darlington Snooker




B Division




Low Spennymoor


St Teresas


Philadelphia CC


Saltwell SC




Washington CC




C Division




Northern Rock


The Wolsey


Morpeth Harriers


Winlaton Vulcans


Heaton Rifles




The Chairman asked if anyone wanted to comment on the proposal. . Barry Howbridge stated that it wasn’t fair to Saltwell and Heaton Rifles that they had won their respective Leagues but would be prevented from being promoted due to the proposed three League structure. The Chairman answered Barry by saying he had spoken to both Bryan White from Saltwell and Brian Neil from Heaton Rifles and both had been agreeable to the Committee’s proposal and accepted that neither team would be promoted on this occasion. There being no further comments, the three League structure was proposed by Saltwell, seconded by The Wolsy and accepted by the meeting




Table Top Quiz Proposal




                                                The Chairman stated that in light of the issues and controversy surrounding the Table Top Quiz scoring in both the B and C League quizzes this season, The Committee had come up with a revised format and scoring mechanism for the Table Top Quiz for next season. The proposal is as follows;-




Two Table Top quizzes shall take place. The first mid-season and the second as the final quiz of the season.. No league points shall be awarded for the first quiz but each team’s score on the night shall be added to the aggregate and average score for the season. After the second Table Top Quiz, the total scores for the 2 quizzes shall be added together to determine the winner. The format shall be Round 1 of 20 questions, Round 2 Individual Round of 8 questions, Round 3 Picture Round of 20 questions, Round 4 Specialist Individual round of 8 questions, round 5 of 25 questions. (The Written round will be replaced by a Picture Round of 20 question, of which no more than 3 questions can be on a particular sport). The total of the two Table Top quizzes shall be added together and League points awarded as follows: 1st – 4 points; 2nd – 3 points; 3rd – 2 points; 4th – 1 point; 5th – 0 points. In the event of a  tie, league averages shall decide placings and in the event of two teams tying on averages, a Tie Break question shall be asked on the night of the second Table Top Quiz. In the event there is still a tie for the title, a play-off shall take place as noted in the normal League rules.




                                                The Chairman announced that a great deal of thought and discussion had gone into this by the Committee and asked for comments from the floor.  Mike Sowerby asked if the format of the quiz could be explained to him as the Premier League teams had not competed in the Table Top Quiz before. The Chairman explained how the quiz operated. There were several objections to the idea of a “picture round” in the quiz. The general consensus was that this would devalue the quiz turning it into a “pub quiz”. Both Dave and Steve Westerby spoke in favour of the picture round saying that as the Table Top Quiz was a different format anyway, we could afford to have different rounds and freshen things up a bit. Also awarding one point for each correct answer would allow teams the opportunity to score roughly what they do in normal quizzes and allow teams aggregate and average scores to be similar. Several people, including Vernon Adamson, Chris Bone, John Swan, Trevor Ford, Dave Guttridge and Kevin Turner spoke about the new 20 question round stating that they were all opposed to a picture round but would also be opposed to 20 questions on the same sport and would prefer the question to be on a range of different sports. Brian Neil spoke in favour of the Picture round but stated that if we didn’t have a picture round we needed some sort of format for the round and he also advocated a mixed, general sport theme rather than one sport. Barry Howbridge asked whether the round was necessary at all and this was also asked by Dave Morrison who was concerned about the length of the quiz and the time it would take. The Chairman responded by saying that the quiz only takes about one hour and twenty minutes, much less than a normal League quiz, and that the reason for the 20 question round was to make the total scores in line with a normal quiz. Barry then suggested the round should be confined to the Olympic Games, both summer and winter, as this ultimate World event was much under used in the League quizzes. Brian Hannaford suggested that whatever the format was decided on, the question compilers should be given guidance by the Committee on the content of the round rather than it being left entirely up to them. Chris Bone and Alan Kitchen both spoke in opposition to the 30 second per question rule whereby teams had to fill an answer in within the 30 second time limit and could not return to the question later in the round. Steve Westerby countered saying that in that case we would have no need for a question master to ask the questions or scrutineers as the whole quiz could just be a questionnaire. Mike Sowerby made the point that the reason people were against the picture round was that it would turn the quiz into a pub quiz and this would do exactly the same. The Chairman spoke in favour of scrapping the 30 second rule as he said it was sometimes difficult to get scrutineers from the lower league teams. Dave Guttridge suggested that for individual rounds each player comes to the front of the room and fills an answer out in front of the question master thus foregoing the need for scrutineers. On a related topic, Brian Hannaford asked for an explanation of how the Individual round worked. The Chairman explained this to Brian. Kevin Turner said that we were over complicating things and that the current format for the table Top Quiz worked fine. Everyone enjoyed the night so why not leave things as they are. Martin Robinson agreed speaking passionately about how the format and compilation of the quiz should be left to Compliers and Question Masters and teams were just trying to “look after their own interests”. He noted that the teams who had already played in Table Top Quizzes were silent whilst the Premier League teams were making all the comments. Trevor Ford spoke out against the questionnaire approach with no 30 second rule and Geoff Johns agreed saying that we should be able to trust one another to be honest if no scrutineers were available. To bring proceedings to a close, Lennie Laughlin proposed a format for Round 3 of the quiz. The round to consist of 20 questions all on General Sport, none on the majors. The Chairman added that there should be no more than three questions on any one sport. This was largely agreed upon. A vote then took place on whether to retain the 30 seconds for an answer rule and not allow answers to be filled in later. This was passed by eight votes to four so the 30 second rule stands for next seasons Table Top Quizzes.


                                                A discussion then took place about the scoring mechanism and the question was asked why aggregate and average scores were being taken into account. The Chairman stated that as the Table Top Quizzes were going to be staged at hallway through the season and as the final game, all teams will have played the same number of matches and average scores could be taken from the same number of games and the average score over the season was a better way to decide the winner in the event of a tie that an obscure tie break question. The Secretary explained that the original reason for the Table Top Quiz was to provide an additional two quizzes for the teams in the League where they would only have eight matches instead of ten. It was effectively two more League Games. He went on to say that if a team plays two league games, they can either score 4, 3, 2, 1 or 0 points and that was what was being mirrored over the two Table Top Quizzes. If  a team plays 10 League games, the maximum points they can get is 20. Saltwell this season scored 24 points courtesy of them winning both Table Top Quizzes and this, in the opinion of the Committee, wasn’t right and needed to be addressed. This was the reason for taking the aggregate of  the two quizzes. However a tie break question could still be required in the event of two teams being level on points and having the same League average.




The Chairman then outlined the final format of the Table Top Quiz. This would be




Round 1 a team round of 20 questions with 2 each on the Major Sports with 10 General Sport questions


Round 2 a “pot luck” individual round where each team member answers two questions


Round 3 a 20 point round made up of 20 questions on General Sport with no more than three questions on any one sport


Round 4 a specialist individual round where the question master announces the subject and one team member answers that question. All team members answer two questions in the round


Round 5 a team round of 25 questions with 3 each on the Major Sports and 10 General Sport questions.




Any Other Business




The Chairman asked if there was any other business. There being none, the meeting closed at 9:22