Yorkshire Chess News





ECF Finance Council 2024


Notice of the ECF Finance Council to be held by Zoom on 27th April 2024 has been received by delegates.  The YCA’s delegate, per the current voting register, is Andrew Wainwright.  The writer was a recipient by virtue of being the Doncaster Congress’s delegate.  Papers are to be found here.  Papers will be added as things progress, but the following summarises things published to date.


Direct Membership Fees


At the AGM last October (see report here) the ECF Board, in the context of seeking to “simplify” the Direct (=individual) Membership system by reducing the number of levels of membership, sought the meeting’s direction as to which possibility was most likely to be approved at a later meeting (i. e. this Finance Meeting).  In short, that proved to be merger of Silver and Gold memberships into a single category.  Despite that, there is no motion being presented to revise “Bye Law No. 1 The Direct Members Bye Laws” accordingly.  A different approach is being adopted.


Way back, a notional fee for both Silver and Gold adult members was calculated such that it would have brought in the same income as that raised from separate Silver and Gold fees.  This used forecast final membership totals for 2022-23.  The result (£33) is shown in the following table under “Merger Equivalents”.  (See here for calculation details.)


The approach being adopted at this Finance Meeting is to propose withdrawing the offer of Silver membership and proposing a Gold Membership fee based on the calculated fee just described.  This creates a de facto new category from an effective Silver-Gold merger, which is being called “New Gold” and attracts the same benefits as Gold formerly conferred.  This is similar to the way Bronze Junior Membership was in effect suspended by making all entry-level juniors Silver members.  Abolition of Silver Membership is perhaps a more accurate description of the process than merger of Silver and Gold.


The Board’s proposed Direct Membership fees, which need to be approved or otherwise by Council, are shown in the Agenda (to be found here), but the writer offers his preferred representation of things.









De Facto

New Category





Silver *





Adult Gold















Junior Silver *





Junior Gold

Junior Gold




Junior Platinum





Apart from merging Silver and Gold, the proposals for the most part slap a £2 increase on the current rates or, for “New Adult Gold”, the merger-equivalent rate.


For Juniors, a “merger equivalent” rate of £10 seems to have been calculated.  It is here assumed Bronze Junior membership gets sucked into the “New Junior Gold” category as it is not mentioned in the Agenda.


We are told the agenda’s table is subject to revision pending the outcome of an ongoing review by the Board and may have Game Fee and Pay-to-Play fees added in time.


Removal of the Silver membership category from Bye Law 1 may be proposed later, presumably in a year’s time.  Unless . . .


It is possible, of course, that there will be a last-minute “Silver Revolt” and the above “merger” (abolition) is rejected, in which case the current Silver and Gold membership prices would probably merely have £2 added to them to give £29 and £41 respectively, and the Board’s desired “simplification” would be returned to the back burner for a couple of years.


Finance Reports, Accounts (2022-23) and Budget (2024-25)


Not yet available.


Amendments to Articles of Association, Bye Laws Etc


There are proposals addressing the following:

1) the introduction of rolling 12-month membership (i. e. membership not being from a set point in the year),

2) abolition of membership fees for bodies not generating rated games,

3) and provision for membership by clubs.

These all look sound, albeit intriguing.  (Why about 50 clubs?)


The most numerous proposed amendments to the Articles of Association are replacing “he”, “him”, “his” or “chairman” with “they”, “them”, “their” or “chair” respectively.