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Thread: BC Regional Development Team

  1. #1
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    Default BC Regional Development Team

    I was asked a couple of weeks ago, whether I would be interested in representing Song of the Paddle on the British Canoeing East Midlands Regional Development Team.

    As this sounded SOTP-official I did a quick check with MagiKelly who replied with a positive:
    "I’m always keen for SoTP to be more involved in canoeing organisations. Even if it is just as a way of us being able to get better and quicker access to information about upcoming changes and developments. So yes of course I’m happy for you to go and represent us. Let us know how it goes!"
    At which point, and somewhat tentatively, I gave my thumbs up to being involved.

    There was a regional meeting last week, where having representatives from a wider range of paddlers was officially put forward. The result of which was confirmed over the weekend with receipt of an email saying:
    "Approved, we can have reps from non-affiliated clubs. So welcome aboard, you are now the rep for Song of the Paddle.Will forward more info shortly"

    So now awaiting 'more info' ...

    My initial understandings though are:
    a) its a 5 evenings a year commitment
    b) SOTP events can be promoted by BC and listed on their events pages (if we want that)
    c) There are no BC imposed processes/paperwork etc on any SOTP events from this
    d) Some opportunity for input from us on things like the Soar Tour platform placement, access, cleaner rivers, canoeing routes in the area, etc

    No idea whether anything tangible/useful to SOTP will come from this, but I'll go to the first few meetings and add notes to this thread, and see whether there is anything to contribute/take away from such participation.

    I guess I'll know a bit more after the first meeting (no known date yet).

    --------------------

    As pointed out later on, this thread can be a bit acronym heavy, so whilst I can edit this first post, and with apologies for lateness, I figured I should provide a key:

    Acronym Meaning
    RDT Regional Development Team
    BC British Canoeing
    EM East Midlands
    OCA Open Canoe Association
    Last edited by cankay.org.uk; 21st-February-2019 at 10:13 AM.

  2. #2
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    Well done mate
    Paddler,blogger,camper,pyromaniac: Blog: Wilderness is a State of Mind

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  3. #3

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    Well done mate

    will second that.......well done!


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    Just the man for the job. I can see that BC have a large, untapped, probably un represented membership on SOTP and I think it is a very welcome recognition that not every one is obsessed with leading and being led, and spending time and money proving what you already know. They need us, and on the right occasion we need them, and so you will be a perfect interface. Hats off for saying Yes.

    Impcanoe

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    Are they wanting an SOTP rep for other regions RDT's?

    Sent from my SM-G950F using Tapatalk

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    Great to get the thumbs up from peeps - esp as I've not done anything yet - but my thanks anyway.


    Are they wanting an SOTP rep for other regions RDT's?
    Honest answer is "I'm not sure", but at least I have one question to ask now - thx . I'm not sure how autonomous the RDTs are and I suspect this might be a EM region decision. That said I think any individual who is a member of the BC 'enjoys' voting rights etc within their region anyway.

    Hidden away (at least I could not find a way to navigate to) on the BC site are sections for each region: https://www.britishcanoeing.org.uk/regions - I think these are maintained by the RDTs themselves on the grounds that having had a look at a couple of them, they look to be structurally different.

    The EM one states:
    The Regional Development Team (RDT) is here to support paddlers, clubs and coaches in the region, and to promote paddling events throughout the East Midlands.
    and although SoTP is not a 'club' in the trad./structured sense, we are 'paddlers' and we organise (loosely) 'events' - which I think was the justification for recognising SoTP as en entity eligible for Representation with a capital 'R' (at least in the EM region).

    The links for EM News and EM Events are somewhat light and I suspect it will take a while for SoTP to be listed in the 'clubs/contacts', so maybe they're after someone who can C&P content into whatever system BC use to populate the website

    In case it's of interest here is a direct link to the Yorkshire RDT section.

    I'll compile a list of questions that pop up on this thread over the next few days into an email and see what answers I can get. Tis very early days yet ...

    Cheers
    Jon

  7. #7
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    Please excuse my ignorance. But does BC stand for British canoeing.

    I am so glad you explained what EM and RDT are in your last post.
    Big Al.

    Only when the last tree has died
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  8. #8
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    Al, BC is indeed British Canoeing, BCU as they used to be. Confusingly using the same identity for both the overarching UK competition and coaching body, and the England membership body.

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    If you check out the SW RDT they have an OCA rep ..... or to put it another way

    If you check out the South West Regional Development Team they have an Open Canoe Association representative.
    You don't stop playing because you get old - you get old because you stop playing.

  10. #10
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    Well done Jon
    DCUK
    Can't ytpe or roopf read

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by twopigs View Post
    If you check out the SW RDT they have an OCA rep ..... or to put it another way

    If you check out the South West Regional Development Team they have an Open Canoe Association representative.
    Thank you.
    Big Al.

    Only when the last tree has died
    and the last river been poisoned
    and the last fish been caught
    will we realise we cannot eat money.
    ~Cree Indian Proverb

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    They couldn't have chosen better, nice one Jon
    All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.

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    From my (biased) reading of the way the Open Canoe Association (of which I am a lapsed member) is moving , I think their apparent bias towards obsession with awards and coaching and "leadership" may not make them the only suitable representation for open canoeists, although better than none.

    If we had a "head" which thank goodness we don't, it could approach BC to allow a SOTP rep to each region. As a non club, we could ask no more than that said rep should think and behave sensibly for the greater good.

    Impcanoe

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    Quote Originally Posted by Impcanoe View Post
    From my (biased) reading of the way the Open Canoe Association (of which I am a lapsed member) is moving , I think their apparent bias towards obsession with awards and coaching and "leadership" may not make them the only suitable representation for open canoeists, although better than none.

    If we had a "head" which thank goodness we don't, it could approach BC to allow a SOTP rep to each region. As a non club, we could ask no more than that said rep should think and behave sensibly for the greater good.

    Impcanoe
    I like the informal non clubness of SOTP as well and I think cankay epitomises this ethos, he'll be a great rep. Regional reps, also a good idea
    All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.

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    Spotted this East Mids regional calendar on the BC site, possibly not too much of interest, but figured I'd share it anyway. Not so much for the coaching/awards bits, but there are a couple of events.

  16. #16
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    So yesterday evening I popped along to my first Regional Development Team meeting - and very nice pie & chips it was.

    It was, well, a meeting - with all the usual meeting stuff, minutes to be approved, vacant roles, treasurers report, chairman's report etc.
    It looked to be well represented by local(ish) clubs too.

    Quite a lot of time was devoted to developing coaches and the latest revision to awards - so as a sort of SOTP collective, not terribly interesting, but maybe for SOTP individuals, the possibility of bursaries towards coach assessments could be a good thing....maybe?

    There was a semi-interesting section on "lies, damn lies, and statistics" - which showed the majority of paddlers are white males, and the ratios of males to females in the coaching/leader capacity was even more pronounced. Curious question I'd never considered as to whether females would prefer to be coached by females, and/or whether females would be more willing to become coaches if they could coach female only groups. So if there are any Lady's reading this (any region) and would like to pass comment either on this thread or pm me, then I'm happy to compile and pass on as general feedback.

    The different ethos (for lack of a better word) between SOTP and 'the clubs' was markedly pointed out when a club rep was asking about the the cost of getting some people qualified (est 140 per person) to cover the possibility of taking groups around a 2 mile flat water inland loop (specifically the small Mountsorrel loop). Subject to not being in the middle of a storm, its not a route I would think twice about doing solo by myself or with peeps I'd never paddled with before - dunno, maybe I should. I can see two extremes - anyone can buy a canoe, 'yak, 'sup and go out - no training, no supervision, no nothing at one end, and at the other being almost paralysed by the risk averse nature/cost to do things the 'club/BC way'.

    Personally it kinda made me appreciate the sort of middle ground of SOTP of allowing people to make their own decisions as to what is within their own individual ability and to do/not do based on their own assessment of risk.
    That said without the clubs there would be less chance of future generations of paddlers.

    Other things discussed: Access & the Clear Water campaign - "litter picks are cool and great opportunities for getting publicity for the agenda, now is a good time to write to local MPs." - yup - nothing there to really disagree with. Fun anecdote of Anglers complaining about paddlers litter picking 'getting in the way of their fishing' - a somewhat self-defeating approach methinks. The organisation, Surfers Against Sewage can provide all resources needed to a litter pick.

    No mention really of the term "recreational paddlers" that I can recall, no great surprise, but from a BC perspective I wonder if 'we' account for a significant percentage of BC membership (as individuals) and many club paddlers have club affiliation so don't bother with individual membership.

    If I remember anything else I'll add further comments.
    Anyway thanks for reading.
    Last edited by cankay.org.uk; 9th-April-2019 at 08:18 AM. Reason: spelking

  17. #17
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    Excellent report Jon. Well done.

    Just an observation. There have been a few women only sessions at the Ulster canoe festival each year. Possibly because we have quite a few really competent women coaches in Ireland. I also think CANI have been promoting this as well.
    Big Al.

    Only when the last tree has died
    and the last river been poisoned
    and the last fish been caught
    will we realise we cannot eat money.
    ~Cree Indian Proverb

  18. #18
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    Well done Jon. Your excellent feed back shows how foresighted we all were in wishing you well in this.

    On a slightly different tack, I have just renewed my BC membership and received a "one size fits all" response thanking me for "signing up" to unspecified joys. As a well known pedant, with nothing better to do, I got in touch to remonstrate. I had not "signed up", a) because I was already a long standing member, b) I paid by direct debit. I received a very well scripted response showing concern, and asking me to provide them with details. I copied the note from them, but thought it rather strange that they couldn't find it themselves. From my considerable experience of local government highways, even though some time ago, we could have found a copy of any document at the touch of a couple of buttons. Left hand and right hand springs to mind. If anything comes out of this I'll let you know.

    Peter
    Impcanoe

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    Jon, thanks for that.

    I think the BC qualifications scheme is driven by commercial providers, who have a stronger duty of care, and clubs assume the same, probably correctly so far as under 18s are concerned. SOTP, and other similar group don't arrange anything on the water, all we do is help people to meet up so that they can arrange peer group paddles between themselves.

    Some friends of mine are organising a women only sea kayak symposium in September, and I believe there's another in June, so there does seem to be a demand by women for female coaching.

    Peter, the BC website shows that my membership ran out on 3rd April - last year, they took my DD on 9th April, so I'm expecting it to be taken today, but with only about 80% confidence. They have always been inefficient at dealing with members. Two years ago they mixed up their records and unilaterally cancelled my membership without telling me, apparently confusing me up with my wife, who I took off Family Membership about ten years ago. I don't know why they are so bad, some organisations just don't seem to have people with authority who care how they are perceived by customers. Manchester Airport is another! Assume BC do process my renewal, I shall see what they send me.

  20. #20
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    Thanks Jon, both for making the effort and for reporting back succinctly. No surprises, but good to have SOTP involved.

    As for membership, oddly this is the first time in 10 years of membership, that my renewal has happened smoothly and without further input from me....but I also got a welcome letter as if I was new to both membership and the sport...
    Paddler,blogger,camper,pyromaniac: Blog: Wilderness is a State of Mind

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    I've been in touch with BC, and apparently they changed database provider and the link between my membership and my Direct Debit was lost, they responded quickly and I am now a member - as Peter says, the membership confirmation emails don't seem to reflect continuation of existing membership - although, in my case, since they'd allowed mine to expire, I can see why the system might treat as new not a renewal.

  22. #22
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    Cheers all for reading and the replies. Deffo adds significant value to SOTP participation if there is genuine interest and comments hereon to go back with :-).
    Last edited by cankay.org.uk; 18th-June-2019 at 09:49 AM.

  23. #23
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    Some notes from East Midlands Regional Development Meeting 17 June 2019.
    (These are my notes, not official minutes)

    There was early discussion around a commercially organised trip on the Thames (https://regatta.london/), on 29th Sept where the river (or part thereof) is closed for all other traffic. General consensus was that this was quite costly and did not look terribly well organised - i.e. no organised way to reunite paddlers with vehicles at the end. Just mentioning in case it is of interest to SOTPpers down sowff.

    EDIT: Just seen this thread, so this is obviously old news - pretty consistent consensus on the event esp the kerching.

    Meeting officially started over pie and chips with usual stuff welcome & intros, apologies, minutes from previous meeting.

    Next sort of point of note came under 'Correspondence' - a request had been received from BC for assistance with an event at Holm Pierpont on 31st Aug to help on a 'regional stand'. This is the same weekend as the next scheduled Coaches Development weekend. The Coaches Development weekend is an opportunity to peeps to be coached for free as aspirant coaches go through their paces and are guided on how to improve so the pass their formal coach assessment. Jewels666, Jax and Di all offered their services to be coached on the first such event earlier in the year. Anyway jumping to the crux, in order to support both the Regional Stand and the aspirant Coaches Development, it is likely the Coaches Development w/e will also be hosted at HPP rather than the Leics Outdoor pursuit center.

    A month or so ago I attended a talk around weir assessments - generated a bit of an interesting discussion topic thread - and my thanks for all those who took time out to comment. Anyway, at the meeting it was confirmed that the next one (no date yet) is sort of around suggestions of the sort of things coaches can do to record relevant information that could be useful if the worst comes to the worst and a serious accident happens 'on their watch' - i.e. an ongoing compilation of a sort of body of 'evidence' of experience that would stand a person in good stead in front of scary people asking difficult questions. As SOTP trips are generally 'peer'/'friendship group' paddles rather than leader/coach led I'd like to its not really an issue....but I may well pop along anyway!.

    Next topic was a general plug for litter picks and their publicity/political value as environmental. This obviously isn't an East Midlands thing!. Anyway CaRT will provide equipment for litter pickers where such is happening on CaRT maintained waterways - as well as identify where to leave said litter. Some councils will also support directly, but there seem to be instances where councils won't help where a litter pick crosses boundaries - so CaRT is a better first port of call for anyone organising a litter pick. There were general requests/recommendations to let local papers know and invite local politicians to attend, and let BC know - they compile such information and use it in presentations to politicians around the Clear Access, Clear Water campaign. All good stuff.

    Money: specifically County Sports Partnerships: "There are 45 County Sports Partnerships (CSPs) covering England. They work across the sporting landscape, actively supporting Clubs and partners to help increase participation in sport and physical activities." I'm not sure SOTP would be seen as a 'Club', but I know many SOTPpers are also active members of local paddle clubs too. The reason this topic came up is there is money to be had, and there was a general recommendation for 'club people' to sign up for newsletters/comms for own and adjacent areas. May get a couple of emails a year, and these CSP's have money waiting to hand out!.

    Moving on - early days notice of the dates for the Barrow winter series races. 5th Oct, 23rd Nov, 14th Dec, 19th Jan, 29th Feb, 21st Mar. I'll start a threat about this once the 'flyer' is out.

    CaRT adoptions: https://canalrivertrust.org.uk/volun...re-information
    Another general plug/request to clubs to 'adopt' a local stretch of CaRT maintained waterways. This also has BC/political positives and is probably nothing more than clubs already do. Nothing wrong with individuals adopting a stretch too!. Interesting 'fact' that more of the waterways have been adopted by fisherfolk than the paddling community.

    Paddlepoints is still supposed to be moving under the BC 'go paddling' umbrella (although this was originally targeted at Jan 2019!)

    Great inspirational story out of the Rutland Canoe Club - as they supported a paraplegic paddler, Andy Sutton, complete the Three Lakes Challenge: https://brokenbodyofwater.com: Video available in Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/312176655?fbclid=I...VmmUNlmPRkl7Ko

    Possibly another one for clubs, but fully open to nominations from individuals is British Canoeings volunteer awards: https://www.britishcanoeing.org.uk/g...ne-nominations - deadline for volunteer & recognition awards is 2nd Sept 2019. May be a case of nothing ventured nothing gained....

    The Soar Tour: Over the course of the year different clubs are/have been doing different stretches of the Soar Tour - the 'Biggish Meet' at Barrow features as the 'club' doing the Mountsorrel to Normanton-On-Soar. I'll be putting an order in for a job lot of Sour Tour stickers for participants. We may get a couple of people from local clubs signing up to SOTP and joining for a day or the weekend.

    One of the other clubs is organising a paddle from Normanton to Trent Lock on 14th Sept. I'll post further details as I get them.

    Both of these accrue 'Bliss Tour' miles - just in case people do want a 'Bliss Tour' sticker too :-).

    In summary quite a lot of 'stuff' covered, some of it even sort of relevant to SOTP.

    Next Meeting: 16th Sept.

    Not on the agenda, but the Moorings Pub (formerly the Boat House) is open for business.

    Thanks for reading.
    Jon


    Last edited by cankay.org.uk; 18th-June-2019 at 07:16 PM.

  24. #24
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    As a small addendum, I had a look at the BC site for putting forward a Volunteer Award nomination - however there was no option to select that as a category.
    EMailed BC and got the following response:

    Thank you for your email. We are tying our best to resolve the issue, this should be sorted by the end of this week, I will email you once the option is live
    Looking at the BC site now, and the form has gone completely.

    Online Nomination Form
    This form has been deactivated and is closed to any further submissions.
    Although the "Deadline for applications: 2nd September 2019. "

    Another email back from BC:
    This form is now live and ready for submissions. Let me know if you have any questions,


    Have checked, and the drop down now has the third option, so pretty quick to fix :-).

    Although I wonder if they want to outsource their QA department.
    Last edited by cankay.org.uk; 20th-June-2019 at 03:43 PM.

  25. #25
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    Thanks for the updates Jon.
    Paddler,blogger,camper,pyromaniac: Blog: Wilderness is a State of Mind

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    Thanks, useful and interesting

  27. #27
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    Good work Jon
    All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.

  28. #28
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    Just a small update, the Chair of the East Midlands Regional Development Team has, I believe, signed up on SOTP , and having read above comments on this thread will, ...

    bring up at the next RDT Chairs meeting the suggestion that other RDTs ask for a SOTP Rep,

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