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West Midlands Draughts Association Constitution

1 The Association shall be called the West Midlands Draughts Association.

2 The Association is established to promote the game of draughts in the West Midlands region of England, comprising the counties of West Midlands, Warwickshire, Worcestershire and Staffordshire.

3 To carry out the said object, the Association may; a) arrange meetings and playing facilities at suitable premises, b) raise money by subscriptions, donations and any other means considered appropriate, c) invest the monies of the Association not immediately required d) do all such other lawful things as are necessary for the attainment of the said object.

4.1 Full membership of and voting rights in the Association shall he open to individuals of any age. All members except honorary life members) shall pay an annual membership fee, which is subject to alteration at the Annual General Meeting (AGM).
4.2 The Executive Committee shall have the right to a) approve or reject applications for membership, b) end the membership of any individual for a good and sufficient reason. The number concerned shall have the right of appeal.
4.3 The Association shall he affiliated to the English Draughts Association (EI)A) by payment of the appropriate fee.

5.1 At the AGM the Association shall elect a President, a Treasurer, a Secretary, an Auditor and 3 Executive Committee Members. All officers shall hold office from one AGM to the next.
5.2 The President shall he the figurehead of the Association. He shall take the chair and give the opening address at the AGM.
5.3 The Treasurer shall keep books of account and at the end of the financial year prepare the annual statement of accounts and balance sheet, which, duly audited, shall he presented to the AGM.
5.4 The Secretary shall keep a record of the proceedings of the AGM and Executive Committee meetings, and conduct general correspondence.
5.5 The Auditor shall audit the accounts before presentation at the AGM.
5.6 The Executive Committee shall manage the affairs of the Association from one AGM to the next.

6.1 An AGM shall he held during the month of December. The business of the AGM shall include:a) election of officers, b) presentation of reports by officers, c) presentation of audited accounts.
6.2 A quorum shall consist of 4 members.
6.3 Each member shall he entitled to one vote.
6.4 All questions arising at the AGM, except those concerning this constitution, shall he decided by a simple majority vote of those present and entitled to vote.
6.5 The Executive Committee shall meet as often as is necessary for the general management of the Association.

7.1 All monies raised by or on behalf of the Association shall he used only for the purpose of the Association.
7.2 The accounts shall he audited once a year by the auditor appointed at the AGM. 7.3 An account or accounts shall he opened in the name of the Association with a financial institution approved by the Executive Committee.
7.4 The Executive Committee shall authorise in writing the treasurer and three members of the Association to make withdrawals from the accounts. The signatures of any two of the above shall he required in order to make a withdrawal.
7.5 The financial year of the Association runs from 1st January to 31st December.

8.1 The Executive Committee, by a simple majority vote, can decide that for whatever reason it is necessary or advisable to dissolve the Association.
8.2 It shall then call a meeting of all full, voting members by giving 21 days notice.
8.3 If the Executive Committee' s decision is confirmed at the said meeting by a two-thirds majority vote, it shall then have the power to dispose of any assets held by or on behalf of the Association by: a) paying any debts and liabilities, b) giving the remaining assets to the EDA.

9 This constitution may he changed only by a two-thirds majority vote at an AGM.

A Tribute to the late Bert Law.

"My Trophies At last I Lay Down"

My good friend Tony Boyle has just informed me of the recent passing of one of our very fine mutual friends, Bert Law, who only took up checkers just a few years ago. Bert was a very congenial and pleasant gentleman possessed with a good sense of humour. Considering that Bert had much less experience and practice at draughts than most E.D.A. veterans, he performed very admirably and drew or defeated more advanced players on a number of occasions.

I met Bert via internet on the website itsyourturn - we often corresponded and discussed various issues. I supplied Bert with info about the English Draughts Association and suggested that he join our fine organization. Also recommended that Bert join various competitions in the West Midlands etc promoted by Tony Boyle and others. Bert was quite active during his draughts career and participated in tourneys even outside of England! Bert even enjoyed competing in international checkers (10x10) and in other games (Retsami - I Master spelled backwards! etc) and always proved to be a gentleman of great character combined with first class sportsmanship. I always enjoyed my time with this ardent devotee of draughts.

Bert also found time to compete in various Cambridge and U.K. Mind Sports Olympiads and was always happy to meet with other enthusiastic players. While serving as arbiter and tournament director in draughts and other events, I was fortunate indeed to have spent much time with Bert at these events. Bert once mentioned to me that he regretted not learning and playing draughts seriously at a much younger age. One must admit, though, that he certainly made up quickly for any lost time! We will all certainly miss the presence of this outstanding gentleman but his demeanor and personality will never be forgotten. May our great friend, Bert Law rest comfortably in peace.

Submitted by David Kotin, Czech Republic, 28 November 2012.

A Tribute to Bert Law.

Bert Law sadly passed away on 18 November aged 74 years.

I first met Bert Law on the site It's Your Turn. He had come to my attention as an English player brought to my table to play on line. David Kotin, a former English player who now lives in Prague, got us together, and from there I persuaded Bert to join the West Midland Draughts Club. Bert was very keen on the game and, though he wasn't a strong player, made up for this with dedication and enthusiasm. He preferred playing real opponents, I think, and enjoyed the West Midlands Club. He was one of a few players of his age who liked to play the International 10x10 game. Indeed he tried a number of variants and enjoyed them all. He also enjoyed playing in tournaments. He was at Knighton for the Welsh, Stonehaven for the Scottish, Ryde for the English at various times over the last few years. He also played at tournaments in Birmingham and Manchester. Had his failing health over the last 2 years not come to the fore I'm sure he would have done even more because he had a great love for the game. Bert came from Oxford so it was a fair trip to play regularly in the West Midlands League at Longbridge.

Bert had a life before draughts and really enjoyed fishing. Indeed his name on It's Your Turn was Piscator, which is Latin for fisherman. I got the impression Bert was still collecting fishing gear to the day he died. I think he had a lot of it.

Bert always said he started playing draughts too late in life and wished he had begun earlier. He was always generous with time and effort for the game. I last saw Bert in Bristol playing Con Boyle (no relation) in the British Open. I looked over and saw Bert was a piece up and was happy for him. Unfortunately Bert couldn't get the win. After telling him he should have won the game, I thought, actually Bert you did well. Con's a good player and you're not a well man.

Bert was due to go to the Welsh with me but through a series of unforeseen circumstances it wasn't to be. As mentioned, Bert enjoyed the 10x10 game and played at Cambridge and our 10x10 league in Longbridge. He enjoyed the Mind Sports Olympiads in London, and on occasion played in other non-draughts events. I will miss him at tournaments. We often went or met together at them. He enjoyed not only the game but the players and the location, especially Knighton. If ever there was a devotee to the game it was Bert. Bert played every Monday against Colin Jeffries from Oxford at his home and had some good games against him. Colin will miss his playing partner.

Colin and I went to Bert's funeral at the Salvation Army Corps in Oxford. Far from being a solemn occasion it celebrated his love of fishing and draughts. He had a good send-off. In his memory and because of his love for all forms of draughts we have named our small 10x10 league the Bert Law League.

Bert will be missed as a player and a friend, and I hope he can continue fishing and playing draughts in the hands of the Almighty. May your last move be the best, Bert. May you rest in peace. Our thoughts and sympathy go to his son and the rest of the family in Oxford.

Tony Boyle, 11 December 2012.

[From Lancashire Checkers Newsletter, Feb 2013]

The league to 2007.


By Ken Lovell

[From West Midlands Newsletter, No 29 Jan 2007]

Frederick F. Smith.

F.F. Smith

[From The New Draughts World, Vol 1 No 4 March 1937]

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