BFA AGM 2015 Saturday 21st March 1pm Strongroom Shoreditch

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BFA General Secretary
Posts: 1141
Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2010 2:31 am
Real Name: Will Hawkes

BFA AGM 2015 Saturday 21st March 1pm Strongroom Shoreditch

Post by willhawkes » Sun Feb 22, 2015 3:12 pm


The Annual General Meeting of the British Foosball Association will be held in London's Strong Room bar in Shoreditch (just round the corner from Bar Kick and home to London Wanderers TFC and a Garland table) on Saturday 21st March at 1pm.

The BFA is an association of members, so it's really important that we come together as a community from time to time to discuss how things are going and agree what we want to do next, and how. In that vein, I really hope as many can join as possible.

In terms of the agenda, it will go something like this:

1. Minutes of 2014 AGM
2. Matters Arising
3. President's Report
4. Financial Report
5. Vote on any BFA constitutional amendments
6. Vote on general meeting quorum, spending limits, membership fees.
7. By-elections
a) Voting executive committee members - Vice President and Sports Director
b) Two non-voting executive committee members
8. AOB

If you would like to stand for the BFA Committee, please nominate yourself in the comments on the Facebook announcement or in this thread, articulating why you are a suitable candidate for the position you wish to stand for.

All ideas / proposals / submissions are welcome, again please put them in the comments on Facebook or here.

For any other questions, please me at contact


Will Hawkes
BFA Secretary

BFA General Secretary
Posts: 1141
Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2010 2:31 am
Real Name: Will Hawkes

Re: BFA AGM 2015 Saturday 21st March 1pm Bar Kick

Post by willhawkes » Wed Feb 25, 2015 9:40 pm

Update. It's now going to be in The Strongroom bar which is just round the corner from Bar Kick (the home location of London Wanderers TFC with a Garlando table and great food and drink too). BK were just too busy with football and so on, and Strongroom are welcoming us with open arms.

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Christopher Lyall
BFA Regional Rep - South West
Posts: 1751
Joined: Wed Nov 14, 2007 10:00 pm
Real Name: Christopher Lyall
Location: Gloucester/Warwick Uni

Re: BFA AGM 2015 Saturday 21st March 1pm Strongroom Shoredit

Post by Christopher Lyall » Thu Mar 19, 2015 6:50 pm

I'd like to state my intention to stand for the Vice-Chairman position. - Foosball Tournaments, Leagues, Shop

BFA General Secretary
Posts: 1141
Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2010 2:31 am
Real Name: Will Hawkes

Re: BFA AGM 2015 Saturday 21st March 1pm Strongroom Shoredit

Post by willhawkes » Sun Mar 22, 2015 9:56 pm

Thanks to everyone who turned up on Saturday. Yes, we had enough for a quorum, and we discussed UK table football for 3 hours. A lot of consensus as to where we are and the direction we need to go in, yes some hearty debates too, plus brilliant new kits, good eggs florentine, a bit of Garlando fun, and we all learned about wireframes.

I have extensive notes which I will type up and post as the minutes in due course. Promise!

BFA General Secretary
Posts: 1141
Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2010 2:31 am
Real Name: Will Hawkes

Re: BFA AGM 2015 Saturday 21st March 1pm Strongroom Shoredit

Post by willhawkes » Mon Mar 30, 2015 9:45 pm

British Foosball Association
Annual General Meeting
Saturday 21st March 2015 1pm

Ben Mason (Chair)
Will Hawkes (Secretary)
Boris Atha (Treasurer)
Chris Lyall
Steve Lyall
Jody Walding
JP Thompson
Alex Millington Marston
Yaka Diaz
Vito Migliore

Emily Knox
Sam Dawkins
Donna Walker
Jose Oliveira
Andrew Nubbert

1. Minutes of 2014 Meeting

Boris recapped last year’s meeting minutes and they were agreed nem con.

2. Matters Arising

We were reminded of the 500 pounds received from Deutsche Bank, which is available for members to use to promote the game of foosball in the UK, against a sign-off from John Worthington.

Ben noted that two members had left the Committee over the past 12 months - Alex MM and Dave Oates. He thanked and praised both for their hard work.

Boris outlined the incredible pain of the BFA bank account, with rejected signature forms (by them), issuance of cheque books with wrong numbers, etc. Finally Ben, Will and Boris are all signatories on the BFA account (any two to sign). Boris has obtained 600 pounds from Lloyds in compensation. Will encouraged that Internet Banking was set up by the end of June. (ACTION 1)

Ben noted that monthly meetings hadn’t taken place as planned, however there was an EGM in Gloucester, a meeting a Jon May’s office in London, and also a meeting at Will’s house.

3. President’s Report

Ben outlined the previous year. There are no national tournaments with the Capital Venue having come to an end. However there is much to celebrate with the work being done in London by JP; in the North West by Boris; in Bristol by Dave Oates. As a volunteer organisation we all struggle with availability of time - e.g. he and Jody have dedicated so much time to the recent kit sponsorship; Chris to organising Team GB, etc. In future we need to enable people to do what they want to do rather than forcing people to do stuff.

Through Home Leisure Direct we have the contact details of everyone who has bought a table in the past year and this can be used for marketing purposes e.g. by JP, Sarah, Boris, Dave etc.

He introduced the new kit sponsorship which brings 2000 pounds in Y1 and 1000 pounds for each of the next 4 years.

We delivered a UKC and a Club Championship (just!) and our top players continue to get better.

JP and Boris both discussed the World Cup effect and how it didn’t bring new players to the game. JP outlined that there are two types of players - those who love it at home or in the office, and those who play in tournaments in order to get points and climb the rankings. Boris mentioned some corporate events he did (BBC, Liverpool Central station, Asda) although these again didn’t bring new players.

Ben asked that the Committee in future return to monthly or biweekly Skype calls (or we use the forum more). (ACTION 2).

JP proposed that the next AGM was held at a tournament however Will explained the difficulties of doing this e.g. at Liverpool, when people want to play and the meeting holds up the tournament.

JP mentioned the benefit of not participating in his own tournaments meaning it’s easier to welcome people properly. Without this, for new attendees, foosball can feel elitist. Alex emphasised the importance of newcomers getting to make a friend at tournaments.

JP asked about the sponsorship team and whether it was only for the benefit of hand picked Team GB players - Ben explained that players had to pay for 50% of the kit themselves, which meant that there was more money for the BFA’s own coffers (although some is reserved to buy the kit of new players in time).

JP proposed that the BFA offers a financial package to event organisers which can be used to fund the costs of putting tables up / taking them down, e.g. a 500 pound package and the feeling was positive. (ACTION 3). Ben mentioned the Challenger Tour idea which might fit this.

4. Financial Report

(See Appendix)

Boris outlined that broadly the BFA spent in one year what was in the bank at the beginning of the year - and took in about the same amount of money e.g. 6,500 pounds. We made a small loss due to monies owing from some Team GB members relating to kit. Main income items were from some expert challenges, bank compensation, membership fees, sponsorship money; main costs were ITSF fees, kit, table storage, web hosting, and the ITSF congress.

Ben asked who had control of the PayPal account - it’s Jon May and it was agreed the BFA needed to get control of it (ACTION 4).

Will noted that the BFA does neither a clear revenue model nor a plan for what we spend our money on, and that we are limited to some extent by our legal position as an unincorporated entity. Alex also noted that the aims of the organisation aren’t clear e.g. in particular, are we for our members or the wider community?

JP talked about the ITSF and how they’ve been successful by creating an arena through which all players can come together (rankings, pro-tours, membership etc). He believes the primary aim of the BFA should be to organise national tournaments. Will pointed out that the BFA can’t organise tournaments, both the legal constraints plus no-one is willing to do the work at the moment.

Ben pointed out that the Challenger Tour might be the way of meeting this need for national tournaments.

Alex pointed out that there are various types of entity which we could use e.g. community benefit company or co-operative, and there are white labelled constitutions which we could use.

5. Vote on BFA Constitutional Amendments

None proposed.

Boris pointed out that we are half way through a 2 year committee and we need to agree the principles and new wording for constitutional changes, and it will take up to 12 months to get it right.

There was a point about the role of the BFA - how members and the committee and clubs related to each other.

Ben suggested that the BFA could be the national governing body to help clubs and regions develop, helping the regions pick develop their leagues e.g. JP in London, Dave Oates in Bristol. Could even provide e.g. 500 pounds to support people putting on a tournament.

There was a discussion about the goal of the BFA:

do we want a rise in the number of new players, increasing participation through regional association tournaments and clubs, e.g. the BFA providing support for local events such as software, rankings, marketing collateral, money?
what’s the object of these competitions - is it just about having fun or improving the standard (a point was made that most people don’t want to get better, they just want to have fun)
Boris asked, can we have a budget which people can make applications for (see ACTION 3) e.g. the BFA creates a tournament budget which can be used by promoters.

Chris asked whether the aim was a) “more people playing” (acquiring new players) or b) “people playing more” (getting existing players more into the game). Various numbers were mentioned in terms of the number of players - 451 in 2013 (2 or more events); we were over 500 in 2014.

There was a feeling that both are important. JP outlined his experience that he originally focussed on having more people playing, and then over time his focus has changed to be creating a fun competitive environment, a healthy welcoming tournament where people are playing hard.

Boris explained his experiences in the North West - in Liverpool, most participants are one-time only new to the game people; in Manchester it’s all returnees with no new players; in Lancaster it’s half and half.

The benefit of all these national tournaments is that the points add up - people participate because they want tournaments, points and rankings.

Steve noted that for the game to function properly, we need both a decent tournament scene and good local scenes - and we don’t have either today. He reminded us that the BFA has a commitment to run 2 ITSF Leonhart tournaments a year and we are compelled to sort that out.

Steve outlined his proposal under the Sports banner, that we establish regional associations (London, Bristol, NW etc) so there’s a link between players and clubs, and regions and the BFA. The Sporting Sub Committee would consist of the heads of the regional associations and would be a sounding board overseeing sporting aspects in the region, with clubs etc, looking to stimulate growth etc. Also membership could be priced so money goes to clubs or the region to promote the game.

It wouldn’t be a massive change but it would devolve the way a member interacts with the BFA down to the region and club, which would do more of the running rather than the BFA. The regions organise clubs and tournaments, regional rankings etc, and the BFA just provides the commonality e.g. the rankings methodology etc.

Will suggested that perhaps the regional heads could sit on the BFA Committee but Ben pointed out they may not have time to do it properly.

Alex said that we’ve talked about this before and actually set up sub-forums to connect people regionally.

There was a conversation around table type because it’s anticipated different regions may want different tables. JP pointed out that the UK is a multi-table community because we don’t have a British table of our own.

Will proposed the following motions which were passed uncontested:

That the BFA develops the concept of Regional Associations and the regional committee (ACTION 5)
That the purpose of the BFA is to support our members, clubs in regions in getting a) more people playing, and b) people playing more, by meeting the needs of that region through… (ACTION 6)
That a budget for tournament support is scoped out (SEE ACTION 3)

Ben presented the designs for the new website. Tom King has committed to do this for the BFA with a view to having the wireframes ready by end of May and the new site up by the end of August.

A motion was passed giving Ben the green light to make this happen.

6. Meeting on general meeting quorum, spending limits, membership fees

Quorum was agreed to remain at 9.

Boris noted that the spending limits are in reality irrelevant as all spend needs to be approved by the Committee on a 4/1 basis, and all payments are signed by 2 Committee members.

Membership fees were agreed to remain the same, with a view to changing once the regional / club concept is better defined.

JP noted he was uncomfortable with the current BFA membership scheme as people want to know what they get in return. Alex noted that it’s need to fund the BFA’s 500 pound annual payment to the ITSF. Steve noted that it could be managed in the new regional associations when ready. Various examples of how the Germans do it well. Alex pointed out it’s not how much it is, it’s how it’s marketed.

JP said it was great to have members but we should do a newsletter. Will asked who was going to do it. Jody said she wouldn’t mind (ACTION 7)

There was a discussion on how the Team GB captains are picked.

There was a discussion around the idea of having casual labourers supporting the table pick-up / set down and using a pool of money for this (see ACTION 3).

7. By-elections

Chris Lyall was elected unopposed as Vice Chair.
Steve Lyall was elected unopposed as Sports Director.
Will asked that Ben took the lead as Commercial Director. Ben will follow a process of openly posting all sponsorship offers to himself as Five Bar, also to Sarah, JP and Boris.

8. AOB.

Ben thanked Jody for the Team GB kit
Will noted that he was moving to Korea in July but could continue to do many of his duties online from overseas for now.
There was a long discussion around the selection method for Team GB and whether Player Of The Year rankings could be used to qualify people automatically, giving captains a wild card pick a la Ryder Cup. Opinions were divided and all were passionate on the subject. Whether it’s a good idea or not, at this stage we don’t have enough tournaments to generate robust enough rankings for now.

Meeting closed at 4.20pm

(when I figure out how to attach an Excel table or please just ask me and I can share them)

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