I chaired my first Council meeting on Saturday.

My first task was to thank the previous Chairman and Secretary for all their hard work on the Council over the past few years. Jim Tudor, in particular has worked tirelessly to bring new players into the game and keep us all updated with his humorous e-mails.

Next on the agenda was the job of filling the various roles. Without an elected leadership, we have had to operate on an ad hoc basis for the past 5 or 6 weeks, so I am pleased that Margaret Little, Alison Hughes and Valerie Wood have agreed to continue as Duplimate Dealing, Stationery and League Members respectively. Eddie McGeough will continue to look after the website from outwith the Council. We had 2 volunteers to maintain the centre, so a discussion, then a vote ensued. This resulted in Charlie Rennie being given the role of Premises Maintenance. This role will only encompass looking after the physical elements of the property and supplies. I would like to thank Alison Tudor for her recent work with the refurbishment. The place looks great and Charlie has a tough act to follow.

Apart from League matches, which will be co-ordinated by the League Member, any other requests for use of the Hall from now on will be made through the Secretary. If there is a conflict with any club, the matter will be discussed by the Council before a decision is made. The following rules will apply to assist with any disputes.

For use of the Centre, the day will be split into 3 defined periods. 9am til 1pm, 1pm til 6pm and 6.30pm til 11pm. This will probably only immediately affect the Afton Club which starts at 1pm (the other afternoon clubs start at 1.30pm), but as there has only been one request for a Wednesday morning slot in the past year, there should be very little confliction. Hence, Afton Club members are still welcome to arrive at the centre as early as they wish if it is not being used in the morning.

In addition to the above, we agreed that if a resident club is regularly getting 8 tables or fewer, they can be requested to play in one room only. We managed (a cosy) 9 tables during the recent painting, so this is not unreasonable. More than 8 tables, any resident club will be asked to leave 2 tables spare for Scottish Cup/Gold Cup/Ayrshire Cup matches etc, but they may spill over into both rooms. I am sure most clubs would be happy to accommodate 2 tables anyway, but think it best to have some ground rules. Other requests will be at the discretion of the Council as mentioned.

GDPR affects us as much as any organisation of course and Fiona Braid will be looking to set up a compliant e-mail database of our membership.

The Pollok Williamson competition continues, but Ian Burn may not continue to host right through the summer, so we hope that anyone seeking a game will make use of the partnership request facility on our Home Page. I will not be asking Council members to volunteer to host as may have been done in the past, so it may mean players turning up without a partner will not get a game.

Finally, we have nearly finalised the calendar for next year. The Easter/Autumn Pairs and Bobby Allan Sims will be replaced by week long Sim Pairs, different hands for Mon - Thurs and the Ayrshire Pairs semi-finals will both be held on a Wednesday, 2 weeks apart. Also, all weekend ABU competitions (excluding whole day events) will start at the uniform time of 1pm.