Sorry for the delay, but we didn’t want to let the cat out of the bag about the men’s element!
There have been recent questions about what UKRDA’s involvement in the British Championship will be, and the potential implications of this. We would like to set the record straight so as to save any further speculation or misunderstanding.
The UKRDA was approached by the developers of the British Champs concept to be involved with the organisation of the tournament as it was felt that the national expansion of the event should be in consultation with the national governing body of the sport. The UKRDA’s involvement was discussed on our forum at length with our member leagues – including those already involved with Heartlands 2014, those who have signed up for the British Championships, and those who declined to take part – who voted overwhelmingly in favour of involvement.
The 2015 British Championships tournament is structured so that UKRDA can have direct oversight of the top two tiers, which will be wholly made up of our members.
All tiers and divisions will be run by the representatives of the teams therein. As with everything in roller derby this tournament is to be run by the leagues, for the leagues, with support from democratically appointed individuals, as per the structure diagram prepared by the British Championships team. This tournament has UKRDA’s approval as it has been put together for the benefit of the UK roller derby community, with support from UKRDA’s directors and some guidance from WFTDA.
The tiers will be governed by the Divisional Heads, who will in turn be supported in their role by the overall governance structure of the tournament.
We have also been working with MRDA to ensure that the men’s side of the tournament is compatible with the women’s side, and to ensure a high standard of oversight throughout.
What we’ve done so far includes developing a support structure for the tier and divisional management, including the formation of a panel to oversee the appointment of key tournament staff and volunteers.
UKRDA has had direct involvement in the development of a comprehensive support network for officials taking on management roles within the 2015 tournament structure and expect the structure to be one that enables officials at higher levels, but also one that nurtures and promotes development for officials early in their derby lives.
No financial support from UKRDA has been agreed at this time and the tournament is planned to run on the teams’ entry fees. There are a number of options being investigated, but these are ongoing and will be announced if and when they are confirmed.
As this is the first time a UK tournament of this type as taken place, there may be teething problems as we go along. However, we are confident that any potential issues can be resolved through proper skater representation and fair, flexible management. This structure is one that will greatly benefit the UK roller derby community, from the grassroots to the top tiers of the game in our country.
We hope that we can build on the work done putting the 2015 British Champs together, as well as the hard work going into creating a British men’s championships, and can create the biggest and best UK-based roller derby tournaments.
The UKRDA directors are happy to answer any questions about our role in the British Championships.