1. Welcome & apologies for absence.

Apologies – Ewan McCarthy (EM), David Sloan (DS), Roger Scrutton (RAS)

2. Register of interests – check & update.

All present checked and signed the register of interests.

3. Approval of the Minutes of the Meeting of Directors on 22nd February 2017


4. Matters arising from the minutes of 22nd February 2017 (not covered in the agenda below)

6 SOA laptops will be needed for Deeside and clubs that have them will need to be contacted to check their status (Action: CM)

KR stated that a new expense claim form had been circulated and should now be used. (Action: All)

5. Finance report

KR reported that the EventScotland documents had been completed and submitted in order to release £20,000 of funds for Royal Deeside 2017.

KR had reviewed the Strategy & Business Plan and was happy with the wording.

KR noted that the 6 Days Company was adhering to the reserves policy. Following discussions with the Royal Deeside 2017 Treasurer he was confident that the company would continue to do so through the rest of 2017.

CM reported that MAROC had now registered the 6 individual days of Royal Deeside 2017 and that these were now covered by BOF insurance. Separate policies would be required for equipment and public liability at the campsite.

6. Deeside 2017

JM discussed the finances of the event and reported entries to date. Based on these figures JM forecast that the event would have between 2750 and 3000 competitors. This is lower than the initial estimate of 3500. The re-budget has been reforecast with a deficit of £40k (using 2850 competitors). This includes £10k of contingency and £10k distribution to clubs.

JM had anecdotal evidence that potential competitors couldn’t find suitable accommodation. A number of actions are now in place to address this:

  1. Promoting the campsite, including the provision of extra electrical hook-ups. JM noted that approximately 400 competitors had booked to stay on the site, compared to an expected 700+
  2. Promoting Aberdeen as an accommodation option, especially given the apparent surplus of hotel rooms due to the downturn in the oil industry
  3. Contacting tourism bodies and local councils to free up more accommodation

JM also suggested that the 6 Day Company set up a better process to capture entries against time in the future to make entry forecasting more reliable.

Other aspects of the event (technical, day organisation etc are on track), although some agreements remain to be signed. These were executed on behalf of the Board following the meeting.

KM asked that payments were paced to manage cash flow/ working capital. He had also reviewed the budget with the Royal Deeside treasurer and concluded that the forecast outturn was reasonable – but that the campsite needed careful management and that historically a few thousand pounds had been needed after the event to cover unforeseen events.

The issue of quality vs budget was also discussed. Given the current healthy state of the reserves it was concluded that quality should not be compromised.

JM also raised the issue of contactless punching. It was agreed that this would not be offered.

7. Strathearn 28th July to 3rd August 2019

CM circulated some draft logos for 2019 and asked for feedback.

There are still some issues with access to suitable areas – including pheasant shooting, the inability to establish ownership (Auchingarrach), the need for bussing (Auchingarrach) and the need for a major road crossing (Lochearnhead). Craig a Barns is likely to be used for the last day.

The campsite will probably be located at Comrie Croft which also has hostels that can handle 350-400 people. Crieff is probably too busy to be feasible.

8. 6 Day event 2021

DK handed out a map showing all of the Scottish 6 Day locations between 1977 and 2017. Possible locations for 2021 were discussed, noting some of the restrictions in some areas (e.g. Speyside) and the need to pick an area that would maximise competitor numbers. These will now be considered by DK.

9. Strategy and Business Plan

DK thanked CM for his efforts to pull this together.

CM asked RO to review the lessons learned section (Action: RO). He also asked everyone to review final version and feed back any final comments.

10. SOA Events Manager

CM is still trying to get realistic costings for new LIDAR data

Glenmore is being remapped (although it has seasonal restrictions due to capercaillie)

FCS have contacted CM about permanent O-Courses at visitor centres. JM suggested that semi-permanent control sites are used.

BOF are considering the 6 day model as a vehicle for major events

11. SOA business relevant to 6-Day Company

RAS circulated a report ahead of the meeting.

The SOA has been successful in attracting new Directors.  Apart from the Independent Director, which is a Board appointment, the others will be voted in at the AGM.

The SOA has just received written confirmation from SportScotland that it will receive £80k for 2017-2018, all to be spent on development.

SOA are assuming that BOF will, at some stage, enter into an agreement to host the 2018 British Long and Relay Champs.  Despite several reminders, this has not been forthcoming.  SOA are now spending money and have told BOF that SOA will settle for a fee of 2x the basic 2017 BOF levy, which SOA consider to be the best deal for SOA under the circumstances.  The circumstances are that the BOF major events programme is in difficulty: BOF wants an income stream without any associated risk, but host associations are now baulking at taking the risk and there have been several “near misses” regarding cancellation (BOC 2017 was at risk).

RAS has established a small Working Group to look in detail at the issue of how SOA might best take greater control over membership options to grow the membership.  The WG is Ian McIntyre, Lynne Walker, Johannes Peterson, Derek Allison and RAS, with some input from Alan Halliday and Clair Macpherson.

12. AOB

JM has had no reply from his request for support from Robert Gordons University students for photography at Royal Deeside 2017, so will give up on that idea. He has had an e-mail request from a professional photographer who is also an orienteer (Laurence Johnson).  This might help with the idea of creating a library of photos for Scottish orienteering. It was agreed that he should sign the Traders Agreement and that the S6D should get 20-25 photos in lieu of traders’ fees.

JM suggested that an S6D on-line shop was set up for merchandising for all 6 Day events. This would avoid paying a fee to SI Entries. The possibility of using such a site to sell the remaining copies of “A Few Surplus Maps” was also discussed. (Action: all to consider prior to the next meeting).

DK thanked RO for attending the 6 Day Board meetings as a co-opted member following his role as co-ordinator of Highland 2015 and asked JM if he would do the same from September, following Royal Deeside 2017.

RL also said that he planned to stand down after 7 years of attending the 6 Day Board meetings from Oban 2011 to date.

13. Future meeting dates

September 20th 2017.