For the Fancier by the Fancier – NWHU
Please bear with me it’s been a while since I’ve done any sort of writing / scribing so if any of the following seems a bit disjointed then it probably is. Intro first Mr Terry Phifer President of the NWHU, NWGNFC, Red Rose Fed and Secretary of Copeland NWPA. Glutton for punishment or just plain muggings, the wife and kids just think I’m nuts and don’t waste any opportunity to tell me.
NWHU - 50 years in the making.
Yes 50 years old this year its Golden Jubilee yes and the NWHU is still here, I believe it had a bit of a difficult start in life (I was 4 back in 1969 and while the pigeons where there I can’t say I took much notice of them to tell you the truth) yes it’s had its ups and downs over the years. Taken a few knocks (ok more than a few) but with the dedication and drive of you its members past and present its still here. Now like the sport in general some may say its glory days are behind it their part of history now? Me I’d say no they’re not, not yet, it’s just the basis of what that glory is measured has changed. The days of massive clubs with record birdage’s may have gone but that doesn’t mean its not as hard now to win than it was back then with the quality and calibre of fanciers and birds these days, advances in technique’s systems, feeds etc. Just the sheer volume of information available wow its mind blowing.
Now a call to you the members old and new, past and who knows future what has happened over the last 50 years? Pictures, stories, your pigeon hero’s outstanding birds etc Please let us see the pic’s hear (ok read) the stories, tell us share with the fancy.
So what’s in store this year?
Golden Jubilee Race / Award I’d say so. It’s hoped that a Golden Jubilee Race can be arranged and a special performance award to help us mark this great milestone of an anniversary. Now more knowledgeable and experienced people than me can work out the details at the Unions Spring Meeting toward the end of March so it’s a case of watch this space.
Website and Social Media
The unions old website and use or should that be limited-use of social media, has been reviewed and improvements are in the pipeline, it’s hoped that it will make it more member driven. This is in the hands of the experts but you will see changes as the NWHU gets a refresh a bit of a makeover if you like. Little tip after a couple of members contacted me they put their usual search or used their established link and where pointed at the old website that’s been taken down, if you want to visit the new website for the first time try typing nwhu.co.uk in your search engine, it should work ok after that.
News: as you may be aware well it’s been a busy last few months for the officials during this closed season.
The NWHU has evolved over the last 50 years and as noted earlier it’s had its up’s and downs faced challenges but has kept on going. As you may or may not be aware there was a meeting back in January this year between the RPRA & NWHU at the Show of the year weekend. The following are a set of notes that were made from that meeting.
Please note the RPRA were given the opportunity to provide feedback on these notes.
RPRA – NWHU meeting in Blackpool
Meeting between representatives the RPRA and the NWHU took place at the winter gardens 20th Jan 2019 at 11.00 am.
In attendance Mr D Bridges President of the RPRA, Mr I Evans C.E.O. and Mr G Cockshott Vice President of the RPRA, Mr T Phifer President of the NWHU, Mr M McAlinden & Mr J Pawson vice presidents of the NWHU. The meeting had been instigated by the NWHU following a letter from the RPRA saying that if by the 1st February 2019 the NWHU had not reverted to its original boundaries then it would be de-recognised.
After brief introductions the main purpose of the meeting was discussed and established.
The purpose was to establish communication between the two organisations to find a way of dealing with discord that has developed over time for the benefit of the members and the sport.
Boundaries, the issue of boundaries were discussed with both parties expressing their views with regards the changes to the NWHU since its establishment 1969 and from the time of recognition 1996. The boundaries as published in the NWHU rules had been decided by its membership over the last 50 years and to go back to the boundaries that existed 50 years ago would not be possible nor practicable. The old counties had been dissolved or changed and replaced, Cumberland, Westmorland, Lancashire and Cheshire had been changed to Cumbria, Lancashire, Merseyside, Manchester, and Cheshire during the changes part of West Riding had been absorbed as well has other changes to the boundaries. The Addition of Flintshire and Denbighshire had been done at the request of its membership many years ago. The RPRA were still concerned about the boundaries however accepted that the existing declared boundaries couldn’t really be altered but concerns remained that the NWHU were accepting affiliated members and organisations from outside these declared boundaries.
Membership: the issue of membership was discussed, and it was established that the NWHU could not and would not force any of its existing membership organisations or individuals to leave irrespective of their current location. The NWHU stated that since the Oct report there had been a number of organisations and individuals from outside its boundaries that had resigned. The RPRA delegates accepted that the NWHU couldn’t expel members and didn’t expect it to.
The NWHU understood the concerns of the RPRA and would look at the second part of its boundaries rules which deals with the use of management discretion over accepting organisations / individual members outside its boundaries. There were a number of options discussed surrounding this rule from suspension of the rule, rewording it. The NWHU representatives would have to take this back to their management committee.
It was recognised that a large proportion of the membership within the NWHU were actually dual members of both organisations and the current actions if continued could not be of benefit to the members nor the sport, hence the need for dialogue between the two organisations.
Stray birds issue was discussed with the NWHU taking this issue very seriously, they were alarmed to read in the RPRA October Meeting report that there could an issue. It was noted that the NWHU’s telephone line did have a problem at one time during the 2018 season which didn’t help. There is an online facility on the NWHU web site for reporting strays. The NWHU requested more information from the RPRA ie, the numbers reported areas reported and what the follow up with the NWHU was? This information would be helpful in aiding to mitigate / improve this situation in the future as with all unions the NWHU takes this subject very seriously.
Confederation: NWHU membership of the confederation was discussed, it had been a member at one time. The NWHU would consider membership so long as it was more than just a talking shop; Mr Bridges informed the meeting that he had been impressed after attending a meeting recently. Mr Phifer noted he had only picked up snippets of information about the Confederation and wanted to know more. His, own point of view was that a forum / corporative organisation that all the home unions could use to help drive improvements for the sport could be an asset.
Concern was raised that even after the use of even more discretion / suspension of the NWHU rule allowing membership outside its boundaries that new members could join via existing clubs / federations. It was discussed that neither the RPRA nor the NWHU as an association / union could determine or control who clubs / federations allow too join them nor make changes to their radius. These types of organisations are self-determining with regards to their radius and membership. It was noted that at fed level no-one from outside a fed could join another, which is the way it is at that level of management, however the association / union could not within their constitutions dictate that level of control over member organisations.
The meeting concluded that there had been a positive and constructive discussion with reasonable views of each party’s opinions aired. It was further realised that each would have to feed back to their respective councils / committees.
Post Meeting Note: the meeting was conducted in a professional and gentlemanly manner which was much appreciated.
Finally, 50 years ago: did you know in 1969
The Beatles' made their last public performance, on the roof of Apple Records
The First Concorde test flight was conducted In France.
Man City won the FA cup and Leeds won the First Division.