This weekend marked the start of the 2012 commissaire conference season with the first event taking place at the National Cycling Centre in Manchester.
Building on last year’s success and format four inter-regional conferences have been set up and so far over 160 commissiares have booked on, further outlining their popularity. Two conferences took place this weekend, the first of which was aptly held at the home of British Cycling and the proceedings got off to a great start with an enthused audience, clearly demonstrating the unrivalled commitment and dedication of volunteers involved in running our sport.
The conferences offer the opportunity for commissaires of all levels to come together, share good practice and learn new ideas. Building on feedback from last year’s successful delivery, improvements were made to the schedule to allow greater time in discipline specific workshops. The delivery of which is facilitated by the commissaire and referees commission along with other key cycle sport education tutors. The conferences are a great example of British Cycling staff and commission members working effectively together to develop a formula which is engaging and relevant to those who are key to supporting the delivery of cycle sport.
Bob Howden, Chair of the Commissaires and Referees Commission, commented: “With an increased emphasis on workshop content this year any doubts about how successful the format would be were quickly removed as each of the discipline specific groups rose to their task, with some open and stimulating discussions. This all provided some excellent feedback that we’ll review at upcoming commission meetings.
"Once again the response from across the six disciplines of the sport has been fantastic. Commissaires and officials dedicate a phenomenal amount of their own time and are at the forefront of supporting events ranging from the very grass roots through to major domestic and international events. "
British Cycling Cycle Sport Events Manager Jonathan Day
“It was also great to network with peers in a wider collective group than the two’s and three’s that work together on events throughout the season. The anecdotes were certainly in abundance throughout the weekend.
“With a wide range of disciplines and grades of officials to cater for creating a content balance was challenging. To see however UCI Commissaires readily talking with newly qualified Regional Officials about their local events maybe suggested that the balance was just about right. So a big thank you to all those who made this an excellent weekend."
British Cycling Cycle Sport Events Manager Jonathan Day added: “Eighteen months ago we embarked on re-introducing and changing the delivery and structure of the commissaire conferences. Last year was the first year and the feedback then was extremely positive so again this year we have opted for a similar format of inter-regional delivery.
“Once again the response from across the six disciplines of the sport has been fantastic. Commissaires and officials dedicate a phenomenal amount of their own time and are at the forefront of supporting events ranging from the very grass roots through to major domestic and international events. It was great to get them kick started at our new home in Manchester and it was fantastic to see like-minded people come together from across the disciplines to listen, contribute and learn in a positive environment. We know how passionate we all are about this sport and commissaries and officials are no different, they play such a key role as we continue to grow and develop the competitive structure.
“If the feedback from today’s conference is anything to go by the 2012 season looks set to be a resounding success!”
The next conference will take place in Walsall on Sunday 12 February before the conferences head south to Bristol on Saturday 3 March and conclude in Hillingdon on Sunday 4 March.
All the feedback and suggestions from the conferences will be noted and will help to further shape the direction of the Cycle Sport Education programme in terms of discipline specific issues, commissaire communication, education and support.