Fireworks at BMC AGMThe BMC´s 2003 AGM in Buxton was the best attended for many years and according to several old stalwarts was also amongst the liveliest. The day started with a debate on ´The Future of the BMC´ followed by the main AGM business then the National Open Forum. Mark Vallance took over from Dave Musgrove as BMC President and Louise Thomas was welcomed as new vice-President. Gordon Adshead resumed his role as Treasurer but the bulk of the discussion focused on the proposed subscriptions increases – primarily the result of significant increases civil liability premiums. More than anything, the AGM demonstrated the significant role of the major clubs in setting the direction of the BMC – despite the fact that individual members now out-number club members. The Alpine Club supported by several senior clubs led the opposition to the subscriptions increase on the basis that clubs (quite rightly) needed more time to discuss the implications of the membership options and also needed clarification of how their subscriptions money was spent. After strenuous debate it was agreed that an EGM would be held later in the year to re-visit the issue after a period of consultation between BMC officials and affiliated clubs. The BMC accepts that the AGM resolutions placed the clubs in a difficult, even impossible position and we are firmly committed to working with all clubs and individuals to develop a membership package that suitably reflects the needs of all members.BMC Extraordinary General Meeting – 25 October 2003 The BMC is calling an EGM at 12pm on Sat 25 October to agree membership subscription rates for 2004. All club and individual members are invited to attend the meeting at the BMC Office, 177-179 Burton Rd, Manchester, M20 2BB. The agenda and associated resolutions will be published in Summit 31 in September. See you there. Competitions Lots going on recently in the competition world. The international season kicks off properly very soon with the first World Cups in Imst (Difficulty) and Ekatrinaburg (Bouldering) – good luck to the British Team members who will be attending (Adrian Baxter in Difficulty and Gaz Parry & Malc Smith in Bouldering). The first semi-official Junior International took place over the weekend of 26/27th April and had a large British contingent, when a minibus full of Junior Team members shot off to Marseille following on from a few days training in Fontainebleau. Results from this will appear at www.icc-info.org. Finally, Jemma Powell has recently been awarded the Chorley & District “Sports Personality of the Year award”. Because of this a £300 grant was given to the BMC, which was spent on sending the junior team to Fontainebleau – well done and thanks Jemma! Across the pond we saw some fantastic results from ´Brits´ at the famous Phoenix Bouldering Competition (probably the biggest competition of any kind in the world) – the Under 13 categories were won by Tyler Landmann and Laura Griffiths (Laura would have also won the 14-19 class). Laura is a Brit living in the USA and Tyler is an American living in the UK but he has applied for a UK passport so we´ll claim him as one of our own! Ex-Pat Wills Young was also flying the flag, coming second in the men´s seniors.In other news, competition climbing has been invited to the prestigious World Games in Duisburg (Germany) in 2005. Seen by many as a stepping-stone to full Olympic status, the World Games features a relatively small number of sports. Percy Bishton recently went on a UIAA-ICC International Route Setting course in Aix-en-Provence, and apparently impressed the course tutors with his route and problem setting prowess. Walls As part of the BMC Annual Gathering there was a workshop/debate on the current insurance problems facing climbing walls. Expert input came from, amongst others, Martin Wragg (BMC Honorary Advisor and BMC Individual/Club member), Phil Robbins (manager of the Edge in Sheffield and BMC Peak Area Representative on the Management Committee) and Pat Clews (Perkins Slade – insurers) although Pat was there in her role as BMC Individual member! The debate centred around a number of issues such as whether the BMC should develop an accreditation scheme, attempt to train expert witnesses/insurance representatives etc as to the nature of our sport, develop signing in procedures and how to discourage the current climate of litigation prevalent in society today in the climbing world. An interesting discussion! Injury Research In cooperation with the Sheffield Centre for Sports Medicine, the BMC´s High Performance Steering Group (HPSG) has just started a major survey into the incidence of injury in adolescent climbers. This survey will hopefully lead to a better understanding of how young climbers should train and increase awareness of injury prevention. Al Hinkes choppered off Kanchenjunga It seems Alan will have to wait a little longer before becoming the first Brit to climb all 14 of the world´s 8000m peaks. Alan picked up a bronchial infection of some sort on the approach to the mountain and was unable to continue with his bid – a helicopter evacuation to Kathmandu followed. Alan only has two more mountains to climb in his quest – Kanchenjunga and Dhaulagiri – and still hopes to attempt Kanch later this month.The Heat is on The recent drought-like weather has meant that the Devonshire estate moors around Skipton and Bolton Abbey will be closed from Wednesday 16 April, because of fire risk. Crags affected include Rylstone, Crookrise, Simon´s Seat, Rolling Gate and Deer Gallows. For the latest information, please contact the Estate Office on 01756 710227.There have also been blazes in Lancashire, Wales, The Lake District and Scotland, so please be extra careful out there with cigarette butts and stoves, and PLEASE do not light campfires! LiveLine weather service LiveLine is a unique real time telephone consultancy service, allowing callers to speak in person to a professional forecaster between 08:00hrs – 20:00hrs daily.Accurate weather nowcast and forecast information for the UK and Europe will be available for up to 16 days ahead, providing a very valuable tool for those about to set out into the hills and mountains. LiveLine can be accessed on 09061 992 060 – calls cost £1-50/min + VAT.