BAFRA Newsflash

Issue: 10/14

13th March 2014


We Keep Getting Bigger!

Once again the support for the Convention has been fantastic. We now have 88 people registered to attend which is fantastic. Thanks to everyone for registering well in advance. I’m sure there are a few more people out there who have still to confirm whether or not they can come along.

88 and counting

The following 88 members have booked their places at the Convention. If you are not listed it may be because you have only recently confirmed your place in the last couple of days. A final list will be issued next week. If you registered prior to the 13th March and your name is not on the list please send an email to

S Alger, M Allen, J Bennett, F Bevans, A Binns, J Briggs, J Brookes-Lewis, A Brooks, R Brown, D Burridge, M Burrows, C Caroll, D Carr, M Cavanagh, P Clarke, A Cockerill, M Cockerill, G Coleman, T Cripps, I Davies, R Davis, S Egan, T Fisher, G Galloway, K Gambrill, M Gibson, Mz Gibson, K Glover, R Goodgroves, R Grace, J Graveling J Griffin, B Griffiths, P Haddad, S Halls, D Hewitt, R Hill, D Holt, H Horner, J Ikins, B Jacquin, C Jarvis, D Knight, A Lambert, L Lebolt, T Lindeman, A Lovell, J Malia, J Merideth, D Morton, A Newsham, R Newton, T Ockendon, C Olsson, D Parsons, P Parsons, E Paterson, M Prentice, A Price, H Richardson, J Roberts, P Roberts, R Samples, C Sandle, I Sneddon, S Sombati, K Stanton, D Sterling, P Sutton, S Tabberner, L Taylor, S Taylor, P Thom, F Thomson, S Tonkinson, R Vernon, I Wainwright, D Walsh, K Wickham, C Willox, A Wilson, M Wilson, H Wiltshire, L Wood, L Wooton, D Wright, B Yates & C Young .

Last Call!

The closing date for registering to attend the Convention has been extended to Monday 17th March. You can still come along if you decide nearer the time however we will only have Convention packs, DVD’s, lunch and Dinner for those who pre-register before this date. Also worth noting is that the accommodation subsidy for the event will not be available after this date.

Andrew and I have a conference call with the Convention Centre on Tuesday 18th March where we need to confirm numbers and subsequently make a payment. Full details of the Convention and accommodation rates can be found at this link:


Payment for Convention rooms are due by Thursday 20th March, and cheques should be made payable to BAFRA Ltd and sent to Charles Young at 8 Shaw Square, Earby, Barnoldswick, Lancashire, BB18 6SF. Cheques may not be cashed till this date.

If you wish to pay out of game fees please send an email to If paying electronically please quote booking reference and name and use the account numbered 10255350, sort code 16-16-11, BAFRA Ltd, RBS, Cheetham Hill, Manchester. Please let us know by email if you use this method to

Davie Parsons


Applications are invited from BAFRA members who would like to be a member of this important committee. It’s role include the selection of officials for all UK Bowl Games, NFL Chain Crews and IFAF Panel.

In accordance with the rules of this committee two places are vacated every year and as a result two places will shortly be available. Please submit an Expression of Interest to me by no later than 2nd April 2014.

If anyone is considering applying who has not served previously on a BAFRA you are welcome to contact me for an informal discussion about the role and requirements.

Richard Vernon


CRPs were received from the following games this week:

Oxford, NTU Renegades, Bath Killer Bees, Stirling Clansmen, Hertfordshire Hurricanes, Portsmouth Destroyers, RHUL Bears, Brighton Tsunami, Swansea Titans, Birmingham Lions, UCH Sharks, Imperial Immortals, Kent

In addition, for the 2nd Round Play Off Games will all Referees ensure that your Payment Request either to BAFRA or to the team is for £275.00. £75 for BAFRA and £200 for the crew.

Jonathan Ikins


This is a reminder that the Annual General Meeting of BAFRA Limited will take place at 5:00pm on 5th April 2014 at Yarnfield Park Training & Conference Centre, Yarnfield, Stone, Staffordshire ST15 0NL during the Convention. The agenda papers will go out this week. Please note that all members are entitled to attend.

The period for nominations period for the Director posts has now closed and the following nominations were received:

Nominated for President

David Parsons (#425); proposed by Steve Tonkinson (#99), seconded by Les Connor (#152)

Nominated for General Secretary

Paul Sutton (#312); proposed by Mike Cavanagh (#465), seconded by William Marriage (#293)

Nominated for Director of Training

Pete Thom (#200); proposed by Brian Yates (#29), seconded by Ian Papworth (#366)

Nominated for Director without Portfolio #1

Martin Cockerill (#345); proposed by Larry Rigby (#269), seconded by Alisha Cockerill (#573)

In accordance with our Regulations, all of the above will be automatically elected at the AGM.

Paul Sutton


The BUCS Semi-finals will be played on this date and the fixtures will not be known until Sunday evening. In addition 3 pre-season games are also scheduled, the home teams will be Bury (Suffolk), Ouse Valley and Shropshire. While we will try to assign officials to the pre-season games before Monday it must be recognised that changes may be necessary due to the results of the play-off games. Again it is really important you have updated Arbiter if you are not available on this date.

Thanks for your continued co-operation.

Richard Vernon


The Senior and Under 19 league schedule begin on 13th April. It is therefore really important that you update Arbiter to show us when you are not available.

I will give full details of the league schedule, and other operational matters, at the Convention on Sunday 6th April. However we do intend to schedule for games on 13th and 20th April during March so we need you to ensure your availability is correct.

Richard Vernon


I received the following from Ashley Allen:

As you are aware, I am shortly moving abroad. Although it has taken a little while longer than expected to get to where I am now, barring some major unforeseen occurrence it looks as though I will be moving to live with my wife Lisa in Minnesota fairly soon.

At this stage though, I wanted to express my gratitude to all within BAFRA that have helped me to learn about the world’s greatest game and given me the opportunity to officiate it in the UK, especially those in the South East that I regularly worked with. I will carry very fond memories of my time within BAFRA and will keep in touch with the good friends I have made through it. I look forward to seeing it grow from strength to strength. Thank you once again.

I know that I will seriously consider looking into officiating football once again in the future through the Minnesota sports associations, however for now my focus will be on preparing to move and this partly involves watching money and trying to cut down on what I need to take away with me. At this moment in time that means that I will be looking to give my officiating kit a new home as well. I have the following kit for sale and am open to offers:

I hope that this kit can be of great help possibly to someone new taking up officiating. Despite the variation in kit sizes with some items, all fit me comfortably with Under Armour on and I am medium build just under 6ft tall.

Members can contact me if interested on my e-mail address of

Paul Sutton


If you are asked to mentor someone, don't worry if you haven't done it before. The first step is to take the new member through the Induction Training Manual, which can be found in the members' area of the website. This has 10 modules gradually introducing the rules, mechanics and other aspects of officiating.

The amount of time to go through this will vary with each new member but a guide line would be between 7 and 12 hours. This can be done over a couple of days or a couple of weeks depending on the trainee and the amount of time you have to spare.

Where possible, invite them along to your games while they train, they can then observe what they have recently covered with the training manual. Perhaps they could run a backup clock after learning the timing rules.

When they have completed the training modules you should contact the Director of Training who will send them the competency exam, the pass mark is 80% and if they pass this then they are ready to go on the field.

Ideally their first game will have a crew of 5 with them at Line Judge where they can be shadowed for at least some of the game by the Back Judge, when they settle in the Back Judge can move to their proper position for the remainder of the game.

If you have any questions feel free to contact the directors of training or recruitment.

James Meredith


Following on from the past two years when a total of nearly £2500 has been raised, BAFRA will again select a charity to support this year.

All members are invited to suggest a charity for us to support in 2014 and a ballot to decide which is to be this year’s charity will be held on the Saturday of the Convention. All members present will be entitled to vote on this. If you have a suggestion, please let me know via e-mail by 17th March. Please include the name of the charity, a short description of the charity’s purpose and a link to their website.

Paul Sutton


On the next two weekends we have large crews for the playoffs. If you are training someone or know of associates near you I'd encourage you to invite them along. They can help with the chains and may find the larger crew interesting.

James Meredith


Championship Playoffs

Stirling 38 – 0 Sheffield Hallam

Hertfordshire 17 – 14 UWE

Brighton 38 – 0 Sunderland

Birmingham 55 – 0 Cambridge

Durham 24 – 12 Loughborough

Imperial 14 – 12 Derby

Bath 34 – 17 Kingston

Sheffield 14 – 6 Southampton

Trophy Playoffs

Swansea 54 – 34 Newcastle

Portsmouth 8 – 26 UCLAN

Leeds Carnegie 30 – 6 Nottingham

NTU 28 – 29 Exeter

Royal Holloway 23 – 14 East Anglia

Kent 6 – 0 Surrey

Glasgow 42 – 19 Brunel

Hull 16 – 12 LJM Fury









New this week

Andrew Messiha


Sunderland Spartans



After the play was over player grabbed the facemask of an opponent and pulled it sharply to the ground in an obvious attempt to injure.


Steven Kilgannon


Liverpool Fury



Player was seen punching an opponent during a dead ball melee


Previous weeks – none





New this week

Royal Holloway Bears

Royal Holloway's ground is Rugby pitch width rather than American Football pitch width. The Ambulance booked by the home team did not arrive on time. The home team management kept us informed of the position on the coverage but this was optimistic (due to what the ambulance was reporting). In the end the game kicked off at 2.50pm rather than 1pm and was reduced to 10 minute quarters to allow UEA's coach to depart with sufficient time for the driver to get it home.

Keith Wickham #423

16/03/14 v Hull Sharks

Portsmouth Destroyers

Field markings were extremely faint - only barely discernible in places. Only 9 yards between the 10-yard line and the goal line at one end. No coaching box or team area lines. Balls provided were in poor condition, one went soft almost immediately and had to be replaced. Changing rooms not lockable. Chain crew provided but then disappeared off to the local shop and returned only just before the scheduled kickoff time.

Kickoff was scheduled for 3pm. On arrival, Portsmouth notified us that the paramedic would be late - his ETA was 3.15-3.30. We agreed then to delay the kickoff until 3.20, but in fact he did not arrive until 3.58 and we kicked off at 4.01.

Jim Briggs #31


Brighton Tsunami

Well marked field in blue with other markings in white and yellow. No team area markings which were marked out with cones instead. Goal posts set back approximately 8 feet from the end line against the fence that surrounded the field. KO delayed by 5 minutes due to issues with home team roster and card check.

Tim Ockendon #481


Swansea Titans

The field was a 3g surface with multiple field markings for various sports, the football markings were in blue, with non football marking for a rugby field in white.

Colin Edwards #76

16/03/14 v UCLan Rams

Hull Sharks

100 yard field with 10 yard end zones, no nine yard marks, NFL style hashmarks. Whole chain crew was changed during the first half, the new assistants were very slow. Couldn't get back in to the changing rooms at half time because they were locked and nobody was sure of the whereabouts of the key. Crew were not paid as the home team did not have enough cash on the day.

Dan Holt #371


Outstanding items from previous weeks - none



New this week

Play: A's ball on B's 8, 3rd and 2. The score is tied with ten seconds remaining in the 4th quarter. A23 advances to B's 7 where he is downed. B76 is offside. Two seconds remain on the clock. Ruing? Clock?

Last week

Play: Time is running out towards the end of the 4th quarter. Team A are losing by 1 points and have 3rd and 15 on the Team B 20 yard line, Team A decide to go for a field goal. The kick is blocked by B90 behind the line of scrimmage. The ball bounces backwards and rolls out of bounds on the team B 25 yard line. The ball never crossed the line of scrimmage. There are 3 seconds left on the clock when the ball goes out of bounds. Ruling? Next play? Clock?

Ruling: When a scrimmage kick goes out of bounds or comes to rest between the goal lines, the ball belongs to the receiving team at that spot (6-3-7). When a field goal does not touch cross the neutral zone or is touched by team B beyond the neutral zone, it is treated in exactly the same way as a normal scrimmage kick (8-4-2-b-2). Therefore team B get the ball at their own 25 yard line. The clock will start on the snap. Team B will take a knee to win the game.

Thanks to Keith Wickham for this question!


New this week

Game Situation: 1st and goal on team B's 9 yard line. How should the Back Judge position himself and then move to ensure the best possible coverage of the developing play?
Answer next issue...

Last week

Play: 1st and 10 on team B's 45 yard line. A84 runs a post pattern and is heading towards the end zone pursued by defensive back B21. The QB passes the ball. The Back Judge jogs backwards and arrives at the goal line moments before B21 intercepts the legal forward pass somewhere between the goal line and Team B's 1 yard line. B21's momentum carries him into his own end zone. Ruling?
Answer: In this situation, in which there is clearly some doubt as to exactly where B21 intercepted the ball, we apply when in doubt principle M-6-1-24. When in doubt, it is a touchback rather than a momentum exception. Team B's ball on the B20, 1st and 10.




Contact for details


March 29th (Sat)

BUCS Final

April 5th (Sat) & 6th (Sun)

BAFRA Annual Convention 2014

May 10th (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

July 19th (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

November 15th (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

BAFRA Directors


David Parsons

General Secretary

Paul Sutton


Andrew Lovell


Richard Vernon


James Meredith


Pete Thom

Director without Portfolio #1

Martin Cockerill

Director without Portfolio #2

Steve Tonkinson

The opinions expressed in this Newsflash are those of the contributors, and not necessarily of BAFRA or its Directors.

All Incident Reports to be submitted via

Deadline for articles submitted by email ( is midnight Tuesday.

Editor: Dean Wright - Email: