Newsletter Archive

Newsletter Archive

British Orienteering
Club Chairs, Club Secretaries, Association Chairs, Association Secretaries
Mike's eNews August 2017

Mike’s eNews – 18 August 2017



Data Protection Act to be Replaced

EGM and the Club & Association Conference

Website and the next update

Incentive Scheme and a request to clubs

Please feel free to forward this eNews to your members; it will be published on the eNews page at; if you’d rather send them a link please feel free to do so.

Apologies for the gap in producing eNews, things have been very busy and priorities have pulled me away from producing an eNews over the summer. Anyway, now things are settling down into some sort of rhythm again I hope to be able to return to producing an eNews each month.


Many of you will know that we have gone through a prolonged period of change driven by the reduction in government funding that has impacted across governing bodies of sport. British Orienteering has maintained funding from Sport England but at a level approximately 40% below that of the previous funding cycle.

This has resulted in a widespread restructuring of the staff and British Orienteering now has the following staff structure:

Chief Executive, Mike Hamilton – normally full time but in the interim whilst a new CEO is recruited I’m officially working half-time but realistically considerably more.

Development Manager, Craig Anthony – Full-time

Accounts Manager, Jannette Blunden – Full-time

Orienteering Services Officer, Dan Riley – 2 days a week funded from reserves

Administrator, Scott Parker – Full-time

Administrator, Liz Goodwin – Part-time, 3 days a week

Additionally, there are several positions fully dependent on funding:

England Development Officers x2, Nat Weir & Tim Herod – full-time; another two full-time officers are being recruited all funded by Sport England

Communications Officer, Jennie Taylor – full time funded by Sport England

Orienteering Services Officer (England), Dan Riley – 1 day a week funded by Sport England

Northern Ireland Active Clubs Coordinator, Juls Hanvey – full time funded by Sport Northern Ireland.

If you keep up to date with the news items on the website you will be aware that I have informed the Board that I wish to retire and have agreed to work half-time until a new CEO can be recruited and take up position.

I’ve really enjoyed my time with orienteering and I regret having to depart however I’m getting older and there are a few things I want to do before I’m too old to enjoy them!

Data Protection Act to be replaced

The Government has recently confirmed that it will implement the General Data Protection Regulation (EU 2016/679) (“GDPR”) which will replace the current Data Protection Act by 25 May 2018. The GDPR aims to give individuals more control of their personal data including clearer erasure rights and a right to be told when personal data has been hacked. The announcement, in the Queen’s Speech, ended speculation that the Government might adopt a light touch approach following Brexit.

We will be providing you with more information about how this regulation will be implemented and what it will mean for your club over the next few months.

EGM and the Club & Association Conference

An Extraordinary General Meeting of British Orienteering has been called to take place at The Studio, Riverside West, Whitehall Road, Leeds, LS1 4AW on Saturday, 14th October 2017 at 11:00 am.

The EGM has been called to make a number of changes to the Articles of Association:

  1. To formally include the Isle of Man in the territories over which British Orienteering governs the sport of orienteering. The Isle of Man is a self-governing British Crown dependency in the Irish Sea between England and Ireland, not a part of the UK & NI and is currently not included in the territories covered by British Orienteering.
  2. To clarify the situation regarding Directors who have served their maximum term in office. Currently, the situation is unclear and we would like to follow the good practice identified in the new governance code by making it a minimum period of 4-years during which a director cannot stand again. This is in line with good practice and a change required by Government.
  3. To clarify the membership of the Appointments Panel that is used to make nominations to the Board regarding independent directors. This is also in line with the new Governance Code of Practice and required by Government.

Every member of British Orienteering over 16 is entitled to attend and vote. A member is entitled to appoint another person as their proxy to exercise all or any of their rights to attend and to speak and to vote at the meeting.

The Studio is situated in Leeds City Centre just a 10-minute walk from Leeds Train Station, information on transport and directions can be found here.

The EGM will be followed by the 2017 Club & Association Conference. Your club and association are each entitled to send up to 2 members to represent your views. The theme of the conference will be to consider our competitions and local events and the part they play in delivering our Strategic Plan. This is a theme that should interest everyone as it looks at the heart of the sport from local events through to major events.

Of course, there will also be opportunity for your club or association to raise matters that are important to them and if your club or association has a topic you would like considering for inclusion in the Conference agenda please let us know – it must be an item that you think will be of interest to a wide group of clubs and associations of course.

Website and the next update

The ranking algorithm is being updated on the live website early in September. The changes also include additional views of results and rankings to enable users to drill-down into the results/rankings and make the system more interactive.

As a part of the update the new algorithm will be run across the results from this year which will mean some past ranking scores being changed, hopefully, the anomalies and exceptional scores awarded to some competitors will be removed during this process.

The changes to the algorithm are to address these anomalies and exceptional results and to tidy up a few related matters. The changes include:

  • Outliers (exceptional results) are included in the initial calculations for the course ranking parameters but then the runners whose score would be more than 100 points different from their previous average are ignored for the second final calculation of ranking points.
  • The rule that there must be 10 previously ranked runners on a course before it can be ranked is now unnecessary and has been replaced by the rule that if there are fewer than 8 non-outlier scores on a course the course will be excluded from ranking points being awarded. It is understood that this will make it hard for competitors to judge whether there will be sufficient people on a course to ensure the course receives ranking points.
  • The calculation of the ranking parameters for a course is on the averages of the runner's scores and not on all of the separate scores.
  • The various parameters involved in the calculation are now recalculated on the same basis and included in the second pass of the calculation.
  • The algorithm calculations no longer run immediately after a set of event results are uploaded; the calculations are run as a ‘day batch’ early in the morning. This overcomes a lot of calculation time that was wasted when multiple sets of results for an event were uploaded on the same day – now only the most recent upload of the results for an event will be used to run the calculation.

The changes to the participant experience include:

  • More linking between results, people, scores, etc to allow drilling down into the results and scores.
  • The data can be embedded into websites but drill down is visible only to members.
  • A basic graph of a member’s points over time is available.
  • The Rankings age class view enables drill down.
  • The club ranking points page will allow drill down.

As always it is possible that there will be some initial problems when the system is made live early in September, hopefully, any problems will be few and far between.

Incentive Scheme

Forgive me for repeating an item from the May 2017 eNews but we continue to be contacted by clubs and members regarding the national incentive schemes. We would love clubs to enter the results for more Local (Level D) events so that people can benefit from the incentive schemes. The schemes include the Navigation and Racing Challenges that track individual members progress through the colour coded courses and corresponding technical difficulties. In order for individual members results to be tracked their results need to be uploaded. Results from any event can count towards these awards and with the focus on juniors and newcomers, the importance of uploading Local (level D) results is increased.

The scheme works by allocating results based on course names. To ensure members are recognised for their achievements, courses need to be named using the colour of the course. The system currently requires specific naming to work; any shorthand versions or abbreviations are not recognised. For clarity, the course names recognised are listed below:

Technical Difficulty (TD)

Colour Coded Courses






Orange, Long Orange


Light Green


Very Short Green, Short Green, Green, Short Blue, Blue, Short Brown, Brown, Black

Certificates are awarded electronically after successfully completing 3 colour coded courses at the same technical difficulty. Members are notified directly, via the website and an email, when they have been awarded a certificate. We have noted that there may be an issue for some people with the automatic email system and we’re working with the developers and email hosts to try to address this. Club secretaries have access to the Incentive Report through their member login on the website; other club officials can request access to this if the club thinks it is appropriate. Dome club coaches or development leads have access to enable them to award juniors with printed versions of the certificates.

Best wishes,


'More People, More Places, More Podiums'

For further information about orienteering please visit