4 -> 5 sections

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by MoominDave, Nov 13, 2003.

  1. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    Why did bands change from 4 to 5 sections in, oh, 1992 or whichever year it was? Was it simply that there were too many bands in each section? This was shortly before my time on the contest scene, and I've never heard much about it.

  2. Jo Elson

    Jo Elson Member

    I was going to say there are only four sections, but I realised my error. Can't say I've known any different an I have been banding for about 9years.
  3. Di B

    Di B Member

    I believe it was to do two things... 1) Reduce the number of bands in each section and 2) To reduce in particular the numbers of Championship section bands.

    The extra section saw a few section jumps.... for example, a band at the top of the fourth section moved to the second section. This led to sucess in a few camps but did make a lot of bands struggle.

    It did make the 4th section entries for NEMBBA be less than 30 bands again though, which was good!

    I remember a lot of Championship section bands were moved to the new 1st section - I will probably be corrected on this but I seem to remember people saying that they wanted the Championship bands to be a real cut above the rest too - the elite sort of thing.

    I thought it was earlier than 92ish but my memory is not what it was in my older years! ;-)
  4. Dave Payn

    Dave Payn Active Member

    Trouble is, in London, the problem's still there. Not in the upper reaches, but the lower ones. 35 bands in the London and Southern Counties 4th section at the regionals in quite common!
  5. Accidental

    Accidental Supporting Member

    I thought it was primarily to bridge the gap in standard between 2nd and Championship sections. Imho it used to be huge, and adding the 1st section did work - certainly in L&SC anyway.
    1992 is right according to the 4br results archive.

    edit: makes sense now!!!
  6. GJG

    GJG Well-Known Member

    My understanding was that it was less to do with numbers, and more to do with the perceived gap between the standard of bands at the top of the (old) Second section and the bottom of the Championship section. In other words, bands getting promoted from 2nd to Championship found themselves struggling too much with the sudden increase in difficulty of the test-pieces. As I understood it, the new First section was intended to provide a kind of "buffer", making the transition less severe.

    I have to say, I am not convinced that it has really worked, and I don't really know why not. As far as I can see, there is still a huge gap (at least in some areas of the country) between 1st & Champ. section bands. At Egham, we find ourselves in the slightly ridiculous situation where, because of a few reasonable placings at the regionals, we are in danger of being promoted to championship section status after next years regionals if we come anywhere near the top. No-one in the band would profess that we were anywhere near Championship standard, yet the points/grading system in operation means that we could easily find ourselves competing in the Championship section in 2005!

    Don't really know what the solution is.



    [edit: Rats! Beaten to it]
  7. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    Oh, and another related question: Was the change at all inspired by the reorganisation of the Football League that took place at around about the same time?

  8. Seedhouse

    Seedhouse Active Member

    Lol! :lol: Probably! :roll: Always thought they were very similar!
  9. EIBB_Ray

    EIBB_Ray Member

    For the foreigner, can someone explain (in brief) the promotion of bands. I think I understand that bands are promoted up sections as they succeed in rankings (by virtue of contest placement?) So, does that necessitate that bands are dropped sections as well?

    We are in a situation in the states where once you elevate (usu. voluntarily, except I think if you win 3 consecutive campionships in your section you have to elevate or sit out a year.) anyway, once you elvate to a higher section you can't go back down without petition. So the question is always about the bottom of the Championship section versus the top of the honors (our next section) section, which are actually better, who belongs where. We don't have the "benefit" of multiple contests, so I'm not sure how we could implement a similar system, just thinking.
  10. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    In the London area, anyway, they simply add up your placings at the area qualifying contest from the previous three years - the lowest two or three totals (depending on section size) go up; the highest two or three totals go down. There are some additional rules, but I think that all areas in the UK run on these broad principles. In other words, only one contest a year goes towards your placing.

    Your system for relegation sounds a bit of a nightmare...

  11. Accidental

    Accidental Supporting Member

    I think winning the finals gives you automatic promotion too?
  12. EIBB_Ray

    EIBB_Ray Member

    once you've arrived it's much more permanent. Gotta remember we're talking about 30 or so bands that compete, once a year, one championship,, no regionals etc. There are a couple of other comeptitions but they don't relate to each other in any way. So for most bands it's really not about winning, it's about playing and having fun (at least we keep telling ourselves that.)
  13. Okiedokie of Oz

    Okiedokie of Oz Active Member

    The U.S system sounds like Qld/Oz
  14. Straightmute

    Straightmute Active Member

    All the Regions are (should be) using an identical system as defined in the National Rules.

    I seem to remember that the 1st section was introduced (a) to bridge the wide gap between 2nd and Championship, and (b) to allow the Championship to become more of an 'elite' section, with fewer bands. This seemed to happen at first (through an instruction from the old NCC that Championship Sections should be limited to a maximum of 10 bands), but since their replacement by the BFBB this is no longer applied in some regions.

  15. BeatTheSheep

    BeatTheSheep Member

    I would agree that there is a big gap between the1st and championship section, and previously it must have been even worse. We have a similar situation in the north west counties association (n.b. NOT the north west area, this lot are organised) where 1st and championship are grouped together for lack of numbers. The key is not to get to top section status until you are really ready for it and have the infrastructure/ feeder band or whatever it takes to support you. Otherwise a couple of players leave and you're stuffed. Which can happen when you come last in your first championship section contest.

    The good thing about our local area contests, however, is that you earn points off four different contests a year. I wish the area championships were the same!