Promotion, Relegation, Regional Section Rankings - the system

Discussion in 'The Adjudicators' Comments' started by Al, Nov 5, 2007.

  1. Al

    Al Member

    This was being discussed off topic elsewhere and perhaps it deserves its own thread.

    As I see it (and I am no expert):

    Bands are awarded points based on their performance at the Regional Contests and this will place each band into positions in their respective sections - Championship, 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th.

    However, unlike the obvious similarities with the Football League table system, the top/bottom 2 or 3 do not necessarily get promoted/relegated as I understand the performance in the National Finals can also be taken into consideration. And other things.

    A Bands points are totalled over the previous 3 years performance in the Regionals although when a band is promoted it is awarded the average mark of its new Section over the previous 2 years. Likewise when relegated the average marks are awarded.

    I believe that when a band withdraws or did not compete (DNC) then it is awarded the lowest marked band's points +1.

    In another thread I raised the following observation:

    to which one of the replies made the point:

    So if the organising committee can allow an obviously strong band to jump a section without even competing at the Regionals/Nationals, should they equally have the power to demote a band if a few of them leave?

    Or should there be clear cut rules - the Adjudicators decision is final and the Adjudication should be what governs promotion/relegation etc. not a round the table committee or a nod and a wink or whatever?
  2. Anno Draconis

    Anno Draconis Well-Known Member

    First of all, strictly speaking Timperley folded and reformed several months later with an almost entirely new crop of players (I'm not sure of the exact details) so they presented themselves to the regional committee for grading as a "new" band in accordance with the rules. Since a lot of players in the new band were/are top section standard players I think the committee took the view that it would be unfair on Timperley to make them work themselves up from the bottom and unfair on the other NW bands if Timperley were allowed to compete in the 3rd or 4th section where they would have been almost certain to win every contest by a country mile. Seems perfectly sensible to me.

    [from appendix B of Kapitol's rules, available in full here]

    So Nationals placings are irrelevant unless you win - winning bands in sections 1-4 are automatically promoted. In truth, it's hardly likely that a band whose performances at the area have left them relegated are going to have qualified for the finals and then gone on to win it, so this wouldn't affect relegation issues



    So you are quite right that a band which continues to exist in some form but doesn't compete would be in line for relegation. Timperley ceased to exist, then reformed with different players so this rule doesn't apply.

    To me the rules seem crystal clear, and anyone with a calculator or a copy of MS Excel can work out gradings easily. There is no scope for "a nod and a wink" and I can't really think of a better way of doing it.

    What does need more clarity (and preferably scrapping altogether) are local association gradings. My band (Middleton) are nationally graded 3rd section until January, but locally graded as championship (3 sections higher!), so when we go to local contests we end up playing against bands like Freckleton, Longridge, Ashton, even Besses. No wonder we didn't bother going to Fleetwood. Can anyone explain this to me?
  3. Accidental

    Accidental Supporting Member

  4. Al

    Al Member

    Many thanks for the replies. It all makes sense now.
  5. Forest Gump

    Forest Gump Member

    Sorry to add to this debate but i really do think that the current system (5 sections) is'nt working, the difference in quality within the sections is to large, also all the overflow seems to be shoved to the forth section, how can honestly say that a section with possable 25 bands is fair.
    Also in the top section the gulf is massive between top and bottom as shown in last years area's.
    So why not add another section and make the sections smaller and fairer, also make promotion and demotion on that years results as in football.
  6. brassintheed

    brassintheed Member

    This was tried previously (went from 4 to 5) and things just reverted to how they were.

    What about removing the 'professional' bands from the amateur competition? Form a professional 'Super League' for these. This surely would make things much fairer and could potentially raise the profile of brass bands.
  7. Forest Gump

    Forest Gump Member

    Thank god we did make a extra section, what would off hapened if we did'nt.
    The super league could work though.
  8. Absolute rubbish that two of London and Southern Counties most consistant bands in the championship got relegated this year - Soham and Friary after I think 3 bands didn't even enter and are actually on the brink of disbanding so I understand.
    Its definatly not correct that the system should work like that - after both Soham and Friary put in credible performances and had the band to do it yet the 2 or 3 that pulled out did so - so i understand because they didn't have a band to do it - yet they are still championship section??????? The test piece was a dodgy one anyway - hard to understand and truly master unless the guy in the middle has studied the piece for years.
    Both probably still amongst the best bands in the London area yet 1st section from next January!

    Referance 2 the above few posts I have to agree with putting the 'professional' bands together in one small group (there arn't many - 4 or 5 throughout the country). It does no justice in any way when people (some internet bandsmen websites especially) rattle on about 'really it was only a real contest between the top 4 or were the only ones to master the piece' when other bands get put in the shadow after they have in fact played superbly well. I think people and editors of bandsman websites expect way too much from all the bands at the moment
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2007
  9. hellyfrost

    hellyfrost Member

    This thread has been enlightening for me! Thanks for starting it! :clap:
    I've recently taken on the contest secretary role for Dobcross Silver and I'm still trying to get my head round it all! I never knew there was so much to it!:dunno
  10. towse1972

    towse1972 Active Member

    I have always found this very confusing. I grew up playing in the North-West and moved to Yorkshire in 1993. When I joined my first band in Yorkshire they were in the 3rd section nationally. When I asked the conductor what section they were locally he looked at me as though I had decended from Mars.
    I think (and I'm sure someone will correct me if I'm wrong) that only the North West area do this.
    Surely it should be optional for you to compete at your higher "local" grading? It hardly seems fair.
  11. stevetrom

    stevetrom Well-Known Member

    I had a quick look atthe L&SC grading tables

    Consistent maybe but consistently in the bottom 4/5 will get you relegated I'm afraid.

    The system is designed to reward consistent results over a 3 year period, and the bands that did'nt compete this year will need a really good result to stay up another year.

    Win the 1st section and get yourselves back up :D
  12. Ahhh yes but its funny that through the past 9 years Soham Comrades has only come outside the top 6 twice, and that was 2005 and 2007. Just starting to pick ourselves up again in 2006 with 6th place then that 2007 result which left the band relegated. Ahh I just feel sorry for the band. Its definatly not right that they should be relegated but we have to live with it.
  13. The East Anglian Brass Band association has a similar system I beleive. Newmarket who are 4th section are on the verge of entering the championship section in the local entertainment contest in Norwich which i'm sorry to say would probably cause the band to withdraw!
    EABBA dosn't have any connection with the national grading system though I think.
    This systems definatly not a good idea though
  14. Will the Sec

    Will the Sec Active Member

    From my perspective, Soham should not be relegated. Where there is a a tie, then the band finishing higher in the last contest should be placed higher in the rankings. A band not attending is placed below all the bands that did. In this case, that means Alliance would go down as they did not attend, and Soham stay up.

    It's a simple way of resolving ties, and with the exception of a band winning the Nationals in the lower sections, would prevent promotion or relegation of more than two at a time.
  15. geordiecolin

    geordiecolin Active Member

    A similar system exists in the Durham League which is unrelated to the national gradings and consequently you get bands competing in sections which you wouldn't usually expect.
  16. BIG Paul

    BIG Paul Member

    I often see on here mention of bands playing in a particular section nationally but a higher section locally, does it only work this way or can a band be graded in a lower section locally than they are nationally?
  17. geordiecolin

    geordiecolin Active Member

    Yes it can.

    Last year Westoe were graded as Section C locally in Durham League and 1st Section nationally.

    This year we were still only graded as Section B locally, although we're going into the Championship section nationally in January.
  18. paul johnson

    paul johnson New Member

    Promotion and relegation

    I currently play with Uppermill band and over the last 2 years been consistently placed in the prizes at 95% of the contests we play at I wondered whether the system that is in place for the nationals should cover all the contests that bands enter rather than just the regionals, it has also occured to me that there are two different associations within the north west, one of which we are a 3rd section band the other we are fourth section due to our national grading. It seems crazy.
  19. johnmartin

    johnmartin Active Member

    That's how it works in Scotland. One grading covers all of the bands contesting activities.

    It is.
  20. Anno Draconis

    Anno Draconis Well-Known Member

    It's a silly system, but I could put up with it if it didn't present the silly anomalies like the example I (and geordiecolin) gave before. Had we gone to Fleetwood we would have been playing in the 3rd section at Harrogate and then the following week expected to play in the championship section at Fleetwood. How silly is that? In the event there was no way we could work up a piece of a suitable standard in a week (having previously focussed all our attention on the Nationals piece) so ended up not going, which obviously is not what the local association wants.

    At the very least local gradings and national gradings should be done, and take effect, at the same time. But frankly, wouldn't it be easier simply not to bother and use the National gradings?

    Re a couple of the earlier points: If a couple of bands in L&SC pulled out of the area this year only, and previously did very well, it would be unfair to relegate them for being unable to field a band in one year. Of course if they don't field a band next year the chances are that their 3 year average will be enough to get them relegated. The system is designed to reduce the danger of one bad day at the office relegating an otherwise good band. I'm afraid if the results for Friary and Soham weren't consistently good enough over 3 years to stay up, I'm not sure what the complaint is?

    Also, this concept of a "professional" band - what is that? How would you prove that a band is "professional"? No-one (to my knowledge) even in the top bands in the country earns a living purely from banding, and some, maybe most, players at that level don't earn a penny. I could see the argument for forming a "super-league" of (for instance) the top 6 bands in the 4BR rankings but wouldn't that simply make it harder for bands just outside the top flight to break in?

    I think the reform is needed more at the bottom - I like the suggestions in 4BR's recent editorial about making the rules regarding registration and the like more flexible in the lower sections, and making more contest "own-choice". An extra section, while relieving a bit of pressure in areas like the North West where I think there were 24 bands in the 4th section this year, would spread bands too thinly in some other areas (like the North, perhaps) and lead to sections with two or three bands in them.