Issue 05/17                                                                                25th February 2017

BAFRA Newsflash


Week 1 Update

Although Convention details were only released in last week’s Newsflash we have had a very good response so far. For those not already registered details are below. Please remember that you need to register even if you are not using the accommodation at Yarnfield. We will add more details regarding the Convention Programme, and events on the Saturday night as soon as they are finalised

46 and counting

The following 46 members have registered to attend the Convention. If you are not listed, it may be because you have only recently confirmed your place in the last couple of days. An updated list will be issued next week.

Jim Briggs, Amir Brooks, Roger Brown, Derek Burrige, Martin Cockerill, Ian Davies, Steve Egan, Barbara Favre-Derez, Tim Fisher, James Ford-Bannister, Ronnie Gaffin, Martin Gibson, Kenny Glover, Roger Goodgroves, Ben Griffiths, Steven Hall, Krister Halvorsen, Graham Hedges, David Hewitt, Dan Holt, Heather Horner, Keith Lakeman, Steve Leonard, Tzvi Lindeman, Adrian Miller, Darryl Morton, Andrew Murrell, Christian Olsson, Davie Parsons, Pete Parsons, Euan Paterson, Jack Pearce, Henry Richardson, Mike Roberts, Ian Sneddon, Kevin Stanton, Darran Sterling, Paul Sutton, Lee Taylor, Susannah Taylor, Pete Thom, Frank Thomson, Keith Wickham, Mark Wilson, Dean Wright, Brian Yates.

Guest Speaker

Jim Farmer will be our Guest of Honour and main speaker at the Convention. Jim is an experienced Official and a veteran of many Officiating Clinics and Conventions. We are thrilled he has accepted our invitation and are sure our members will benefit greatly from his attendance. We are certain that like all our previous guests he will make many new friends and will leave with lots of fond memories.


The Convention will be held at Yarnfield Park Training & Conference Centre, Yarnfield Lane, Yarnfield, Staffordshire, ST15 0NL. Yarnfield Park is a leading Training and Conference centre in the heart of the UK.. Please look over the facility on their website where you can also find details of the location and directions.


To register to attend the Convention, you need to send an email to Sean Welsh at Again we will be making up personalised Convention Packs, Presentation handouts, Game Film DVD, Programme of Events, Game Day Paperwork, etc. As such you do need to pre-register.


As mentioned above we are trying to make the Convention more accessible to everyone. This year we have again negotiated excellent rates for accommodation which are detailed below. In addition, the BAFRA Board has also agreed to provide some funding to keep down the costs. The rates indicated are per room and include all discounts and a full breakfast.

Twin Room: £40.00 per night (So if you share with someone it will only cost you £20.00 per night).

Single Room: £40.00 per night.

Remember, to take advantage of the above rates you must book your room with Sean at


Payment for Convention rooms are due by 19th March and payment can be made electronically or by cheque.

By cheques; with full payment included, should be made payable to BAFRA Ltd and sent to Charles Young at 25 Daffodil Close Haslingden Rossendale BB4 6NG. Cheques may not be cashed till this date.

By electronic payment; please ensure your payment reference is your full name and BAFRA number e.g. “Roger Brown 469” and use the account number 10255350, sort code 16-16-11, BAFRA Ltd, RBS, Cheetham Hill, Manchester.

By electronic payment plan; It is appreciated that some people may wish to spread the cost and make multiple payments over the weeks leading up to 19th March. Please use the same instructions as above. If you wish to make multiple payments, then you must make the payments electronically and not by cheque.

Please let us know how you wish to pay by including this information in your email to Sean Welsh at when you register.

Game Fees

Unfortunately, payment for the Convention cannot be taken from Game Fees. The administration work involved is far too time consuming and does not fit well with our newly introduced process of paying games Fees by direct transfer to your bank account.

Friday Night

Last year 85 people stayed on the Friday night to save an early rise and travel on the Saturday morning. As such the above rates are available again for both the Friday and Saturday nights.  As the event promises to be our biggest and best for a while we would recommend booking your room as early as possible. You can do this at the same time you register to attend.

Ian Sneddon & Susannah Taylor

Convention Delivery Team


The nomination papers have been sent to all qualified members and nominations for the four director post due for election at the AGM must be received by 5:00pm on Saturday 4th March. As always, I will publish a list of the nominations received to date in Newsflash each week. By 2:00pm on Wednesday 22nd February, the following had been received:

The Directors encourage members to put themselves forward for all of the above posts. If members require details of any of the four posts, or wish to discuss anything about the responsibilities involved, they should feel free to contact me or, if they prefer, another Director for further information.

Paul Sutton 



We have 20 play-off games on this date.  Currently we have fewer than 85 qualified officials showing themselves available for assignments.  As you will appreciate, we need to supply officials to every play-off game.  Can every official currently shown unavailable carefully consider if he/she is able to work a game on this date.  Please ensure Arbiter accurately reflects your availability.


Once the play-off games are confirmed we will try to assign everyone as soon as we can.  Full details of BAFRA fees payable for  play-off  games are contained in the Members Handbook

It has also now been confirmed that the BUCS Bowl Final and the Tier 1 Final will take place at Sixways Stadium, Worcester on Sunday 26th March 2017.  Officials selected to work these finals will be notified shortly. Again can you ensure that your Arbiter information is up to date to assist us in the selection process.


Richard Vernon


Susannah Taylor and Sean Welsh were appointed over 18 months ago as the BAFRA media team.  Sean has had to step down from the position recently because of work commitments and the directors would like to thank him for all of his contributions.  Susannah has held the fort alone since Sean stepped down but that is not a situation that can continue for the long term.  Following discussions with Susannah, it has been agreed that we will appoint an assistant to support her in this role. It involves managing BAFRA’s presence on various social media platforms and, when appropriate, other media, and working with the soon to be appointed new Director of Recruitment and his or her team supporting work to grow the number of BAFRA members. For more information about the role, please contact Susannah on If you think you may be interested in helping out, please let me know by 5:00pm on 11 th March 2017.

All members, especially those considering applying for the vacancy, should familiarise themselves with the BAFRA Social Media Guidance, a copy of which may be found in the Member’s Handbook at:

Paul Sutton 


For some years now, BAFRA members have selected the charity they wish to support. As in previous years, all members attending the Saturday of the AGM will have the opportunity to vote from a list of nominations submitted by members. If you would like to nominate a charity for members to support, please send the name of the charity to me by 5:00pm on 14th March 2017.

Paul Sutton 


In a recent game, Tom Fields of the MMU Eagles was disqualified for two unsportsmanlike fouls. On Tom's behalf the team appealed the disqualification and the player has been playing under appeal. The appeals panel have denied the appeal and therefore Tom must serve his one game suspension this week against De Montfort University. The team are aware of this and have confirmed that he will not play in this game.

David Knight 









New this week - none

Previous weeks - none





New this week

York Centurions

Pitch is well marked, though is a hike and half from the car park to the changing rooms and they same again to the pitch.

Murray Gibson #268


Sussex Saxons

Chain crew were poor - other sport markings also in white

26/02/17 v Reading Knights

UEL Titans

Field does not appear to have been remarked in some time. External lines were generally visible, but solid lines every 5 yards were very faint in areas of the middle of the field. The inbound hash marks were generally invisible. Only 4 pylons available. These were placed at the intersection of the sidelines and goal lines. Two of the post protectors fell off during the game, requiring a delay to fix. The bottom of the down box was not available. A workaround was created by taping a soccer corner flag found lying against a fence to the top half of the down box. Officials assistants were changed during half time, requiring some retraining. Away team had to provide one ball boy.

Steve Leonard #370


Kent Falcons

Field was ok with dark red markings, the hashes was narrower than needed and the team areas were shown only with cones.

Viktor Janvari #63

26/02/17 v Cambridge Pythons

Bangor Muddogs

No coaching line at 6 feet. Field markings were yellow on a green surface. This was the second of two games played at the same venue on the day, there had been constant drizzle throughout both games, by the second half the field markings in the middle of the field were for all intents and purposes non-existent and will need remarking before the next game to be played at this venue (past experience at this venue suggest the groundsman will re-mark the field, so this should be a non-issue). No towels were provided for ball-persons. Home team only provided 3 officials assistants, one ball-persons was provided by BAFRA the other provided by the visitors. Changing room was shared with members of the public and was not-secured.

Ben Griffiths #228


Edinburgh Predators

Team Area marked with cones. Home team were only able to provide 2 adequate game balls. Game started 40 min late due to late finish of 1st game of doubleheader

Shawn Sombati #15


Heriot Watt AFC

No Team Area markings, cones had to be used.

Shawn Sombati #15


Hull Sharks

Muddy field which could very easily cut up in poor weather. Head Coach removed mobile phones from Chain Crew during 2nd qtr, Game Management excellent.

Daniel Johnston #347


LJM Fury

No team or coach areas marked out, but some non-football lines that were used as a guide. Changing facilities not lockable, and had to be shared with soccer referees.

John Roberts #145


Sheffield Hallam Warriors

80 yard field with 10 yard endzones.  No 3 yard marks or limit member of the chain crew was replaced at half time whilst the ball person on the home sideline was moved to the opposite sideline to help him do his job and not 'chest bump' the Hallam players!  Team areas were missing but we used other sports lines to solve the problem.

Dan Holt #370


Swansea Titans

Officials had to use a public changing room in the sports centre adjacent to the field as the usual officials’ changing room was being used for a rugby match on the neighbouring field. Field markings were very faint. No nine-yard marks, limit lines or separate player / coach areas. One ballboy was changed during the first half.

Amir Brooks #593


UCL Emperors

Team areas marked out with cones. Numbers too small at 9 yard marks.

Lee Mills #70


BNU Buccaneers

The markings on this field were of a very poor standard. Although all of the required lines were present, you would be hard pressed to describe any as "straight". The field bulged in the middle and then the sideline curved in at one end. The hash marks were somewhere between NFL and NCAA spacing, and appeared to have been marked in sets independent of each other, so as you cross a main line, the next set might be a yard to your left. The lines were also very faint in places, particularly on the sidelines by the team areas. The "chains" are not in fact chain, but a piece of paracord string between the poles, so there was nowhere to put the clip on. Due to these issues, the chains were used as definitive with no measurements. The changing facility prior to the game was the club shop as all other rooms were in use, although we were able to use a changing room after the game, but it also doubled as the cleaning store. Aside from these issues, the game was played in a good spirit by both teams who just wanted to get on and play the game.

Andrew Murrell #608


NTU Renegades

Field markings in yellow but otherwise very good. Team areas marked between 30 yard lines. Crew had to wait 10 minutes after the game for the changing room to be unlocked.

Jed Brookes-Lewis #395


Leeds Gryphons

Small changing room for large crew. 80 yd pitch. No sideline hash marks.

Daniel Johnston #347


Outstanding items from previous weeks

UCLan Rams

Field was marked in yellow and was barely visible by the end of the game. No team or coach areas marked.

Stuart Alger #179


Napier Knights

90 yard field with team area marked out with cones. Game kicked off 10 minutes late while waiting for minimum medical cover to be meet. Cover had been arranged but gone to the wrong venue and then gotten stuck in roadworks

Henry Richardson #25


Lancaster Bombers

Pitch only 80 yards long no team area markings.  Pitch marked in blue with other sport marking on the field.

Tony Newsham #302

26/02/17 v York Centurions

Hertfordshire Hurricanes

No medical coverage was forthcoming so game abandoned after waiting 1 hour despite attempts by the home team to secure adequate coverage.

Brian Yates #29

26/02/17 v Birmingham Lions

Sussex Saxons

Game was suspended with 1 minute remaining in the 2nd quarter due to a serious injury. Both coaches agreed to forgo the remainder of the quarter. The game was resumed 95 mins later once the injured player had been removed by ambulance.

Simon Ryan #408

26/02/17 v Reading Knights

Heriot-Watt AFC

90 yard field, no team area marked

Henry Richardson #25

26/02/17 v Napier Knights

Royal Holloway Bears

The field is 100 yards long with proper football goalposts, but the field surface is very deep in wet conditions, as we had today. Team area markings were non-existent and we had problems getting enough helpers for the chain crew and ball persons. Changing room is a closable room inside the men's changing rooms, so it may not be fully proper with ladies on the crew.

Viktor Janvari #63

26/02/17 v Imperial Immortals

Gloucester Gladiators

Away team coach was 2 hours delayed. KO was moved to 2pm at the agreement of everyone involved. With 4 minutes left in the 1st quarter one of Bath Spa players had a head/neck injury and an ambulance was needed, the player was left waiting for an ambulance for 2 hours. Game abandoned at Half time due to bad light at 5.10pm both coaches agreed.

Sean Welsh #458


Derby Braves

One set of goals so one way mechanics used. Team areas marked with cones.

Jed Brookes-Lewis #395

26/02/17 v NTU Renegades

Imperial Immortals

The hash marks in the middle of the field were not lined up with each other and as you looked down the field, it created a nice snaking pattern. Also they were too long in length. In addition there were lines from the rugby markings in the same white colour on the field. Changing room is shared with officials from all other sports taking place at the venue, so although it is locked it has other personnel going in and out of it whilst we are officiating.

Andrew Murrell #608


Birmingham Lions

Field markings were in black and very faint. No 9 yard marks, team areas or limit lines.

Amir Brooks #593


Essex Blades

There were no team or coaches area. Lines in blue were visible but became faint by the end of the game.

John Griffin #598

26/02/17 v Greenwich Mariners

Canterbury Chargers

Well marked 90-yard field with 8-yard end zones, marked in blue with other sport markings in yellow & white. Missing limit lines, numbers & 9-yard marks with coaching line at incorrect depth. Game balls presented were all under-inflated but this was rectified by game management prior to kickoff.

Tim Ockendon #481

26/02/17 v UEL



New this week

Play: 4th and 6 on the A's 49. A5's punt is high and deep, landing on the Team B 5 yard line. The ball bounces high into the air and is coming down near the team B goal line. A45 is standing in the end zone and reaches through the goal line plane and with his hands over the Team B 1 yard line to bat the ball back toward the field of play. The ball does not penetrate the goal line plane. The ball hits B22's leg and is then recovered by A7 on the B5.


Last week

Play:  1st and 10 at Team A’s 4-yard line.  A12, deep in his end zone, throws a forward pass which is muffed by A25 at Team A’s 2-yard line and then caught by A80 at Team A’s 6-yard line. A80 advances to Team A’s 18-yard line. A60 had gone downfield 5 yards before the pass was thrown.  Ruling?

Ruling:  1st and 10 for Team A at their own 18 yard line.  A legal forward pass has crossed the neutral zone when it first strikes the ground, a player, an official or anything beyond the neutral zone inbounds. It has not crossed the neutral zone when it first strikes the ground, a player, an official or anything in or behind the neutral zone inbounds. (2-19-3-a)  Therefore since the ball first touches A25, who is behind the neutral zone, this is NOT a forwards pass crossing the neutral zone.  Therefore there is no ineligible downfield penalty against A60 here (7-3-10), it is a legal play.


New this week

Game Situation: A 4 man crew are covering a passing play.  Both wingmen have left the line of scrimmage to cover deep receivers.  The quarterback throws a pass out wide to an eligible receiver behind the line of scrimmage.  The pass falls shorts though and hits the ground.  Due to the relative positions of the officials and the players there is doubt over if the ball was passed forwards or backwards.  Ruling?

Answer next issue...

Last week

Play: How should a 3 man crew line up for and cover the return on a kick off?

Answer: M-23-2.  The Linejudge should take the kicking team's restraining line, the Linesman the receiving team's restraining line.  The referee should be downfield in the centre of the field covering the goal line.  The Linejudge and the Linesman have responsibility for marking forward progress on their entire respective sidelines.




Contact for details


March 26th (Sun)

BUCS Finals

April 1st & 2nd (Sat / Sun)

BAFRA Convention Weekend

April 1st (Sat)


April 9th (Sun)

BAFANL Season Begins

May 6th (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

July 22nd (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

November 18th (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

BAFRA Directors


David Parsons

General Secretary

Paul Sutton


Charlie Dean Young


Richard Vernon


James Meredith


Pete Thom

Director without Portfolio #1

Peter Parsons

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:

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