Issue 05/18                                                                                9th February 2018

BAFRA Newsflash


Week 3 Update

Although registration has only been open for a couple of weeks, we have already received a very good response, with over a third of our members already registered. For those not already registered please see details below on how to join in. 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 finalized.

63 and counting

The following 63 people have registered to attend the convention. If you are not listed, it may be because you have only recently confirmed your registration. An updated list will be published next week.

Stuart Alger, Francis Bevan, Tom Blakson, Jim Briggs, Roger Brown, Derek Burridge, Darren Carr, Alan Christopher, Martin Cockerill, Graham Coleman, Jeff Dahle, Alisha Darkins, Ian Davies, Steve Egan, Tim Fisher, James Ford-Bannister, Ben Gadsby, Ronald Gaffin, Barry Gent, Martin Gibson, Kenneth Glover, Roger Goodgroves, John Griffin, Ben Griffiths, Steven Hall, David Hewitt, Dan Holt, Heather Horner, Barbara Jacquin, James Kilbane, Bill LeMonnier, Tzvi Lindeman, Richard Madge, Gaby Martinez, Liam McCullough, Jason Mead, Adrian Miller, Darryl Morton, Russell Newton, Ian Papworth, Davie Parsons, Pete Parsons, Euan Paterson, Jack Pearce, Michael Prentice, Henry Richardson, Tony Rivers, Mike Roberts, Graham Smith, Kevin Stanton, Darran Sterling, Paul Sutton, Andrew Swift, Lee Taylor, Susannah Taylor, Pete Thom, Frank Thomson, Steve Tonkinson, Sean Welsh, Richard Whitby,

Mark Wilson, Brian Yates, Stuart Young.

Guest Speaker

Our guest speaker will be Jeff Dahle. He has excellent experience both as an official, and as an instructor and mentor for PAC-12 officials.


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.  I would recommend that you 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, ID Badges, Presentation handouts, Programme of Events, Game Day Paperwork, etc. As such you do need to pre-register.


In our efforts 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:            £44.00 per night (So if you share with someone it will only cost you £22.00 per night)

Single Room:          £44.00 per night

Remember, to take advantage of the above rates you must book your room with Sean at  When you send your email to Sean please provide the following important information:


Payment for Convention rooms are due by 23rd March and payment can be made electronically or by cheque.

By cheque; with full payment included, should be made payable to BAFRA Ltd and sent to Charles Young at 25 Daffodil Close Haslingden Rossendale BB4 6NG.

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 23 rd 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.

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 electronic process of paying Games Fees by direct transfer to your bank account.

Friday Night

Again, last year many attendees 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 I 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


As always, the Annual General Meeting of BAFRA Limited will be held at 5:00pm on the Saturday of the Convention, 7th April. It is open to all members. A full agenda will be circulated to members nearer the time.  Part of the AGM is the election of directors for the Company. This year, four directors are standing down having completed their term of office: President, General Secretary, Director of Training and Director without Portfolio #1.  These positions are open to all qualified members and nomination forms will be circulated to qualified members on or before 17th February. As previously notified, the present incumbents will be seeking re-election for the positions of President, General Secretary and Director without Portfolio #1 but the Director of Training will be standing down when his term of office expires at the end of the AGM.

The Directors encourage all qualified members to consider applying for one of the above positions. If you are considering standing and would like more information, please contact me or, if you prefer, another director for more details.

If any qualified member has not received their nomination forms by Saturday, 17 th February, they should let me know as a matter of urgency.

Paul Sutton 


A further reminder that nominations are invited for the Official of the Year award for 2017. The criteria for the award may be found on our website at: Nominations should be with me by 9:00pm on Sunday 11th February 2018 (please note this deadline has been slightly extended so people have the opportunity to nominate after receiving this edition of Newsflash). Any member may nominate another member. If you have any queries about this, please do not hesitate to contact me.

The Selection Committee will make the award from the nominations received. The only way a member may be considered for this award is if another member nominated him or her so I look forward to receiving your nominations.  There will be a presentation at an awards dinner on the Saturday evening of the Convention.

Paul Sutton 









New this week

Ade Adedeji        


Bradford Bears



After time had expired but before the score had been declared final the player pushed an official in the throat area in an attempt to get to an opponent.

11/02/18 v Bangor Muddogs

Roy Smith


Glasgow Tigers



WPlayer committed a second unsportsmanlike foul, and was ejected from the game.

11/02/18 v Northumbria Mustangs

Previous weeks - none





New this week

Liverpool Raptors

90 yard field with no 3 yard marks for extra points. 3 changes of ball person, the first directed by the referee, also a member of the chain crew was changed at half time.

Lee Taylor #183

25/02/18 v Manchester Tyrants

Newcastle Raiders

Home team was unable to provide sufficient padding to protect wall located about 2 yards from end line. In order to play game, teams agreed to shorten playing field by 5 yards on each side thus moving endzone further away from hazard. As a result teams played on an 80 yard field and did not use Goal Posts (no FG/PAT). No coaching boxes as well as 25yd marks for team area.

Shawn Sombati #15

18/02/18 v UWS Pyros

Kingston Cougars

100-yard grass field marked in white. No limit lines and team areas marked with cones. Hashmarks and inbounds lines between 5-yard line and goal line missing at both ends of the field. Down box below regulation height. Playing surface at one end of the field was very muddy at the start and deteriorated as the game progressed to the point where the correct lateral spot could not be used. The other end of the field remained extremely playable throughout.

Tim Ockendon #481

11/02/18 v Surrey Stingers (at Surrey’s ground)

Keele Crusaders

Game was switched to JMO at short notice so it should be noted that Keele had no input into the field markings. This was a 90 yard pitch with no 3 yard marks for the extra point attempts

Lee Taylor #183

18/02/18 v Tarannau Aberystwyth

Surrey Stingers

90 yard field, quite decent despite the wet conditions. There were extra white rugby markings on the field.

Viktor Janvari #63

11/02/18 v Kingston Cougars

Worcester Royals

Changing rooms are a shack next to the field, would advise officials arrive changed. Field very well marked.

Jed Brookes-Lewis #395

25/02/18 v Lincoln Colonials

Birmingham Lions

Field marked in black and faint. No team areas.

Jed Brookes-Lewis #395

10/02/18 v Bath Killer Bees

Staffordshire Stallions

The field was marked as a 100 yard field, however the markings were shorter than a standard yard. The chains were shortened to match the markings on the field.

Paul Todd #289

11/02/18 v Warwick Wolves

Bournemouth Bobcats

No nine yard marks, lines too fat, some twice as wide as they should be. Lines marked in blue and could be seen easily.

Roger Brown #469


Bath Killer Bees

Changing room shared with other officials. Field marked mostly in blue and markings became increasingly faint during the game.

Euan Paterson #165

18/02/18 v Swansea Titans

UCL Rams

The field is lined in yellow with other sports markings in different colours. No coaching or players boxes marked out so cones were used instead. No numbers or 9 yard marks.

David Hewitt #607


Leeds Gryphons

Due to Leeds playing their home game in Skelmersdale they were only able to muster 4 officials assistants. The facility was recently re-marked, with the only issue being extra point marks placed at the 2 yard lines.

Stuart Alger #179

25/02/18 v UCL Rams

Outstanding items from previous weeks

Nottingham Outlaws

90 yard field. Coaching boxes were not the correct distance from the sidelines and this led to a dispute with the home coach after the wing official on his sideline collided with one of the assistant coaches and was subsequently flagged. The goal posts are tied to the exterior fence and are very short which causes problems for the officials trying to judge kicks.

David Hewitt #607

24/02/18 v Warwick Wolves

Leeds Gryphons

80 yard field. No limit lines, no team areas, no hash marks on either sideline. One ballboy changed at halftime.

Daniel Holt #371

25/02/18 v UCLan Ram

Canterbury Chargers

Well marked 90-yard field marked in blue with other sport markings in white & yellow. No limit lines, numbers or 9-yard marks. 8-yard end zones and coaching line at incorrect depth. One of the Chain Set stakes was below regulation height due to previous repair. Entire chain crew changed at half-time. Well appointed changing room but not lockable.

Tim Ockendon #481

25/02/18 v Imperial Immortals

Bristol Barracuda

100 yard field well marked except for lack of 9 marks and team areas. Down box tied to soccer corner flag due to missing base pole

Euan Paterson #165

11/02/18 v Bath Spa Bulldogs

Brunel Burners

90 yard field, decent painting, far from the changing rooms as usual at this venue. We had extra problems with parking, as all the parking spaces were full when we arrived. We had to delay kickoff for 25 minutes as the medic did not turn up, luckily in the end he arrived. The field surface was muddy and slippery, but good enough to have some football.

Viktor Janvari #63

25/02/18 v Surrey Stingers

NTU Renegades

The game was delayed 30 minutes due to the late arrival of the medical crew. After consultation with both head coaches, it was agreed to reduce the quarters to 10 minutes.

Murray Gibson #268

11/02/18 v Nottingham University

Sheffield Sabres

80 yard field with blue markings, posts fell over before the start of the game but were repaired before kick off.

Ian Wainwright #567

11/02/18 v Leeds Gryphons

Swansea Titans

The field had been fully marked out. However, persistent Welsh weather (i.e. rain) left these lines very faint.

Amir Brooks #593

11/02/18 v Hertfordshire Hurricanes

Huddersfield Hawks

Upon arrival coin toss was conducted away from the field as Huddersfield were not certain that we could stay later than 4:30pm due to complications with venue management. Chain crew and ball persons were not available at the scheduled kick off time, medical cover was also not present. Huddersfield had assumed it had been arranged through the Student Union however this was not the case. Despite Huddersfield’s best efforts to try and arrange medical cover and after waiting an hour the game was abandoned at the agreement of both Head Coaches

Kevin Stanton #157

11/02/18 v Northampton Nemesis

Lancaster Bombers

80 yard pitch. No limit line . Field numbers too small

Henry Richardson #25

11/02/18 v UWS Pyros

Portsmouth Destroyers

100 Yard field was marked out in yellow which has hard to see. Each endzone was only 5 yards deep, so we changed to a 90 yard field before the game with the goal-line being on the 5 yard line. The opposition sideline was faint and gameday management was asked to re-paint over these markings. The game was delayed at the start due to the late of arrival of the chain crew who then were needing to be briefed.

Richard Moger #472

18/02/18 v Hertfordshire Hurricanes

Cambridge Pythons

Only two officials arrived for the game, so with the agreement of both coaches we draughted in two suitably qualified coaches from Cambridge, Martin Steers and Tim Allen. Plaudits and thanks to them for a great game and to both teams for giving us a super contest.

Brian Yates #29

18/02/18 v Canterbury Chargers

Solent Redhawks

No numbers or nine yard marks. Most lines marked in yellow, but part of both 10 yard lines were marked in blue and the midfield line was marked in white.

Peter Parsons #321

25/02/18 v Cardiff Cobras

City Wolfpack

This game was the second of double header and kicked off at 13:30. Due to sunset at 15:58, both coaches were informed that under rule 3.2.1e we would be playing 10 minute quarters. The game was completed just before 16:00. Field markings in a faint blue, hard to see. Hash marks in the wrong place with one side almost down the middle of the pitch. Some main yard lines at a very poor angle. A Bucs player wore 06 and have been informed to change this shirt as it is illegal.

John Griffin #598

18/02/18 v Chichester Spitfires

MMU Eagles

The majority of the field was marked in faint blue, with some field lines marked in bright white. The field will need remarking before the next game at this venue. No numbers or nine yard marks. Team areas and coaching line not marked. The down marker and stakes were only approximately 3 feet high and had to be taped to other poles to raise them to a sufficient height. The stakes and down maker were provide 60 minutes provided to the scheduled kick-off, the actual chain was not provided until after the scheduled kick-off time. The final two officials assistants were only provided after the scheduled kick-off time. The home team did not provide a roster until after the scheduled kick off time. The home team were assessed a game management delay of game penalty. Two of the chain crew did not re-appear for the start of the second, the home team were assessed second game management delay of game penalty. In the third quarter, midway through a visiting team drive, the down-box operator decided he no longer wanted to be a member of the chain crew and wanted to return to his own sideline and become a coach. The home team were assessed third game management delay of game penalty No towels were provided for the ball persons despite the rain.

Ben Griffiths #228

25/02/18 v Huddersfield Hawks



New this week

Play:  A's ball, 4th and 8, on the Team A 32 yard line. A4's punt is rolling downfield on the Team B 30 yard line. B48 alerts his teammates to stay away from the ball with a waving "get away" signal at his waist. Seeing that Team A players are holding up following this action, B48 scoops up the ball on the Team B 26 yard line and advances to the Team B 44 yard line where he is downed.


Last week

Play:  Team A's ball, 4th and 7, on Team B's 35 yard line. Quarterback A17, under heavy pressure on the Team B 45 yard line, dumps the ball into an area where there are no eligible Team A receivers to save a loss of yardage. The pass is intercepted by a diving B67 at the Team B 36 yard line where he is downed.

Ruling:  Team B's ball, 1st and 10, at the Team B 45 yard line. The penalty for intentional grounding is a loss of down at the spot of the pass.  The fact that the pass was intercepted makes no difference to the fact that A17 has fouled (7-3-2-h). Team B will accept the penalty rather than the result of the play.


New this week

Game Situation: Should the Umpire should give a tipped ball signal (S11) when a ball kicked from a punt is partially blocked at the line of scrimmage?

Answer next issue...

Last week

Game Situation: Team A run a fake handoff play in which Fullback A34 fakes possession of the ball and runs towards the Linejudge's sideline.  The ball is kept by the Quarterback, who begins running to the far side of the field.  The fake is extremely believable, and A34 is tackled by two defensive players.  The Linejudge is also fooled by the fake, and blows his whistle – but almost immediately realises the ball is still live and in possession of the Quarterback, who is beginning to run upfield.  Only A34 and the two defensive players who tackled him appear to react to the Linejudge's whistle and stop playing.  What should the Linejudge do next?

Answer:  If you blow an inadvertent whistle, don't think no one will notice. Continue to blow and make sure the play is killed. Admit your mistake and follow the procedure laid down by rule (MM 5-5-6 & 4-1-2-b).  In this instance Team A will have the option of either repaying the down, or accepting the result of the play, with the ball being spotted at the location the Quarterback had when the whistle was blown.  Never try to cover up an inadvertent whistle, doing so can have safety implications for players, can seriously impact the game and damage the credibility of the crew.  Far better to admit an honest mistake than keep on digging a hole for the whole crew.




Contact for details


February 17th (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

April 7th (Sat)


April 7th - 8th (Sat - Sun)

BAFRA Annual Convention

May 12th (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

July 21st (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

November 17th (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

BAFRA Directors


David Parsons

General Secretary

Paul Sutton


Roger Brown


Richard Vernon


Lee Taylor


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:

Page  of