A Brief update from the Chair of some key events and recent news from September.

Hi Judo Community,

September had a few memorable events and occasions to savour.

Judith and I attended Hibari Kan’s event on 16th September in Motherwell.  A great day of competition which attracted the biggest ever entry for a Grand Prix Event in Scotland!

On 18th September I attended a very interesting event hosted by sportscotland on the ‘Role of the Chair’.   I personally think it’s very important to keep up-skilling and learning so that we improve in our roles.   This is the second such event I’ve attended this year.

On the 20th, I met up online with the Nomination Committee to discuss and agree on our recommendation for President of JudoScotland.   This was subsequently passed by a unanimous decision at the Board of Directors meeting on the 26th.

On the 26th of September JudoScotland hosted our annual MacMillan Coffee morning. I was really sorry not to make it along where I heard there were wonderful judo memories and stories being shared as people enjoyed their home-baked treats. The judo community is a pretty special one and we aim to have some more social events in the near future to bring everyone together.

And at the end of the month, on Saturday 30th, we had the AGM and the Gathering.

The Gathering surpassed expectations.   An excellent event, which hosted 200 judoka, organised by the JudoScotland team.   A special mention should go to Paul McGuinness here – great effort Paul!

It was fabulous to welcome Mike Callan who gave a great talk on the history of judo in Scotland.  We were honoured to have Masashi and Kana Ebinuma, and Shohei Ono from Japan deliver the sessions.  I suggest this is the best lineup we’ve had in living memory on these shores.

Special congratulations go to Dr George Kerr 10th Dan who was awarded the new title of JudoScotland’s first President Emeritus.   I’ve known George since I was a boy, and he’s had a great influence on my own development.  And equally big congratulations go to Colin McIver, who was awarded the position of President of JudoScotland, an accolade he richly deserves.

Well done too to Susie Wright who was re-elected to the Board and to Jason Moore in his first term. I look forward to working with you all.

On a personal basis, on the day before the Gathering Lee McGrorty and I took Masashi and Kana out for a day flying gyr falcons (the largest falcons in the world).  Suffice to say it didn’t go completely smoothly!  There were very high winds.  We used our drone to take the falcons up – and they both flew some distance away!  Lee had to use all of his falconry skills to recover both bird and machine.  But he did!!   So a big thank you to him and to his son Harris for a great day.

And finally, at the AGM the revised Articles were voted in with a 79.7% approval rate.  So thank you all for considering – and accepting – this move to embrace these progressive and best practice changes.  It gives the Board a big boost to know that we have your backing.

Marc Preston

6th Dan