I'm glad there's possibly some people lurking on here that can offer more value in their opinions - we'd more than welcome it, it would involve being sucked into the vortex though so if you're happy to give some free time and hard work to coming on side in any capacity then please do so.
The point of the content of the post is to get you to realise that you are dealing with people, surfers, just like you. Not some tie wearing ponces sitting in our ivory towers, trying to bleed our sport dry another go around the houses. Far from it, all though some of us do wear ties, and I'm particularly fond of high heels. I know it didn't really go into any technical detail but that wasn't the point. The point is that we are here. We are the normal people that you see at your beaches every single day. And ultimately we are human and we are subject to making some mistakes or being wrong - as you've said not to be afraid of accepting that. But we can't do these things without all of you.
The idea is that we will benefit our members, the least we can do at the moment is offer them a great bunch of discounts (even Magic Seaweed does 10% off for them!!!) in return for their £20 - which insures them worldwide third party for surfing. As members they can also buy world-wide travel insurance, multi-trip for £35. Pretty key in that at the moment are our board manufacturers, a 10 or 15% discount off your next board covers a couple of rounds signing up with SGB. Not to mention all the other discounts we are adding - again, if anyone is or can suggest members benefits to add to the list then come forward. I'm working hard to get discounts all over the UK - it's just a little time consuming with everything else going on so it's growing slowly, but we're getting there.
The only measurement of any of this being a success is if our members are happy, and indeed we have any members - if none of you want us and you don't sign up then as I've said before, we all go back to our normal day jobs and actually get chance to go surfing.
You might be opposed to the government giving grants so all can have access to a sport, but what about the other side of that? The money is there. Would you rather it was given to your chosen sport to develop better clubs for people to join? Which led to training, governance of surfers and education from a young age, ensuring all coaches and instructors were operating to high standards, which would lead to better water etiquette and less chance of getting run over by an out of control novice (who hopefully is a member so the damage to your head or board is covered)? Or would you rather it were put elsewhere, ball sports, track and field? Or it goes back to Brussels when coming from the EU pot - we know 40,000 euros did just that out of a pot of sporting money we had some funding from. 40,000 euros. Gone. Not claimed. Lost to any sport.
The government is very keen to put money towards all surf sports - kite surfing, surfing, surf life saving etc we just have to have a good structure there in place to ensure that OUR sport gets part of that funding. That we aren't left by the way side for other water users to fill up the gap.
You say you don't really care but you still want info - and that tells me you do actually care, which is enough for me (please don't get all bristly again and drop the c-bomb!).
As regards the application - I'm not sure where we would have access to the initial application as it was made before our time, I will need to speak to other Directors as Matt would be my first point of call on that answer but he has just landed in Panama at lunch time it's a little tough - everyone else has probably recognised Easter!! I think if you looked on the internet it would give you an idea of the hoops Sport England require us to jump through in order to achieve governing body status. There are steps for us to do, which is the bite sizes I understand from the application process. The next big ones for us are :- put a constitution in place (which we have almost finished drafting as some parts needed a little work) this will be made public once done, set a date for an AGM we are just looking for a venue for and have to give 8weeks notice on. The idea is to have this in Bristol for easy transport connections - we know some of you won't agree with this as it is still lower down the country but we are where we are. We are trying to make steps to show that we are committed to having an NGB that is not deemed to be South West orientated - I've already told you where I come from. And also start our charity application - so that the NGB has charitable status.
I'm on my phone so cannot bring up minutes links - the ones from the meetings of British Surf Champs - the take on or take-over rumblings of how this all started are up on that website. I have word doc minutes from steering committee meetings, but you have to choose a different form of communication from those on offer in order for me to get that to you. email@example.com
would be a good one!
Sorry this got long again but there are lots of people with lots of questions that I am trying to cover all bases. It's a long process. I know. I'm on the phone to speak to people and they want answers - and mostly they want to be able to deal with a person so here I am. That's what my communication role is about, even if it's just ensuring the phone is answered which hasn't happened for a long time. Taking the time to write you passionate people a response, because you are, or this thread wouldn't have begun. Tweeting that our team had omelette bocadillos in Madrid airport - because people are interested and they want us to talk to them. I told you before. I love to talk!!
I'm not asking for any of you to be impressed by the personal sacrifices being made, I'm asking you to understand the commitment we are giving to all of you, whether you're with us or not, it's your sport. We wouldn't do all this if we didn't want to. Someone had to step up with the best intentions, how could it have gotten any worse? A governing body that had ceased to exist, members feeling they got absolutely nothing for parting with their hard earned cash, and slagging off the NATIONAL team. Like I said before, we know we're on the right track because of everything constructive you guys wrote in this thread that we should be doing. That we want to do. That at some point we WILL be doing.
And if you see no value to yourself in an NGB from surfing, then tell us what would make us valuable to you, if none of the things I have said lights any kind of fire within you, no matter how small the spark, then please tell us what we can do for you. It's in our about us on the website "we will give you a voice, we will work hard on your behalf, and we will protect your passion for riding waves." To end on another adage ... YOU DON'T ASK YOU DON'T GET!!