1 Name of the League
The League shall be known as:

2 Purpose of the League
The purpose of the League is to promote competitive chess in Stockport and the surrounding area for individuals and teams of all strengths under conditions at least comparable with those in other events in which League players take part. The League Constitution and Rules are to be interpreted in this spirit.

3 Officers of the League
The officers of the League shall be:
1) President
2) Vice-President
3) Secretary
4) Treasurer
5) Fixtures Secretary
6) Website Manager
7) Grading Officer
8) Handbook Editor
and any other officer considered necessary for the effective operation of the League. Individuals may hold more than one office, but shall not be entitled on that basis to more than one vote.

4(a) Annual Elections and Turnover
The officers shall be elected annually at the Annual General Meeting (AGM). A steady turnover of officials is desirable and, except in exceptional circumstances, the maximum consecutive tenure in any single office shall be 3 years.

4(b) AGM Delegates
Each club affiliated to the League may send two delegates, other than League officers, with voting powers to the AGM.

4(c) Auditors
The AGM shall elect one honorary auditor.

5 Effective Majorities at the AGM
The AGM may amend the constitution by a two-thirds majority vote, and the Rules by a simple majority vote. Majorities are to be calculated on the basis of votes cast.

6(a) Purpose and Composition of the Executive Committee
The business of the League, apart from that at the AGM or an Extraordinary General Meeting, shall be conducted by an Executive Committee comprising the officers of the League and one representative from each affiliated club.

6(b) Rule Changes by Executive Committee
The Executive Committee may amend the rules by simple majority vote. The League Secretary shall inform club secretaries of any change in the Rules within seven days at which time the change shall become effective.

6(c) Vacancies on the Executive Committee
The Executive Committee shall have power to fill any office which should become vacant.

7 Annual Fees of Clubs
Annual affiliation fees shall be determined at the AGM. Such fees shall be paid to the Treasurer before the end of September.

8 Financial Year
The League's financial year shall be from 16th April to 15th April.

9(a) Date of AGM
The AGM shall normally be held on the second Wednesday in May, but the Executive Committee may appoint the nearest convenient date for this purpose.

9(b) Date of Annual Fixtures Meeting
The Annual Fixtures meeting of the Executive Committee shall normally be on the 3rd Wednesday in September - but the Executive Committee may appoint the nearest convenient date for this meeting.

9(c) Executive Committee Meetings
The officers have the power to call additional meetings of the Executive Committee should the need arise.

10 Quorums for Meetings
A quorum for the AGM or an Extraordinary General Meeting shall be ten and for an Executive Committee Meeting or an Extraordinary Executive Committee Meeting shall be seven.

11 Meeting Notices and Deadlines for Meeting Agenda
Any item for the Agenda of a meeting must be submitted in writing or by email, by either a Club Secretary or Officer of the League, to the League Secretary not less than 21 days before the meeting. The League Secretary shall send to all officers and club secretaries, not less than 14 days before the meeting, the agenda together with a notice of the meeting giving its date, time and location.

12 Proposals to change Constitution or Rules
Any motion to change the Constitution or Rules shall be included in the Agenda of the meeting. The proposer of any amendment to such motion should endeavour to submit the amendment in writing, or by email, to the League secretary not less than 7 days before the meeting.

13 Extraordinary Meetings
An Extraordinary General Meeting shall be called at the written request to the League Secretary of at least ten persons, all of whom are members of affiliated clubs whose membership covers at least three clubs.
An Extraordinary Executive Committee meeting shall be called at the written request to the League Secretary of at least five persons, all of whom are members of affiliated clubs whose membership covers at least three clubs.
Such meetings shall be held not more than 28 days after the request is received by the League Secretary, who shall inform all officers and club secretaries of the date, time, location and the purpose of the meeting at least 14 days before the meeting.


14A FIDE Rules
The rules of FIDE shall apply in situations not covered by the following rules. The host club shall have copies of the League rules and FIDE rules available for use during matches.

15A Disputes Sub-Committee
The members at the Annual General Meeting shall elect a Disputes Sub-Committee to which all disputes shall be referred. The Sub-Committee shall consist of three members chosen from a panel of six, no two of whom shall belong to the same club. The Sub-Committee will normally consist of the same three members of whom the League Fixtures Secretary shall be one. No member may sit on the Sub-Committee if the dispute involves his own club, and in this case one of the other three members of the panel (who shall be designated 1st, 2nd and 3rd deputy respectively) shall take his place.

15B Disputes Procedure
Disputes shall be submitted to the League Fixtures Secretary, and the Disputes Sub-Committee shall adjudicate normally within the next 14 days. The decision of the sub-committee shall be final.

16A Smoking
No smoking is allowed at the boards. Moreover, smoking in the same room as the match should be prevented where it is in the power of the host Club to do so.

16B Absentee Player
If a player fails to turn up for a match, his game shall be forfeited when 30 minutes have elapsed on his clock.
If at the start of a match there is a known default it shall be on bottom board.
A reserve, i.e. any player eligible to play for the club and the team concerned, may be substituted for any absent player before 30 minutes have elapsed on his clock. The clock will not be re-set.

16C Mobile Phones
A warning shall be given to any player whose mobile phone rings during a match. If this should happen a second time for the same player, then the game being played by that player will be recorded automatically as lost.

17A Rate of Play (not a quickplay finish)
The rate of play shall be at least 36 moves in the first 75 minutes, at least 52 moves in the first 105 minutes, at least 68 moves in the first 135 minutes, and so on. The clocks shall be set back at each time control, i.e. after black's 36th, 52nd, 68th moves, etc. All games are to be played to a finish, through adjournments if necessary.

17B Rate of Play (quickplay finish)
If both captains agree to a quickplay finish before play starts, the provisions of Rule 39 (ii) may be adopted. If a quickplay finish was agreed in the first match that season between the same teams, there must be a quickplay finish in the second match.

17(c) Recording moves
Moves must be recorded; any clear notation may be used.

18 End Time for Playing Session
Play shall continue until 10.30pm, or 10.15pm where the nature of the premises makes this necessary. Play may continue beyond 10.30pm if both players agree before the match starts.

19 Clocks
All games must be played with clocks. Responsibility for providing a clock rests with the host team or individual. The host team shall default on those boards for which a clock is not available unless the visiting team/individual has been given reasonable notice of a need to make up the deficit.

20 Adjournments
Both players must reach the first time control before a game may be adjourned. Adjourned games shall be completed within 28 days unless the League Fixtures Secretary agrees otherwise on the basis of a written explanation from the match captains. This explanation must be received before the 28 days are up. The visiting player shall have choice of venue.

21 End of the Playing Season
The playing season extends from the Annual Fixtures Meeting to the 30th April, and all matches shall be arranged to be played and completed on or before 30th April. All results should be submitted to the Fixtures Secretary as soon as matches are completed but in any case not later than 1st May. If a dispute is submitted in the 14 days prior to 1st May its adjudication will be expedited.

22 Entries for the Playing Season
Entries should reach the League Secretary by the second Wednesday in September together with club details to be included in the League Handbook. Clubs may enter any number of teams. Each team shall have six players unless agreed otherwise at the Annual Fixtures Meeting.

23 Promotion and Relegation
The Annual Fixtures Meeting shall assign teams to divisions. Ordinarily one team shall be relegated and one promoted at each interface between divisions, but the Executive Committee may modify this.
NOTE: This rule comes into force at the end of the 2010-2011 season

24A Composition of Divisions
The divisions shall normally consist of six or seven teams, as decided at the Annual Fixtures Meeting.

24B Matches between Teams
Teams shall play one another twice during the season, alternating as hosts.

25A Player Registration at the Start of the Season
Before the first match of each year's play in the League and preferably at the Fixtures Meeting, each Club shall supply to the Fixtures Secretary a list of its players in order of playing strength with their current grades.  For the purposes of SDCL board order the grades current at the time of the fixtures meeting shall remain in force for the whole of the playing season irrespective of any subsequently published ECF grading list.
Each ungraded player shall be given an estimated grade (to be agreed between the Club and the Fixtures Secretary) and placed in the list at a position that reflects the player's playing strength.
The Club may make any rearrangements to the order it wishes provided that it does not place a player who is more than 15 grading points stronger than another player below this latter player.

25B Player Order in a Match
During the season players may be played in any order provided that the team captain does not place a player who is more than 15 grading points stronger than another player below this latter player in the team order. An infringement of this condition (other than substitutions under Rule 16B) will, at the discretion of the Fixtures Secretary, result in the game involving the highest rated players playing out of sequence being recorded as defaulted by the offending team.Such penalties are restricted where necessary so that the offending team never loses by a margin in point score greater than the number of games in the match. For example, in a six game match the winning margin can never be greater than six-nil.
For the avoidance of doubt, the game scores from games giving rise to the penalty are always used. The actual team scores (including scores from games giving rise to the penalty) are combined with the match penalty or penalties to produce the final team scores.

25C Method of registering and playing New Players
A new player may be registered at any time during the year by notification to the Fixtures Secretary or, in his absence, the League Secretary before his first match. If players are new to the League (i.e. players not on website grading list), clubs should provide details of their previous club(s)/country and their ECF registration number (or date of birth) upon registration. If date of birth is not available, full name and whether male or female shall be supplied
The Club must provide a revised registration order following the principles in rule 25A.

25D Revision of Player Registration during the Season
A revised registration list may also be submitted if playing strengths of registered players change during the season to a degree not coverable by the 15 grading points flexibility described in rule 25A. If such a revised list is submitted, it must include revised grades for all the players and may not be used for team order until agreed by the Fixtures Secretary or, in his absence, the League Secretary. At the discretion of the Fixtures Secretary, an unregistered player shall be treated as having defaulted the game for the purposes of the match score.  .

26A Players restricted to play for Certain Teams
If a club enters more than one team, a fixed number of players are restricted ‘first team only’ players. The number of such players is equal to the number of boards in that team less two. The allocation procedure continues in this fashion until all teams have been allocated restricted players who may not play for lower teams. Player allocation follows the club’s registration order strictly. The players that have not been allocated a specific team are free to play for any team.

26B Club playing two or more equal-strength First Teams
A club may have two or more teams of similar strength. It must allocate a fixed number of players to each of these equal-strength teams. The number of such restricted players is equal to the number of boards in the team less two. Equal-strength teams do not have to belong to the same division.
If the club has teams in addition to the similar-strength ones, a fixed number of players are automatically allocated (by reference to the registration order) to the strongest team in this group of teams. The number of such players is equal to the number of boards in this strongest team less two. The allocation procedure continues for the club's remaining teams as described in Rule 26A.

26C Restriction on Number of Registered Players
The number of players registered for a club is limited to 20 per team to discourage the registration of players who never play.

27 Players changing Clubs during the Season
No player may be registered for more than one club at any one time. A player's agreement to be registered by another club cancels the earlier registration.

28 Arranging Fixtures at the Start of the Season
Club representatives shall arrange playing programmes at the Annual Fixtures Meeting.

29(a) Match Postponements
Seven days notice shall be given to the opposing captain by any team wishing to postpone a match. At the same time a choice of 3 alternative dates shall be given. In exceptional circumstances shorter notice may be given (e.g. heavy snow falling), but this shall not be later than 4.00 p.m. on the day of the match. Inability to raise a team will not be acceptable as a reason for postponement at short notice. The League Fixtures Secretary is to be informed of postponed matches and new dates within 2 weeks by both clubs.

29(b) Re-arranged matches

If the re-arranged date for a postponed match cannot be agreed before the date for the end of the season, both captains should contact the Fixtures Secretary explaining their reasons why not. The matter will then be referred to the disputes committee. If the committee find the postponement was not made for a genuine reason (such as unavailable venue) the team requesting the original postponement shall have the match defaulted against them. Inability to raise a team shall not be deemed as a genuine reason.

29(c) Teams withdrawing during the Season
The playing record of any team that does not complete 75% of its fixtures is to be removed from the records.

30A Start Time for Matches
Play will ordinarily begin at 7.30pm unless both captains agree to alternative arrangements or unless it is essential to start earlier to avoid the playing session being cut short.

30B Team to be named before the Match starts
Each captain must nominate his players before play commences.

31 White and Black determined by Board Order
The host team shall have white pieces on even numbered boards.

32 Method of Informing the Fixtures Secretary of the Match Result
At least one of the team captains shall send results to the League Fixtures Secretary within 3 days of the complete match result being known.

33A Match Points Result
Teams shall gain 2 points for a win, 1 point for a draw and 0 points for a loss of the match.

33B Method for determining the Winner of a Division
The team with the highest number of points at the end of the season shall be declared the winner of its division. In the event of a tie the team with the most game points shall be the winner. The division title will be shared if the teams still cannot be separated. The winners of Division 1 are the League Champions.

34 Fixture Dates for Matches between Teams from the Same Club
If a club has more than one team in a division these teams shall play all the matches between themselves by December 31st and complete them by January 14th.




35 Description of the Competition
The Charnley Cup shall be awarded to the winners of a knockout competition open to all member clubs of the League.  Each club may enter one team made up of six players drawn from its registered list of players, unless it has more than one team in the 1st Division, in which case it must enter as many teams as it has in the 1st Division.  Where a club enters more than one team, those players who have played for one team are ineligible for any of the others.

36A First Round Draw
The draw for the whole of the competition is made at the annual Fixtures Meeting.

36B Dates for Each Round
The completion dates for each round are as follows: round 1 before 1st November, the quarterfinal before 25th December, the semi-final before 1st March and the final before 30th April.

36C Method for determining Venues after the Initial Draw
For the fixtures after the initial draw the Fixtures Secretary shall determine the home team so as to minimise the occurrence of sequences of home venues in successive rounds or of away venues in successive rounds accruing to teams.  Where both teams are eligible for a home draw in a subsequent round, the team drawn out of the hat first when the initial draw was made shall be the home team.

36D Fixture Dates negotiated by Captains
Team captains are responsible for agreeing the actual playing dates.

37 White and Black determined by Coin Toss
Colours shall be decided by the toss of a coin.  Each Captain shall declare their team and playing order prior to this coin toss.

38 Resolution of drawn matches
Drawn matches shall be resolved by eliminating boards successively from the bottom until a clear result is obtained.

39 General Application of Rules
All rules for the League Championship competition are intended to apply also to the Charnley Cup insofar as they make sense in such a tournament with three exceptions:
(i) Adjournments are not allowed.
(ii) The rate of play shall be 36 moves in the first 75 minutes, and at this time control (i.e. after Black's 36th move) the clocks shall be set back 15 minutes. Each player shall make all his remaining moves before the next time control. The player whose flag falls first shall lose unless his opponent has insufficient material remaining to mate, in which case the game shall be drawn.
(iii) Players can only play in the semi-final or final if they have played at least twice for the club in either the Stockport League or the Charnley Cup during the last two seasons.


40 The Individual Competition
The League's individual trophy holders will be determined by reference to results in the three sections of the annual rapidplay tournament organised by the Stockport club. The "Minor", "Intermediate" and "Major" trophies will be awarded to the highest placed competitor, in the relevant tournament section, who is a registered player with one of the affiliated clubs in the Stockport League at the time of the tournament. (Please note that competitors do not have an absolute right to enter the tournament by virtue of their trying to compete for an individual trophy - the organisers of this tournament have the right to refuse entry to any applicant.)


41 The Vic Knox Trophy
This trophy, in memory of Vic Knox, a former President of the Stockport League, is intended to recognise outstanding performance during the season. It is held for twelve months following its award at the AGM to that player, registered with the Stockport League during the previous year, who has the best percentage performance in team competitions arranged by the League and who has played in at least 6 games


42 The Eric Harrison Trophy
This trophy, in memory of Eric Harrison, a former President and Vice-President of the Stockport League, is intended to encourage junior players. It is awarded annually at the AGM to be held for twelve months by that junior player, registered with the Stockport League during the previous year, who in the opinion of the League President, League Secretary and the Fixtures Secretary has shown the best combination of enthusiasm, promise and playing strength. The award will be open to players under 18 on the 1st of September immediately following the AGM and who have been nominated by their clubs.