Month: June 2021

Funding Opportunities For Clubs

We wanted to make clubs aware of a few new funding streams which have become available which may be worth considering, these have been highlighted specifically for their simple application process. Thank you to our new East RDO, Lorna Simpson, for bringing these to our attention and sharing the information here on how to apply and what the grants will support. Building on Lorna’s experience and expertise in this area we hope to run a session in the Autumn on supporting clubs with funding applications and opportunities.

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Obituary: Alastair Lessells

With thanks from ESOC for the sharing this touching obituary to Alastair Lessells who was known, admired and relied upon by many throughout the Scottish Orienteering community over many years. The SOA send our deepest condolences to Alastair’s family, in particular Katy, Ruth and Richard as well as all his friends in orienteering across the country.

Dave Kershaw (ESOC, Scottish 6 Days Chair) said

“Alastair was one of ESOC’s long-standing members and contributed a huge amount to the club, and to Scottish orienteering generally, both as a competitor and as an official over nearly 40 years. He was one of a large group of ‘baby boomers’ in Scottish Orienteering and all members of my age, in particular, will remember him fondly for his competitive spirit and friendly post-event discussions. He will be sadly missed when we get back to orienteering together again. Our thoughts are with Katy and the family.” 

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Scottish Success at British Middle Distance Championships

Last weekend saw the first national orienteering championships since early 2020 with the British Middle Distance Championships being hosted by Lakeland Orienteering Club at Summerhouse Knott in the South Lakes on Saturday. The weekend was nominated as selection races for juniors and with the Northern Championships also being held in the area the following day, there was a very strong Scottish contingent that made the journey south.

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SOA 2020 Finalised Accounts

Ahead of our AGM on Friday 25th June, we are able to publish our approved accounts for 2020. Many thanks must be extended to our independent auditor, Brian Miller for his timely and professional communication with us. Also we appreciate the work done by our Finance Director, Ben Hartman to produce the accounts and give us confidence in our financial position.

If you have not already signed up to participate in the AGM on 25th June at 7.30pm you can register to attend here

Should you be unable to attend the AGM please make sure you cast your vote by proxy, you can complete the online proxy voting form here

Full details of the published AGM booklet which outlines the proposals can be downloaded here

Levels Changes Across Scotland

As of Saturday 5th June some Local Authority areas move to level 1, some remain in Level 2 and Glasgow move to Level 2. This remains a step in a positive direction and means that all members can now travel across Local Authority boundaries. We ask all members to please check and be aware of the guidance for where you live but also for any area you are planning to travel to.

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Craig a Barns confirmed as Scottish Championships

Given the First Minister’s statement earlier this week which sees all areas of Scotland move into level 2 or below, we can now confirm that next weeks event at Craig a Barns will be classified as Scottish Championships and there are medals and titles to be won! We recognise that local authority levels changes can occur at any time, we hope this is not the case in the coming week however the decision to go ahead with Scottish Championships has now been taken. The SOA would like to thank the volunteers who have worked tirelessly behind the scenes to prepare for our largest scale event in some time under much uncertainty, our appreciation to Margaret, Jayne, Roger and Sarah in particular.

All event details can be found:

Valuing our Volunteers

As part of our celebrations of Volunteer Week in 2021, we want to say a BIG thank you to our SOA Board of Directors. They have kept us on track and focused throughout lockdown and provided valued expertise as we emerge as a sport to capitalise on new opportunities, partnerships and ensure our focus remains on supporting our clubs and coordinating a balanced and high quality events calendar. We really do appreciate your contribution and continued commitment to Scottish Orienteering.

Welcome Lorna To The Team

We are delighted to introduce Lorna Simpson who has started as our East RDO this week. We believe that Lorna will bring her skills and experience from the sport sector, specifically in athletics to the role and will enhance our development team. It is great to have the Development Team up to full capacity as we move into the summer and anticipate a busy second half of the year. Lorna is currently being inducted into Scottish Orienteering and will be in touch with all the clubs in the East Region in the near future. She is hoping to be at Craig a Barns for Scottish Championships, so do say hello if you see her!

Welcome Lorna, we are all looking forward to working with you!

East RDO appointed June 2021
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After-school Activity in Lochaber

With a gradual easing of Covid restrictions it has been fantastic to be able to help get a series of after-school orienteering sessions up and running in Fort William this term. The sessions have been organised by Fort William Active Schools Co-ordinator, Bridget Thomas, together with Iain Murray, and have enabled a first taster of the sport to be delivered to some 27 youngsters, ahead of the planned Scottish 6-Day event this summer.

The sessions have been based at Kilmallie Community Centre using one of a set of new maps, which have been specially produced to support development work in Lochaber, and co-funded by the Orienteering Foundation and SOA. The Kilmallie map offers a great space to learn the basic orienteering skills in a compact and safe setting. Here’s hoping we might see some of these smiling faces at the 6-day event in a couple of months’ time!