How do we register for the Tournament? By emailing Dicky Biddle, the Tournament Director and Organiser, who will confirm whether the Tournament is full or whether you will be put on the Waiting List. He will send payment instructions to you unless you have requested that the funds be deducted from your London League Account. Only payment of your Registration and Entry Fees (Total £40) guarantees your entry. Don't even think about asking for credit. After making payment, you should book your hotel rooms immediately. Bear in mind that priority for Tournament Registration is given to Hotel Residents. Until you book your hotel room you are, in effect, just on the Waiting List along with local players not staying at the hotel. Priority will be given to players who have booked for two Hotel nights.
Why do we have to register for the Tournament before before we book the hotel? To avoid the annoyance of booking a hotel room and finding out the Tournament is full. Anyone falling into this trap will get little sympathy from me as you have been warned.
When must I pay for the Optional High-Roller Pool? Firstly let me stress this is an optional pool which means you don't have to enter it but if you do want to be a High-Roller, £50 must be paid by Bank Transfer or by deduction from your London League Account by Midday, Wednesday 31st January 2018. No cash taken on the day. Payout by Bank Transfer only. No cash payouts.
All other optional pools can be entered during the weekend, cash only. Payouts in cash or by bank transfer by request.
Why is the Tournament capped at 32 players? Sometimes less is more. I would rather this weekend was over-subscribed than under-subscribed.
If over-subscribed will you have a reserve list and might you extend the entry? There will be a Waiting List and if enough players are on it, especially potential Hotel Residents, I may increase the entry in increments of eight. Increasing by increments of eight players makes it easier to adjust the format of the tournament fairly.
Why is tournament registration priority given to those players who book two nights at the hotel? If demand warrants it and I choose to expand the number of entrants, I would like to do this without decreasing the match lengths from eleven points. This would mean that one or two rounds of the group stage may be played on Friday night.
What is the Waiting List? If the Cotswolds Invitational Tournament is full a player may request to go on the Wailting List by paying a £20 Registration fee. If a Tournament-registered player drops out, they will be replaced by a player on the Waiting List. If there are 8 players on the Waiting List and the hotel can accommodate the extra playing area, the entry to the Tournament may be extended allowing all eight players to enter the tournament.
If on the Waiting List, is my £20 registration fee refundable? If no place is offered to you the fee is fully refundable. You can withdraw yourself from the Waiting List at anytime and receive a full refund. If you are offered a place in the Tournament and don't take it up or subsequently withdraw, the fee is non-refundable unless a suitable replacement player can be found.
Those one-point play-offs could take all night, couldn't they? In theory yes but in practice unlikely however if they did what a fantastic war of attrition! Any play-offs not decided by 9am Sunday morning are to be decided by a sleepy roll of four dice. Highest wins.
Will there be any casual Backgammon for non-playing partners? Last year we had over a dozen non-playing partners/friends/family attending, many who signed up for Yoga but we will also have plenty of casual Backgammon play available and if the demand is there, perhaps an informal competition just for fun. Additionally, non-playing partners will be welcomed in the Consulting Doubles competition and if comfortable with the Doubling cube they are welcome in the Friday Night Warm-up Tournament. The short answer is yes.
Can I use a baffle box at the Cotswolds Weekend? The Cotswolds Weekend, like all my Backgammon events, is a baffle-box free zone. This is not up for discussion.
What date must we book by to guarantee the Backgammon Rate? The Backgammon Rate and booking instructions can be found here. All bedrooms without deposits will be released back to the hotel for public sale 12 weeks prior to the Cotswolds Invitational. I make this the end of October 2017 but you should book earlier to avoid disappointment as they have only block booked thirty rooms at this rate. If there is a good take up of rooms and further demand from BG players and their non-playing guests, I may be able to negotiate an extension to this deadline or a further increase in the number of rooms available but I am a lousy negotiator so don't count on anything.
What happens if we book after this time? You may have to pay more for your rooms than the preferential rates that I have negotiated.
Is it cheaper per night to stay for two nights? Yup! Fifteen quid a night cheaper per person. That's enough to buy your thirsty Tournament Director a few drinks over the weekend. Another reason for coming on the Friday is that before Supper I will be treating everyone to a Welcome Drink and you will get a chance to mingle with the great and good of British Backgammon. Come on Friday, you know it makes sense.
Are you on a commission with the Hotel? No, but if I don't sell a certain number of bedrooms per night, my costs jump up dramatically and I end up out of pocket. There is no money to be made in running Backgammon Tournaments but it is very easy to lose money. In the unlikely event this event turns a profit, like all my BG events, the money will be put back into Backgammon at the grassroots level.
Our Yoga volunteer, Caroline Biddle is giving up her time for free so make a point of asking her about their regular paid classes. She will welcome the attention.
I have never done Yoga before, can I still come? Yes, this would be the perfect opportunity for you to try your first Yoga class.
I am not flexible, I can't even touch my toes, would I be able to do it? Yoga is a long slow process of increasing not just flexibility and body awareness, but strength and stamina too. It is precisely because you are not as flexible as you would like that you should come! Yoga is completely non-competitive and the class will be a diverse mix of abilities, with easier and more challenging variations available for each pose that we do.
I have an injury or I am pregnant, should I let the teachers know? Please do let the teacher know of any existing medical condition, injury, or recent surgery so that they can offer you modifications throughout the class. It is your responsibility to make sure the teacher is aware as certain postures may be contra-indicated. If you are 2nd or 3rd trimester in your pregnancy and have an established Yoga practice you are welcome to attend.
Is there a minimum or maximum age to attend the Yoga classes? Minimum age for these sessions is 14, no maximum age!
How do I register my interest in the Yoga Classes? Please click on the Yoga Booking Form link to book as many sessions as you would like to attend. There are limited spaces available so it will be on a first come first served basis. We will start a waiting list thereafter and look into the possibility of scheduling different time slots
What about these local walks? I may not have time to lead a local walk myself, due to Tournament Director commitments, so I am looking for any hearty ramblers out there who would be prepared to lead a motley crew of unfit Backgammon players into the great unknown. Having spent a bit of time walking around the area, I know we are spoilt for choice. The Bear of Rodborough recommend a walk on Rodborough Common - The Figure of Eight Walk.They also have a number of other walks over the beautiful common and surrounding area. Please ask at Hotel Reception for full details.
Did I really see Golf on the Schedule? Weather allowing, this could be the perfect start to the weekend. We did play in the horizontal rain last year! There is a lovely old course a three-wood drive away from the hotel. In the winter, it is £10 from Midday to play a round on this historical course. Let me know if you are interested. There will be a Trophy for what has become an annual event. If the weather is too bad, the Trophy will be contested for in a 9-point BG Tournament in the bar. Check out the Minchinhampton Old Course Golf Club. Golf Trophy kindly sponsored by Simon Morecroft.
Would you not prefer to play in the Costwolds Invitational Backgammon Weekend rather than organise & direct it? Damn right, I would! So stop me feeling sorry for myself by making sure you buy me a pint over the weekend.