Merseyside Quiz Leagues

The World's Largest Independent Quiz Leagues

MQL MEETINGS 2020-2021


Sun 6th September 2020 (online)

Sun 4th October 2020 (online)

Sun 8th November 2020 (online)

Sun 6th December 2020 (online)

Sun 14th March 2021 

Sun 27th June 2021 


Sun 18th April 2021 

All online meetings commence at 7.30 pm

All face to face meetings held at Old Swan Club, commencing at 8.00 pm

AGENDA FOR most recent/next mEETING

Agenda for the Council Meeting of the Merseyside Quiz Leagues held online on Sunday 8th Novenber 2020 at 7:30 pm

1        Apologies

2        Minutes of the last Meeting

3        Matters Arising

4        Chairman’s Report

5        General Secretary’s Report

6        Treasurer’s Report 

7        Assistant General Secretary’s Report

8        Area Reports

9        Decision on Conventional Quizzing
As was agreed previously, a decision on the return to conventional / face to face quizzing in January was to be made at this meeting.  It has been suggested that perhaps this be extended to a decision on the rest of the season (see note below)

10        On-Line Quiz Competitions
•    Update on the S&F, Ormskirk and MQLOnline leagues.
•    Report from Area Secretaries on how many teams and players may now be interested in Online Quizzing (Item 9 Action Point in Minutes 04 October)
•    Rules about non-MQL players and creation of “Super” teams
•    Rules about Recording and Posting matches
•    Plans for January onwards including MCC and 2020-21 Mimir

11        Dates
•    2019-20 Mimir
•    Completion dates for current Online leagues
•    MCC and 2020-21 Mimir depending on item 10
•    MQL Buzzer Tournament 
•    2021 Finals and Presentation Evening

12        Any Other Business

minutes of most recent council meeting

Minutes of the Council meeting of the Merseyside Quiz Leagues held online on Sunday 8th November 2020 at 7.30pm

1.    In Attendance: were Frank McFarlane, Cliff Houghton, Angela Doyle, Angela Houghton, Derek Moody, Bill Thomas, Dag Griffiths, Dave Tilley, Peter Deakin, David Hodgson , Bob Wilkie, Jim Eccleson, Paul Davitt, Danny Grimes, Bill Morris, Jon Stitcher, Brian Bates and Brian Thompson

Apologies:  Frances Mason, Colin Foster

2.    Minutes of previous meeting:  These were accepted as a true record of the meeting.

3.    Matters Arising:  There were no matters arising not covered by items in this meeting.

4.    Chairman’s report: The Chairman, Frank McFarlane, had nothing to report. 

5.    General Secretary’s report:  The General Secretary, Brian Thompson, had nothing to report.

6.    Treasurer’s report: Treasurer, Dag Griffiths, presented a balance sheet and reported that only two transactions had occurred since the last meeting.

7.    Assistant General Secretary’s report: Assistant General Secretary, Cliff Houghton, had nothing to report.

8.    Area reports:  
Liverpool Secretary, Paul Davitt, had nothing to report that was not covered in items 9, 10 and 11.

Ormskirk Secretary, David Hodgson, had nothing to report that was not covered in items 9, 10 and 11.

Southport and Formby
S&F Secretary, Dag Griffiths, had nothing to report that was not covered in items 9, 10 and 11.

Warrington Secretary, Derek Moody, had nothing to report that was not covered in items 9, 10 and 11.

Wirral Secretary, Jim Eccleson, had nothing to report that was not covered in items 9, 10 and 11.

9.    Decision on Conventional Quizzing:  
The decision on the return to conventional / face to face quizzing in January was to be made at this meeting.  Brian suggested that perhaps this might be extended to a decision on the rest of the season.  Following a short discussion, the following proposal was made;

All League quizzing for the 2020-21 MQL season be cancelled and recommence in September with the 2021-22 season.  (This was proposed by Jon Stitcher, Seconded by Dave Tilley).  The proposal was carried unanimously.

A suggested statement for the website and for use by League secretaries if they wish;

It is with regret that MQL announce the cancellation of the 2020-21 Leagues season.  This was a unanimous decision made at Sunday’s meeting of the MQL Council.  It means that there will be no face to face quizzing in the Liverpool, Ormskirk, Southport & Formby, Warrington or Wirral Leagues.   Any question sets and membership fees that may have been submitted will be carried over to the 2021-22 season, which we hope will begin as normal in September.   As you are aware, three online league competitions are currently being operated by Southport & Formby, Ormskirk and by MQL.  If any teams or individuals would like to get involved with these, please contact your league Secretary.
The President’s Trophy competition is being played online and it is hoped that the Merseyside Challenge Cup and possibly the Mimir Individual competitions may run in some form of online version in the Spring.  The President’s Shield, Feeny Cup and Rendon Cup competitions will not take place.
The decision to cancel was made very reluctantly after months of uncertainty.  However we had reached the stage that even when circumstances may have allowed venues to open and host, there would be insufficient time to complete a league programme.  We hope that all players and their families stay safe and look forward to meeting up again in September.

Buzzer Quiz Tournament
In the same way it was decided to cancel the Buzzer Tournament that was originally scheduled for October 2020 and then postponed until February 2021.  The 2021 Buzzer Tournament will hopefully take place in October.
Action:  Jon Stitcher and Brian Thompson 
Contact those teams who had signed up for the Buzzer Quiz and the Bradbury Centre venue and inform them of the decision.

Action:  League Secretaries were to 
Inform their teams about the cancellation of the 2020-21 League Season

10.    On-Line Quiz Competitions:  
Ormskirk QL
The first phase of their competition has been completed and won by Colly Wobblers.  The second phase, a handicap league of 9 teams, has started and will be completed at the end of January.  A third phase would then start.  Any former or current members of the OQL were eligible to play.  Questions are provided by those set in house and by MQLOnline.

They are 5 weeks into a 9 week Handicap Season 2 with 10 teams.  A third season will start in January, with possibility of more teams in light of the decision in item 9.  Sets are being compiled in house and in cooperation with Dave Tilley and David Hodgson.

They are just over halfway through a 14 week Season 1.  The current 15 teams will be joined for Season 2 in January by a further 8 (13 Liverpool, 4 Warrington and 6 Wirral) and they anticipate 2 divisions.  Questions are provided by those set in house and by Ormskirk Online.

A further 3 teams from Liverpool will join MQLOnline in January.  Paul once again repeated the offer made by several players to help those less familiar overcome technical difficulties and get involved in online quizzing.

In addition to the 4 teams playing in MQLOnline, the weekly email competition is continuing and will finish its current season at Christmas.

Being unable to quiz face to face, 5 teams will join MQLOnline in January bringing the total to 6.

Player Eligibility
It was decided to adapt and apply the Merseyside Challenge Cup Rule No 3 to any online quiz competitions organised by the MQL.  This states;
Players (in MQL online competitions) should be current or former players in the Merseyside Quiz Leagues.  A team who wish to include any other player must seek permission from the Competition Secretary.  If this is not done then the game, when played, may be forfeit.

Recording of Matches
It was decided to adapt and apply the MQL Rule No 50 to any online quiz competitions organised by the MQL.  This states;
Any published matters, including press, radio, internet and social media, concerning quiz teams and individual members must not contain any comment or statement capable of causing offence or embarrassment. Matches may not be recorded without the express permission of the Competition Secretary.  The only circumstances in which a recording might be made would be to promote the competition and in which case the Secretary would seek the individual permissions from all involved. Questions must not be discussed on social media. MQL has the right to impose appropriate sanctions on teams or individuals who contravene these rules.

Merseyside Challenge Cup 2020-21 and Mimir 2021
It was agreed to ask teams who usually play in the MCC if they would be interested in playing the competition online.  If there was a positive response then this could encourage a few other teams to join in.

It was thought that there might be an opportunity to run a version of the 2021 Mimir online in the Spring.  However, it was agreed that it would be sensible to make a decision after the experience of running the 2019-20 Merseyside Mimir in December.

Action:  League Secretaries were to 
Contact those teams who usually took part in the MCC to find out if they would be interested in playing the competition online from January.

11.    Dates:  
2019-20 Mimir Merseyside Heats to be held online at 7.45pm on Wed 16 December.  The competition will produce the four players for the final in May.
Current Ormskirk Online league finishes 25 January 2021
Current S&F Online league finishes 7 December 2020
Current MQLOnline league finishes 4 Jan 2021
2019-20 Finals and Presentation Evening at APH on Wed 26 May 2021

Action:  League Secretaries were to 
Make date of Merseyside Mimir at 7.45pm on Wed 16 Dec known to the appropriate players

12.    AOB:  
There were no items of AOB

The meeting closed at 8.35 pm.  

Next Council meeting:  Sunday 6th December 2020 at 7.30pm online

minutes of most recent AGM

Minutes of the Annual General Meeting of the Merseyside Quiz Leagues 
held online on Sunday 26th July 2020 (commenced at 7.30pm)

Attendees;  Frank McFarlane, Cliff Houghton, Angela Houghton, Angela Doyle, Derek Moody, Bill Morris, Bill Thomas, Brian Bates, Dave Tilley, Colin Foster, David Hodgson, Dag Griffiths, Bob Wilkie, Jon Stitcher, Jim Eccleson, Paul Davitt, Frances Mason, Danny Grimes and Brian Thompson representing thirteen teams and all five areas.

Chairman, Frank McFarlane, asked for a moment’s silence for the following members and associates of the MQL who had passed away in the last year;
Charlie McAuley

Southport & Formby
Bob Ellis
Geoff Wilde
Rhian Griffiths

Anna Torpey
Geoff Austin

1. Apologies for absence.  There were no apologies.

2. The minutes of the previous AGM.  The minutes, having been circulated to all teams, were accepted as a true and fair record of the meeting.

3. Matters Arising.  There were no matters arising not covered by the Agenda

4. Chairman’s Report.  Frank thanked the Council and all those who continue to organise the MQL and to all who run the constituent leagues.  This had been especially appreciated in the current circumstances. 

5. General Secretary’s Report.  General Secretary, Brian Thompson, reported on the outcomes of 2018 - 2019 competitions that had occurred since the last AGM.  He thanked all who had played, set questions and supported the events.  He noted that 107 teams played in the 2019-20 season.  Participation in the Merseyside Challenge Cup and Rendon Cup was still disappointing but interest in the President’s competitions was still very healthy.  Special thanks were given to Dave Tilley who had set all the questions in the MCC and Plate competitions.
Although the season had been truncated, there seemed to have been less dissatisfaction with the quality of question sets.  The anonymisation of sets appeared to have had its desired effect to reduce the blind prejudice about questions before they were even played.
Following the success of the inaugural competition, the second MQL Buzzer Tournament was held in October.  Setting our own questions allowed us to control both the date and the administration of the event.  With a few hiccups that were sorted out on the day, the event was a great success and won by Ormskirk with Liverpool winning the Plate.  Many thanks must again go to Jon Stitcher and his team of setters, compliers and most importantly question persons.  

The General Secretary congratulated Ormskirk in winning all three inter-league competitions and the Buzzer Tournament in what was their Golden Jubilee season.

The Diamond Jubilee of the MQL passed a little more quietly than perhaps anticipated. A Charity Table Quiz scheduled for May or June didn’t take place, but a Jubilee Pairs Competition was held in September 2019.  Hosted by Wirral, it was attended by 36 players and was won by the team of John Hall of Warrington and Kris Jones of Wirral.    COVID notwithstanding, both the Pairs and the Buzzer Tournaments will remain on the MQL calendar as a legacy of the Diamond Jubilee year.

It was reported that the team from Merseyside retained the Don Bissett Trophy at the annual Quiz League of London Open Quiz Festival in June 2019, defeating teams from Teesside, Yorkshire and Scotland on the way.

The General Secretary concluded by thanking fellow Council members and to all who contribute to the organisation of the MQL and the individual Leagues.

 (A full version of this Report can be found on the MQL website

6. Treasurer’s Report.  Treasurer, Dag Griffiths, presented an unaudited financial statement for the season 2019-20.  He reported a less healthy financial situation than X as there had been no outlay for the Mimir evening nor any trophies.  He proposed that no increase to the £25 MQL subs was needed although pointed out that as there had been no increase in subs for several years this was in effect a reduction in real terms.  The proposal was seconded by Brian Thompson and carried nem. con. 

7. Assistant General Secretary’s Report.  Assistant General Secretary, Cliff Houghton, reported that the additional Laser printer had eased pressure on copying and that distribution had gone relatively smoothly.    He added that the anonymization of sets had been a success.

8. Election of Officers.  President, Angela Houghton took the chair for the election of the Chairman.  No other nominations having been received Frank McFarlane was returned as Chairman.  As all remaining officers had expressed their willingness to continue in post, Frank McFarlane proposed that they were re-appointed en bloc. This was seconded by Cliff Houghton and carried nem. con.

Chairman:             Frank McFarlane        
Deputy Chairman:         Cliff Houghton    
General Secretary:         Brian Thompson    
Treasurer:             Dag Griffiths            
Deputy General Secretary:     Cliff Houghton     

Auditors (appointed):         Paul Davitt and David Hodgson.

9. Election of President.  Angela Houghton has served her 3 year Presidency and was obliged to stand down.  The Chairman expressed his thanks for her dedication to the Leagues and her support at all events.

The MQL Council had nominated Angela Doyle as new President and she was duly appointed.

    Vice Presidents:  The 3 year term of the following had ended.  Brian Thompson proposed that they be re-elected for a further 3 years.  This was seconded by Frank McFarlane and carried nem. con.

Jim McGrath            Brian Bates 

Brian Thompson then proposed that Angela Houghton be elected as a Vice-President.  This was seconded by Angela Doyle and carried nem. con.

The date for the 2021 AGM has been set for Sunday 18th April.

The meeting closed at 8.00pm