Tuesday, 14 May 2013

First off the list...

... I'm going to discuss clubs.  In particular, Sheffield and Rotherham Wargamers and South Yorkshire Dice Devils and my history with them and what I consider to be the Pro's and Con's.

First off, I've been a member of Sheffield and Rotherham Wargamers for about seven years now and have seen the club membership fluctuate massively, in the main due to the venues although there have been some personal issues as well.

The club has moved several times during my attendance, I joined when we met at Wargames Emporium held a gaming venue at Meadowhall, then we moved to Darnall Liberal and Social Club and were nearly decimated when the club shut without warning with our property locked within.

A hectic Sunday roll call got us enough people and cars to transport the boards and boxes when they were liberated to a new venue: Park Gardeners which was a good thing as the Darnall venue was torched a few weeks later.  Things were good at Park Gardeners and the venue was bigger so the same crew that liberated  the club boards and property met on a Saturday and painted some more boards and attendance went up.  I briefly entertained a stint on the council but stepped down as I was getting a lot of flack for implementing membership forms, particularly from people who refused to come to the club given its current venue. Then the management of the club changed and we were faced with intermittent closures, on top of this a mistake on the forum where an intended personal PM was posted as a thread and blown out of all proportion and as a result the club split.

The new venue, Farm Road Social Club is smaller than Park Gardener but the room has been pretty much given over to the club so gaming is guaranteed every week, in weeks where the main room is in use we have been given use of the pool room which is smaller but fine for running games on 4'x4' boards.

Address: Farm Road Social Club, Farm Road

Subs: £2   (Was £1.50 for students, but not sure of outcome of AGM)

Pro's:
- Cheap beer! (£2.15 for a pint of bitter shandy)
- Good quality and range of scenery as should be expected of an established club
- Plenty of painted boards
- Massive range of systems played
- Good location with to tram, train and bus all within ten minutes walk
- There's a website! www.sr-wargamers.co.uk
- McD's are on the corner!
- Large car park

Con's:
- It's a half hour trek from Rotherham if traffic is good.
- The room looks crowded very quickly. It comfortably holds nine 6'x4' boards and three 4'x4' boards but the central area isn't always cleared so its difficult to get to the back of the room if you arrive late and this can put people off as they presume there's no room.
- You must be a member of the Farm Road Social Club to be on site.  Membership is £10 for the first year and £5 per consecutive year after that.  Failing to renew annually means you must rejoin at £10
- The forum is not for the easily offended, threads are regularly hijacked and general abuse is rife.  If you don't mind that, apply for a user account at sheffieldandrotherhamwargames.freeforums.org you'll get approval very quickly, don't presume because you can't see anything that its a closed forum.



Now South Yorkshire Dice Devils.  The club's been running for a few months now, but has only recently moved to Thursday nights which does put it in competition with SR.  It's evident its a fledgling club, but there's enough boards to make eight 4'x'4 and enough scenery to populate them.  Rob who runs it is determined to make the club a success and is ploughing as much of the subs back into the club, additionally a number of the new members have their own scenery (me included) so we can bring down what we need in the interim. The venue is a decent size, closer to Darnall than Farm Road with space for, i guess, approx fifteen 6'x4' boards, although its not got the back up room like SR.  Not much else I can say really, onto the Pro's and Con's.

Venue:  Cross Street Bramley Rotherham South Yorkshire S66 2SA

Subs: £2

Pro's
- Cheaper beer! (£1.75 for a pint of bitter shandy)
- Regular buses direct from Rotherham Central Here's the bus timetable
- There's a Facebook page!
- Active members of the GCN
- Already planning weekend events!
- I can be gaming within 10 minutes of leaving the house!
- I can game every week as I can set off once the girls are in bed
- I get to game against people I've not played against for a long while!
- Right next door to Junction 1 of the M18
- Lots of good takeaways in stone throw's distance

Con's:
- New club so limited boards and scenery (Temporary Con)
- Transport options are limited to Bus or Car
- Can't take food in :(
- Car park is quite small but on street parking is available

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