CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Discussion and announcements relating to unofficial Countdown competitions, held online or in real life. Observation, discussion, reflection, and other stuff ending in -ion.
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Fiona T
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CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Fiona T »

Countdown is returning to Reading in 2024! This event will be part of the FOCAL calendar.

When is it?

20 April 2024. Doors will open at 10:40, with the first round draw taking place shortly after. Please arrive before 11:00.

Where is it?

Hemdean House School Hall - a 20 minute walk from Reading station (use the Caversham exit)

Reading is 20 minutes on the train from Paddington, 25 minutes from Oxford, an hour from Bristol, and less than 90 minutes from Birmingham. Even Exeter can be done in less than two hours! There is plenty of free parking available on the school site. The venue is fully wheelchair accessible.

Map

What will I be doing?

Keeping with the traditional format of Reading events, you will be playing 15 round games in 'Bristol' style, where everyone plays the same selections in pairs, with each pair choosing their preferred numbers round format. Game presentation will be using a shiny new purpose built tool - no more switching between spreadsheets and powerpoint! We should be able to fit in at least six games, then the top two players will face each other in a grand final.


The first round will be drawn randomly, but don't worry if you have a bumpy start - for the remaining games you will be playing opponents that have scored similarly to you, so everyone should get some good, well matched games. The primary aim is to have fun!

What about lunch?

You can bring a packed lunch, or there are plenty of local shops in Caversham village, including a very nice vegan cafe! Tea and coffee will be available at the venue - if you do have a travel mug, bring it along.


And after?

I've made a group booking at ZeroDegrees. Please let me know if you'd like to join us for food. For those who want to make a weekend of it, there is plenty to do in Reading including escape rooms, climbing walls, and plenty of pubs, shops and restaurants.

I'm in - what do I do?

The entry fee is £12. Paypal is preferred. https://www.paypal.me/FionaTitcombe/12GBP. If you can't pay via paypal, then please contact me to make alternative arrangements. Please ensure you select the family and friends option.

Please note your name will be added to the attendees list below and on facebook. If you would prefer for this not to happen, please let us know when you sign up.

Any questions, please contact me and I'll do my best to help.

Look forward to seeing you there!

At time of writing, Novotel is £150 for 2 nights for a room that sleeps 3
EasyHotel is £115 for 2 nights for a double room

fb link - https://www.facebook.com/events/8536351 ... _tab=about

We want everyone to enjoy the event and have a good time. All attendees or organisers of FOCAL events are bound by the FOCAL Code of Conduct regarding respect for boundaries, respect for opponents and fair play. Any breaches of the Code of Conduct can be discussed in confidence with Fiona or any member of the Focal committee.

Confirmed entrants (48 (+4) - full and some!)

Phil Stanton
MSR
James Robinson
Darren Godfrey
Lju Laz
Martyn Pegram
Mike Lee
Adam Dexter
Ben Leyburn
Catriona Cappleman
Dave Cappleman
Tom Cappleman
Ruth Cappleman
Nicki Sellars
Jack Hurst
Suzy Turner
Dave Ryan
Sean Fletcher
Dave Robjohns
Adam Beach
Neil Collins
Maire Bennett
Graeme Cole
Jo Bartram
Archie Rodger
Adrian Fletcher
Graham Harding
Helen Harding
Richard Priest
Adam Latchford
Coral Heath
Last Ashwin Hero
Ellen Harrison
Mauro Pratesi
Jessica Pratesi
Thomas Carey
Dan Byrom
Tom Stevenson
Pete Borrett
Toby Byfield
Steve Hyde
Tim Hebbes
Mike Springett
Paul Talmey
Jonathan DeSouza
Rob Foster
Eeshan Malhotra
Ronan Higginson
Daniyaal Ali
Andy Evans
Tim Down
Matthew Brockwell
Last edited by Fiona T on Wed Apr 17, 2024 8:51 pm, edited 33 times in total.
JackHurst
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by JackHurst »

Pretty excited about this. With 15 rounders and a decent letters algorithm this is going to be the most realistic co event I can recall. 😎
Fiona T
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Fiona T »

Yep, I really enjoyed the 15R at MSO - will be keen to hear feedback (good or bad!) after about how well it works on a bigger scale.

Thinking about trialling the A/B conundrums suggested elsewhere to allow for adjudication, and possibly different difficulty levels for top half tables after first couple of rounds.
Gavin Chipper
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Gavin Chipper »

Is Tony Atkins involved or is this just a separate thing from his events?
Fiona T
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Fiona T »

I checked with Tony before organising and he gave his blessing and will bring and present the traditional Reading teapot :) I didn't want to tread on anyone's toes. I'm organising and hosting and the presentation will be computer based using a new hosting tool which will hopefully allow for quicker games. But it's something afaik we haven't tried before, so be prepared for the unexpected!
JackHurst
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by JackHurst »

Fiona T wrote: Sat Jan 20, 2024 10:31 pm Thinking about trialling the A/B conundrums suggested elsewhere to allow for adjudication, and possibly different difficulty levels for top half tables after first couple of rounds.
Yeah it seems like a no brainer to do this!
Gavin Chipper
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Gavin Chipper »

This is the day before the London Marathon by the way, so it's unfortunately not doable for me.
Fiona T
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Fiona T »

Gavin Chipper wrote: Sun Jan 21, 2024 9:22 am This is the day before the London Marathon by the way, so it's unfortunately not doable for me.
:( We won't keep you out late! (I'm also heading to the marathon to cheer my daughter on, but I think she'll be several hours behind you!)
Gavin Chipper
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Gavin Chipper »

I think any travelling at all the day before might be a bit tiring, and could be a bit of a risk! Hopefully I'll see you out there in London and good luck to your daughter!
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Adam Dexter
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Adam Dexter »

Just a note to say Advance train tickets are now available - I've just booked and saved £15 woohoo
ADAM DEXTER: MAXED DATER
We're off to button moon :)
Archie Thomas R.
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Archie Thomas R. »

Hiya Fiona! I’m considering this event for my first, so if you get £12 from a random Rodger, don’t put their name in as an entrant as someone else is probably paying for me, I’m about 4 years too young to really pay anything online never mind PayPal.
Thanks!
Fiona T
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Fiona T »

Archie Thomas R. wrote: Fri Feb 09, 2024 8:47 pm Hiya Fiona! I’m considering this event for my first, so if you get £12 from a random Rodger, don’t put their name in as an entrant as someone else is probably paying for me, I’m about 4 years too young to really pay anything online never mind PayPal.
Thanks!
Cool - will look out for it.
Fiona T
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Fiona T »

Two months to go!

I've made a provisional booking for 20 people at ZeroDegrees at 6:30pm - menu available on the website, lots of dishes can be veganised!

Please let me know if you'd like to join us for dinner after

https://www.zerodegrees.co.uk/restaurants/reading/
Fiona T
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Fiona T »

Fiona T wrote: Fri Feb 09, 2024 10:11 pm
Archie Thomas R. wrote: Fri Feb 09, 2024 8:47 pm Hiya Fiona! I’m considering this event for my first, so if you get £12 from a random Rodger, don’t put their name in as an entrant as someone else is probably paying for me, I’m about 4 years too young to really pay anything online never mind PayPal.
Thanks!
Cool - will look out for it.
Received thanks Archie. Just a note that you will need to bring a responsible adult to tag along!
Dave Robjohns
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Dave Robjohns »

In pls for the meal :)
Phil Stanton
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Phil Stanton »

Just in case anyone missed this on the FB page ...

Does anyone fancy a trip to a local climbing wall on the Friday?
Or the Sunday?
Or both?!

FRIDAY
Climbing at Parthian Climbing in Reading, some time in the afternoon, exact time to be decided.
No prior climbing experience necessary.

SUNDAY
Same as Friday, for anyone who wants to join but can't do Friday. Probably late morning I guess.

Comment here or on the FB post below if you're interested 🙂
https://www.facebook.com/events/8536351 ... 755047428/
Fiona T
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Fiona T »

We need to pre-order our food for zerodegrees - if you haven't told me you want in, then please do asap!

I've sent everyone who's said they're in a pre-order link - note that if you need vegan/GF, the options pop up when you choose a pizza!
Neil A Collins
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Neil A Collins »

In for meal as well please Fiona :)
Fiona T
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Fiona T »

Excited to have so many people who want to come and play Countdown in Reading, but logistic-wise I'm going to have to limit entries to 48 (currently on 48). So if you do want to play and haven't signed up yet, please let me know asap!

Edit - now full
Last edited by Fiona T on Fri Apr 12, 2024 10:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
Fiona T
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Fiona T »

Co:Reading is full! 48 people is going to be a bit cosy but we'll work it out! If you do want to play and haven't signed up, please don't send me money, but drop me a message and I'll let you know if more places become available.
Fiona T
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Fiona T »

One week to go, and I'm getting excited!

A couple of things to note -

If you're arriving by train, use the CAVERSHAM (North) exit of the station. The nicest walking route is along the river - cross the road as you come out the station and there's a small road just to the right that takes you to the river and then over the footbridge. It's just over a mile, and took me 17 minutes walking fairly briskly when I did it a couple of weeks ago. See map.

If you have a travel mug, please bring it!

Good news :D Because numbers are so much higher than anticipated, you'll all be getting £2 of your entry fee back! Woop woop, don't spend it all at once! The budget has also stretched to crisps and biscuits so snacks will be available.

In order to get everyone playing comfortably in the space we've got, I've bought clipboards. There will be plenty of tables too for those who want/need them.

Look forward to seeing you all next week!

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JackHurst
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by JackHurst »

Fiona T wrote: Sat Apr 13, 2024 10:00 am In order to get everyone playing comfortably in the space we've got, I've bought clipboards. There will be plenty of tables too for those who want/need them.
Great to have so many players signed up! What's the deal going to be with conundrum buzzes? I could imagine adjucating buzzes onto separate clipboards causing quite a bit of confusion/distrust.

Fiona T wrote: Fri Sep 22, 2023 4:19 pm We should be able to fit in at least six games, then the top two players will face each other in a grand final.
Sounds like a good plan to allow flexibility to have extra games if timings allow so. Please don't leave it too late to decide the number of games. For example, if you decide after game 4 that a 7th game is possible on the day, I think this is reasonable notice as a lot can change in the leaderboard whether 2 or 3 games left. However if you were to decide after game 6 whether a 7th game is possible, this is just really unfair on whoever is in the current top 2 at that time (could imagine it making them upset and stressed), because the decision to extend the event effectively doubles as a decision on whether to accept those two players as finalists. Combine that with the fact that at this point, you probably have 46 people in the room who want the extra game and 2 who don't, you would have a bias in the room on making a decision :)
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by George Armstrong »

JackHurst wrote: Mon Apr 15, 2024 11:20 am Sounds like a good plan to allow flexibility to have extra games if timings allow so. Please don't leave it too late to decide the number of games. For example, if you decide after game 4 that a 7th game is possible on the day, I think this is reasonable notice as a lot can change in the leaderboard whether 2 or 3 games left. However if you were to decide after game 6 whether a 7th game is possible, this is just really unfair on whoever is in the current top 2 at that time (could imagine it making them upset and stressed), because the decision to extend the event effectively doubles as a decision on whether to accept those two players as finalists. Combine that with the fact that at this point, you probably have 46 people in the room who want the extra game and 2 who don't, you would have a bias in the room on making a decision :)
Fwiw a similar situation happened at Brum 22, where the decision of whether or not to play on was given to the top 2 players, who understandably said no.
Fiona T
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Fiona T »

JackHurst wrote: Mon Apr 15, 2024 11:20 am
Fiona T wrote: Sat Apr 13, 2024 10:00 am In order to get everyone playing comfortably in the space we've got, I've bought clipboards. There will be plenty of tables too for those who want/need them.
Great to have so many players signed up! What's the deal going to be with conundrum buzzes? I could imagine adjucating buzzes onto separate clipboards causing quite a bit of confusion/distrust.

Fiona T wrote: Fri Sep 22, 2023 4:19 pm We should be able to fit in at least six games, then the top two players will face each other in a grand final.
Sounds like a good plan to allow flexibility to have extra games if timings allow so. Please don't leave it too late to decide the number of games. For example, if you decide after game 4 that a 7th game is possible on the day, I think this is reasonable notice as a lot can change in the leaderboard whether 2 or 3 games left. However if you were to decide after game 6 whether a 7th game is possible, this is just really unfair on whoever is in the current top 2 at that time (could imagine it making them upset and stressed), because the decision to extend the event effectively doubles as a decision on whether to accept those two players as finalists. Combine that with the fact that at this point, you probably have 46 people in the room who want the extra game and 2 who don't, you would have a bias in the room on making a decision :)


Yeah, realistically with so many people I think it's very unlikely we'll get an extra game in, but any decision would be made by lunchtime once we know how long the first couple of games take.

I'm delighted to have so many wanting to play, but it has made me nervous about keeping things moving along!

re: conundrums - should work ok I think. See how it goes on the practice one. I'm intending to do A/B so there will be an adjudicator available for each pair.
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Graeme Cole
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Graeme Cole »

Old CoRea used to have five 15-rounders and a final, with a typical attendance of less than half what this one's getting. The FOCAL Finals have seven games but they're 9-rounders. I'm not aware of any event ever fitting in seven 15-rounders and a final (even six is a lot), so colour me astonished if that happens.
Fiona T
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Re: CO:Rea - 20 April 2024

Post by Fiona T »

Graeme Cole wrote: Mon Apr 15, 2024 7:12 pm Old CoRea used to have five 15-rounders and a final, with a typical attendance of less than half what this one's getting. The FOCAL Finals have seven games but they're 9-rounders. I'm not aware of any event ever fitting in seven 15-rounders and a final (even six is a lot), so colour me astonished if that happens.
yep really hoping we get in 6 - the new software should keep things moving more quickly, but the number of players might slow things down! But yep - dropping a round more likely than adding one, but 6 is my intention!
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