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CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Thu Jul 11, 2019 7:51 pm
by FOCAL Countdown
FOCAL comes to the market town of Braintree in Essex this November — and this will be the last event on the 2019 circuit before the FOCAL Finals three weeks later.


Date: Saturday 2 November 2019
Venue: White Hart Hotel, Braintree, Essex CM7 9AB [see on map]; [website];
B&B accommodation available.
Admission: £12pp or £20 for two; further discounts available for larger groups
Start time: Doors open 10:30 for Round 1 draw at 11:15
Parking on site? Yes, chargeable
Lunch provided? No
Accommodation available? Yes
Finish time: 18:00
Host: Jeff Clayton – jeff@focalcountdown.co.uk
Games to be played: 6, plus Grand Final
Wheelchair accessible?: Yes
Train connections: Braintree station – direct from London Liverpool Street, or change at Witham off main line services from Ipswich and Norwich.
Bus connections: First 70 from Chelmsford or Colchester, Arriva 133 from Stansted Airport.



This tournament will take place in one of the town’s oldest buildings, the White Hart, dating back to the early 16th century. Its rustic, warming vibe provides the perfect setting for wiling away an autumn day.


Getting to the venue
If you’re coming by car, the pub has parking on site but it is chargeable (and this is enforced). Other car parks are available nearby at ground level on Manor Street (CM7 3HW, by the Town Hall) or George Yard Shopping Centre (CM7 1GF, multi-storey). Both are short walks from the venue.

Braintree has a direct rail service from London Liverpool Street, then it’s a 15-minute walk through the centre of town up to the White Hart. Super off-peak discounted fares are usually available from Abellio Greater Anglia on Saturdays.

If you’re coming from the Midlands, the North, or even further afield, there’s an hourly bus 133 to/from Stansted Airport which stops right by the venue.


When do I need to be there?
Doors open from 10:30 and you can enjoy a hot drink from the bar before we get underway at 11:15. After introductions, we’ll generate a random draw for the first round matches.


How does it work?
We’ll be using what’s the Lincoln format and all matches will consists of nine rounds.

We’ll stop for lunch after Round 1 towards 12:45 — you can either order something off the menu, or take a stroll towards Sainsbury’s, or the High Street, with an array of coffee shops and cafés. The Saturday market will also be in full flow down towards the Town Hall — all a short walk away.

There’ll be another short break after Round 2 towards 14:45, then again after Round 3 at 16:30. Sometime towards 17:00, the two highest performing contestants will contest a Grand Final in front of a captive audience to decide the overall winner.


Grand Final
This will be a longer match — 14 rounds (LLNLLNCLLNLLNC) using big screen graphics.


Where in the pub will the games take place?
We’ve hired out the Braintree and Tudor function rooms, across from each other on the ground floor and just round from the main bar. Each room will be set up with a mixture of tables and chairs, or sofas and coffee tables, so everyone will have the choice of how they want to play their matches.


Timetable for the day:
10:30 Doors open; tea/coffee available from the bar
11:15 Welcome, followed by Round 1 draw.
11:30 Round 1
12:45 Lunchtime
13:45 Round 2
15:00 Break
15:15 Round 3
16:30 Break
17:00 Grand Final (14 rounds)
17:30 Prize giving
18:00 End


Payment
You can book your place with host Jeff using PayPal:

£12 for an individual booking;
£20 for two.

If you wish to book a larger group, please email Jeff to discuss rates.

Remember to select the “family/friends” option, as your contribution is voluntary to help cover Jeff’s personal costs of organising the event.


What’s happening in the evening?
We're arranging a group booking at a curry house in the town centre for 19:30. Let Jeff know if you can join us.


Staying over?
The White Hart offers B&B accommodation which has received good ratings and reviews. At time of writing (July 2019), two nights’ B&B for two adults (staying Friday 1st and Saturday 2nd November) is £100.

There are also two Premier Inns and a Holiday Inn Express, located just out of town off the A120. Parking is free at all of these others, though we would recommend arranging taxis to get to/from the town centre if you’re not coming by car.


Any questions?
jeff@focalcountdown.co.uk


Entrants so far...
1. James Robinson
2. Jon O'Neill
3. Toby Pereira
4. Matt Morrison
5. Heather Badcock
6. Danni Perez
7. Matty Deller
8. Jill Thwaites*
9. Fiona Titcombe
10. Callum Todd
11. Zarte Siempre
12. Tim Down
13. Noel Pereira
14. Jonathan de Souza*
15. Rachel Perkins
16. Tim Goate
17. Mike Brown
18. Rob Foster.

Curry (19:30)
1. Jeff
2. Robbo
3. Gev
4. Gev's Dad
5. Jono
6&7. Morricocks
8. Fiona
9. Rachel
10. Tim G
11. Callum.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sun Jul 14, 2019 5:48 am
by Marc Meakin
I am off work that day so could finally go to one but I have to occasionally have to look after my mum so won't be certain until nearer the time
Do you have a maximum number before it's fully booked or can I , say , book it a week before ?

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sun Jul 14, 2019 1:05 pm
by Gavin Chipper
Marc Meakin wrote:
Sun Jul 14, 2019 5:48 am
I am off work that day so could finally go to one but I have to occasionally have to look after my mum so won't be certain until nearer the time
Do you have a maximum number before it's fully booked or can I , say , book it a week before ?
I imagine a week before would be fine. It probably won't book up.

But this would be good. It's my local event so I'll be there.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sun Jul 14, 2019 1:13 pm
by Marc Meakin
Gavin Chipper wrote:
Sun Jul 14, 2019 1:05 pm
Marc Meakin wrote:
Sun Jul 14, 2019 5:48 am
I am off work that day so could finally go to one but I have to occasionally have to look after my mum so won't be certain until nearer the time
Do you have a maximum number before it's fully booked or can I , say , book it a week before ?
I imagine a week before would be fine. It probably won't book up.

But this would be good. It's my local event so I'll be there.
Well I live in Kent but it's doable with a mid morning start and as my partner will be at her sisters I will probably be at a loose end so I am pencilling it in

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Mon Jul 15, 2019 6:18 pm
by JackHurst
Was the venue picked after the name?

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Tue Jul 16, 2019 5:07 pm
by Zarte Siempre
Strong chance I will attend if family visits other family on that day so I can hitch a ride. Won't be at the meal though if this happens.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Thu Aug 01, 2019 11:07 pm
by Ronan M Higginson
Hoping to go to it seeing as it's not too far away. Could we please have a list of who is going?

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 2:06 pm
by Gavin Chipper
Is this getting a Facebook event thing as well? I know that everyone should use c4c for their primary source of all things Countdown, but in practice not everyone does.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sun Aug 04, 2019 10:05 am
by FOCAL Countdown
Original post now updated to include confirmed sign-ups so far.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Wed Sep 11, 2019 7:20 pm
by Matt Morrison
Can't find the Facebook event, has it been done yet or am I just being stupid? Sure I saw something about the curry house at one point and wanted to check it out.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Wed Sep 11, 2019 7:50 pm
by James Robinson
Matt Morrison wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 7:20 pm
Can't find the Facebook event, has it been done yet or am I just being stupid? Sure I saw something about the curry house at one point and wanted to check it out.
Not one up yet...

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Tue Sep 17, 2019 4:00 pm
by Callum Todd
A family room for up to 4 people seems to cost £105 for both Friday and Saturday nights. Looking for 3 people to share with to bring costs down to just £26.25 per person. Let me know if interested.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Tue Sep 17, 2019 9:16 pm
by Matt Morrison
Callum Todd wrote:
Tue Sep 17, 2019 4:00 pm
A family room for up to 4 people seems to cost £105 for both Friday and Saturday nights. Looking for 3 people to share with to bring costs down to just £26.25 per person. Let me know if interested.
You enquired as to what this room is made up of? Guessing a double and two singles.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Wed Sep 18, 2019 5:23 am
by Callum Todd
Matt Morrison wrote:
Tue Sep 17, 2019 9:16 pm
Callum Todd wrote:
Tue Sep 17, 2019 4:00 pm
A family room for up to 4 people seems to cost £105 for both Friday and Saturday nights. Looking for 3 people to share with to bring costs down to just £26.25 per person. Let me know if interested.
You enquired as to what this room is made up of? Guessing a double and two singles.
Yes, a double and two singles. Using the online booking form you can't select more than 2 adults to stay in the room, so I guess it's intended for 2 adults and 2 children, but I see no reason why 3 or 4 willing adults couldn't stay in the room.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Thu Sep 19, 2019 7:40 am
by Matt Morrison
absolutely consensual

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Wed Oct 02, 2019 8:10 am
by FOCAL Countdown
One month to go now! £12pp or two for £20.
PayPal: jeff@focalcountdown.co.uk .

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Wed Oct 02, 2019 4:13 pm
by Callum Todd
Still looking for hotel buddies, please contact me if interested. So long as I can find a few people to share with I will definitely attend.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Thu Oct 03, 2019 2:49 pm
by Fiona T
Hotel prices appear to be heading Northwards...

Any idea how much the parking is?

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Fri Oct 04, 2019 8:19 am
by Callum Todd
Best deal now appears to be a family room for 3 at £135, so £45 per person for 2 nights. Please contact me within the next week if interested.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Fri Oct 04, 2019 8:56 am
by Ronan M Higginson
Callum Todd wrote:
Fri Oct 04, 2019 8:19 am
Best deal now appears to be a family room for 3 at £135, so £45 per person for 2 nights. Please contact me within the next week if interested.
Think you'll make the event?

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Fri Oct 04, 2019 9:02 am
by Ronan M Higginson
Just read above, fingers crossed

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 11:49 am
by FOCAL Countdown
Three weeks to go! </nudge>
www.focalcountdown.co.uk/braintree2019

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 1:08 pm
by Gavin Chipper
FOCAL Countdown wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 11:49 am
Three weeks to go! </nudge>
www.focalcountdown.co.uk/braintree2019
Facebook event page! </nudge>

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 2:27 pm
by FOCAL Countdown
Volunteering?

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 2:47 pm
by Gavin Chipper
I can if you want but I've never done one before so it could go horribly wrong.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 3:11 pm
by Matt Morrison
Did I pay?

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 3:12 pm
by Matt Morrison
Ah yes, I did. That is why my name appears on the first post in this thread. Because I paid.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 3:24 pm
by Matt Morrison
Ah fuck me. Really should have sorted out the hotel before it went crazy. Was £55 for Saturday night last time I looked. It's like the Lincoln Travelodge caught AIDS.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 3:52 pm
by Fiona T
Matt Morrison wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 3:24 pm
Ah fuck me. Really should have sorted out the hotel before it went crazy. Was £55 for Saturday night last time I looked. It's like the Lincoln Travelodge caught AIDS.
Lincoln's quite a way from Braintree...

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 4:33 pm
by Fiona T
https://www.premierinn.com/gb/en/hotels ... B&BRAND=PI

£85 for Fri and Sat night.

£48 for Sat only.

I think Callum's still looking for a share.

Gonna book now before I get screwed on price...

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 9:59 pm
by Gavin Chipper
Gavin Chipper wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 2:47 pm
I can if you want but I've never done one before so it could go horribly wrong.
It's done.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sun Oct 13, 2019 2:24 pm
by FOCAL Countdown
@Toby - And it's absolutely fine, thank you for doing that.

@Fiona - Thank you for your admission monies, entry list now updated.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sun Oct 13, 2019 6:24 pm
by Callum Todd
Fiona T wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 4:33 pm
https://www.premierinn.com/gb/en/hotels ... B&BRAND=PI

£85 for Fri and Sat night.

£48 for Sat only.

I think Callum's still looking for a share.

Gonna book now before I get screwed on price...
Have now sorted hotel out with a buddy. Thanks for your help Fiona.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Mon Oct 14, 2019 10:33 pm
by Gavin Chipper
Great Notley parkrun is the one to be at beforehand.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Fri Oct 18, 2019 7:07 pm
by Gavin Chipper
Do we need to say if we're doing the curry? I'm in.

Edit - And Noel Pereira as well.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sat Oct 19, 2019 1:14 pm
by FOCAL Countdown
Cheers Gev. I'll add you both to the list.

And yes, feel free to say on here if you want in on curry night.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sat Oct 19, 2019 3:50 pm
by Ronan M Higginson
Provisionally in for now. Could you please put my name down as "Ronan Higginson" if possible? payment will be done within the next few days :) , will let you know if I can't make it .

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sun Oct 20, 2019 7:06 pm
by FOCAL Countdown
Sure can do, Ronan. Name goes on the list once payment is received.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sun Oct 20, 2019 8:02 pm
by Ronan M Higginson
OK thank you

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Thu Oct 24, 2019 8:32 am
by Fiona T
Gavin Chipper wrote:
Fri Oct 18, 2019 7:07 pm
Do we need to say if we're doing the curry? I'm in.

Edit - And Noel Pereira as well.
Assuming it's not a set menu and I can order a korma (I can't do spicy!) then in please.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Thu Oct 24, 2019 9:25 am
by Gavin Chipper
FOCAL Countdown wrote:
Sat Oct 19, 2019 1:14 pm
Cheers Gev. I'll add you both to the list.

And yes, feel free to say on here if you want in on curry night.
Can we see the list?

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Thu Oct 24, 2019 10:40 pm
by Gavin Chipper
Put Jono and the Morricocks down for the curry too.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Thu Oct 24, 2019 10:43 pm
by Fiona T
Why do Jill and Jonathan get a star? How does one earn a star? :)

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Fri Oct 25, 2019 7:43 am
by Gavin Chipper
Fiona T wrote:
Thu Oct 24, 2019 10:43 pm
Why do Jill and Jonathan get a star? How does one earn a star? :)
I was wondering too. Can't be the curry.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Fri Oct 25, 2019 8:48 am
by Matt Morrison
Gavin Chipper wrote:
Thu Oct 24, 2019 10:40 pm
Put Jono and the Morricocks down for the curry too.
Whilst this is a hilarious joke, it has the potential to cause confusion and annoyance for the organisers, us, and for you.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Fri Oct 25, 2019 8:49 am
by Matt Morrison
Gavin Chipper wrote:
Fri Oct 25, 2019 7:43 am
Fiona T wrote:
Thu Oct 24, 2019 10:43 pm
Why do Jill and Jonathan get a star? How does one earn a star? :)
I was wondering too. Can't be the curry.
First two signups for Spin the Bottle in the afternoon break.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Fri Oct 25, 2019 9:19 am
by Gavin Chipper
Matt Morrison wrote:
Fri Oct 25, 2019 8:48 am
Gavin Chipper wrote:
Thu Oct 24, 2019 10:40 pm
Put Jono and the Morricocks down for the curry too.
Whilst this is a hilarious joke, it has the potential to cause confusion and annoyance for the organisers, us, and for you.
Heather committed you to it, and Jono said he was in if you are.

Edit - But yeah, take them off the list then.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Sat Oct 26, 2019 2:24 pm
by FOCAL Countdown
Let's have a debate, what do you think the asterisk is?

Original post updated with curry list.

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Thu Oct 31, 2019 7:30 am
by FOCAL Countdown
The White Hart have advised they will open early for us to watch the rugby final, but breakfast will be served as normal in their restaurant for guests only. Would anybody like to arrive for 9am?

Re: CoBra (Essex) -- Saturday 2 November 2019

Posted: Thu Oct 31, 2019 3:00 pm
by James Robinson
FOCAL Countdown wrote:
Thu Oct 31, 2019 7:30 am
The White Hart have advised they will open early for us to watch the rugby final, but breakfast will be served as normal in their restaurant for guests only. Would anybody like to arrive for 9am?
I was certainly thinking about the rugby, so that wouldn’t be a bad idea.👍👍👍