New Years Message from Association Management and President & 2023 Highlights

Once again the Association has enjoyed another successful year, not only measured in the number of new entrants, prestigious appointments and promotions but by the healthy activity which has taken place throughout the year as outlined in the highlights which have been shared. Below is a message from Association Management and our President wishing in the New Year:

Association Management – Martin Clark (Association Manager) , Mark Doyle (Assistant Association Manager) and George Drummond (Referee Committee Member)

As we come to the end of 2023 it is good to look back before looking forward to hopefully another successful year for the Association.

The year started positively with mid-season promotions to the List of Senior Referees for Lewis Hogarth and Cameron Stirling. Further promotions were also to come the way of George Calder (Category 1), Ryan Lee, Alex Shepherd (Category 1 Development), Steven Wilson (SAR Development), David Gallagher (Category 3 Development), Callum Donald, Richard Kay, Blair McAlpine and Sean Simpson (Category 4 Development) while David Dickson and Mikey Dixon moved to Category 4. Graeme Leslie became the Association’s first permanent AVAR and our President Vikki Muckersie was not only renominated as a FIFA Assistant Referee but also became a mother. Congratulations to all.

Change is a constant in all aspects of life and there were of course some who moved on as Michael Banks, Graham Chambers and David Doig all retired while Ralph Gordon and Gavin Ross joined the Observer ranks where they will bring years of experience and expertise to their new roles.

At the start of the season, we also welcomed George Drummond, who following operational changes made in terms of the responsibilities within the referee committee, saw George appointed as our liaison with the Scottish FA on the Referee Committee, while Calum Murray has moved to act as the liaison for Fife and Stirlingshire Associations after serving our Association with distinction for many years.

It was also though a year which was marked with some sadness as we lost several past Presidents of the Association: Bill Crombie, Alistair Huett, Jack Cambridge and Peter Tinley, as well as the untimely loss of Gary McGregor and other members of the Association. Our thoughts are with their families at this difficult time of the year.

Looking back on 2023 we can though see that the Association continues to flourish. New members were welcomed by way of the two very successful new entrants classes which were expertly led by Danny Graves and Ryan Lee, as well as the Online Course. We also grew our numbers of Futsal Referees through a one-off module as well as increasing the numbers of those who have passed the Advanced Exam.

Our numbers at Training continue to impress and the support and enthusiasm which Jimmy and Lee bring to each session is replicated by the hard work shown by those who attend. If you have not made it along this year or would like to return you would be very welcome; a great new year’s resolution.

The Association does not run itself and it would be remiss not to acknowledge and thank all of those who serve on the Management Committee, the Association is in good hands. In a similar manner we would like to thank the work of the various Teams in the Association for the countless hours spent in support and the refereeing development of everybody.

Success comes in many shapes and forms and I am sure everybody can look back and identify a highlight of the year for them, be it officiating in a cup final or receiving a prestigious appointment as mentioned in the President’s review, or even just taking charge of their first match. Congratulations to you all.

Hard work brings its own rewards and therefore on behalf of Martin, Mark and George we would like to thank all our members for their dedication and the professionalism they have shown throughout the year in representing the Association.

A new year brings new opportunities, a time to refocus and to define new goals. Whatever they are you can be guaranteed of our support to help achieve these and we wish you every success in 2024. Happy New Year

Vikki Allan, President

Each year it is an absolute pleasure to see all of the highlights that the Association share, I am sure personally for each of our members you will also have your own highlights to be proud of. Following Martin, Mark and George’s message I am also proud of how strong a position the Association is in at the end of 2023 and I can’t wait to see what the coming year brings. It has been great to meet so many of you at instruction classes, training and Association meetings this year, it is so important for each of us to have a support network in our fellow colleagues.

Of course it is with great sadness the friends we have lost during the year, past presidents, friends and colleagues. My thoughts are with their families at this time of year.

I would like to thank our Management Committee, Association Management, Development/Instruction/Social teams and our Trainers for everything that they do for the Association as we wouldn’t be where we are without them all.

To the membership I thank you for your continued professionalism on and off the pitch when representing the Association, along with your positive attitudes which makes my role so much easier. The highlights today showcase just how fantastic a group of officials we have at the association from grassroots to the Premiership. I can’t wait to see what the Association Membership will achieve in 2024.

With that I would like to wish you all and your families a very happy new year and hope whatever your goals are for 2024 the Association will be there to support you.

Highlights Summary from Social Media

Its that time of year again where we look back at 2023 and round up our highlights! Keep an eye on our socials today and let us know your officiating highlights.

We held two referee introduction classes this year with 46 new referees into the Association, this also includes 11 new Futsal officials! These classes are led by our coaching team which is headed up by Daniel Graves. Would you like to give refereeing a go? Our next class begins in February, for more info please click here

Promotions –
Throughout the season we had a number of promotions, congratulations again to all in the below picture very well deserved. These promotions include all categories throughout the pyramid from Category Four up to One.
Click here

Cup Final Appointments –
Throughout the season we had a number of officials appointed to Cup Finals, congratulations again!

Craig Ferguson – SPFL Trust Trophy Final as AR 2 & Scottish League Cup Final as Additional Assistant Referee
Mark Harris – Scottish FA Youth Cup Final as 4th Official
Iain Sneddon (Referee) & Alex Shepherd (4th Official) – Glasgow Cup Final
Ryan Lee (Referee), Cameron Stirling (AR1) and Lewis Hogarth (4th Official) – King Cup final
Gavin Duncan – Women’s Scottish Cup Final as VAR
George Calder (Referee) and Steven Wilson (AR2) – Junior Cup Final
Tommi Kerr (4th Official) East of Scotland League Cup Final
Dominic Falconer and Cameron Conner – Scottish Futsal League Edinburgh League Cup Final

The Scottish FA each season recognise contributions to Refereeing and invite those recipients to a celebration at the Scottish Cup Final. This year our trainer Jimmy Ramage was recognised for his contribution which spans over 32 years! Congratulations again Jimmy, very deserved!

This new season also saw us launch our Monthly Laws of the Games quiz. This has been shared far and wide across Scotland and seems to have gone down extremely well with over 300 people completing each month.

While we take our roles extremely seriously on the pitch, it isn’t all work and no fun! We had a number of socials this year including our post AGM drinks, Bowling, Annual Awards dinner and our Annual Charity quiz. Our Annual quiz this year raised over £700 for our Charity Partner Marie Curie.

At our Annual Awards dinner the following awards were handed out along with the awards recognising National Cup Finals. We also recognised the retirements of Michael Banks, Graham Chambers and David Doig.

      Winners –
Frank Campbell AR of the Year – Andrew Simmonds
Bill Mullen Trainers Award – George Calder
Presidents Award – Daniel Graves
Refs Ref of the Year- Ryan Lee
Bill Tait – Lewis Hogarth
George Smith Development Award – Cameron Stirling

Our member Isla Buchanan also represented the Scottish FA at the Euro 2028 bid. Below is a short interview she gave at the event.

In December we also saw Iain Snedden officiate his first Premiership match in the middle, a very deserved appointment!

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