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MAROC Newsletter 10th December 2019
Thanks to all our volunteers over the past 2 weeks:  Dan Gooch (and others) - Wood of Easter Clune event; Ewan and Jon Musgrave - Dinnet DNC; Sue Barrie, Roger Coombs, Trevor Ricketts and Pat Graham - coaches at Balnagowan training.


Maroc Calendar            

-Sun Dec 15th: Bellwood, Aboyne, Christmas club event
-Sun Jan 5th: Glen O Dee, Banchory, regional race

Deeside Night Cup

-Wed 11th Dec: Balmeadie
-Wed 18th Dec: Carlogie
 See DNC blogpage for more info

Please see SOA Events Page for full calendar of O fixtures.

Maroc Christmas Extravangaza, Bellwood, Sun 15th Dec

There will be a mass start at 11am with a 60 minute Score event format*. The event is open to all, and the course will be suitable for everyone.
Parking and registration alongside the play park on Bellwood Drive or else along Bellwood Road towards Aboyne hospital. Please be there in time to head in to the forest at 10:45. Registration open at 10:30.
We will pair up younger juniors with an older junior, confident juniors and adults can run on their own if they wish**.
* The score event has a spread of controls through the forest and it is up to the competitor what order to visit them. However at this event there is a twist… After finding one control the competitor then has to find the roving Santa, punch the control he is carrying, then back to another control, then find Santa’s helper who is roving round a different part of the wood, punch their control, another forest control, back to the Santa control etc.
** We reserve the right to handicap anyone
More explanation on the day.
Prize for the best fancy dress. Please contact Jon with any offers of refreshments.
Please sign up by Sat midday using the Doodle Poll here as this makes preparing maps much easier. There will be very limited entry-on-the-day. Adults £5, Juniors £2.50
Jon Musgrave - planner/organiser
Fantastic Fanatics - Raising Funds for the Club with No Effort!

Would you like to help raise funds for Maroc at no cost to yourself?  We have just joined Fantastic Fanatics, an Aberdeen-based funding platform that generates commission for your chosen sports club when you spend money with the platform’s local and national retail partners.  Fantastic Fanatics is the main sponsor of Aberdeen’s Sports Awards and a partner of Club Sport Aberdeen.

To raise funds, club members (and their friends and family) can sign up at the Fantastic Fanatics website, choose the club they would like to support (hopefully Maroc!) and securely register their credit/debit card details.  No money is taken from your card, but when a registered card is used to spend over £5 at one of the retail partners, a commission (typically 3-5%) will be paid by the retailer to your selected club automatically.  You don't have to do anything else.

Local retail partners include: Thistle Sports, Poldino's, Inn at the Park, Noose and Monkey, Shakes 'n' Cakes, Simple Bee, Grub Fresh Food, Black Bull Inn, Light of Bengal, Rajpoot, The Pigs Wings, Bon Accord Glass, John Willox Kitchen Design, Garioch Blinds & Furnishing, Jim Reid Vehicle Servicing and Sales, Peterhead Prison Museum.

National retail partners are also being added (initially for online sales only) and include:, Under Armour, The White Company, Outdoor Gear, SCS, ASOS, Regatta, Waterstones, Wayfair, Hamleys, Boots, Body Shop.

New retail partners are being added on a monthly basis, so the list is likely to grow. If you are likely to spend money at any of these retailers, you can find more details and register as a supporter at  (search for Mar Orienteering Club in the list of clubs).
Help SOA raise some more money too!

As the SOA is a registered charity, Gift Aid allows us to claim extra funds from HMRC on any donations made to us – including your SOA membership fees – AS LONG AS the person donating the funds completes a declaration that they are a UK tax payer.

Every single declaration completed helps us gain extra funds and, if every adult member did this, we could claim £10,000 which would otherwise just be lost in tax.

PLEASE complete the form at this link to register for Gift Aid
President's Report Part 1
by Nick Hale, from the AGM

The first thing I must say is a big thank you to all our Volunteers. The Club runs an ambitious programme of events and training and this is only possible because of you. Thanks to every single person who volunteered in 2019.

I would also like to thank the committee for their hard work. There have been changes in personnel through the year but this turnover is part of who we are as a club. We have a big emphasis on juniors and as a result our average age is the lowest of all clubs in the UK, but this comes with the downside of a larger than average turnover of members, as the older juniors leave school and move on. We thrive through these changes but at the same time we value greatly the more senior experienced members we have in our midst!

Our juniors and coaches set very high standards and we are recognised for it. We won the Jamie Stephenson Trophy for the 12th time in a row this year and this success is a major part of Aberdeenshire Council recognising us as Sports Club of the Year 2018. Scottish Orienteering also like how we do things and have just last week awarded us their Silver Accreditation. In addition, Aberdeenshire Schools are very pleased with our engagement, which generates large turnouts at their Schools Festivals. Thank you Sarah and the team for helping the teachers deliver these.

Two of our junior athletes have represented Great Britain this Year, Eilidh Campbell at the Junior World Championships in Denmark and Matthew Gooch at the European Youth Championships in Belarus. Congratulations to them both. We also have five British Champions: Eilidh, Matthew, Sarah Dunn, Roger Coombs and Andy Tivendale and a further 6 runners in podium positions.

But it is not just about reaching the podium. We all have rivalries and beating our peers using great maps in beautiful areas is the single driving motivation for most of us.

We have put on many events and training sessions this year but our biggest, for which I would like to thank all those involved, were the British Night Championships and SOL in February, Day 1 of the Six Days in August and the recent Cambus O’May Junior Inter-regional Individual event. I’d like to highlight our amazing Organisers for these events; Jon Musgrave, Fran Getliff, Pat Graham (twice), Sue Barrie and Katja Neuman, and the amazing Planners; Drew Tivendale, Andy Oliver, Dan Gooch and Trevor Ricketts. An amazing job by all!

President's Report Part 2


We have been very successful in 2019 and we should be very proud of this. So what is in store for 2020?

After 17 years of using EMIT the Committee has decided that now is the time to change to the SportIDENT timing system. Touch-free capability is the future and only SI can deliver this reliably. Also, our EMIT equipment is aging and switching to SI will bring us into line with almost every other club in Scotland and the UK. There are also clear safety benefits from using SI.

We plan to make the purchase early in 2020 using much of the surplus from the British Night Championships weekend and are currently applying for Award contributions to make up the difference. We anticipate a gradual introduction of the new system through the year and will be arranging instruction. I have more information if anyone would like more detail on this decision.

We also have, starting shortly, the mapping of a new urban area in Johnshaven and Lathallan School. This is part of our vision to encourage more orienteering participation in the Mearns area. With the Sprint World Orienteering Championships visiting Edinburgh in 2022 now is the time to get more involved in Urban and Sprint Orienteering. We have an event planned at Johnshaven on 7th March and it will be included in the UK Elite League and the Scottish Urban League.

In September we will be hosting the Senior Home Internationals and Scottish O League at Balfour, and of course, we will have our usual programme of Regional and Local events.

In Royal Deeside we are custodians to some of the best orienteering terrain in the UK and people want to travel to our events. Through our volunteers, our juniors and our wonderful terrain we are the envy of many.

We have much to look forward to in 2020 and on a final note; we are always on the lookout for event Organisers and Planners.  So, please talk to Bob, our coordinator, to see where you can fit into the programme, small event or large.

Helping in any capacity at an event or coaching session is a great way of getting to know other club members and support and mentoring is always available.

It will always be very rewarding.

Thank you very much

Controllers Course
For anyone interested in training to become an event Controller, please note that the grade C course previously scheduled for November will now be held on January 11th 2020 at Roseisle Village Hall, by Elgin, 10:00-16:00. Please contact Denise Martin if you are interested in attending
World of O Route to Christmas
Are you finding it hard to get out to train some days when it's dark, cold and wet? Never fear, whilst it might not have the same physical benefits, you can still do some useful orienteering training from the comfort of your armchair! Every day during December, World of O publishes a different map and course with a route choice problem for you to think about. Once you've analysed the options you can plot your route onto the map and see how it compares with what other people thought, and what the results from the competition showed as being the best route. This is excellent practice to help your map-reading skills, contour interpretation and route planning.

On behalf of the organising team I would like to invite MAROC to Edinburgh University Orienteering Clubs annual festival of Orienteering - the Big Weekend! This event will run from the 24th-26th of January and packs in 3 high quality races as well as the Saturday night ceilidh.  

Entries for the 2020 event are now open at the link below, don't miss out on early-bird prices, entries increase on the 1st of December. Enter here:

We hope to see you at Edinburgh University Orienteering Club's Big Weekend 2020!  

Daniel Spencer

Big Weekend 2020 Coordinator


September SCORE

Don't forget to read the latest issue of SCORE, SOA's quarterly magazine.

Paper copies can be requested via the SOA office (details in every issue).

As always, contributions from all readers are welcome.  If you'd like to discuss, email
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5 St. Machar Place
Aboyne, Aberdeenshire AB34 5FJ
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Mar Orienteering Club · Crofts House · Glenmuick · Ballater, Aberdeenshire AB35 5SP · United Kingdom

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