First T-UK Black Belt Championships July 2013 in Manchester - 15/7/2013

T-UK’s inaugural black belt championships hosted by Mr. James Miley were held at the George H Carnell Leisure Centre in Manchester on 6th July 2013.

A small, but select, group of competitors arrived at the venue on Saturday morning to participate in the first T-UK black belt championships.  The competitors and spectators were greeted with three international sized rings and contrary to popular opinion brilliant weather.  The problem would not be being drenched bur being dehydrated!  The venue had been set up the previous evening by a group of volunteers from the Trident group and Mr. Ridley.

Mr. Ridley, T-UK’s Vice President, welcomed competitors, spectators, medical staff and officials.  He presented apologies on behalf of Mr. Archer who had to attend, at short notice, an international grading which was taking place in London, with a group of students from T-UK.  After thanking those who were at the tournament he welcomed groups from other associations who were attending the black belt championships.  Notwithstanding those attending on behalf of their clubs from the T-UK he drew attention to the participation of students:

TST based in Coventry and led by Mr. Tizick;

Halewood Taekwon-do led by Mr. Davies;

North east ITF clubs led by Mr. Smith;


De Silva TKD led by Mr. de Silva.

Mr. Miley, the host of the tournament, also thanked those attending and drew attention to the success of T-UK students in the recent ITF European Championships held in Skovde, Sweden and the selection of Lyle Walker and India Isles to the Great Britain Taekwon-do squad for the Olympic Games in Brazil.

After these opening remarks competition began in earnest in 42 categories embracing pattern, sparring, special technique and destruction.  It was pleasing to see that entries covered all the categories from peewee to veteran.

Competition was of a very high standard and it would be impossible to identify individuals.  A list of medal winners will be posted separately on the website in the near future.  Given the standard of the competition the officials were kept on their mettle and all acquitted themselves very well given that they were kept under constant pressure to keep the competition moving in a smooth manner.  Their work was essential to the tournament and I place on record my thanks for all their help and forbearance in ensuring the competition operated in a fair and an efficient manner in the true spirit of Taekwon-do.

Given that the tournament had 42 categories the efficiency of all was rewarded by competition closing at 3:45.  By 5 pm the mats and other competition paraphernalia had been stored away and all those attending were either on their way or enjoying barbecues.  At this point I should add that Mr. Miley had driven up to Scotland to pick up the mats stored with Mr. Condie in Scotland.  The journey, I understand, was interesting but that’s another story!!

In conclusion, I wish to place on record my thanks to all those who attended from all parts of T-UK, other associations, to Mr. Lewis for taking photographs of the day and to Mr. Ridley for opening the tournament and addressing my numerous questions during the day; his help was crucial in running the days events.

Finally thanks to Mr. Miley who hosted the tournament and dealing with the organizational arrangements for the tournament.  The lasting impression was of a brilliant day, which was conducted, in the true spirit of Taekwon-do, which led to renewal of and the creation of new friendships with people leaving waiting to return next year.


Jeff Brider