Judging test Guidelines

There will always be exhibitors who criticise judges for the decisions that they make. It is the duty of the Poultry Club to ensure that its judges are of the highest standard, are well trained, and well informed. In order to do this it is necessary to conduct regular reviews of the judging tests to ensure that they meet the requirements of the exhibition world.

The Judging Test Committee has drawn up the following proposals which Council has approved:

  1. Judging Tests will be conducted at the National Championship, Federation, and Scottish National Shows. These shows are suitable for all the judging test categories.
  2. There will be a maximum of 20 judging tests per venue. These will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. The practical tests will be held at 2pm in order to allow the show judging to take place, written tests at 12 noon or when advised.
  3. Applications to take judging tests will only be accepted on the official form and should be received with the appropriate fee of £25. Late entries will not be accepted (see application form for deadlines).
  4. Copies of the application form will be forwarded to the judging test co-ordinator for each venue. The co-ordinator will write to all candidates informing them of the time and theory and practical tests. Neither the candidates nor the examiners will know their allocation to each other.
  5. All theory papers will be type-written and will require an ‘x’ in the appropriate box for the answer. Anyone needing the questions to be read out to them should state this on the form. There will continue to be questions on the Show Rules.
  6. Examiners for the practical test need to be carefully chosen. As well as their knowledge of birds they need to be able to relate to people. The list of examiners has been revised. The list will be reviewed annually by the Judging Test Committee. Examiners will be given detailed instructions as to their responsibilities and what is expected of them. They will be encouraged to follow a format for the practical test, details of which will be given on the assessment paper. The time for completing the practical tests varies but examiners will be given the following guidelines: Hard Feather, True Bantams and Eggs - 30 minutes; Soft Feather Heavy and Light - 45 minutes; Waterfowl and Rare Breeds - 1 hour.
  7. Section tests will be open to all members over the age of 16 years. Junior members will still be able to take a theory and practical test on a single breed but, in future, will be awarded a Certificate of Competence. This will show that the Junior has reached a certain standard of knowledge but will not qualify them as a judge. Hopefully, this will eliminate the situation that has arisen in recent years with Juniors complaining that they have not been asked to judge and older members being reluctant to accept Juniors as judges.
  8. All judges reapplying to the Judges Panel will be asked to complete a form listing the Regional and Championship Shows they have judged during the previous year. In this the Judging Test Committee will be able to monitor the Judges Panel. Those not wishing to actively judge may be shown in the Yearbook as Panel A, B, C, or D (retired).
  9. A Judges’ Newsletter will be published each year containing judging tips, information on new standards, show rules, etc.
  10. A Judges’ Workshop will be held each year. This event will be open to existing judges and members wishing to learn more about judging. Attendance will be voluntary but judges will be expected to attend a Workshop once in three years. Details of this event will be published in the Newsletter and bookings will be made on first come, first served basis. The Judges Workshop will be used to highlight issues of concern and emphasise good practice.
  11. All judges and especially the examiners will be expected to own the most recent copy of the British Poultry Standards book together with all amendments to the Standards. Details of any amendments will be published in the Newsletters and members should apply to the Secretary for a copy of each new Standard.