The General Committee have over a number of months been discussing the possibility of the introduction of an age limit for those being nominated for new appointments to award CCs, Obedience & Agility Certificates, and Working and Field Trial Certificates or to carry out other new appointments at Ch. Shows
This is obviously a complex and sensitive issue. There were two main factors considered. Firstly it was recognised that unfortunately there are some judges who themselves fail to recognise a decline in their abilities and continue to accept appointments when they would be well advised to retire, at least from accepting new breeds. It was also thought that an increase should be sought in the number of opportunities to promote the new generation of judges coming through to the point of being ready to award KC Certificates.
On balance the General Committee considered that the correct course of action would be to introduce an age limit for new Championship Show and Trial appointments. Therefore, at its meeting held on 3 June 2003, the General Committee agreed that it would no longer consider nominations for individuals who would have reached the age of 75 years (at the time of fulfilling the proposed appointment) to judge new breeds with CCs, to take on further Group or Best in Show appointments for the first time, or to award Obedience, Agility, and Working Trial Certificates or to be elected on to either the A or B Field Trial Panel of Judges.
In making this decision the General Committee is well aware that there will be some judges who are more than capable of successfully carrying on their judging careers well into later life. It is however believed that as a bare minimum and in the interests of judges and exhibitors alike, such a policy as this ought to be introduced. In many other countries a similar policy is in force for judges of 70 years or more.
This policy will be effective for all nominations received by the KC Shows, Trials and Awards Dept. from 1st October 2003.
It is stressed that no restriction is being placed on judges already approved for breeds or groups etc., to judge the particular breeds or groups for which they are already approved or for those already approved to award Kennel Club Certificates in the working disciplines.
However all judges of whatever age are encouraged to make a careful assessment of their own capabilities before accepting future appointments.