Saturday, October 24, 2015

BREAKING: Guenzel & Cooke Depart QUK; Give Exclusive Statement

QuidditchUK today announced that Vice President Matthew Guenzel and Teams Director Andy Cooke will be leaving the organisation. Guenzel's departure will take effect immediately, while Cooke will continue as teams director for two weeks so a replacement can be found. The Quidditch Post received this joint statement from Guenzel and Cooke and have their permission to publish it.

From former Vice President Matthew Guenzel and former Teams Director Andy Cooke
Many of you will have seen today’s announcement that Matthew Guenzel and Andy Cooke have stepped down from their respective roles in QuidditchUK. The two of us have collaborated to produce this statement, which we hope will shed some light on the situation and put a preemptive end to unnecessary speculation.

We would like to clarify first that the two incidents which led to the both of us stepping down occurred entirely independently of each other. It is simply not the case that the resignation of one of us led to the resignation of the other. Having said that, the feelings which led to our respective resignations are mutually shared, even if the processes through which they occurred are different.

In the case of Andy, longstanding health issues – based on his injury last season have led to a lack of consistent engagement with the sport, and although he is proud of Derby Union Quidditch Club’s progress, and of his own achievements both as a player and captain, he feels as though his time with the sport generally has come to a close, and wishes to take more of a back seat in its development. He wishes QuidditchUK, and its community, the best of luck for the future and looks forward to seeing everyone at Northern Cup.

In regards to Matthew, a series of disagreements over the direction of the organisation has led to him feeling increasingly disillusioned with the organisation’s future. He has enjoyed his time with QuidditchUK  beyond measure, and sincerely hopes that it will resume the great work which it has carried out in the past. He will continue playing for Derby and captaining Monsters Quidditch, as well as pursuing his inevitably successful career as a battle rapper.

Whilst we are both happy to discuss the issue with anyone further, we do request that people postpone any questions until after Northern Cup, where we will be focusing on ensuring that Derby destroy Bangor.

Any questions, complaints, or concerns can be emailed to
End of statement.

Guenzel has worked for QUK since the 2012 Summer Games, when the idea of a national governing body for quidditch in the UK was first put into action by founder Robert Barringer. He has since moved from his initial role as head of gameplay to become vice president. He served in this position under three presidents; Ben Morton, Amy Maidment, and, most recently, Mel Piper. The organisation published a feature on him as a staff member only three days ago.

Cooke has worked for QUK for a considerably shorter time, hired as teams director for the start of the 2015-16 season after the previous director, Piper, became president. He leaves his role after only a couple of General Forums, the regular meetings with club leaders that the teams director hosts on behalf of QUK.

Matthew Guenzel and Andy Cooke representing Derby Union Quidditch Club | Photo credit: Claire Teed

Though QUK President Piper was saddened at the departure, she emphasised the NGB would take the chance to bring new blood into the organisation.

“Although QuidditchUK are never happy to part ways with valuable staff members like Matthew Guenzel and Andy Cooke, we’ll take this chance to thank them for the work they have done for us,” Piper said. “We are now looking optimistically to our future, and are excited to welcome in new energy and leadership to help the organisation grow even further.”

The Quidditch Post would like to thank both for their service to the sport, and look forward to working closely with whomever is selected to continue the great work QUK are currently carrying out.

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