Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Younger Section - Week One

This was our first week with the club split into two. This week was the turn of the younger half (we need a better name – I’ll ask the players). In addition Tolu, Josh, Sebastian, Leon and Adam came along from the older group to give some coaching and general help. The boys did a great job so many thanks to them.

As you can see from he photos the club was still healthily busy. We did a bit of learning in small groups then everyone played a round of the UK Chess Challenge tournament. Congratulations to Naman who made his first ever checkmate against Cody (who earlier made his first checkmate at the club against Andrew). We have a few players just learning the moves and one of the great things about the club is that the older or more experienced players are willing to help them.

Next week be the older half will meet and be joined by a few of the stronger young players.

 Dylan concentrating against Alice in the foreground.

Adam and Sebastian on a coaching break watched by Tolu who was in charge of recording the tournament results.

 Leon helping out Naman and Cody in their match.

James moving against Lucas. Welcome back to Tommy (in the middle) after his broken leg.

Best Wishes

Monday, 25 January 2016

Chelmsford School Chess

Next month there are two school chess events in Chelmsford I’m involved with. On 6th February Springfield Primary School are hosting the area qualifier in the English Primary Schools Championship and on 23rd February KEGS are hosting a tournament for secondary schools.

I’ve visited Springfield this term to give a chess workshop and am doing the same at Moulsham this week to help with their preparation. Mrs Faulds at Springfield and Mr Pugh at Moulsham both do an excellent job running their school clubs. Although I’ll be officially at Springfield with Moulsham I’ll be sending good wishes in Springfield’s direction.

The KEGS tournament is for teams of four from any secondary school. Moulsham High and New Hall have already entered from Chelmsford and Sevenoaks are among the other competitors. Although it is part of a national competition the primary aim is to encourage local schools who don’t play much chess to take part. If you would like your school to enter a team please get in touch and I’ll send you an entry form. It will be a relaxed and fun afternoon so come and join us.

On 11th February KEGS also travel to Southend for the next round of the National Schools Championship after a fine victory over Woodbridge this month. There are many schools who don’t play chess but where there is a teacher to take charge it is thriving in Essex. KEGS are fortunate enough to have three teachers to run their school club and Mr Worrall willing to organise their team.

Best Wishes
Robin Slade

Thursday, 21 January 2016

Club Changes

We’ve made some changes at the club due to the pleasant problem of how to accommodate so many players. In the last couple of weeks we’ve had over 40 children along each week which is really too many for me to be able to give them the quality of chess experience and coaching I want to.
So from next week (26th) we’ve split the club into two and each group will meet fortnightly. One group will be for the younger and newer players (Years 2-4) and the other for the older and more experienced players (Years 5-8). This way we’ll have about 20 players each week and can offer more effective coaching.
The boundaries are not set in stone. There are a few older players who are quite new to chess and might prefer the guidance in the younger group and a couple of younger ones who are very accomplished and might prefer the chess challenge of the older one. In addition where families have more than one child attending they are welcome to bring younger children to the older group or vice versa.
I’ll also be inviting a few of the older players to come along to the younger group to offer some help to the younger players. This is a good life skill to practice and something that everyone benefits from. It all should work out nicely but if not we’ll think again.
Congratulations to all our players who competed at Southend last Sunday. The EJCA tournaments are lovely events and it was nice to see so many new players there. Keep an eye at for the next one.
Tuesday 26th January Younger Group 4.45-6.15pm
Tuesday 2nd February Older Group 4.30-6pm
Tuesday 9th February Younger Group 4.45-6.15pm
Tuesday 16th February – Half Term – Club open and everyone welcome.
Tuesday 23rd February – Club Closed
Tuesday 1st March Older Group 4.30-6pm
Tuesday 8th March Younger Group 4.30-6pm etc.

Best Wishes


Sunday, 10 January 2016


Happy New Year!

The club met back on the 5th January and will carry on each Tuesday at 4.30pm. Congratulations to Harry and Jerry who qualified for and played in the London Junior Chess Championships over Christmas and did very well to score 3/7 and 5/7 respectively in the U8s. Congratulations also to former Chelmsford junior Gorak who won the U21 section and as a result qualifies for the main British Championship in the summer.

Two tournaments coming up. Next Sunday (17th) is the latest Essex Junior Grand Prix event at Southend. Entry forms and (after next week) results at Good luck to all our players at the tournament.

I have a boxful of badges, chess mascots and shaggy pencils which means it is time for the UK Chess Challenge. We’ll kick off at the club on 19th January and play one round each week. It is a 7 round event and we’ll run up to Easter to give as many juniors as possible a chance to get 7 games in. The best boy and girl in each school year will qualify for the Essex Megafinal.

For those of you new to this event you score 3 points for a win, 2 for a draw and 1 for a loss. You also as far as possible play someone with a similar score to you each round. This means even the players new to chess will score points and everyone will get a prize and a certificate.

Best Wishes