Wednesday, 30 November 2016


Now we are in December CJCC will be celebrating Christmas with a buffet and a Harry Potter chess theme on the 6th (older players) and 13th (younger players). We’ll meet back after New Year with the older group on 10th January.

Next term CJCC will take part in the Delancey UK Chess Challenge along with 1400 schools and junior clubs across the UK. All our players will take part in a 7 round tournament and get a chess badge. Depending on results they’ll have a chance to collect gold spots, chess mascots, furry pencils and other prizes. The best boy and girl in each school year will then move forward to the Essex Megafinal.

Last weekend many of our players took part in the Basildon Rapidplay event. This weekend sees the 3rd Essex Junior Chess Association Coaching Day at Writtle. Results of the tournament and future chess dates are at

The younger players were fighting this week to move up the ladder. Pictured below are Cody and Bella who are currently sharing the 8th rung. Alice and Jake share the top rung because of the help they gave the less experienced players this week.
Best Wishes

Tuesday, 15 November 2016

CJCC Meeting 15th November

Back to the younger half of CJCC today. Tom is the new leader on the ladder because of learning the rook and king versus king checkmate on the demo board then proving his mastery of it against Sophie.

Josh was inspired to try a simultaneous challenge after hearing about Sunday’s event. He took on 6 players and was promptly checkmated in 4 moves by Freddie. Final score – one loss, five unfinished. An entertaining finish to the afternoon though for all involved.

Alex and Cody battled away for almost an hour before their game finished in a draw. Congratulations to both of them for a fine effort and some excellent concentration despite Freddie and Wolffie distracting Cody with their Match Attack pack.

Best Wishes

Monday, 14 November 2016

3rd Brentwood Train and Play 13th November

On Sunday was the 3rd Brentwood Train and Play event which attracted 50 children to the mix of coaching and team competition. There was a strong CJCC flavour with the coaching provided by two CJCC parents and me – International Master Richard Pert and two-time Essex Champion Russell White.

Richard had recruited British Grandmaster and former world number 4 Jon Speelman to join us for an afternoon simultaneous match. Chelmsford junior (and sometime CJCC helper) Scott Shelley completed our team. The 5 of us took on 43 juniors and 11 parents simultaneously. Few players of any age get the chance to face opponents as illustrious as Jon or Richard. Even fewer get the chance to team up with them and it was a great way to round off our 2016 events.

They’ll be a series of these Train and Play events in 2017 starting on 15th January when Richard and I will be joined by IM Adam Hunt. In February British GMs Matthew Sadler and Nick Pert will be the guest coaches. Keep an eye on for more details.

 Alex on his way to 3/3 for Team Gary Kasparov
 Team Judit Polgar finished 1 point behind the winners.
 First time player Oliver Whitney on Board 12 for (winning) Team Bobby Fischer.
 All those who scored 3/3 with GM Jon Speelman and IM Richard Pert
GM Jon Speelman greeting his opponents before the start of the simul.

Jon, Scott and (in the background) Russell mid-simul.

Best Wishes

Wednesday, 9 November 2016

Delancey UK Chess Challenge and November Chess Dates

I am delighted to see the Delancey UK Chess Challenge will continue in 2017 and once again Chelmsford Junior Chess Club will take part. Last year 1400 schools and junior chess clubs with a total of 45000 players entered across the UK. The CJCC stage will take place between January and April 2017.

Players will collect gold spots for their chess badge, assorted mascots and furry pencils along the way as they fight for qualification to the Essex Megafinal.

Successful players here will reach the Southern Gigafinal and fight for a place in the National Terafinal. This year Olga and Toby both reached the Terafinal and it would be great if someone can replicate this in 2017.

Tournament details can be seen at the link below. If you would like your school to take part please encourage them to do so.


Last Sunday (6th) was the 2nd EJCA Coaching Day. Last Tuesday at CJCC it was the turn of the older players who all looked at a game from World Champion Magnus Carlsen when he was a junior.

This Sunday (13th) is the 3rd Brentwood Train and Play including a simultaneous match with Grandmaster Jon Speelman. Details at

Next Sunday (20th) is the Basildon Rapidplay tournament. Details for this at

At our club this coming week (15th) it is the turn of the younger players with the older players the following week (22nd).

It is great to see so much junior chess in Essex these days and welcome new players to CJCC every week. We have about 20-25 players each week which makes about 40 different players every two weeks spread from Year 1 to Year 8.

Best Wishes

Tuesday, 1 November 2016

New Ladder Leader and Latest Junior News

Congratulations to Alex Carter who has moved to the top of the ladder for the younger players. As well as winning his games he helped Harry learn a new checkmate. He is pictured below with the leader board.

We all looked at a game together on the demonstration board midway through the meeting to see the black king get hunted down by white’s rook, bishop and knight. The children worked out the final checkmate with Josh and Tom among others seeing the finish after Freddie accidently (and correctly) sacrificed the queen.
Alex came to the most recent Train and Play day at Brentwood where he was the only player to score 3 draws. At the next event on 13th November we’ll be joined in the afternoon by Grandmaster Jon Speelman (former world number four) for a special challenge match. Places available via This is a rare chance to challenge a player who has competed in the later stages of the World Championships.
Before that the Essex Junior Chess Association has a coaching day at Writtle on Sunday I'll be coaching at along with CJCC parent and two-time Essex champion Russell White. Fellow CJCC parent and British Rapidplay champion IM Richard Pert will hopefully be competing but if he loses on Saturday will join us for the coaching.
Best Wishes