Thursday 31 March 2022

Megafinal Update

I am very pleased to report that we have now 99 entries for the forthcoming Delancey UK Schools' Chess Challenge Teesside Megafinal.

That leaves 51 places and, as the old phrase has it, 'when they are gone, they are gone'.

Head here for the details of entry.

Catherine's Checkmate

Here we see an excellent checkmate, delivered by chess tutor Catherine Lloyd against the Year 5 class champion.

It is not see clear from the picture, but the white queen is pinning a black knight on e6, preventing ...Nxg7.

Wednesday 30 March 2022

Newsletter Praise

I would like to share a piece from the newsletter of Fairfield Primary School.

Fairfield first had chess lessons from me in 1988 and returned to action in September 2021.

The newsletter, written by Headteacher Mr Ruffell, makes the impact of our lessons, delivered by Jo, very clear indeed.

Fairfield has already renewed for 2022-23.

Tuesday 15 March 2022

Yarm's HMC Success

We enjoyed our time at the HMC tournament with Yarm Preparatory School’s chess teams.

Thank you, Queen Elizabeth Grammar School of Wakefield, for hosting the event (for the first time since pre-COVID 2019). 

Only two people in the photograph were here last time!

Yarm's Under-9 team won their section!

The last time this happened was back in the Autumn of 2003.

Kylie Minogue was at number one with 'Slow', Manchester United were the reigning Premier League champions (and Cristiano Ronaldo was in his debut season for the club), Adam Faith died, Greta Thunberg was born, Concorde made its final flight and Mr Grundmann and I were both still in our thirties.

Oh yes, we may be 'Slow', but we get there in the end.

Monday 7 March 2022

Yarm Preparatory School's Delancey UK Schools' Chess Challenge 2022

We had an excellent day at Yarm Preparatory School on Saturday, running the Delancey UK Schools' Chess Challenge there for the first time in two years.

We had a record entry of 82 players and each section - from Year 2 up to Year 6 - featured strongly contested title battles.

Thank you to all of the children and staff who helped to make it such a memorable day.

Here is a gallery from our very fine day of chess (all photographs are © Mr Grundmann).

Our players are now looking forward to the Teesside Megafinal on Sunday 1 May.

Click on the image below to find the online enrolment page.

Wednesday 2 March 2022

Event Announcement: Fifth Teesside Megafinal

I am very pleased to announce the details of the Fifth Teesside Megafinal.

This will be our first Megafinal since 2019. Our plans for 2020 and 2021 had to be curtailed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Event: 2022 Delancey UK Schools' Chess Challenge Teesside Megafinal. This year, children do not need to have qualified from the initial phase to enter a Megafinal. Entry is open to all!

Venue: Yarm Senior School, specifically the Princess Alexandra Auditorium.  This is one of the North East's premier concert venues and we are delighted to be back here. Parking is available on site.

Date: Sunday 1 May 2022

Timings: Please arrive for 9.30 a.m. Play will start at 10.00 a.m. The prize giving will be at approximately 5.00 p.m. but we are hoping to pull the timings forward if we have the opportunity to do so on the day.

Closing Date for Entries: Tuesday 26 April 2022

The online entry form and other information can be found on the UKCC website.

Format: All players will play six rounds, on the Swiss system. We will combine some of the sections but the champions of each one will receive the trophies and titles. Tied places will be resolved by the Sum of Progressive Scores tiebreaker.

Arbiter: Sean Marsh

General Information: 

The Megafinal has a set number of 150 places. Once these have been booked the online entry system will not allow any more.

We cannot accept any more entries once the Megafinal is full and we will definitely not be able to take extra entries on the day.

If you miss out on a place on Teesside, please try another Megafinal. They are listed here.

We cannot offer full supervision anywhere outside of the playing rooms. Parents/guardians must supervise their children at all times other than when the children are in the playing rooms.

Parents, guardians, teachers and chess coaches will not be allowed in the playing rooms during the rounds.

Problems arising during the games will be solved by the tournament Arbiter. Children must alert the Arbiter to any problems by raising their hand. It is very difficult to solve problems retrospectively.

The venue's cafe will be open and basic refreshments will be on sale throughout the day. However, we advise you to bring a packed lunch too.

We will be working very hard on the day trying to ensure everyone has a great time. As usual with our events, we want to keep the pressure on the children to an absolute minimum. To help protect this ethos, we want the children to relax between the rounds and to temporarily forget about their chess battles. It would be greatly appreciated if all parents, guardians, teachers, chess coaches et al supported this ethos too and helped all of the children to enjoy the day without applying any pressure between the rounds.

Full reports will appear across our range of social media platforms. Please let me know on the day if you have any concerns regarding the use of photographs.

The Arbiter's decision in all matters relating to the tournament is final.

A full list of Megafinal rules can be found on the UKCC website.