Upcoming Events

Monday 17th January 2022 at 7.30

We plan to run a ‘Pairs’ event in which strong players will be paired up with weaker players, who will then play alternate moves without consultation. Each pair will be allocated to a group of four pairs, who will play a mini all-play-all with 3 rounds. The clocks will be set to 15 minutes with 10 second increments.  During the game, each pair may at any time call for one ‘1-minute time out’, when the clock is stopped and that pair remain at the board and discuss the position, with the other pair having left the board so they cannot over-hear what is said.   At the end of the one minute, the players resume their seats and play continues.  The stronger player in each pair will be expected to keep a record of the game, so that a 10-15 minute post-mortem can take place after the game, which should help the weaker players to learn from these games. Thus each round should last about one hour in total.  Anyone interested in participating in this event should either complete the registration form which will be found on display at the Club, or should contact Nigel White to register their interest.

GM Danny King on the World Championship Match

Grandmaster Danny King, who has played for Guildford in the past in both the 4NCL and the Surrey League, came along to the Club on Monday 6th December to give a talk about the ongoing World Championship match between Magnus Carlsen and Ian Nepomniachtchi. The session was very well attended by around 40 Club members and Danny regaled us with stories about previous World Championship matches, as well as taking us through some very interesting moments in the current match, with a particular focus on the spectacular game 6.

Danny after the event wearing his Guildford Chess Club Polo shirt and toasting with his Guildford Chess Club mug.

The Club celebrates its 125th anniversary.

Guildford Chess Club was founded on 10th April 1896 and so 2021 is the Club’s 125th anniversary. To commemorate the occasion we decided to stage a 125-Board Simultaneous display on Guildford High Street on 11th September and to accommodate all-comers, we invited nine Masters to each take on 12-15 opponents. Thanks to our long-standing involvement in the 4NCL we had a wide pool of strong Guildford players to choose from, so we had a good mix of talents to appeal to a wide array of participants.

The nine Masters: Back row: Matthew Wadsworth, Andrew Martin, Harry Grieve, Gawain Jones; Middle Row: Nigel Povah, Alex Golding, Nick Pert; Front Row: Akshaya Kalaiyalahan, Jessica Mellor.

We put out a significant amount of publicity amongst local schools and chess clubs across Surrey and the surrounding area, as well as through the ECF and various other chess outlets. We also put up a series of banners and posters in Guildford Town Centre.

We set up a booking system on Eventbrite, so come the day we were fully booked on all 125 boards for each of the three 1½-hour playing sessions at 10.30, 12.30 and 14.30, with over 50 people awaiting the opportunity to step in, if games finished early or there were no-shows. We were fortunate with the weather on the day. After a brief opening ceremony with an address by Councillor Mrs Marsha Moseley, the Mayor of Guildford, play got underway and we saw a huge number of people taking interest throughout the day.

The Mayor playing the first move on Gawain’s board against William Golding. Note the iconic Guildford Clock in the distance on the right, which is the foundation of Guildford Chess Club’s logo.

Two rows of 60 or so boards at the top end of Guildford’s cobbled High Street.

Every participant received a certificate acknowledging their participation and their master opponent, and those achieving a result (win or draw) also received prizes. The event was well managed by a team of helpers, acting as controllers and stewards.  Over 410 games were played, with the masters only conceding 17 draws and 7 losses. The most notable performances came from Gawain Jones (who only conceded two draws in his 50 games, despite facing the strongest opposition) and Andrew Martin and Alex Golding, both of whom won all their games.

Andrew Martin taking on a group of boys from Guildford’s RGS Prep School

The event was so well received that there were many enquiries about how regularly we ran this and would we be doing it again next week or next year!  Most pleasingly we attracted a lot of interest, resulting in a boost in the club’s adult membership, as well as in our junior section, which was relaunched after the pandemic. For more details go to the Junior Section tab.