The Weald Congress and SCCU Championship - Results

Posted: 17.July.2017

The 11th Weald Congress, incorporating the SCCU Individual Championship 2016/17, took place at Copthorne Preparatory School, East Sussex, on 15th-16th July 2017.

Weald Open, SCCU Championship and Glenroy Trophy
Joint Winners: GM Nick Pert and IM Richard Bates

Open (32 players)

1st= GM Nick Pert, IM Richard Bates (4½/5) - SCCU Joint Champions + Glenroy Trophy (shared)
3rd= Krzysztof Jamroz, Matthew Payne (4/5) - both awarded British Championship Qualification Places
Grading Prizes: Gorak Rajesh, Dominic Miller, Calum Salmons, Will Graham, Mikolaj Rogacewicz, Oli Howell

U175 Major (20 players)

1st Viktor Jamroz (4/5)
2nd= Paul Kelly, Scott Borland, Owen Phillips, Laurence Butt (3½/5)
Grading Prizes: Freddie Coleman, Alec Hedger, Lucy Bennet-Stevens, Peter Horlock

U140 Intermediate (27 players)

1st Jake Hurley (4½/5)
2nd= Edward Gray, Jonathan Britnell, Max Bennett (4/5)
Grading Prizes: William Stock, Alex Miller, Mike Spence, Susan Chadwick, Callum Vyse, Timmy Hedger

U110 Minor (36 players)

1st= William Ellinger, Hou Ning Zhu, Max Wilton, Colin Gardiner (4/5)
Grading Prizes: Laura Borland, Patrice Tournier, Henry Adams

Sussex Junior Championships

U18 George Self Cup: Callum Brewer
U14 Brian Denman Cup: Calum Salmons
Girls Anne Gammans Cup: Lucy Bennet-Stevens

For full results, cross-tables and photographs see Weald Congress website: http://wealdchesscongress.org/results/

SCCU 125th Anniversary Chess Match

North of the Thames v South of the Thames
on Saturday 16
th September 2017, 1.00pm to 6.00pm

Posted: 10 July 2017

This celebration match is looking to replicate the large scale multi-board county and other matches of yesteryear bringing together players from past and present affiliated organisations of the SCCU including juniors.

It is open to players of all ages and abilities residing in the all time 25 SCCU counties north or south of the river in two combined teams led by Chris Majer (North) and Mike Gunn (South).

Rate of play: all moves in 125 minutes.

Light refreshments will be available throughout the afternoon.

See list of players registered to play:

If you would like to participate in this event, please, register your interest now with your respective team manager stating your chess playing county or county of residence, playing strength and, if U18, your age:

North Team Manager:  Chris Majer at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Counties Guide:  Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Cambridgeshire, Essex, Gloucestershire, Gwent (Monmouthshire), Herefordshire, Hertfordshire, Huntingdonshire, Middlesex, Norfolk, Northamptonshire, Oxfordshire and Suffolk

South Team Manager:  Mike Gunn at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Counties Guide:   Berkshire, Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Hampshire, Kent, Somerset, Surrey, Sussex and Wiltshire

Venue:  The Hall School, 23 Crossfield Road, Swiss Cottage, London, NW3 4NU

Nearest tube stations: Swiss Cottage (4/5 mins walk) or Belsize Park (15 mins walk).  Buses on Finchley Road and surrounding area are also good.  Public transport is advised as on street parking is limited and oversubscribed on a Saturday.

Safeguarding policy for the event: parental supervision.  Spectating is permissible in the playing hall.

Further information will appear on a SCCU event web page in due course.  In the meantime any queries should be addressed to Mark Murrell, Tournament Director, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

AGM - Notice of Change in Venue

Posted: 07.July.2017

The committee have been notified that the original venue at the Hall School will not be available and rather than postpone the AGM the venue will change to Green Top Centre, Quakers Course, Lanacre Avenue, Colindale NW9 5WR.

Contact is being made to all those known to be attending but to be sure that everyone is aware, please, inform anyone whom you think might be attending the meeting as your representative.

Apologies for the late notice.

AGM - Election of Non-County Representatives

Posted: 28.June.2017

It is likely that more than five Non-County Members will be affiliated to the SCCU in 2017 - 2018.

In such circumstances General Rule 5 provides that the Non-County Members shall elect five persons as Non-County representatives on the Executive Committee.

Nominations of persons to serve in this capacity during 2017 - 2018 should be made to SCCU President Julie Denning (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) no later than Saturday 8th July, or at the SCCU Annual General Meeting on Sunday 9th July before 4.00pm. Self-nomination is perfectly acceptable.

David Sedgwick
Acting Assistant General Secretary

Updated FIDE Laws of Chess - Effective 1st July 2017

Posted: 26.June.2017

The new version of the Laws of Chess, effective 1st July 2017, are available in the FIDE Handbook.

The Chess Arbiters' Association have provided the following helpful documents on their website:

ECF County Championship Finalists

Posted: 12.June.2017

With the semi-finals having now been completed, the following teams have made it through to the Final:

  • Open: Yorkshire v Lancashire
  • Minor Counties: Suffolk v Lincolnshire
  • U180: Devon v Middlesex
  • U160: Lancashire v Yorkshire
  • U140: Nottinghamshire v Lancashire
  • U120: Middlesex v Essex
  • U100: Leicestershire v Warwickshire

In the above list, click on the section name (Open, Minor Counties, etc.) to reveal the results of previous rounds.

All Finals will take place on 1st July 2017 at Warwick Trident College, Trident Park, Poseidon Way, Warwick CV34 6SW. See Map.

SCCU Website

Posted: 05.June.2017

The SCCU website, sccu.ndo.co.uk - originally set up by Richard Haddrell in 1998, is no longer accessible due to its subscription having finally run out. Being a privately owned site it has not been possible for the SCCU to take over ownership and, therefore, it will soon become extinct. 

All information that resided on Richard's website has been preserved and made accessible in the Archive on this site.

Should anyone experience difficulty in accessing the required information or find that a link that does not function correctly, please, inform the webmaster at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. so that the error may be rectified.

ECF County Championship

Posted: 15.May.2017

The first round matches of the ECF County Championship have now been played and are reported on the Oxfordfusion Results Service.

The results of matches involving SCCU County Teams are, as follows:

Open:
  • Lancashire beat Middlesex 9.5 - 6.5,
  • Surrey and Kent had byes and are through to the next round.
Minor Counties:
U180:
  • Warwickshire v Middlesex  - not yet reported,
  • Lancashire v Essex - not yet reported,
  • Surrey had a bye and is through to the next round.
U160:
U140:
  • Kent v Nottinghamshire - not yet reported,
  • Lancashire v Hertfordshire - not yet reported,
  • Worcestershire v Essex - not yet reported.
U120:
  • Hertfordshire beat Nottinghamshire 4 - 8,
  • Essex beat Norfolk 3 - 9,
  • Middlesex's match v Warwickshire has not yet been reported.
U100:
  • Warwickshire v Kent - not yet reported.
  • Surrey had a bye and is through to the next round.

Report on the World Senior Team Championship 2017

Posted: 04.May.2017

As one event to mark the SCCU’s quasquicentenary (125 years), we entered a self-financed team in this year’s World Senior Team Championship held in Crete from the 24th April to 2nd May.

 

The SCCU team facing Latvia Women in round 8.

 

The team consisted of the current and past Presidents of the Union, being myself, Mike Gunn and David Howes, all under the guidance of team captain David Sedgwick.

Recognising that in rating terms we would be the weakest team in the event by a significant margin, we set ourselves two objectives:

      • Enjoy ourselves
      • Avoid humiliation

The 7.15am departure from Gatwick provided the first challenge, especially for those of us who had been at the ECF Council meeting in Birmingham the day before. We met up at the airport with a number of other players from the “official” England teams, along with a few other familiar names playing under the Bermuda banner. The crew had obviously been tipped off that they had a contingent of chess playing geriatrics aboard and welcomed us during the pre-flight announcements, albeit referring to us generically as “the England team”.

The venue was the Creta Maris Beach Resort, about a 30 minute drive from the capital, Heraklion. This is a large complex with several swimming pools, as well as direct access to a good beach, and with accommodation largely consisting of rooms in mini-villas scattered over the hillside site – which ensured a certain amount of exercise was had by all.

The event was split into 50+ and 65+ sections. Our team captain being a youngster barely more than half way to his own quasquicentenary, meant that we were only eligible for the younger section. The tournaments consisted of 9 rounds, with matches played over 4 boards, but teams could include a fifth member, allowing one to be rested each day. As we only had 4 players, we each had to play every day. Teams did not have to play in strict rating order, but having declared a team order at the start of the event, you had to stick to that order, albeit teams of 5 could rest any one with the others moving up a board appropriately.

There were 22 teams in each section. Adding the 4 of us to the 29 players spread across 6 official England teams, meant that the ECF was the best represented Federation. Including teams from Wales and Scotland in each section, along with our Bermudian friends in the 50+ section, meant that the British contingent dominated the event, at least numerically.

Whilst we were seeded at the bottom of our section, a bit of skulduggery by the England 1 team – Nigel Short being a last minute substitution – meant they eased themselves into the top seed position. Any doubt we might have had about the strength of the opposition we faced didn’t survive the publication of the pairings for the first round. We were up against the German team of VSG 1880 Offenbach. Only David Howes, on board 4, had an opponent rated (marginally) below 2000, whilst David Sedgwick and I on boards 1 and 2 faced opponents rated above 2200. (It didn’t escape my notice that on board 2 in the bottom match I faced a higher rated opponent than did Nigel Short on board 1 in the top match!) With David Sedgwick achieving a win and myself a draw, we felt this was an excellent start.

Next we faced Wales and a draw on board 3 saw Mike Gunn off the mark, although the rest of us failed to add to the score line. In round 3 we met Sweden II and David Howes had his first draw, a result I matched on board 2 whilst our captain notched up his second win on board 1; thus a draw overall and a Match Point for SCCU 125. This meant we were elevated off the bottom table for round 4, where we played Oslo. Just a draw by David Sedgwick retained a degree of honour for the team.

Round 5 had us relegated back to the bottom table, where we remained for the rest of the tournament. We played Bermuda, who were reduced to 3 players due to a very late withdrawal. We suffered a whitewash on the played boards, only the default win on 4 making the score line look a little more respectable. Round 6 has us paired against England III and a 3 – 1 loss, with draws by the 2 Davids.

By now we had played all the lower-ranked teams and round 7 had us paired against another German team, 12th seeded Rochade Bielefeld Revival, all of whose players were rated above 2000. This was our first complete whitewash. Our penultimate opponents were 14th seeded Latvia Women, who inflicted a similar result upon us as our previous opponents. Finally, we played 16th seeds Sweden I, where once again Mike Gunn put us on the score line with a draw.

So, overall the team match score was no wins, one draw and 8 losses. Each of us on the lower 3 boards notched up 2 draws, whilst our outstanding player was David Sedgwick with 2 wins and 2 draws.

The full results can be found on the tournament website (www.wstcc-crete.com) but I’ll try to summarise the main points. In each section there were bronze, silver and gold trophies for the top 3 teams, and also for women's teams. In addition, there were medals for the best player on each board number (including the 5th player for teams with 5) in each section. In the 65+ section, this was very much a Russian affair, with their players taking all 5 “best board player” medals and the gold trophy. In the 50+ section, England I failed to hold on to their top seed position, coming away with the bronze trophy, but 3 of their players featured amongst the 5 “best board” medal winners. The top placed 50+ team was Saint Petersburg, followed by Armenia in silver trophy position.

This was a well organised event, with excellent accommodation and good playing conditions. Other than the final round, matches didn’t start till 3pm, allowing time for a couple of morning excursions that were laid on for us, and to confirm that the Aegean in April is warmer that the waters around the UK at any time of the year.

The first excursion was to the excavated site of the ancient Palace of Knossos. During the conducted tour it took us about half an hour to realise one of our team had got separated from the group! (Well, what are friends for?)

The second excursion was to the Island of Spinalonga, located in the largely enclosed bay of Elounda. This tiny island had been heavily fortified over the ages, then served as a leper colony as late as 1957. A beautiful area and very much the centre of the upper echelon of the Cretan tourist industry. For those with a long enough memory to be eligible to have entered this tournament, this was the setting for the 1977 BBC drama serial Who Pays the Ferryman.

The Verdict:

      • enjoy ourselves: achieved
      • Avoid humiliation: achieved

Finally, a big thank you to David Sedgwick for suggesting that we take part, for organising our entry and for leading us throughout the event.

Next year the championships return to the 2016 venue of Radebeul, near Dresden in Germany, running from 30th June till the 8th July. Might there be an SCCU 126 team?

Julie Denning
SCCU President

125th Anniversary Chess Match - Saturday 16th September 2017

Posted: 08.Mar.2017

Plans are being made to celebrate the 125th Anniversary of the Southern Counties Chess Union with an epic chess match between two teams representing "North of the River" and "South of the River" managed respectively by Chris Majer and Mike Gunn.

Currently, the match is envisaged to take place in London and played over 63 boards with a standard play move rate.

Teams shall comprise players of all ages and playing standard and invitations will be extended to players across all current and former affiliated counties of the SCCU.

 Further details will be released as they become known.

Thanet Chess Congress - Friday 18th to Sunday 20th August 2017

Venue: Canterbury Christ Church University, Broadstairs Campus, Northwood Road, Broadstairs, Kent CT10 2WA.

Five-round swiss tournament:

      • Open,
      • Challengers (170 & under),
      • Major (150 & under),
      • Intermediate (130 & under),
      • Minor (110 & under)

Download: Entry Form

Congress Website: http://www.thanetchesscongress.co.uk/

ECF County Championship - The Draw is Out

posted: 30.Mar.2017

The draw for the ECF County Championships was made last night and is published on the ECF website. See ECF Draw.

County Championship - Final League Tables

Last updated: 29.Mar.2017

The winners in all divisions of the SCCU County Team Championship are now known.

The draw for the ECF County Team Championship is expected to be published by Saturday 1st April and the Grand Final will take place at Warwick on Saturday 1st July. See ECF Competition Rules for further details.

In the Tables below, which supersede those output by the CLM software, tiebreaks have been applied in accordance with the SCCU County Match Rules. The CLM software accurately shows the results of games and Match Points scored but is unable to correctly apply the SCCU tiebreaks rules.

Teams that finish on equal Match Points are ranked according to tiebreaks MP1 and MP2, which indicate the Match Points scored between themselves.

In the comments column, Q indicates that a team has qualified to the ECF County Championship and N indicates a team nominated to take up a vacant place.

SCCU Open: Shannon
Pos Team P W D L MP MP1 MP2 GP  Comments
1 Kent 4 4 0 0 4.0 - - 51.5 Q - Open Champions
2 Surrey 4 2 0 2 2.0 1.0 - 32.5 Q
3 Middlesex 4 2 0 2 2.0 0.0 - 33.0 Q
4 Essex 4 1 0 3 1.0 - 1.0 30.0 N - ECF Minor Counties
5 Sussex 4 1 0 3 1.0 - 0.0 23.0  

 

SCCU U180: Montague Jones
Pos Team P W D L MP GP Comments
1 Surrey 6 4 1 1 4.5 50.0 Q - U180 Champions
2 Essex 6 4 0 2 4.0 58.5 Q
3 Middlesex 6 3 1 2 3.5 51.5 N
4 Sussex 6 0 0 6 0.0 30.0  

 

SCCU U160: Amboyna
Pos Team P W D L MP MP1 GP  Comments
1 Essex 4 3 0 1 3.0 - 32.5 Q - U160 Champions
2 Middlesex 4 2 0 2 2.0 2.0 34.0 Q
3 Sussex 4 2 0 2 2.0 1.0 31.0 Q
4 Surrey 4 2 0 2 2.0 0.0 33.5  
5 Kent 4 1 0 3 1.0 - 29.0  

 

SCCU U140: Ebony
Pos Team P W D L MP GP  
1 Kent 5 4 0 1 4.0 45.5 Q - U140 Champions
2 Essex 5 3 1 1 3.5 45.0 Q
3 Hertfordshire 5 3 0 2 3.0 39.0 Q
4 Surrey 5 2 1 2 2.5 43.5  
5 Middlesex 5 2 0 3 2.0 36.5  
6 Sussex 5 0 0 5 0.0 28.5  

 

SCCU U120: Harry Woolverton
Pos Team P W D L MP MP1 MP2 GP  Comments
1 Middlesex 4 3 0 1 3.0 1.0 - 26.0 Q - U120 Champions
2 Essex 4 3 0 1 3.0 0.0 - 25.0 Q
3 Kent 4 1 1 2 1.5 - 1.0 22.5 Q - Declined qualification place
4 Hertfordshire 4 1 1 2 1.5 - 0.0 24.5 N - Nominated
5 Surrey 4 0 2 2 1.0 - - 22.0  

 

SCCU U100: David Smith
Pos Team P W D L MP GP  Comments
1 Surrey 4 2 1 1 2.5 28.5 Q - U100 Champions
2 Kent 4 2 0 2 2.0 20.5 Q
3 Essex 4 1 1 0 1.0 23.0  

 

Key:

P, W, D, L indicate number of matches Played, Won, Drawn, Lost. 

GP = Game Points, where Win= 1 point, Draw= 0.5 point, Loss= 0 point.

MP = Match Points, where Win= 1 point, Draw= 0.5 point, Loss= 0 point.

Q = Qualified to ECF County Team Championship (i.e. ECF National Stages)

 

Weald Chess Congress

Posted: 20.Feb.2017

The 11th Weald Congress, incorporating the SCCU Individual Championship, will take place at Copthorne Prep School on 15th-16th July 2017.

5 round Swiss in 4 sections - Open, Major (U175), Intermediate (U140), and Minor (U110)

£1750 prize fund; Spacious playing conditions; Ample car parking; BBQ

The Sports Centre, Copthorne Prep School, Effingham Lane, Copthorne, West Sussex RH10 3HR

Website: http://wealdchesscongress.org/

Download Entry Form: WealdCongress2017.pdf

 

County Championship - U140 Middlesex v Essex Postponed

Posted: 25.Jan. 2017 (originally 22.Jan. 2017).

Owing to planned rail engineering works disrupting travel, yesterday's match was postponed by agreement of both match captains. The new date of the fixture is Saturday 4th February.

County Championship - U180 Sussex v Middlesex Update

Posted: 18.Jan. 2017 (originally 12.Jan.2017).

The difficulty over the loss of the Sussex home venue on 21st January has been resolved by the two captains agreeing to reverse the scheduled home and away fixtures. The revised fixtures are:

21st January U180 Middlesex v Sussex

11th March U180 Sussex v Middlesex

County Championship - U120 Herts v Middlesex Rescheduled

Posted: 10.Jan.2017.

The U120 match Herts v Middlesex has been rescheduled for 18th March 2017 due to non availability of the venue on 25th February.

Hastings International 2016/17

Posted: 06.Jan 2017

Hastings Congress took place at Horntye Sports Centre, Hasting, from 28th December 2016 to 5th January 2017.

Masters (99 players)
1st GM Deep Sengupta (Ind), 7/9; 2nd - 6th IM Miklos Galyas (Hun), IM R Pragggnanandhaa (Ind), GM Bogdan Lalic (Cro), IM Arghyadip Das (Ind), FM Ravi Haria (Eng), 6.5/9; 7th - 12th GM S.P. Sethuraman (Ind), GM Alexandr Fier (Bra), GM Benjamin Gledura (Hun), GM Murali Karthikeyan (Ind), GM Allan Stig Rasmussen (Den), IM Justin Tan (Aus), 6/9

Below are links to the full results on the Swiss Manager results service (chess-results.com):
Masters Christmas A  -  Christmas B  -  Christmas C  -  Christmas D
Weekend Major  -  Weekend Minor  -  Weekend U120
New Year Morning A  -  New Year Morning B  -  New Year Morning C
New Year Afternoon A  -  New Year Afternoon B
Pairs Blitz  -  Chess 960 Blitz  -  Blitz

Congress website: hastingschess.com

Photos by Brendan O'Gorman: Hastings 201

Open Fixture Update & Kent Home Matches

Posted: 24.Oct.2016.

The Open match, Essex v Sussex, has moved from 5th November to 11th February to avoid expected travel disruption on Southern Rail.

Kent: home matches at St Anselms will start at 1.00pm and finish at 6.00pm.

SCCU Archive

Posted: 21.Oct.2016.

This website (sccu-chess.com) was originally set up solely to manage and report on the SCCU County Championship but since the County Match Controller has now acquired the duties of SCCU webmaster it is natural that these pages should expand to report on all SCCU activities.

The change will be progressive but the first step is to preserve Richard's magnum opus (website sccu.ndo.co.uk) in its entirety and original form as SCCU Archive on this website. All hyperlinks on the archive pages should function correctly.

John Philpott

Posted: 16.Oct.2016.

The death of the former SCCU President, John Philpott, has been announced.  Few details are known at this stage, but it is understood that John collapsed and died at home on Mersea Island.  Although he served us well in Union matters over many years, John will be remembered mostly for his tremendous service to the ECF where he remained Company Secretary, Financial Controller and Voting Register Officer - and purveyor of authority, experience and sound advice.  John wasn't so much an individual as an institution. 

Richard Haddrell Funeral Arrangements

Posted: 16.Oct.2016.

The funeral arrangements for Richard Haddrell have been announced (see Richard Haddrell funeral). It is taking place on the afternoon of Thursday 3rd November at Tunbridge Wells Crematorium.

Richard Haddrell

Posted: 02.Oct.2016.

The death of the SCCU Deputy President, Richard Haddrell, has been announced.  Richard passed away on 30th September following a period of deteriorating health stoically borne. 

Richard has been a tremendous servant of English chess locally, in his home County of Kent, regionally, through this Union, and nationally with the ECF.  Reference to the Who was Who page bears testament to the range and length of his contribution to the SCCU, of which the creation and maintenance of this website has been just one part.

Nationally, his contributions were recognised with an ECF President's Award for Services to Chess in 1994 and at the ECF AGM later this month, there is a proposal that ECF Council approve the conferring of the title of Honorary Life Vice-President of the Federation on Richard.

Funeral arrangements will be announced in due course.

Chess League Manager

Posted: 05.Aug.2016.

This website is built using Joomla! and Chess League Manager. Here, I would like to acknowledge the assistance of Martin Blasczyk, webmaster -  Merseyside Chess Association, who first drew my attention to the CLM and advised on its installation and use.