Raymond Slatcher Memorial Trophy 2019

posted 27 Feb 2019, 14:58 by Andrew Zigmond

Harrogate and Ilkley faced each other over twelve boards for the 17th annual match and the result was one of the most exciting matches of the series.

It was first blood to Harrogate when Max Parkhouse continued his recent hot streak by dispatching a solid opponent with ease. After that things seemed to swing Ilkley's way as four straight wins with a scattering of draws left Harrogate needing to win all four of the remaining games. It seemed a tall order but Brian Coop scored a hugely impressive win against the experienced Chris Wright and board 12 debutante Rob Carrington also scored. Paul Pritchard also edged out the victory on board 3 and suddenly the scores were level.

That left everything hanging on the Stokes vs Rogerson encounter. With both players short of time Mick seemed to be building up a decisive attack only to miscalculate and lose material. It looked like Mark was going to score the decisive victory but with just just seconds on his clock blundered one queen and was forced to promote another, at which point his flag fell. The result was the first tied match since the first encounter back in 2003.

1 Mick Stokes 1/2-1/2 Mark Rogerson
2 Brian Coop 1-0 Chris Wright
3 Paul Pritchard 1-0 Lee Crawford
4 Peter Rawcliffe 0-1 William Boothman
5 David Harasym 0-1 David Adam
6 Gordon Marks 1/2-1/2 Robin Browne
7 Peter Gregory 1/2-1/2 Bill Tait
8 Richard Tate 0-1 Robert Dennington
9 Jim Postill 0-1 Stuart Johnson
10 Ranyl Hughes 1/2-1/2 Arthur Thompson
11 Max Parkhouse 1-0 Peter Ward
12 Rob Carrington 1-0 David Webster

Secondary Schools Tournament Saturday 1st December

posted 29 Oct 2018, 08:09 by Andrew Zigmond   [ updated 3 Nov 2018, 04:25 ]

A tournament for players aged 12-17 will be held at St Robert's Club on Saturday 1st December, open to any players of that age either resident in Harrogate or attending a secondary school in the Harrogate area (this includes Knaresborough, Wetherby, Ripon and Tadcaster).

For entries and further information please contact Andrew Zigmond on 01423 538142, 07899085110 or email A document with frequently asked questions can be found below.

Lightning tournament 2018

posted 19 Sep 2018, 03:21 by Andrew Zigmond

Fourteen players, including a few new and returning members as well as guests, contested the 2018 lightning tournament (ten seconds a move). Despite one of the strongest fields I can remember Jonathan Round successfully defended his title winning all five games. Brian Coop was second with 4/5 and Mate Ther third on 3 1/2.

Harrogate Chess Club AGM

posted 19 Sep 2018, 02:26 by Andrew Zigmond

Harrogate Chess Club held their AGM on Monday 10th September where the achievement of the A Team in winning the IM Brown Shield for the Yorkshire league second division was celebrated. The shield has been in competition since 1914 and somewhere in our archives is a photograph of the 1951 team holding it. It was also pleasing to see several young players among the prize winners from previous season. Most notable was the achievement of Mate Ther (13) in sharing the club championship, something which appears to be a record. Max Parkhouse (12) won the Improvers trophy for achievement in the Baines-Lewis minor. The Baines-Lewis itself was won by Peter Rawcliffe, a new member last season. The handicap knockout was won by Jim Postill. This is Jim's first every victory in a Harrogate competition and at 84 he is determined that Mate and Max will not have it all their own way!

The prizes were presented by the club president, Margaret Rowley. During the meeting Margaret was appointed an honorary life member in view of her outstanding service to the club over sixty years.

Harrogate Chess Club meets every Monday from 19.30 at Apley Grange, Oatlands Drive. A  club for players aged 12-18 meets on Thursday 18.30-20.00 at St Robert's Club, Robert Street. For more information contact 01423 538142

The photograph shows Margaret Rowley presenting the IM Brown Shield to A Team captain Mark Daley. Also pictured l-r are Max Parkhouse, Peter Rawcliffe, Mate Ther and Jim Postill.

New Season

posted 26 Aug 2018, 13:09 by Andrew Zigmond

The 2018-19 season will kick off on Monday 3rd September with the initial schedule as follows;

MONDAY 3RD SEPTEMBER Normal club night to start the season. For new members it's an ideal opportunity to come along and introduce themselves.
MONDAY 10th SEPTEMBER Annual General Meeting at 19.30.
MONDAY 17th SEPTEMBER Lightning tournament at 19.30 prompt. All welcome.

The Harrogate Youth Chess Club for students aged 12-18 will re-open on Thursday 6th September, 18.30 at the St Roberts Club.

Harrogate Chess Club at the British Chess Championships

posted 12 Aug 2018, 06:01 by Andrew Zigmond

The 2018 British Chess Championships were held at the city hall in Hull, the closest they have been to home since Sheffield 2011. While Hull was perhaps not a destination venue in the same way as Llandudno 2017 was the Hull & District Association rose to occasion and collaborated with the English Chess Federation to put on a championship to remember. The highlight of their program was a living chess demonstration outside the venue on Wednesday. Initially this was a prepared game but expanded to enable play in real time. Mate Ther was watching and the organisers invited him to take on a local player and Mate duly stole the show, winning an instructive game fought to the last pawn and containing several promotions, done with good humour throughout.

Mate managed to juggle this with score 3.5/7 in the Under 16s (played in the morning) and 3.5/5 in the U2050 (afternoon). Other Harrogate participants were Douglas McKerracher in the Over 65s (2/5/7) and Andrew Zigmond (4/5 in the Soanes weekender and 2/5 in the U1750.

The attached files show Mate in action.

Harrogate Junior Chess Tournament 24/3/2018

posted 25 Mar 2018, 14:48 by Andrew Zigmond   [ updated 25 Mar 2018, 14:55 ]

The Harrogate & District Primary Schools Chess Association (HDPSCA) held their annual tournament on Saturday 24th of March at St Aidan's School. Several members of the Harrogate Chess Club supervised on the day and HCC Chairman Andrew Zigmond presented the prizes at the end of the day.

The winners were as follows;

Year 6 1st Tom Osborne (Harrogate Junior Chess Club) 2nd= Finlay McCreanor & Ollie Poyser-Senior (both HJCC)
Year 5 1st Edward Evans (HJCC) 2nd= Thomas Bentley (HJCC) & Louis Mills (HJCC)
Year 4 1st Penelope McCreanor (HJCC) 2nd= Jacob Kell & Archie Sculthorp (both Oatlands)
Year 3 and under 1st Dylan Mawhinney (Richard Taylor) 2nd= David Ther (HJCC) & Jacob Turnbull (Oatlands)

Harrogate Junior Chess Club won the Trumper cup for best school with Oatlands school second.

Book prizes were awarded for best girl (Penelope McCreanor), best mate (Georgina Scott) and best game (Tom Osborne). The Harrogate & District is a registered charity promoting primary school chess in the area. More details can be found on their website

The photograph below shows Mick Stokes (chairman HDPSCA) and Andrew Zigmond (chairman HCC) at the prizegiving.

Image may contain: 4 people, people standing and indoor

Raymond Slatcher Memorial Trophy 2018

posted 25 Mar 2018, 11:44 by Andrew Zigmond

On Tuesday 13th March Harrogate players traveled to Ilkley to contest the 2018 match in memory of Raymond Slatcher. Incredibly this is already the sixteenth match in the series' the first being held in 2003 and only four members of the Harrogate team not being in position to remember Raymond Slatcher personally.

The match was exceptionally close on paper with some fascinating pairings; not least a relatively rare Stokes Rogerson clash on top board. In the end Ilkley proved more tenacious to run out narrow but convincing winners, the match being won on a clean sweep of boards 3-7.

Harrogate's wins all merit mention. The youngest member of the team, Mate Ther, was our first scorer when he crushed his experienced opponent. The game of the match may have been on board 8 where Richard Tate was forced to concede a rook for several pawns which he used to launch a devastating counter attack. Stuart Johnson saw off his opponent in convincing style while Cameron Funnell won on time on his Slatcher debut.

So the trophy returns to Ilkley who extend their lead in the series. As ever the 2019 installment is eagerly awaited.

1 Mick Stokes 0-1 Mark Rogerson
2 Brian Coop 1/2-1/2 Chris Wright
3 Mate Ther 1-0 Robin Browne
4 Michael Johnson 0-1 Lee Crawford
5 David Harasym 0-1 William Boothman
6 Gordon Marks 0-1 David Adam
7 Andrew Zigmond 0-1 Barry Taylor
8 Richard Tate 1-0 Bill Tait
9 Stuart Johnson 1-0 Chris Woodthorpe
10 Jim Postill 0-1 Peter Ward
11 Cameron Funnell 1-0 Arthur Thompson
12 Ranyl Hughes 1/2-1/2 Martin Hawkins

Junior team tournament announced.

posted 11 Oct 2017, 11:56 by Andrew Zigmond   [ updated 13 Oct 2017, 09:22 by Christopher Tomsett ]

Harrogate Chess Club and the Harrogate & District Primary Schools Chess Association are pleased to announce that a junior team chess tournament will be held at the St Robert's Club on the morning of Saturday 18th November. Entries from schools of between 4-6 players are invited.

Entries and enquiries should be sent to the following email addresses
PRIMARY Mick Stokes 01423 879245
SECONDARY Andrew Zigmond 01423 538142

Secondary school players are free to enter individually as composite teams will be formed although priority will be given to putting players from the same school together. Different rules may apply to primary schools.

2017 AGM

posted 17 Sep 2017, 12:04 by Andrew Zigmond   [ updated 13 Oct 2017, 08:59 by Christopher Tomsett ]

The AGM took place on Monday 11th September and proved to be straightforward enough (as an AGM should be) with all business transacted in just over an hour. There were several changes at officer level, the most substantial being Richard Tate stepping back into his old role as secretary after two years as membership and minutes secretary. Margaret Rowley has stood down as C Team captain with Andrew Zigmond taking on the running of the team. Both Margaret and the outgoing business secretary, Paul Pritchard, will continue as members of the committee alongside the newly elected Chris Watt. Brian Coop and Richard White have stepped down from the committee.

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