MEETINGS: The club meets in room 3 at the COURTENAY CENTRE, Kingsteignton Road, Newton Abbot, (TQ12 2PQ) on THURSDAY evenings from 7 p.m. between late September and early May. Our premises are comfortable and central with good parking and refreshment facilities.The 2014-15 season opens on Thursday 18th September with a 10-second “Buzzer” Tournament. We look forward to welcoming new and old members whether adult or junior for a lively start to the new season at one of the South-West’s top chess clubs!
FURTHER INFORMATION about membership (including the various subscription rates) can be obtained from the Secretary, Trefor Thynne Tel: 01626 337876 (email@example.com) or the President, Andrew Kinder Tel: 01548 810750
DCCA Division 1 champions 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013 Division 3 winners 2013 2014
DCCA KNOCK-OUT CUP winners 2013 2014 DCCA JUNIOR DIVISION winners 2013
Torbay League Champions 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013
Division 2 winners 2013 2014 Division 4 winners 2011 Rapidplay winners 2014
Exeter and District League champions 2014
Individual honours: Dominic Mackle: West of England and Devon Champion 2013
Jacquie Barber-Lafon: Devon Ladies’ Champion 2012,2013,2014. West of England Ladies’ Champion 2014
“ LEMON JELLI CAFE CHESS EVENING”
On Friday June 20th the Newton Abbot Club hosted a chess event with a difference at a popular local cafe in Queen Street in the town centre: a four-sided Rapidplay team tournament. In June 2012 and 2013 Newton Abbot had visited Exeter for a summer friendly match at the Village Cafe in Whpton but, this no longer being available, it seemed a good opportunity to try a new venture at a home venue.
The four competing teams were Exeter Chess Club, Torquay Boys’ Grammar School and two teams from the host club, Newton Abbot, who adopted the names Bullfrogs and Crocodiles for the evening.
The format of the event was similar to the Rapidplay Division of the Torbay League and the DCCA’s Newman Cup division: two rounds with 30 minutes per player per game. This gave players time to socialize between rounds and to take advantage of the excellent refreshments available from the cafe throughout the evening. The jamboree pairing format worked well. Each team had seven players and the final results were:
1st: Torquay Boys’ Grammar School 8 ½ (out of 14)
2nd Newton Abbot Crocodiles 8
3rd Exeter 7
4th Newton Abbot Bullfrogs 4 ½
Notable was the excellent play by the numerous juniors present: John Fraser (TBGS board one) scored wins against top county players Alan Brusey and Dave Regis. For the TBGS team this was excellent practice a couple of weeks ahead of their trip to the ECF National Schools’ Finals at Uppingham School (Rutland) in early July.
The winning TBGS team consisted of: John Fraser, Vignesh Ramesh, Jared Wray, James Milne, Jakub Kubiak, Ben Sturt and Yul Lee.
The feeling among all the players was that this friendly social chess event on a fine summer’s evening was definitely worth repeating in 2015. We would welcome expressions of interest in taking part from any other clubs.
Secretary’s report to the Annual General Meeting 22nd May 2014
Once again I can report with satisfaction on a busy and successful season for the club with plenty of chess activity of all types. Membership declined slightly in numerical terms with 17 paid-up adult members and 13 juniors. This was compensated by an above-average rate of attendance at club sessions right through the season.
In December, we sadly lost one of our most loyal members, Jim O’Grady, who passed away after several months of declining health. His family bequeathed to the club his chess sets and considerable library of chess books, CD-Roms and DVDs and these now form the new club library kept in a small bookcase purchased for this purpose.
While on the subject of equipment we have invested in a new storage cupboard – a big improvement on its predecessor – and also have bought a number of digital clocks. These enabled the use of the new incremental time limit (25 minutes plus 10 seconds per move) in the Torbay League Rapidplay division.
We welcomed several new members this year: John Bruce of Totnes, John Stephens (one of Devon’s top players who has moved to Plymouth) and juniors Jared Wray (the TBGS chess captain), Yannis Wells of Churston GS plus 10 year old Oliver Sutcliffe. It was good to see the return of Mike Hussey after a few years absence. Towards the end of the season, three more potential adult members attended briefly and I am hopeful of recruiting them together with some more new junior members for 2014-15. On the debit side, we lost Patrick Ozzard-Low who left the area and temporarily we hope, Roger Hocking and Vitali Chornenkiy owing to work commitments in both cases.
The decision to end the season slightly earlier this year has enabled the club to avoid the financial crisis of 2013 and did not seem to prevent the efficient conduct of internal competitions. This also permitted the holding of the AGM right after the end of the playing season which, I hope, will have resulted in a good turn-out.
In general, despite the issues of noisy music downstairs members still seem to feel that the many advantages of the Courtenay Centre outweigh any minuses. I am hopeful that the reduction in room hire charge which I negotiated with the centre for this season will operate again next year. I did investigate last summer alternative premises in the town but without finding anywhere as satisfactory.
The ECF membership scheme introduced the previous season has continued to work smoothly. This year all players were responsible individually for their own ECF membership fees but I am happy to say that every single one of our members is a paid-up member of the national federation. The Secretary is happy to deal with the administration of this for any member if so desired.
The club continues to be grateful to Andrew Kinder for the running of the internal tournaments (Championship and RapidPlay). This year we played 6 rather than 7 rounds in the main tournament bearing in mind that we have the most active match play programme of any club in the county.
I am grateful to all the various team captains for their efforts to field competitive teams. IThere were only a few hiccups and mainly the match season was enjoyed by members. The highest number of individual match appearances (19) was made jointly by John Allen, Vignesh Ramesh and Nandaja Narayanan with Nijad Rahimli just behind on 18.
In terms of success we had to hand over to Plymouth our Torbay League Division 1 title and to Exmouth our DCCA Division 1 Bremridge Cup mantle after a number of years in which we had held both. We will be back!
In compensation Wilf Taylor’s Newton Abbot Bishops won Torbay League Division 2 and Jacqui Barber-Lafon’s division 3 team came second in a busy division 3 season. And Andrew Kinder’s team again won the Rapidplay division with two terrific wins away to main rivals Plymouth. Our division 4 team consisted mainly of juniors who gained valuable experience.
In the DCCA competitions our division 2 (Mamhead Cup) team had a hard time finishing last. Other clubs seem to turn out top Bremridge players in this (notably Jack Rudd for Barnstaple!). thanks to Paul Brooks for running this team. Wilf Taylor completed a successful season for teams under his captaincy by retaining the Division 3 (Schofield Cup) title.
Our partly-junior divison 4 (Moyle Cup) team had four close matches but did not win any of them, drawing 2. In the Peter Rooke Knock-Out Cup the club beat Teignmouth in the semi-final and Tiverton in the final, both by 5-3. This is a competition held over 8 boards in which we traditionally do well, having a large enough membership to cope with unavailability.
This year for the first time we entered a team in the premier Division of the Exeter and District league in an attempt to bring some variety into the opposition we meet. Although we won the league there were only four teams in it so we only played three matches, a disappointment. If Exmouth and Sidmouth rejoin the league it should be more interesting.
Congratulations to our two highest-percentage scorers in individual terms: Mike Hussey and John Fraser.
On the individual achievement front I must highlight the terrific achievement of Jacquie Barber-Lafon who won both the Devon and West of England Ladies’ titles. Fast-improving junior, Vignesh Ramesh won the Devon Minor Individual and John Fraser continued his remarkable rise and has been rewarded with another invitation to represent England in a junior event abroad (this time in Georgia in the autumn). In July John will be competing in the British Championship as a result of his fine performance in last year’s Major Open at the ECF Congress in Torquay. Jim Knott, another rapid improver, won the Devon Under 15 title in December.Stephen Homer won outright the Open Tournament at the Teignmouth Congress in April and Alan Brusey had a fine tournament win in the Open at the annual Torbay Congress. I hope i have not missed any other individual success off this list!
The strength of the club was reflected in selection to play for the Devon County sides with no fewer than thirteen club members having played at least once.
I would like to address the issue of club representation at the meetings of the Torbay League and DCCA. At the moment the club is represented at the DCCA by Paul Brooks (DCCA President) and myself (DCCA Secretary) who both attend ex-officio. I would like to see other members attending these meetings to represent the club and hope that tonight’s meeting can address this issue.
I would like to conclude by thanking the committee members for their hard work, all members for their various contributions to the success of the club this year, to express the hope that as many as possible will turn out for the “Lemon Jellli Cafe” friendly match on 20th June and to look forward to the resumption of activity in the autumn.
Individual match statistics 2013-14
For those interested in such things I append below a list of individual members’ results in matches played this year in the Torbay League (excluding the Raoidplay division), DCCA and Exeter and District League. I have listed players in descending order of number of games played.
John Allen 13/19
Vignesh Ramesh 12/19
Nandaja Narayanan 7/19
Nijad Rahimli 9/18
Wilf Taylor 10.5/17
Jim Knott 8/15
Paul Brooks 5/15
Andrew Kinder 7/13
John Bruce 5.5/13
Jacquie Barber-Lafon 3/13
John Fraser 8/11
Mike Hussey 7.5/10
Trefor Thynne 6.5/10
Nathan Mills 4.5/10
Dominic Mackle 4/6
James Milne 2.5/5
Toby O’Donoghue 2/5
Stephen Homer 2/5
Ben Sanders-Wyatt 1/5
5 games or fewer: Jared Wray 1//2, Joshua Blackmore 0/3, Alan Brusey 0/2, Yannis Wells ½, Calum Germain 0/2
On the basis of the above the committee has agreed to make two match-play awards at the AGM on 22nd may:
Match-Play trophy: 75% score: Mike Hussey
Runner-up (book prize) John Fraser 73% score.
Those of you who attended the AGM will remember that the Secretary was mandated to investigate other possible premises for the club in the light of concerns expressed about noise from the music downstairs on club nights. Various premises in the town have been looked at during the summer but all ruled themselves out for different reasons: cost/ time restrictions/lack of parking/ unavailability etc. We shall continue to monitor this issue closely but for the present we are remaining at the Courtenay Centre. I have been able to negotiate a slight reduction in the room hire fee from £35 to £30 per session.
The first night of the new season will be THURSDAY 19th SEPTEMBER when we shall hold the traditional 10-second BUZZER tournament. I hope as many members as possible will come along to get the season off to a lively start. Your committee will be meeting next week to discuss the possibility of organising other special events for subsequent club nights.
Other dates you might like to note are:
Wednesday 18 September: Torbay League pre-season meeting
Friday 20 September: DCCA Council Meeting
Sunday 22 September; WECU Jamboree at Taunton
Sunday 20th October: DCCA Team Blitz at the Courtenay Centre
Members will be able to sign up for the various club internal tournaments (Championship/Rapidplay/Junior Tournament) at the club’s opening night. Andrew Kinder is acting as Competitions Secretary again this year.
The following subscription rates were agreed at the club’s AGM in June:
Full adult subscription £65 (reduced from £70)
Concessionary rate adult subscription: £35
(The concessionary rate applies to unemployed members/full-time students/ members choosing to play in EITHER internal club tournaments ONLY OR external club matches ONLY).
Junior membership (under 18): £30
Subscriptions are due from the beginning of the season and early payment would be appreciated as the club has some major bills to pay early in the season for affiliation and entry to the DCCA and Torbay League. In addition this year we are hoping to enter a team in the Exeter and District League which will entail further cost.
Subscription payments should be sent or given to our Treasurer, DOMINIC MACKLE: 2 Bradley Road, Newton Abbot TQ12 1LT
Members will remember that last year the ECF introduced a new membership scheme. This seems to have been a success with about 10,000 players joining the ECF. In 2012 the club agreed to pay our members’ ECF membership fees as a special gesture. This year, however members will have to pay their own ECF membership. Membership becomes due on 1st September and can be renewed online or by telephone to the ECF Office. You may already have received an e-mail reminder about renewal from the ECF. The ECF website is:www.englishchess.org and the telephone number is 01424 775222. If you have any question or problems related to ECF membership please ask me.
Finally, I do hope that you will join the club this year. The committee is determined that the club should remain the most active club in the county and one which provides match , tournament and friendly play for players of every standard and age group. Therefore if you wish to raise any issues about what the club offers or the way it is run please do not hesitate to speak to a member of the committee. Current committee members are: Andrew Kinder, Trefor Thynne, Paul Brooks, John Allen, Dominic Mackle, Jacquie Barber-Lafon and John Fraser (junior representative).
I look forward to seeing you at the club at the opening night.
3rd September 2013.