Welcome to the official website of the BDCL 

The news was last updated on 21/10/2018 

Updates/Pages recently updated
21/19/18 - Derek Perks
11/09/18 - Rules page
]26/07/18 - clubs page - venue details
26/07/18 - Welcome page - Uk Blitz
18/07/18 - Welcome page - Midland Open
10/07/18 - Clubs - Rushall
18/06/18 - Honours page
13/05/18 - Morry-Wood awards
27/04/18 - Mutual Tournament
25/04/18 -  Welcome page - Robert Bellin talks
03/04/18 - Mutual Lightning
19/03/18 - Cotswold Congress
15/03/18 - Lightning tournament
05/02/18 - Morry-Wood awrds
30/01/18 - Sutton Coldfield
06/01/18 - Midland Rapid
02/01/18 - Birmingham Rapidplay/ Warwickshire Open Congress
05/12/17 - University contact updated
01/11/17 - Clubs - Marek Schroeder
15/10/17 - Rapidplay results
23/09/17 - Halesowen ECF club of the year
05/09/17 - Admin page - Laws of chess
25/08/17 - Welcome page links - LMS
22/08/17 - Welcome page
18/08/17 - Birminghm Rapidplay
03/08/17 - Welcome page - Redditch chess evening
11/07/17 - Welcome page - local congresses
15/06/17 - Greenlands page
13/06/17 - Honours, Officials
11/06/17 - South Birmingham Rapidplay
08/05/17 - Morry-Wood awards
07/05/17 - Rules meeting report
28/03/17 - Summer League - rules
18/03/17 - Jon Speelman event
10/03/17 - Home page - Colin Thomas
09/03/17 - Leadue Lightning Tournament
02/02/17 - Welcome page - Cotswold Congress
23/01/17 - Morry-Wood competitions
14/01/17 - Birminghan Rapidplay
10/02/17 - Geoff Harris memorial
02/01/17 - Welcome page - Warwickshire Congress
03/12/16 - Home page - Gabor Csepregi
19/10/16 - Warley Quinborne website
17/10/16 - Welcome page - Rapidplay
10/10/16 - Welcome page - Warwickshire Juniors
31/08/16 - Guidelines for captains
21/08/16 - Welcome page - F Grades
09/08/16 - St. Georges withdrawal
01/08/16 - Jonathan Swallow
28/07/16 - Ron Hardy
28/07/16 - Welcome page - Mutual website
27/06/16 - Wecome page - 4NCL Congress
14/06/16 - Honours, Officers
13/06/16 - Archives 2015-16
10/06/16 - Redditch club website
08/06/16 - Jim Friar
29/05/16 - Morry Wood results updated
27/04/16 - Summer League Fixtures
26/04/16 - Welcome Page - Cotswold Congress
20/04/16 - Welcome page - Walsall Kipping
13/04/16 - Ruels meeting report
03/04/16 - Welcome page - Olton website
16/03/16 - Rules & Docs - Summer League form/rules
16/03/16 - Lightning Team Tournament
11/03/16 - Welcome page - St. Georges
28/01/16 - Welcome page - news, Rules committee meeting
20/12/15 - FIDE Rated Congress - updated
17/10/15 - Welcome page - Stourbridge parking
12/10/15 - Welcome page - Birmingham Rapidplay
24/09/15 - Shirley Website URL
18/09/15 - Welcome page - Rapidplay
31/08/15 - Welcome page - Individuals
23/08/15 - Rushall return
20/08/15 - New rules/guidance
14/08/15 - Welcome page, Clubs - Bushnbury venue change.
11/08/15 - BDCL Rules updated
10/06/15 - South Birmingham website
09/06/15 - Honours page
09/06/15 - Welcome page - Ken Langston
26/05/15 - Welcome page - British Chess Championships
22/05/15 - Welcome page - Chess magazines
27/04/15 - Morry Wood awards
21/04/15 - ECF National Club Championships
9/04/15 - Home page - trophy finals
11/03/15 - Home page, Lightning tournament
05/03/15 - Home page - Lightning Tournament
03/03/15 - Home Page - Mike Walker Funeral details
02/03/15 - Document uploaded - Summer League
25/02/15 - Home page - Mike Walker
24/02/15 - Home Page - Morry-Wood Awards
16/02/15 - Home page - Tom Farley
11/02/15 - Home page - Mike Walker
21/01/15 - Welcome - Kynoch web site
20/01/15 - Home page - Colin Hammersley
13/12/14 - Home page - Robin Farmery
14/10/14 - Welcome page - Rapidplay
30/07/14 - Rule Change Proposals
06/07/14 - FIDE Laws updated
30/06/14 - West Bromwich page
25/06/14 - Welcome page - WCA
12/06/14 - Fixtures meeting
10/06/14 - Honours 2014
05/06/14 - Welcome page - AGM
28/05/14 - Archives 2013 added
15/05/14 - Welcome page, Bushbury venue change
07.05/14 - Welcome page - Division 2 play-off, Mike Biddle email.
03/05/14 - Morry-Wood page updated
14/04/14 - Welcome page - Staffordshire congress
29/03/14 - Welcome page - Summer League & League Management meeting.
28/03/14 - Welcome page - Rules meeting
25/03/14 - Mindsports events
17/03/14 - Welcome page - Keith Arkell
15/03/14 - Lightning Tournament 2014
03/03/14 - Welcome page - Team Lightning
03/03/14 - Welcome page - Morry Wood
23/01/14 - Welcome page - University Championships
20/01/14 - Welcome page - University details
08/01/14 - Welcome - staffs Congress
02/01/14 - Welcome page - Warwickshire Championships
01/01/14 - Alf Schroeder
12/11/13 - Welcome Page - Peter Oliver email
08/11/13 - Welcome page - Stourbridge parking
24/10/13 - Welcome page - Warley Quinborne 5
15/10/13 - Welcome page - Shropshire congress.
14/10/13 - Welcome page - Birmingham Rapidplay
02/10/13 - Welcome page - Sutton Coldfield venue
01/09/13 - Welcome page - League Individuals
23/08/13 - Welcome page - Summer League
20/08/13 - Welcome page - Leamington Rapiplay
13/08/13 - Welcome page - Sutton Coldfield equipment
25/07/13 - Welcome page - Birmingham and Coventry congresses.
05/07/13 - Welcome page - Wolverhampton parking
12/06/13 - Clubs pages and index
11/06/13 - Honours page
11/06/13 - Welcome page - Book collection
07/06/13 - Trophies & Tables for 2013-14
19/05/13 - AGM Notice
15/05/13 - Welcome - Staffs congress
13/05/13 - Archives 2013
02/05/13 - Welcome page
29/04/13 - Morry-Wood - Winners announced
27/04/13 - Guidelines for captains
25/04/13 - John Holmberg Funeral
22/04/13 - Admin pages - Rules meeting
18/04/13 - Links page - Kynoch
16/04/13 - Welcome - British Blitz
11/04/13 - Robert Jones
10/04/13 - Chess in Schools & Communities
09/03/13 - Welcome - Champions
19/03/13 - Welcome - Summer League
13/03/13 - Team Lightning Tournament
25/02/13 - Welcome - Warwickshire congress
21/02/13 - Lightning tournament form
21/02/13 - Welcome - Morry-Wood, Lightning
31/01/13 - Welcome - Alf Schoeder update
29/01/13 - Welcome - ECF Grades
28/01/13 - Welcome - League Individual
27/01/13 - Welcome - Alf Schroeder's Birthday
10/01/13 - Welcome/Clubs - Rushall Venue
10/01/13 - Welcome/Clubs - Sutton Coldfield
01/01/13 - Welcome - Stourbridge Parking
18/12/12 - Welcome - e2e4 Congress
17/12/12 - County - Under 120 result added
02/12/12 - Welcome - MCCU news
28/11/12 - Checkmates withdrawal
26/11/12 - County - Under 120 result added
18/11/12 - Welcome - Mike Walker
24/10/12 - Welcome - Halesowen Roadworks
08/10/12 - Welcome - Rapidplay
09/10/12 - Welcome - Free Tournament
24/09/12 - eMatch cards - Version 8 available
20/09/12 - Welcome - New Redditch venue
13/09/12 - Welcome - Stourbridge venue
10/09/12 - Welcome - Birmingham Blitz
01/09/12 - Welcome - Leamington Rapidplay
31/08/12 - Welcome - Changes to handbook
20/08/12 - Birmingham Rapiplay
05/07/12 - Welcome - Special meeting
25/06/12 - Welcome - Hinckley Congress
24/06/12 - Welcome - Staffs Congress 2013
12/06/12 - Welcome - League AGM
12/06/12 - Officers page updated
11/06/12 - Honours - 2012 winners added
28/05/12 - Welcome - Chess lectures
22/05/12 - Morry Wood Winners
22/05/12 - Archives - Trophies 2011-12
21/05/12 - Welcome - AGM notification
17/05/12 - Welcome - David Rowe - Update
14/05/12 - Welcome - Management Meeting
11/05/12 - Welcome - Tony Brown
11/05/12 - Welcome - MCCU Arbiters course
01/05/12 - Sheffield Congress
16/04/12 - Welcome - Staffordshire Congress
21/03/12 - Welcome - Rapidplay update
14/03/12 - League Lightning Tournament
08/03/12 - Welcome - Individual Final News
02/03/12 - Birmingham Summer League
24/02/12 - Stourbridge car parking updated
20/02/12 - Google places map
17/02/12 - Stourbridge car parking
08/02/12 - Welcome - League Lightning
30/01/12 - ECF Half-year grades published
30/01/12 - Staffordshire Congress
26/01/12 - Birmingham Rapidplay
17/01/12 - Norman Young obituary
16/01/12 - Dave Thomas award
13/01/12 - Walsall venue move
23/12/11 - E Match cards - V7 available
15/12/11 - British Blitz Championships
08/12/11 - West Bromwich venue change
18/11/11 - Individual Tournament update
16/11/11 - Report of rules commitee meeting
01/11/11 - Welcome - New Kynoch Venue

Handbook Changes

Sutton Coldfield

Sutton Coldfield Chess Club will be meeting in the Lounge of Minworth Social Club, Robinsons Way (off Water Orton Lane), Sutton Coldfield B76 9BB. Same night and start time (Mondays 7.30pm) so fixtures are unaffected. Patrons requested not to bring their own food or drink.


21/10/2018 - Derek Perks

It is with great sadness that we have to report the passing of our WDCL Tournament Secretary and Auditor Derek Perks on Thursday 18th October 2018. Our sympathies and thoughts go out to his family at this sad time. A full obituary can be found here .

Andrew McCumiskey, Mercia Chess Club

20/10/2018 - Birmingham Rapidplay

Results in the tournaments will be updated and can be seen through the links on the Rapidplay page

14/10/2018 -  Birmingham Rapidplay Invitational

To celebrate the 25th rapidplay, there will be a special Invitation tournament featuring a mix of grandmasters, former winners and local players. The full details are here...

Alex Holowczak

10/10/2018 - Nigel Short

Nigel Short, son of Lichfield secretary and former Birmingham League president David Short, has been appointed a Vice President of FIDE.

David Short

13/09/2018 - Mercia contact

Peter Thompson will be acting as Club Secretary for Mercia for the remainder of the current season.  Peter can be contacted at and on 01902 765870.

Tim Lane, Hon General Secretary

11/09/2018 - Individual competitions

The individual Knock-out tournaments are now in graded bands rather than divisions. Anyone wishing to enter should contact Tim Lane, the closing date for entries is 1st October. Revised rules are contained within the BDCL Rules.

21/07/2018 - Birmingham Rapidplay October 2018

Entries are now open for the 25th Birmingham Rapidplay Tournament, wich takes place on Sunday 21st October. See the Rapidplay page...

26/07/2018 - Redditch venue change

Redditch CC now meet at

Alvechurch Sports and Social Club,

Radford Road,



B48 7LD

Michelle Clack

Olton/Westminster venues

Please also note that the 37 bus given in the handbook is now the 4/4A service Birmingham-Solihull/Gospel Oak

26/07/2018 - Uk Open Blitz championship

There is a 15-round Swiss at Quinborne on 8th September, which is a qualifier for the National Final.

Alex Holowczak

18/07/2018 - Midland Open

The 2018 Midland Open will be at the Ramada Hotel in Telford between 10-12 August. The leading Midlands player will be the 2018 Midlands Champion, and qualify for the 2019 British Chess Championships.

More information here

Online entry here

Alex Holowczak

10/07/2018 - Rushall Venue change

Rushall chess club are moving from 6th August to

The Bowman

Corner of Myatt Avenue and Gretton Crescent



Still meeting Monbdays 7:15pm

Steve Wilcox

25/06/2018 - Windsor Peck

It is with great sadness that Halesowen Chess Club must announce the death of our team mate and friend Windsor Peck. Windsor passed away peacefully on 15 June. A true gentleman, he was a well known and respected figure in Midlands chess and will be missed by all who knew him

John Southcote

18/06/2018 - Honours page updates

This years winners and photos from the AGM have now been added to the honours page.Images are compressed, if winners would like a copy of the original, i can email it, also some photos not shown are also available.

13/05/2018 - Morry-Wood awards

The winners of these two league awards for best game and the Junior prize have been announced. See the Morry-Wood page for more details.

Phil Maddocks on behalf of Laurie Wheatley

27/04/2018 - Mike Walker Memorial Lightning Report

This tourney took place at Mutual Circle's venue on Tuesday, 24th April. There were 25 entrants (9 from Mutual and 14 from outside) playing in two separate 6-round tournaments.
In the 'Open' Henrik Stepanyan from Sutton Coldfield club came out on top with 5/6. He thus won the £35 first prize and the Mike Walker Cup for one year. Second equal on 4 points came Nick Walker and Moin Uddin from West Bromwich, Kevin Hurney of South Birmingham and Matt Harborne from Mutual. These four shared the £20 second prize. The 'Grading' prize was won by Phil Bull of Wolverhampton, graded, 157, with 3 1/2. (Technically Moin Uddin, above, should perhaps have been awarded this prize but he opted to take the less lucrative joint-second prize instead).

The 'Challengers' (Under 136 grade tournament) was even more hotly contested and finished with three joint-winners on 4 1/2 out of 6: John Freeman of Shirley & Wythall, Florin Valea of Warley Quinborne, and Giles Stanton from Redditch - who all won £20 and a share of the Challengers' Trophy. Tan Husain, graded only 43 (!), was the undisputed winner of the Grading Prize as he achieved a stupendous score of 3 1/2 points.
Most participants seemed to find the tourney enjoyable. The 'Challengers' event was almost de-railed by a computer-operator error after Round 4 that made it impossible to continue with automated pairings! Fortunately the evening was saved by the Mutual Treasurer, Robert Hollows, who proved to be masterful at sorting out the pairings manually.

Chris Evans (secretary, Mutual Circle)

If anyone wants to see the full result please email the webmaster 

25/04/2018 - Redditch Chess Club - Robert Bellin talks

Robert Bellin on weak squares and outposts, Redditch 22nd May.

There are some spare spaces for our next in the series of Robert Bellin talks. This takes place on Tuesday 22nd May at Redditch from 7.15 until 10pm with an interval somewhere in the middle. It‘s on weak squares and outposts. His last talk on knight endings was excellent. I won at least two games I probably wouldn’t have after attending. Places can be booked with Nigel Towers,, or through me.

Michele Clack

03/04/2018 - Mutual Circle lightning Tournament

Details of the Individidual Lightning tourney that will take place at Mutual Circles' venue on Tuesday, 24th April appear here. This event is held in memory of former Hon Gen Sec, MIke Walker. Please would you circulate details to your members. I also give brief details in the text below.

There wil be two sections: an 'Open' and a graded 'Challengers' section for those graded Under 136. (Although we reserve the right to increase or lower this limit by up to 5 points if the numbers of entrants to the two sections are very unbalanced on the night). The entry fee for both tournament sections will be £5 per person. There will be cash prizes and trophies to be won,

January Rapidplay gradings will be used whenever available, but in their absence January Standardplay gradings or older Rapidplay gradings (from 2016 onwards) will be used, in that order of preference. Ungraded players can enter the Open or may be accepted for the Challengers where there is clear evidence of playing strength.

Entries will have to be limited to a maximum of 40 but I will be happy to receive 'reservations' of a place by phone or email as long as these are from players who are confident that they will be attending. The 7.15 p.m.start time given is for registration of entrants but I would like to get the event going as near 7.30 p.m. as possible.

Let me know if you have any queries. To try to avoid disputes and problems I shall be producing an info sheet giving in more detail the rules and procedures which will apply to the event. This will be available to view on the night of the tourney but can be sent in advance to interested parties.

Chris Evans

26/03/2018 - Graham Humphreys - update

Mike Groombridge reports that Midlands chess stalwart Graham Humphreys sadly passed away on Wednesday in New Cross Hospital, aged 89. Graham was a long-time organiser of chess events in the Birmingham and Wolverhampton areas.

His son Simon informs us that.the funeral will take place at 3.30pm,on Friday April 13th at Gornal Wood Crematorium, Coopers Bank Rd., Dudley. DY3 2PT

26/03/2-18 - Birmingham Rapidplay

This took place on Sunday 25th March. Full results are on the Rapidplay page

1 IM Ghasi, Ameet K ENG None 6 200
2 IM Cooper, Lawrence H ENG Stafford 5½ 100
3 GM Hebden, Mark L ENG Syston 5 50
Rating Prize Gajdosz, Marek POL Darnall & Handsworth 4 25

1= Somton, Anita ENG West Nottingham 5 70
1= Chadwick, Chris ENG None 5 70
1= Malik, Faraz ENG South Birmingham 5 70

1 Graff, Ben ENG Kenilworth 6 120
2 Renegade, Richard ENG Crewe 5½ 60
3= Sheikh, Samia Z ITA Kettering Science Academy 5 10
3= Brown, Geoffrey D ENG Darnall & Handsworth 5 10
3= Mozaffari, Mohammed IRI None 5 10

1 Wright, Nigel ENG Ashfield 6½ 120
2 Monga, Kanav ENG Hallfield 6 60
3 Rajapaksa, Inura SRI None 5½ 30

There are photos on the Facebook page I've set up for the tournament:

Alex Holoczak

20/03/2018 - Coventry Chess Club

Coventry Chess Club are looking to recruit strong players to play for us in Division 1 of the Coventry Chess League. Coventry Chess is a friendly club, based at Massey Ferguson Social Club, Coventry. CV5 7NL.
We play matches on Tuesday evenings, starting at 7.30pm. These take place between October and March, mainly in the Coventry area, and occasionally in Kenilworth, Rugby and Nuneaton.
Lifts from Tile Hill or Coventry train stations may be possible.
If interested, please contact Dave Ireland at

19/03/2018 - 50th Cotswold Congress

This will take place in Gloucester over the Spring Bank Holiday, Saturday 26th-Monday 28th May. The entry form can be found here...

Andrew Gilmour

15/03/2018 - Lightning Tournament 2018

The annual 10-second tournament took place at Olton's venue on Tuesday 13th March. 18 teams competed in 3 sections. Section A was won by Sutton Coldfield, Section B by South Birmingham B and Section C by South Birmingham C. Individual prizes are awarded to Henrik Stepanyan and Chris East of Sutton Coldfield.The full result appears here...

Lightning Tournament Committee

15/02/2018 Reminder - Warwickshire Open Chess Championships 2018

Organised by the Warwickshire Chess Association Ltd

Entry Form

Friday March 2nd to Sunday March 4th
Alan Higgs Centre
Allard Way
Coventry CV3 1HW

Ed Goodwin

05/02/2018 - Morry-Wood awards

Nominations for the 2017-18 Ritson Morry award for the outstanding Junior player, and score entries for the Baruch Wood best game must be submitted by 31st March.
Send e-mail submissions to
Alternatively, postal submissions go to Mr. Laurie Wheatley (address as in handbook)
The entry form for the Ritson Morry award can be accessed at or by following the Morry-Wood link on the left-hand side of the BDCL web site.
Games submitted for the Baruch H Wood award must show the date when played, the players’ names, the competition (eg BDCL div 4), and the venue.

Phil Maddocks on behalf of the Subcommittee Chairman

30/01/2018 - Sutton Coldfield Chess Club

Sutton Coldfield Chess Club now meets Mondays AND Thursdays after 7pm.
The match night is still Monday. Thursday is more informal for mini-tourneys or talks, etc.
Minworth Social Club, Robinsons Way (off Water Orton Lane) Sutton Coldfield B76 9BB

Marek Soszynski

06/01/2018 - Midland Open Rapid & Blitz 2018

The Midland Open Rapid & Blitz will be held on 17-18 February at Holiday Inn Birmingham Walsall, 20 Wolverhampton Road, Walsall, WS2 0BS. There will be four 9-round Rapid sections and a 9-round Blitz tournament. The prize fund for the tournament is £2,680.

For full details, including the online entry form and a downloadable entry form, please visit this link on the MCCU website:

Alex Holowczak

02/01/2018 - Birmingham Rapidplay and British Blitz Tournaments

Entries are now being accepted for the 24th Birmingham Rapidplay to take place on Sunday 25th March 2018. Details are on the Rapidplay page.

There is a qualifier for the British Blittz Championship 2018, details of which are here..

Alex Holoczak

02/01/2018 - Warwickshire Open Chess Championships 2018

Organised by the Warwickshire Chess Association Ltd

Entry Form

Friday March 2nd to Sunday March 4th
Alan Higgs Centre
Allard Way
Coventry CV3 1HW

Ed Goodwin

05/12/2017 - University contact details updated 

18/11/2017 - Chris Evans change of handbook details

Mutual Circle Secretary Chris Evans has moved house and is now at 30 Drew Crescent, Pedmore, Stourbridge, DY9 0UX.

Tel : 01384 827640

Please update your handbook details

Due to changes in my personal circumstances, my address and other details have changed as follows:

28 Lymer Road
Wolverhampton WV10 6AA
01902 787626
07498 514823

However, my email address is the same:

Marek Schroeder

15/10/2017 - Birmingham Rapidplay

Results will appear on the links below

Open -

 Major -

 Inter -

 Minor -

 Alex Holowczak

14/10/2017 - Dr Brian Dudley
It is my sad duty to report the death of Dr Brian Dudley, aged 86. He was President of Stourbridge Chess club. An obituary appears here...

Dave Scricen
Stourbridge Chess Club

08/10/2017  - Bramwell Garner
It is with great sadness that I report that Olton Chess club member Bramwell Garner passed away on Sunday 1st October, after an extended illness. Bramwell and I were both suffering from eye problems in August 2016 and discussing our experiences. In the event, it was found that Bram's problems were due to an untreatable cancer.

Bramwell had played for Olton Chess Club over the past 40 years, stopping on a couple of occasions due to personal circumstances. His last stint was the longest by far and he competed in many club tournaments, Birmingham League and some Leamington League matches. His placid nature and sensible attitude often won the day when there was potential for dispute and his love of chess came through in his efforts over the board, regardless of the strength of the opponent. Bram was always willing to step in if the team was a player short. Missing a Tuesday at the club was unthinkable, although he did enjoy extended holidays in warmer locations over the winter in the latter years.

Bram's funeral will take place at Yardley Crematorium on Thursday 19th October at 1.00pm, then there will be a gathering at Holy Souls club, Warwick Road, Acocks Green.

Our thoughts are with Bram's wife Sue and their family at this sad time.

Richard Reynolds
Olton Chess Club

23/09/2017 - Halesowen award
Congratulations to the Halesowen Chess club on being awarded ECF club of the year 2016-17. The club's winning of the Birmingham League Title no doubt contributed to the decision.

05/09/2017 - Changes to the laws of chess - July 2017
A number of changes to the laws have come into effect in advance of the 2017-18 season and are listed here. All players in the League should be aware of them.

31/08/2017 - BDCL - 120 years old
Lee Collier informs us that the Birmingham & District Chess League was formed on this day in 1897.

25/08/2017 - ECF L.M.S results system
The league will be using the ECF's online results reporting system this season. Links on the buttons have been modified but you can still get to Alan Woollaston's records pages and can still submit eMatch cards as before. Anyone responsible for reporting results will be provided with a login to show the League & cup fixtures that they can update. Other competitions such as individual competitions remain as previously. The ECF LMS home page is here...

25/08/2017 - Changes to Divisions 5 & 6
Several last minute changes to the teams in the lower Divisions have been agreed. New/moved teams will be contacting existing teams regarding fixtures.

22/08/2017 Shirley & Wythall Secretary
Please note that the secretary of Shirley & Wythall CC is no longer Gordon Christie but is henceforward:

D.R. Thomas, Flat 9 Normid Court, 35 Woodstock Road, Moseley, Birmingham, B13 9BD.
Tel: 0121 449 8024.
Mobile: 07793 118 628.

Tim Lane

18/08/2017 - 23rd Birmingham Rapidplay
To be held on Sunday 15th October 2017 at the Quinborne Centre. Details are now on the Rapidplay pages..

Alex Holowczak

03/08/2017 - Robert Bellin chess evening
Redditch chess club have organised an evening with IM Robert Bellin on Tuesday 5th September. The subject of the talk will be Minor piece play. Details are here in Word format. Here is the event poster by Toni Reed.

From Micelle Clack

11/07/2017 - Tournaments - Midland & Leamington

There are two Midland regional tournaments coming up soon:

- Midland Junior Championships (Leicester, 22nd June):

- Midland Open Championships (West Bromwich, 11th - 13th August):

(From Alex Holowczak)

And the Leamington Rapidplay :

Rapidplay Congress on September 10th.

Venue : Sydni Centre , Leamington CV31 1PT

Open, U170, U140, 110 sections

Entry form downloadable from here...

(From Ed Goodwin)

15/06/2017 - Greenlands page update
Club and youth academy details updated

13/06/2017 - Honours page updatred
The Honours page is being updated following the League AGM.


South Birmingham have organised a Rapid play tournament taking place on Saturday 2 September 2017, details of the event are here. Entry form from here..

Terry Walker

19/05/2017 - Birmingham Summer League links

These links are to the ECF's new LMS results system

Home page:

Fixtures & Results:


Alex Holowczak

12/05/2017 - Kynoh Chess Club Marks 80 years
Gren Morgan informs me that Kynoch C.C was formed in 1937 and is celebrating 80 years in existence.

08/05/2017 - Morry Wood awards
Results for the 2016-17 Morry-Wood awards have been announced and are available on the Morry-Wood page.

Phil Maddocks on behalf of Laurie Wheatley

07/05/2017 - Rules committee report
The Rules committee met to discuss a recent dispute and a report of the ruling appears here.

Mike Biddle - Rules Committee Chairman

19/04/2017 - Birmingham Summer League

Fixtures for the Summer League have been circulated to all captains. If any captain has not received them, please contact David Thomas.

28/03/2017 - Birmingham Summer League

The rules of this year's summer league are here..

24/03/2017 - mBirmingham Rapidplay - Sunday 26th March

Results appear here :





Prize list

Alex Holowczak

18/03/2017 - Redditch C.C - An evening with Jon Speelman - Tuesday 16th May 2017

Redditch Chess Club has secured the services of Grandmaster Jon Speelman for an evening on the theory and practice of pawn, rook, and minor piece endgames. Jon was British champion in 1978, 1985 and 1986, fourth in the FIDE world ratings in 1989, and twice played in the Candidates matches. You may remember when Speelman used his phenomenal endgame skill to beat Gary Kasparov in a quickplay game (see links below).

Our venue has the capacity to include people from other clubs for this event. The cost per person is £14 and we are now taking reservations from local clubs on a first come first serve basis for the spare places. To reserve places please complete the attached form and email it to me with attendees from your club. To reduce administrative effort we would prefer to take a single payment from each club - either in cash (or by cheque made payable to Redditch Chess Club) and preferably in advance - to cover the attendees from each club.

We hope this is of interest to your club, and as above please do reply with the completed form as early as possible, so that we can reserve your club's places at the event. Enquiries to Michele Clack, email address on the form.

Michele Clack

10/03/2017 - Obituary -  Colin Thomas RIP

It’s my sad duty to report the passing this morning of Colin Thomas, President of Boldmere Chess Club. I don’t think Colin would have been too upset if I described him as not being a strong player, but that was not his great forte. His real strength lay in his willingness to help with the running of the club and he was a captain of at least one team per season every year, often not playing himself in order to give someone else a chance. For many years, until relatively recently, he was a Governor at a local junior school and ran their chess club. Over a number of years he trained many pupils and some became strong enough to take part in regional competitions, much to his great pride.
Colin had to overcome physical disability and, in the last few years a number of medical problems. Unfortunately, in the last 6 months he became too ill to attend the club and has been sorely missed. The club would like to extend our sincere condolences to his wife and family.

Mike Biddle
Hon. Gen. Sec.

09/03/2017 - League Lightning Tournament

This was held at Olton's venue on Tuesday 7th March. Details are given here. Photos to appear shortly.

02/02/2017 - Cotwold Chess Congress

This will be held at its new venue, The King's School, Gloucester, over the Spring Bank holiday weekend. Entry form

The Cotswold Chess Congress

23/01/2017 - Morry-Wood awards

Nominations for the 2016-17 Ritson Morry award for the outstanding Junior player, and score entries for the Baruch Wood best game must be submitted by 31st March.
Send e-mail submissions to
Alternatively, postal submissions go to Mr. Laurie Wheatley (address as in handbook)
The entry form for the Ritson Morry award can be accessed at or by following the Morry-Wood link on the left-hand side of the BDCL web site.
Games submitted for the Baruch H Wood award must show the date when played, the players names, the competition (eg BDCL div 4), and the venue.

Phil Maddocks on behalf of the Subcommittee Chairman

14/01/2017 - Birmingham Rapidplay 2017

The next Birmingham Rapidplay Tournament will be held on Sunday 26th March at Quinborne Community Centre. Details and entry forms are on the Rapidplay page.

Alex Holowczak

10/01/2017 - Geof Harris memorial service.
A memorial service was recently held for Geoff, who passed away last May. Details are given here.

Geoff was involved mainly in the Worcester Leagues but also the BDCL.

Dave Scriven

02/01/2017 - Warwickshire Chess Congress

The tournament is on 25th and 26th February at the Coventry Rugby Club.
There are open , Under 170, Under 145 and Under 120 sections.

To enter and for more information click on

Ed Goodwin

15/12/2016 - Gabor Csepregi - update

From Gordon Christie :

It is my duty to relay the very sad news that Shirley and Wythall Chess Club elder statesman Gabor Csepregi died of cancer two weeks ago. No other details, including funeral arrangements, are known to us at this time.

Gabor had been a member of Solihull Lodge Chess Club since it started in 1970, and served with distinction as Club Treasurer for more than 30 years. He remained constant through all the changes of club name and venue, to our current identity as Shirley and Wythall Chess Club.

As a player, he had a vast array of openings knowledge and theory, and was always willing to debate the merits of different variations. On his day he was a tricky player, and on any day a doughty opponent.

In his personal life, he was a very private person, with a rich love of family and his homeland Hungary, where he visited family often. He was also determinedly independent, and in recent months, although clearly quite ill and in some discomfort, neither complained nor asked for help. Typically he did not want any fuss.

For myself, and for many in the club this is a great sadness. He will be remembered fondly.

There will be a funeral ceremony at Robin Hood cemetery at 0930 on 5th January, followed by the scattering of his ashes. All chess playersa who knew Gabor are welcome to attend. His family will be attending a simultaneous service in Hungary.

Best regards


19/10/2016 - Warley Quinborne Website
This has now moved to

Simon Smith

17/10/2016 - Birmingham Rapidplay Results


1st FM Alan Tate 5 £200
2nd= GM Keith Arkell, Henrik Stepanyan 4.5 £75 each
Grading Alan Agnew 3.5 £25

1st Amrik Singh 5 £120
2nd= Gary Jackson, Marcus Walsh 4.5 £45 each

1st Geoff Brown 5.5 £120
2nd= Devan Patel, Dragomir Zarev 5 £45 each

1st= Finlay Bowcott-Terry, Gayara Seekkuge 5 £90 each
3rd= Chris Cox, John Pakenham, Estera-Alexandra Ercsei 4.5 £10 each

Full results are on the Rapidplay page.

Alex Holowczak

10/10/2016 - Warwickshire Junior Championship
The Warwickshire Junior Championships will be played at Arden Academy on Sunday, 13th November. There are sections for players aged Under 8, 10, 12, 14, 16 and 18.

More information, as well as the entry form and online entry, can be found here:

Alex Holowczak

31/08/2016 - Guidelines for captains
Following a meeting of the Rules committee, item 4.1 of the guidelines for captains has been modified.

21/08/2016 - Scrutiny Committee - Treatment of F Grades
The scrutiny Committee would like it known that F grades (but not the data underlying them) will be disregarded.
This is due to the narrow band of games giving a distorted measure of strength.

From the ECF site……….
The introduction of a new F Category based on only 5 games (so one congress suffices). This has made it easier for new players to get a grade, and has increased the number of players with published grades by nearly 2000. However, F grades are not treated as "real" for the purpose of future calculation. They are treated in the same way as juniors' grades. They are also (unlike juniors' grades) omitted from "Top Players" lists and rankings.

Alan Woollaston on behalf of the Scrutiny committee

09/08/2016 - St. Georges withdrawal
St. Georges have withdrawn from Division 5. Secretaries should adjust their fixtures accordingly.
Tim Lane, Hon. Gen. Sec.

01/08/2016 - Jonathan Swallow 1952 - 2016
onathan Swallow died in Belfast on May 31 aged 63 after suffering from motor neurone disease. Born in Ilkley, West Yorkshire, Jonathan was awarded a scholarship to Hertford College, Oxford, in 1971, where he read philosophy, politics and economics, before taking a master’s degree in politics at Strathclyde University.

In 1983 he was appointed as a principal officer at Birmingham city council. He played for West Midlands Municipal Chess Club in the 80s & 90s and won the club Championship twice - in 1989 & 1999 and won the WMMCC Lightning Tourney 3 times. His last game for WMMCC was the 2000 Townshend Final in a 3.5-2.5 victory.

He moved back to Ilkley and played chess for Ilkley and Yorkshire and also worked in Northern Ireland. Jonathan is a sad loss to the chess community at such an early age.

Lee Collier

28/07/2016 - Ron Hardy

Many members of the BDCL will remember Ron Hardy, who had played in the League since at least the 1958-59 season, when he was runner-up in the Division 4 individual event as a member of the Lozells club.  I believe he subsequently played for St. James until they folded, before coming to South Birmingham.  Sadly I have heard that Ron passed away on 12 July.  His funeral will be held at the Beacon Church Centre, Whetty Lane, Rubery, B45 9DL at 11.30 on 17 August.

Tim Lane

28/07/2016 - Mutual Website
Please note this has moved to a new home

The old site address is currently defunct but may return later.

27/06/2016 - 4NCL Congress
The 9th 4NCL FIDE Rated Congress will be held over the weekend of Friday 8 - Sunday 10 July 2016 at the Park Inn, Birmingham West, West Bromwich, B70 6RS.
Entry details can be found here: here...
Alex Holowczak

14/06/2016 - AGM and prize-giving
The League AGM took place on Monday 13th June at South Birmingham. Winners were presented with their trophies and Chris Evans was elected League President for a 1 year term. Honours and Officers pages have been updated.

10/06/2016 - Redditch Club website
Redditch have a new website at

08/06/2016 - Jim Friar
Many of you will be aware that Jim Friar passed away recently. He was heavily involved in Worcestershire chess and helped greatly in local junior chess. Jim also played for many years for West Bromwich in the Birmingham League. An obituary from John Crump can be found here...

From John Wrench:
Following his sad passing and communication with his family;

Jim's Funeral Details:...
Monday 13th June at 12noon at St Wulstans R.C. Church, 32 Vale Rd, Stourport, DY13 8YL (Followed by cremation) At the crematorium it is close friends and family only please. People can go straight to the Wake at Bewdley Pines from church, they will be expected.
(Bewdley Pines Golf Club, Habberley Road, Bewdley, DY12 1LY)

Family flowers and donations to Bewdley Medical Centre and The Mesothelioma Society.

Ray Collett's tribute.can be found here

29/05/2016 - Morry-Wood Results
Results of the competition are given on the Morry-Wood page. Congratulations to the winners. The winning game is also published.

27/04/2016 - Summer League Fixtures
An Excel Spreadsheet of the Summer League fixures is available here and the rules are here...

26/04-2016 - Cotswold Chess Congress
The event will be staged at King’s School in Gloucester over the Whitsun Bank Holiday weekend – May 28th – 30th.  Our website is at

John Harris


Cotswold Chess Congress

20/04/2016 - Walsall Kipping Simultaneous
Walsall Kipping Chess Club have organised a simultaneous display by Grandmaster Keith Arkell at their club on Thursday 12th May, 7:30pm. There are a few spaces left if any Birmingham League players wish to take part, it is first-come, first-served. Entry is £15 per player, these should be made to David Anderton,

13/04/1016 - Rules committee meeting
A Rules committee meeting took place on Monday 11th April at south Birmingham Chess club. A report onm the meetings findings is given here..

03/04/2016 - Olton Club Website
The website for Olton Chess Club has moved to a new domain and can now be found at Please update your links

16/03/2016 - Lightning Team Tournament
The annual Lightning Team Tournament was held on Tuesday 15th March at Olton's venue, Tyseley Working Mens Club. 10 teams entered in 2 sections competing at the rate of 10 seconds per move. The full result appears here...

16/03/2016 - Birmingham Summer League
Entry forms and rules are now available for the Birmingham Summer League from the Rules & Docs Page.

11/03/2016 - St. Georges contact

Chris Griffin is leaving the immediate area, stepping down as secretary of St. George's and retiring from chess.  Club chairman Ken Wise will be Acting Secretary for the remainder of the season.  Contact details:


Home: 0121 705 8770

Mobile: 07847 326578

Best wishes to Chris for his chess-free future!

Tim Lane


Report of the Rules Committee meeting held on Monday 25th Jan 2016 at South Birmingham C.C.

Homer Trophy H3-12 South Birmingham 3 v Olton 2

Olton claimed that they had not been informed of the date of this cup match. Terry Hare-Walker (South Birmingham) stated that he informed Robert Reynolds (Olton) of the date of Wednesday 13th January verbally at Olton on 2nd December. Robert Reynolds denied that this happened.

Rule 5.4(f) states that “Clubs are instructed to contact one another to confirm the playing arrangements”.

Olton, for various reasons, decided not to contact South Birmingham to find out the date chosen for the game. On the Thursday before cup week, Olton claimed the game by default and then South Birmingham re-stated the date chosen for the match. Olton also disputed the ruling by the Hon. Records Secretary not to accept their claim for a win by default. South Birmingham also claimed the match by default when Olton failed to appear on the date they had specified.

After considering submissions from by sides the committee gave the following ruling:

The committee rejects Olton’s claim that the Hon. Records Secretary was at fault in not accepting their claim.

The committee finds it disappointing that two experienced club officials have failed to comply with Rule 5.4(f) which has worked successfully for at least 25 years.

The committee finds that both clubs failed to comply with Rule 5.4(f) and orders that the game be played on Wednesday 24th February 2016 at South Birmingham.

Mike Biddle

Chairman, Rules Committee


Nominations for the 2015-16 Ritson Morry award for the outstanding Junior player, and score entries for the Baruch Wood best game must be submitted by 31st March.

Send e-mail submissions to

Alternatively, postal submissions go to Mr. Laurie Wheatley (address as in handbook)

The entry form for the Ritson Morry award can be accessed at or by following the Morry-Wood link on the left-hand side of the BDCL web site.

Games submitted for the Baruch H Wood award must show the date when played, the players names, the competition (eg BDCL div 4), and the venue.

Phil Maddocks on behalf of the Subcommittee Chairman

20/12/2015 - 4NCL congress and arbiter seminar
The 7th 4NCL Congress will take place at the Holiday Inn Birmingham Airport on the weekend of 29th January - 31st January. It has three sections: Open, U2000 FIDE/U175 ECF and U135. The top two sections are FIDE-rated. The prize fund is £2,250. More information can be found here:

To enter, you can do so online or download the online entry form. Both are available online.

A FIDE Arbiters' Seminar will take place at the venue, alongside the Congress. The entry fee is £60 (£50 for hotel residents), and candidates who achieve 80% or more in the exam will earn a FIDE Arbiter norm, as well as being a Level 1 ECF Arbiter. Information and online entry to the Seminar can be found here:

Enquiries about the Seminar should be made to Alex Holowczak at

Alex Holowczak

Please note Dudley Council have now decided to close Rye Market multi-storey car park on evenings and it is therefore not available for players visiting Stourbridge. Tesco’s car park is also reduced from 3 hours parking to 2 hours, so this is unsuitable. Road side parking in High Street, Lower High Street or Market Street remain available.
Dave Scriven, Stourbridge C.C

12/10/2015 - Birmingham Rapidplay Results


1st: Ameet Ghasi 5.5 £200

2nd: Mike Surtees 5 £100

3rd: Lawrence Cooper 4.5 £50

Grading: Patrick Duncan, Andrew Lewis £12.50 each


1st: Parminder Sanghera 6 £120

2nd: Agoston Mihalik, Zoe Varney 5 £45 each


1st: Andrew Crowther, Brian Crofts 5 £90 each

3rd: Keiran Koasha 4.5 £30


1st: Chris Paul 6 £120

2nd: Ben Jacobsen 5 £60

3rd: Jason Smith, Martin Berridge, Paul Heeney, Fredrick Beneat, Steve Swajkun, Jeremy Sharples 4 £5 each

Alex Holowczak

24/09/2015 - Shirley Website address
The Shirley Club website address is now

18/09/2015 - Birmingham Rapidplay 2015

This year's Birmingham Rapidplay will take place on Sunday, 11th October at Quinborne Community Centre. There are four sections for players of all abilities, and over £1,000 in prizes.For more details, including the entry form and online entry, please click here.

Alex Holowczak
Birmingham League Rapidplay Organiser

31/08/2015 - League Individual competitions
Entries are now being accepted for the six Individual knockout tournaments. These should be sent to John Mildenhall giving name, address, email and telephone number. Entry fee is £3.00, payable to the Birmingham & District Chess League.The closing date for entries is 1st October.

23/08/2015 - Rushall return to the BDCL
Rushall Chess Club have entered a team in the league after a few season's absence. They are playing at the Rushall Olympic Football Cub, Dales Lane, Rushall, WS4 1LJ. More information about the club is available on the Rushall page.

20/08/2015 - New Rules & guidance
Wiuth the new time limit options coming into force this season, a number of documents have been prepared by League members :

Although none of these are "official" BDCL offerings, they have been reviewed by a number of members of the Management Committee, and we're hopeful that they'll help Clubs prepare for the start of the new season and get off to a smooth start. These documents & links have been added to the Rules & Docs Page.

From Tim Lane, Hon. Gen. Sec

14/08/2015 - Bushbury Venue Change
Bushbury Club have moved to :

Springvale Sports & Social Club

Millfields Rd


West Midlands WV14 0QR

11/08/2015 - BDCL Rules
The League rukes as amened at the end of last season have been updated and are under Rules & Docs.

10/05/2015 - South Birmingham Website
South Birmingham Chess club has a new website at

09/06/2015 - League AGM and presentation - Ken Langston, Hon. Treasurer stands down.
Presentation of trophies and awards for the various leagues and competitions took place at last night's AGM. The Hon. Treasurer, Mr Ken Langston announced he was standing down after 32 years in the post and was presented with a commemorative bottle of whisky.

The presentation was made by the Hon. General Secretary, Tim Lane.

26/05/2015 - British Chess Championships

Nine Grandmasters will be playing in the 2015 British Chess Championships, played at the University of Warwick between 25th July and 8th August.  

They include both defending Co-Champions Jonathan Hawkins and David Howell. The full list can be seen here:

Spectators are welcome, but there are a variety of other events for people to play in, including Blitz and Rapidplays, Junior and Senior tournaments, and a weekend congress.

Please see for more details on events, including entry information.

Alex Holowczak

22/05/2015 - Old 'Chess' magazines

Mr Chris Whittaker in Tipton will shortly be posting a collection of 'Ches' magazines for sale on eBay from Volumes 37 thru 50 if anyone is interested.

27/04/2015 - Morry Wood Awards 2014-15
The 2014-15 B.H.Wood best game prize has been awarded to Laurie Wheatley of Greenlands. The game can be seen on the Morry-Wood page.
No award was made for the W.R.Morry Junior prize.

21/04/2015 - ECF Club Championships

At the 2015 ECF National Club Championships, at Birmingham Airport Holiday Inn, weekend of 11-12th April, Sutton Coldfield won the Open, Intermediate, and Minor sections. West Bromwich were runners-up in the Open; Redditch were runners-up in the Intermediate. From the Birmingham League, Solihull, Warley Quinborne, and Wolverhampton also entered teams. There are extensive reports on the ECF website (under the Competitions heading). These Championships are planned to be run in Birmingham again next year.

Marek Soszynski

9/04/2015 - Cup finals night
Three of the Knockout cup finals were played at Olton's venue on Tuesday 14th April. South Birmingham 2 beat Shirley 2 in the Homer trophy, while Birmingham University 4 beat St. Georges 4 in the Townshend. Greenlands 4 beat Sutton Coldfield 5 in the Barrington. The Division 6 Individual final also took place.


20/03/2015 - Mike Walker Funeral

Mike Walker's funeral took place on Tuesday 17th Match and was attended by many players and officials from the League. Chris Evans has updated Mike's obituary.

13/03/2015 - Mike Walker - Updated

It is with great sadness that I have to report the death of Mike Walker

of Mutual Circle at the age of 76. Chris Evans has written an obituary, which can be found here...

There will be a humanist funeral service at 2.30 p.m. on Tuesday, 17th March, at Robin Hood Crematorium (Tel 0121 709 7009) , Streetsbrook Road, Shirley, B90 3NL. Afterwards, those who wish to attend are invited by Mike's wife and family to meet at the Billesley pub, Brook Lane, Kings Heath, B13 0AB. 

If anyone wishes to commemorate Mike's life and death then his family would welcome donations to 'The Research Fund' at Exeter University.  It will be possible to make donations at Mike's funeral ceremony itself, but donations can also be made on-line at   or   by phone (01392 725012)   or   by post to  The Development Office, Northcote House, University of Exeter, FREEPOST (EX 472), Exeter, EX4 ZH.  Cheques should be made payable to  "The University of Exeter.

11/03/2015 - BDCL Lightning Tournament 2015
The tournament took place at Olton's venue, Tyseley working Mens Club last night. 10 teams took part in 2 sections based on average grade. Section A was tight after round 4, with South Birmingham A half a point ahead of Olton A. Olton A managed a 4-0 win in the last round, but Richard Reynolds playing for Olton B held on to a point against South Birmingham A. Olton A won with 11½ points from South Birmingham A on 11.

Section B saw a runaway win for South Birmingham C on 15½ points. Sutton Coldfield B and Mutual Circle both finished with 7½ points but Sutton were awarded second plave on tie-break.

The overall individual award went to Jonathon Swindells of South Birmingham, who scored 4/4 on top board in Section A.

Thanks go to John Mildenhall for running the tournament and South Birmingham for providing extra equipment.

The full result and photographs can be found here.....

05/03/2015 - BDCL Lightning Tournament 2015
A reminder that the annual Lightning team tournament will be held at Olton C.C's venue (Tyseley WMC) on Tuesday 10th March, starting at 7:30pm. Teams of 4 will compete in sections at the rate of 10 seconds per move. Entries should go to the Lightning Committee Chairman, John Mildenhall.

02/03/2015 - Birmingham Summer League
The Summer League will be riun again this year. Any clubs wishing to take part can obtain the entry form from here...

24/02/2015 - Morry Wood competitions

Nominations for the 2014-15 Ritson Morry award for the outstanding Junior player, and score entries for the Baruch Wood best game must be submitted by 31st March.

Send e-mail submissions to

Alternatively, postal submissions go to Mr. Laurie Wheatley (address as in handbook)

The entry form for the Ritson Morry award can be accessed at or by following the Morry-Wood link on the left-hand side of the BDCL web site.Games submitted for the Baruch H Wood award must show the date when played, the players names, the competition (eg BDCL div 4), and the venue

Phil Maddocks on behalf of the Subcommittee Chairman

16/02/2015 - Tom Farley
I am sad to report the death of Tom Farley, the founder of Birmingham Telephone Area Chess Club and also a member of Kynoch Chess Club.Please see his obituary.

Keith Ingram

11/02/2015 - Mike Walker
Former Hon. Gen. Sec. and Mutual Circle stalwart Mike Walker is seriously ill with pneumonia and is currently in the critical care unit in the Queen Elizabeth hospital.  Our thoughts are with him and his family, and the League wishes him a speedy recovery.
Tim Lane
Hon Gen Sec.

21/01/2015 - Kynoch website
Gren Morgan informs us that Kynoch Chess Club has a new website at

20/01/2015 - Colin Hammersley (updated 24/01/2015)

Colin Hammersley passed away on the 1st January 2015 aged 81. I first met him in 1959 when I came to Birmingham to live. He was playing top board for the City club at that time and did so until 1966 when the club had by then merged with Erdington folded. I do not know much about Colin's chess career before 1959 but League Records show that he won the Division 3 individual in 1953/54, was runner up in Division 1 1956/57 and League Division 1 Individual Champion in 1963/64. He played for Kynoch 1967/68 season and helped that club to win the Championship against a strong challenge from Birmingham and Sutton Coldfield. Up until this time when someone mentioned the word 'Batchelor' to me I conjured up an image of Colin. At the time apart from chess he played competitive bridge and snooker and also participated with a certain group of chess players with a penchant for poker. His first marriage came as a total shock! He enjoyed a happy married life with his first wife until her untimely death in the late 1990s. Some League members will remember Colin playing for Kynoch in the mid 1990s. He then married Margaret who had just lost her 2nd husband  and moved to MarketHarborough. Colin was a man of forthright views a loyal friend and good company. His funeral is at 12.30 p.m. at St. Dioysius Church, Market Harborough on the 28th January. 

Keith Ingram

Chris Evans of Mutual Circle has added the following :

Colin was a member of Mutual Circle for several years between 1969 and 1977.  More recently he donated to us his collection of Mutual Circle Newsletters from the 1940s and 1950s.  (These can be viewed at ).  In consideration of this generous gift Colin was made a life-time 'honorary member' of our club in 2011.  He maintained a keen interest in Mutual Circle and its players, continuing to follow our affairs through our weekly news bulletins until shortly before his death.

13/12/2014 - Robin Farmery
Robin Farmery, a Birmingham League stalwart for well over 50 years, has died from cancer after a six month illness. 

Robin played his first of many games for Kynoch in the 1950’s as a teenager. He subsequently joined Lichfield in 1992. He later became treasurer for 10 years and his proud boast was that during that time he never had to propose an increase in subscriptions. 

He was captain of the Lichfield second division team which won both the league and the Terrell trophy two years ago. Last season he led  Lichfield to the Division 3 title, sadly missing the last game because his illness was diagnosed.

in was very good at quickplay and was last season’s winner of the club’s annual quickplay tournament.

David Short - Lichfield Chess Club

14/10/2014 - Birmingham Rapidplay 2014

116 players participated in the 19th Birmingham League Rapidplay. The following prizes were won. Click on the section name for full results in each section.



1st: Ameet Ghasi 6/6 £200

2nd=: Ryszard Maciol (West Bromwich)

Don Mason (Shirley & Wythall)

Pablo Padilla Cabero (Sutton Coldfield)

Golam Ali (Sutton Coldfield) 4/6 £38 each

Grading: Faraz Malik (South Birmingham) 3.5/6 £25 + magazine



1st: Alex Rossiter (Cabot) 5.5/6 £120

2nd: Michael Ashworth (Wootton Hall) 4.5/6 £60

3rd=: Paulina Kaminska

Aloysius Lip (South Birmingham)

James Friar (Kidderminster)

Phil Bull (Wolverhampton) 4/6 £30 each

Grading: Richard Szwajkun (Newport)

Ben Pourmozafari Magazine



1st: Richard Weston (Witney) 6/6 £120

2nd=: Duncan Macarthur (Keynsham)

Adrian Walker (Stroud)

Bob Wallace (Melton Mowbray) 4.5/6 £30 each

Grading: Jixin Yang

Owen Robinson Magazine



1st: David Price (Crewe) 5.5/6 £120

2nd=: Stephen Crockett (Redditch)

Paul Heeney (South Birmingham) 5/6 £45 each

Grading: Les Hall (Crewe) 3.5/6 Magazine


Alex Holowczak

30/07/2014 - Management meeting and Rule change Proposals
The next Management Committee Meeting will take place on Thursday 21st August at Warley Quinborne (Hill & Cakemore Club) at 7:30pm. There are a number of Rule change proposals to be discussed, including quickplay finishes and changes to reflect the new FIDE laws. These proposals are detailed here....

Tim Lane, Hon. Gen. Secretary

06/07/2014 - New FIDE laws
A new set of FIDE Laws came into being from 1st July. These can be seen here...

30/06/2014 - West Bromwich Directions
Please note the directions to then club have changed, but the venue is unchanged.

25/06/2014 - Warwickshire Chess Association

Warwickshire Chess Association are seeking volunteers to captain teams in the Under 140 and Under 120 County Championship in 2014/15. To express an interest, please contact Alex Holowczak at before 31st July. If there are no volunteers by the passing of the deadline, then these teams will not run next season.

Alex Holowczak

WCA Secretary

12/06/2014 - Fixtures Meeting
The fixtures meeting will be held at Olton's venue, Tyseley Working Mens Club, on Tuesday 17th June. Fixture sheets for the 2014-15 season have been distributed to clubs.  Please contact Tim Lane at once if you have any difficulties with either the sheets themselves or with representation at the Fixtures Meeting.

Tim Lane, Hon. General Secretary

10/06/2014 - Honours 2014
The Winners for 2014 are now on the Honours page, along with photos of the key presentations.

05/06/2014 - League AGM & Trophy dates
The AGM is on Monday 9th June at Moseley All Services Club, where all Trophies will be presented,
The Dates of next seasons trophy rounds are :
Round 1 - Sept 29 - Oct 3
Round 2 - Nov 17 - Nov 21
Round 3 - Jan 12 - Jan 16
Round 4 - Feb 23 - Feb 27
Finals - Apr 13 - Apr 17
Easter Sunday Apr 5. The 1st Round draw is on the Trophies Page,
The composition of next seasons divisions can be found on the Tables Page.

Alan Woolaston, Hon Records Secretary

27/05/2014 - Archives 2014

Archive pages for the 2013-14 season have been added to the site.

21/05/2014 - West Bromwich Chess Club notice

Members of Birmingham League Clubs who do not participate in the Wolverhampton League,
are welcome to join our Wolverhampton League Division One squad for the coming season

Club night - Monday

Friendly club, excellent venue with bar, easy access from M5 junction 1

Contact David Davies 07751 964788

15/05/2014 - Bushbury Change of Venue

Bushbury Chess Club has a new venue.  From 14th May the club will meet at:


The Polish Catholic Community Community Centre

Stafford Road


WV10 6DQ


Full details are on the club website

Richard Parry

07/05/2014 - Mike Biddle's email

Please note that Mike's email address is now

07/05/2014 - Division 2 promotion play-off

Four teams met at Mutual Circle's Venue to compete for second place in Division 2. An unusual set of circumstances meant that a four-way Jamboree was required to decide on the second promotion place. Teams from South Birmingham, Boldmere St. Michaels, Olton and Wolverhampton played over 12 boards.Two games were adjourned, so the result is yet to be decided.

03/05/2014 - Morry-Wood awards 2013-14

The B.H.Wood prize for best game has been awarded to Simon Smith of Warley Quinborne for the second year running. His game was judged the best of those submitted, after consideration by a panel of League players. To see the game and previous winning entries, go to the Morry-Wood page.

No award has been made this year in the W.R.Morry Junior competition.

17/04/2014 - Summer League

All fixtures for the Summer League now appear on the website. Please click "Summer League" on the left sidebar for more information. The rules are here..

Alex Holowczak

14/04/2014 - Staffordshire Congress results

The Staffordshire Chess Congress was held over the weekend 12/13th April at Bloxwich Leisure Centre, Walsall.

The Premier resulted in a tie on 4/5 between three players: IM Geoffrey Lawton of Birmingham, making a return to chess after an absence of over a decade, and two Staffordshire Players Malcolm Armstrong of Stafford and Tomasz Sygnowski of Wolverhampton who also tied for the Staffordshire Closed Championship. Four games are available here.



1st -3rd IM Geoffrey Lawton (Checkmate) £150, Malcolm Armstrong (Stafford) (Advertiser Trophy) £165 and Tomasz Sygnowski (Wolverhampton) (Advertiser Trophy) £165.

Grading U200: Mark Whitehead (Rochdale), Andrew Paterson (Solihull) and Trevor Brotherton (Church Stretton) share £50.

Senior: Mike Surtees (Bolton) Richard Bryant (Oswestry) and Jan Havenaar (Netherlands) share £30.

Junior: Owen Bennett (Caerleon) £25.


1st  Jonathan Hunt (Wolverhampton) £120.

2nd Shabir Okhai (Syston) £80.

3rd Michael Connor(Great Lever) Martyn Harris (Newcastle-under-Lyme) and Steve Rooney (Church Stretton) share £50.

            Senior and Grading U140: Robert Clegg (Huddersfield) £60.

            Junior: Jacob Boswell (Cheddleton & Leek) £25.


1st – 3rd Bill Egan (Scunthorpe) Francis Rooney (Church Stretton) and Marco Ho (Lichfield) share £250.

Grading U 100: Marten Kats (Derby) £30.

Senior: Christopher Fraser (West Bridgford) Colin Gardiner (Newmarket) and Gordon Somerville share £30.

Junior: Adam Bennett (West Nottingham) and Andrew Fenn (Bloxwich) share £20.

David Anderton

29/03/2014 - League Management meeting.

The next League management meeting will take place at 7:30pm on Thursday 15th May at Warley Quinborne's venue. The Agenda and previous meeting's minutes have been circulated to club Secretaries.

Tim Lane, Hon. Gen. Secretary

29/03/2014 - Birmingham Summer League

The Birmingham Summer League will be run again this year. There will be three divisions. Entries should go to Alex Holowczak and should reach him by Monday 14 April; entry fees should go to Ken Langston.  All participants have to be bronze (or better) members of the ECF.

28/03/2014 - Rules committee decision

The Rules Committee met on Tuesday 25 March at South Birmingham to consider the dispute between S.S.Goray (Mutual Circle) and F.Dickson (South B'ham) in the Individual Tournament. As the elected Chairman of the Committee had an interest in the outcome of the dispute D.Thomas took the chair for this meeting.

After due consideration the Committee found unanimously that Mr Mildenhall (as Chairman of the Tournament Committee) acted within his powers in accepting Mr Dickson's claim for a win by default.

Dave Thomas
Acting Chairman of Rules Committee

25/03/2014 - What are you doing this weekend ?

Mind Sports International give you the opportunity for you to play Chess, Scrabble and Magic all week-end long and later in the year. A list of events starting Saturday 29th March is given here in PDF format.

17/03/2014 - Keith Arkell - European Seniors Tournament

Stourbridge-registered Keith Arkell won the European Seniors Championship (50+) in Porto, Portugal today. He drew his last round to finish half a point ahead of Evgenij Kalekin of Russia.

Results can be seen here:

Alex Holowczak

15/03/2014 - Team Lightning Tournament

The Annual Team lightning Tournament took place at Olton's venue on Tuesday 11th March. The results appear here.....

03/03/2014 - Morry-Wood competitions

Nominations for the 2013-14 Ritson Morry award for the outstanding Junior player, and score entries for the Baruch Wood best game must be submitted by 31st March.

E-mail submissions go to

Alternatively, postal submissions go to Mr Laurie Wheatley (address as in handbook)

The entry form for the Morry award can be found on the link "Morry-Wood" and then clicking "Youth Entry Form"

Games submitted for the B H Wood award must show the date when played, the players names, the competition (eg BDCL div 4), and the venue.

Phil Maddocks

23/02/2014 - University Championships

Birmingham University finished 2nd in the Plate section at this year's University Championship:

Their 5 match results were:

3-1 win v Imperial 3

3.5-0.5 win v Nottingham 2

2-2 draw v Imperial 2

4-0 win v York 2

2-2 draw v LSE 2

Robert Lydiard of Birmingham finished in 2nd place in the Board 1 board prize for the Plate section.

Full results for the event for those who are interested can be found here:

Alex Holowczak

20/01/2014 - Birmingham University contact details

Please note the contact details for Birmingham University.

Peter Steele, 107 Poole Crescent, Harborne. B17 0PE. Mob.: 07706033833 

Darpit Shah, 185 Gristhorpe Road, Birmingham. B29 7SP. Mob.: 07536868158

email :

08/01/2014 - Staffordshire congress 2014
Details of the Staffordshire congess on 12th/13th April are on the entry form which appears here...

02/01/2014 - Warwickshire Chess Championsips

1st and 2nd March 2014 - Warwickshire Chess Championships 

Entries are now open for the Warwickshire Chess Championships which take place on Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd March 2014 at The Trident Centre, Poseidon Way, Warwick CV34 6SW.

There are four sections and five rounds.

This year the Junior Championships are being held simultaneously. The guaranteed prize fund has been increased to £1600.

Excellent catering will be available throughout the week-end in the refectory near the playing hall. Free parking on site.

Further details and entry procedures can be found by clicking on the following link to the Warwickshire Chess Association website :-

01/01/2014 - Alf Schroeder
It is with great regret that I report that Alf Schoeder of Bushbury Chess Club passed away early yesterday morning. He was 98 years old and still held a grade of 117. Alf had had a fall at the nursing home where he was staying and had been taken to New Cross Hospital as a precaution. Alf was a long-standing player in the League and will be sadly missed. An obituary from Marek Schroeder and funeral details appear here..

From Simon Jones

12/11/2013 - Peter Oliver email address
Peter Oliver (Tamwoth & District) will change email address on Thursday 14th November. Please update your contact details, replacing 'aol' with 'btinternet'. The full email address appears on the Tamworth page under BDCL Clubs.

Stourbridge Parking

The new Tesco supermarket next to the Stourbridge CC venue is now complete. There is a new underground car park available. Currently, visitors can park for free for a maximum of three hours. Please note this may change.

The Tesco car park entrance is 10 yards from the entrance to our club and is accessed via Bell Street. Unfortunately, the car park entrance is not a pedestrian entrance. If you choose to park on the Tesco car park you will need to use the escalators/lifts to reach the top floor for the main Tesco entrance. You then need to walk round the atrium to the exit for Market Street. On Market Street turn right until you reach the crossroads and then turn right again onto Bell Street. Our venue is then on your right.   

Given the walk from the Tesco car park, visitors may find the Ryemarket multi-storey is actually a little closer for pedestrians and doesn't have the three hour limit, though it is pay-and-display. This multi-storey can be accessed from the Stourbridge ring-road via Victoria Street between the Police Station and Aldi.

Roadside parking remains available in High Street, Market Street and Lower High Street, each of which are also accessed from the ring-road and are each one-way.   

If anyone requires any further information, please contact Dave Scriven.   

24/10/2013 - Warley Quinborne 5
It is with deep regret that Warley Quinborne will be withdrawing their Division 5 side from the League. The club has had a difficult period with as many as 5 players in hospital at one time and 3 of these are from BDCL Division 5.

With a shortage of players able to play currently, drive and transport others, it is extremely unlikely that we would be able to fulfil the fixture programme for this team.

John Fahy

15/10/2013 - Shrophire Congress

Entries are now open for the Shropshire Chess Congress which takes place on Sat 4 and Sun 5 January 2014 at The Wrekin Housing Trust, Colliers Way, Old Park, Telford TF3 4AW.

We had a record entry last year with three fiercely-contested sections and some great chess. We look forward to extending a warm Shropshire welcome to players from near and far. Some of the enhancements planned for this year’s congress include live transmission of some of the top boards and increased prize money.

And you won’t go hungry as we will once again have some great food from Jacob and his team to keep you nourished over the weekend.

Further details are attached and you can enter online through the following link to the Shropshire chess website -

We are always very grateful to receive donations and this year as we are planning to extend the live board coverage we will put all donations towards the purchase of additional DGT sensory sets.

If you prefer to enter by posting a paper form, we are still happy to receive cheques! Please feel free to copy the entry form and pass to your club colleagues.

Steve Rooney
Congress Organiser

14/10/2013 - Birmingham Rapidplay

96 players entered the 18th Birmingham & District Chess League Rapidplay, held on 13th October, 2013. Amongst them were 1 GM and 2 IMs.

The results were as follows:

Open Section        Full result

1 GM Hebden, Mark L 4NCL Guildford 5.5 ENG M 2495 2624 +0.70 1 1 ½ 1 1 1 £200

2 IM Ghasi, Ameet K Birmingham 5.0 ENG M 2439 2488 +0.53 1 1 ½ 1 ½ 1 £100

3 IM Cobb, James E Clifton 4.5 WLS M 2418 2411 +0.20 1 1 1 0 ½ 1 £50

4 Timmins, Chris P Bristol 4.0 ENG M 1920 2179 +2.07 0 1 1 1 0 1 £25 (Grading)

Major Section        Full result

1 Friar, Joseph D Kidderminster 5.0 ENG M 1872 2102 +1.65 1 1 1 ½ 1 ½ £120

2 Ai, Farshad Phoenix 4.5 ENG M 1951 2010 +0.43 1 1 0 1 ½ 1 £60

3 Kalyana, Ashwin Halesowen 3.5 ENG M 1856 1884 +0.25 1 0 1 ½ ½ ½ £30

Intermediate Section        Full result

1= Cole, James Magdalen Colleg 5.0 ENG M 1720 1885 +1.14 0 1 1 1 1 1 £70

1= Talbot, Nathan L Wigan Knights 5.0 ENG M 1699 1845 +1.00 1 1 1 0 1 1 £70

1= Varney, Daniel Cumnor 5.0 ENG M 1696 1917 +1.59 1 1 1 1 1 0 £70

Minor Section        Full result

1= Hall, Ray Birmingham 5.5 ENG M 1424 1765 +2.02 1 1 1 ½ 1 1 £90

1= Calderbank, Stuart Stratford 5.5 ENG M 1352 1714 +1.65 1 1 1 ½ 1 1 £90

3= Jones, Simon A Bushbury 4.0 ENG M 1400 1515 +0.62 1 1 0 1 0 1 £10

3= Taylor, A (Tony) Halesowen 4.0 ENG M 1232 1414 +0.94 0 1 1 1 0 1 £10

3= Vernon, Colin G Birmingham Univ 4.0 ENG M 1160 * 1300 1300 0 1 1 1 1 0 £10

PGN files for the top 8 boards in each round can be downloaded here

Some of the games were displayed live at

Alex Holowczak

02/10/2013 - Sutton Coldfield change of venue

Starting Monday 7th October 2013, Sutton Coldfield Chess Club will be meeting in the Lounge of Minworth Social Club, Robinsons Way (off Water Orton Lane), Sutton Coldfield B76 9BB. Same night and start time (Mondays 7.30pm) so fixtures are unaffected. Patrons requested not to bring their own food or drink.

Marek Soszynski

01/09/2013 - League Individuals 2013-14
Entries are invited for the League individual competitions for the coming season. Any BDCL player wishing to take part in these should contact the Individual Tournament controller, John Mildenhall. Please provide name, address, telephone number and email address where available, as well as the division you wish to participate in. There is an entry fee of £3.00. Cheques should be payable to Birmingham & District Chess League. Closing Date 1st October 2013.

John Mildenhall
68 Stornaway Road, Castle Vale, B35 6NS

23/08/2013 - Summer League results

The winners of each division are:

Division 1 - Shirley & Wythall

Division 2 - Sutton Coldfield

Division 3 - Westminster

Alex Holowczak

20/08/2013 - Leamington Rapidplay 2013

The 27th Leamington Rapidplay congress will take place on Sunday 15th September. This year's venue is the Trident Centre, Warwick, CV34 6SW. The open section will be FIDE rated. For more details and entry information, the website is here...

13/08/2013 - Sutton Coldfield Equipment Sale

Sutton Coldfield Chess Club is selling off all its old wooden boards and all its sets of wooden or plastic pieces - including the very best ones (but no clocks). This is to make way for new sets.


Each board or each set of pieces is being sold for £5 or less, depending on condition. Grab yourself a bargain while stocks last! Simply come along to the Club (33 Sutton New Road, B23 6TD) on the evening of

19-August-2013 to view and buy.


Marek Soszynski

25/07/2013 - Birmingham Rapidplay Congress 2013
This will be held at Quinborne Community Centre on Sunday 13th October. Four FIDE-Rated sections starting at 10am. Online entry is now available, or you can download a printable entry form from the Rapidplay page.

25/07/2013 - e2e4 congress Coventry

The e2e4 Coventry Congress will be held at the Holiday Inn, Coventry between 23-26 August 2013.

Full details are available online at

Sean Hewitt

05/07/2013 - Wolverhampton parking

Until further notice :  The spacious car park opposite Wolverhampton Chess Club has been closed by the council.  Visitors and clubs can park outside the venue and on ground opposite club. This area is sloped, rough ground.

Paul Walters

Wolverhampton Chess Club

12/06/2013 - Clubs pages updated

The list of clubs and some Secretary details have been updated. Would Secreraries please review the information for thier club and provide an update if required.

11/06/2013 - Photos from the AGM presentation

Photos of the winning teams receiving their trophies from League President, Dave Brelsforth, are now on the Honours page.

11/06/2013 - Second-hand books

Birmingham University report that a large collection of second-hand chess books is available at the Oxfam shop in Harborne High Street. There is everything from opening books to speciality first editions.

7/06/2013 - Trophy dates 2013 season

The Trophy Dates for BDCL Season 2013-14 are as follows

Round One   - Sept 30th - Oct 4th
Round Two   - Nov 18th - Nov 22nd
Round Three - Jan 20th - Jan 24th
Round Four   - Feb 24th - Feb 28th
Finals              - Apr 7th - Apr 11th

For Reference Easter Sunday is April 20th

Full Draw can be found on the bottom of the Trophies Page

The composition of next season's Divisions is on the Tables Page

Alan Woolaston

19/05/2013 - League AGM
The 106th League AGM takes place on Monday 10th June at South Birmingham's venue, starting at 7:30pm.There will be a short Management meeting after the AGM. The agenda can be found here...

15/05/2013 - Staffordshire congress results


1st  Mark Hebden (Leicester)  4.5  £250

2nd  Ali Jaunooby (Denton)  4  £120

3rd  Tomasz Sygnowski  (Wolverhampton) ( Advertiser Trophy)  3.5 £100

Senior/ Grading  Mike Surtees (Bolton) 3  £35 & Richard Bryant (Bolton) 3  £35 

Junior Henrik Stepanyan 3  £20


1st  & 2nd = Robert Clegg (Huddersfield)  £100 & Ian Emery (Warley Quinborne) 4  £100

Senior Andrew Walker (Stroud) 3.5  £20

Junior Rhys Bennett (Newport South Wales) 3.5  £20

 U 140 Grading Andrew Collins (Leamington) 3.5 £20

 3rd = Ben Graff (Leamington)  3.5 £16.66 & Pavel Ondrejka (Rugby) 3.5  £16.67 & David  Pritchard (Walsall Kipping) 3.5 £16.67 


1st  Adam Bennett (West Nottingham)  4.5  £120

2nd  = Stephen Crockett (Redditch) 4  £43.32   &  Gabor Csepregi  (Shirley & Wythall) 4  £43.34   &  Peter Windows (Meir) 4  £43.34

5th =  Jacob Cartlidge (Cheddleton & Leek) 3.5  £25  &  John Pakenham (Warley & Quinborne) 3.5  £25

Senior Peter Griffin  3  £20 & David Hull (Southport) 3  £20

Junior Sam Beardmore (Cheddleton & Leek) 3 £10 & Benjamin Headlong (Moonrakers) 3  £10

U100 Grading James Waddington (Bolton)  1.5  £20

Selected games are here in pgn format.

David Anderton

- Chess Musical in Pershore

A local production of Chess: The Musical, in Worcestershire, will feature the original strategies used by Bobby Fisher and Anatoly Karpov, as well as other Grandmasters.

 Here’s the link:


James Megarry  

Asistant Producer

29/04/2013 - Morry-Wood awards
The W.R.Morry Junior award this season goes to Ashwin Kalyana of Halesowen.

The B.H.Wood award for best game was won by Simon Smith of Warley Quinborne. The game can be seen on the Morry-Wood page.

Phil Maddocks
on behalf of Laurie Wheatley (Morry-Wood Chairman)

25/04/2013 - John Holmberg Funeral

John Holmberg’s funeral will be held at Redditch crematorium on Tuesday 7th May at 11 am, then at the Rocklands Social Club, where Headless Cross hold their chess club. The family have asked approx numbers attending. Would anyone intending to go on to the Rocklands please e-mail Mark Hore at

Michelle Clack

22/04/2013 - Rules Committee meeting
The rules committee met recently to settle 2 disputes. The decisions are published here.

Mike Biddle, Rules Committee Chairman

16/04/2013 -
British Blitz Championship
The British Blitz Championship will take place on Saturday, 20th April, 2013, at Quinborne Community Centre, Quinton. 11 games of chess are played between 1:30pm and about 6:30pm. There is a prize fund of over £750. You can enter the event here:

Alex Holowczak

15/04/2013 - John Holmberg

It is with regret that we hear that long-standing Redditch member John Holmberg passed away last Friday.  John will be sadly missed.  His energy and enthusiasm helped to drive Redditch forward and he was instrumental in starting a second Birmingham League Team.  He captained this team for many years and Redditch became a more vibrant club as a result.

Michele Clack

10/04/2013 - Obituary & Funeral Details - Robert Jones 1945-2013

Robert Jones, a member of Walsall Kipping Chess Club for over 40 years, died peacefully on 3rd April, after suffering from a protracted and debilitating illness. He was a longstanding player in both the Wolverhampton and Birmingham Leagues; and for more than 10 years he captained the club’s WDCL Division 1 side, successfully leading them to the Championship in the 1994-5 season.   He was a strong club player, and supported many of the local tournaments, as well as being a County (Staffs) player. 

In a simultaneous display given by GM Alexei Suetin in 1992 as part of the club's Jubilee celebrations, Rob not only provided him with the stiffest opposition, but was able to engage him in a discussion of the game in Russian afterwards!

Rob was a cheerful and valued member of the club, and never happier than when talking up his favourite opening-the Morra Gambit!  He will be sorely missed. The funeral will be held at 12 noon, Wednesday 17th April,

Streetly Crematorium, Little Hardwick Rd., Aldridge, Walsall WS9 0SG

Mike Groombridge

10/04/2013 - Chess in Schools & Communities
Chess in Schools and Communities (CSC) are looking for volunteers to teach chess and/ or setup chess clubs in schools across the West Midlands. A copy of their advertisement can be found here.

Andrew Moore

27/03/2013 - Divisional winners
Shirley & Wythall are confirmed as League Champions. Congratulations to them.Olton A are winners of Division 4, Solihull are unassailable in Division 5 and South Birmingham are top of Division 6.

19/03/2013 - Summer League
The 2nd Birmingham Summer League will be run during the close season.

Entries should go to Alex Holowczak and should reach him by Monday 15 April; entry fees should go to Ken Langston.  The entry fee is a mere £5 per and is used solely to cover the costs of the results service,

Download the entry form here

13/03/2013 - Team Lightning Tournament

The League Lightning tournament took place at Olton's venue on Tuesday 12th March. There were 14 teams in two sections from a variety of League clubs. South Birmingham took most of the honours as their A team won section A and the B team were second. Section B was won by South Birmingham D, with Olton B second.

Birmingham University player Minh Do was awarded the individual prize, one of two players scoring 6/6.

The full result is here....

News Archive

Old news items have been moved here......

Guidelines for Captains and Players

These guidelines are intended to assist captains and players. They are, nevertheless, only guidelines, and anyone requiring further details should consult the League Rules or the Laws of Chess.  Click Here
M.Biddle Chairman BDCL Rules Committee.

New Ematch card (v8) is now available

 The layout is still on Word but the size has changed from an Envelope to A6. Total Scores are now back at the bottom. Home Team always on the left. Put H or A  in the box to denote if you are the Home or Away team. One Initial & Surname (unless to distinguish between players with the same Initial & name). No full stops please & not all capitals please. Delete old versions V5, V6, etc.

Download the new version here...

Alan Woollaston, Records Secretary

Birmingham Rapidplay, October 2012

122 players attended the 17th Birmingham League Rapidplay today, including 3 Grandmasters, and 2 International Masters. We had about 110 last October, and about 95 last March, so this is an increase in the number of players in attendance. It was particularly pleasing to have numerous juniors playing in the Minor, some of which were playing in their first congress.

The prize-winners were:

Open (20 players)
GM Hebden, Mark 4NCL Cheddleton 5.0 ENG M 2487 2550 +0.56 ½ 1 1 1 1 ½ £200
IM Ghasi, Ameet Birmingham 4.5 ENG M 2432 2458 +0.34 1 1 1 1 0 ½ £75
IM Cooper, Lawrence Stafford 4.5 ENG M 2317 2381 +0.59 1 1 0 1 1 ½ £75
Webster, Richard Ashfield 4.0 ENG M 2000 2164 +1.01 0 1 0 1 1 1 £25 (grading)

Major (29 players)
Price, Andrew Leamington 5.0 ENG M 1911 2690 +0.56 1 0 1 1 1 1 £90
Robinson, Thomas Redditch 5.0 ENG M 1874 * 2179 +1.50 1 1 ½ ½ 1 1 £90
Pritchard, David Walsall Kipping 4.5 ENG M 1955 2098 +0.73 1 1 ½ 1 1 0 £15
Ai, Farshad Phoenix 4.5 ENG M 1923 2635 +1.40 0 1 1 ½ 1 1 £15

Intermediate (34 players)
Robinson, Will Bristol 5.0 ENG M 1730 * 0 0 1 0 1 1 1 1 £70
Evans, Garry Olton 5.0 ENG M 1682 * 0 0 1 1 1 0 1 1 £70
Weston, Rick Witney 5.0 NZL M 1674 * 2612 0 1 1 1 1 1 0 £70

Minor (39 players)
Cole, James Magdalen Colleg 5.5 ENG M 1458 * 1802 0 1 1 1 1 1 ½ £120
Crockett, Stephen Redditch 5.0 ENG M 1631 0 +0.00 1 ½ 1 1 1 ½ £60
Pitkeathly, Hamish University of B 4.5 ENG M 1587 0 +0.00 1 0 1 1 ½ 1 £6
Varney, Andrew Cumnor 4.5 ENG M 1514 * 0 0 1 1 1 1 0 ½ £6
Ashworth, Robert Wotton Hall 4.5 ENG M 1474 * 1631 0 1 ½ 1 0 1 1 £6
Vitarana, Aaron Birmingham Chec 4.5 ENG M 1450 * 0 0 0 1 1 1 1 ½ £6
Stepanyan, Gurgen 4.5 ENG M 0 * 896 0 1 1 ½ 0 1 1 £6

Alex Holowczak


We now have a mailing list for members of Birmingham League teams to receive information and news of events taking place. Please contact the webmaster if you wish to receive an invite to join.

Bulletin Board Launched

The League's Forum is now available for players to start and debate the matters of the day. Please email me if you would like to register as a member of the forum.

Please note this is new and may take some bedding in. Please report any issues you come across.

Club Details

I have now updated the details of clubs that play in the BDCL on the website. Each club has a page and it is up to club Secretaries to inform me of any errors or changes. Clubs can also send me items for inclusion that will help promote their club.

Click on 'BDCL Clubs' link on the left.

Google Maps

Locations of clubs are on Google maps

click Here

Have you a grading double?

I am doing a trawl for players with more than one entry in the ECF grading database. Not the published online list, but the larger central database. Some people have duplicate entries for years without ever knowing it, because one entry is unpublished. Anyway a list of possible duplicates, including unpublished players, is here. Are you in it?

You may well be there with the same code more than once. That doesn't matter. But if you appear with two or more different codes, let me know and I will merge your records into one. E-mailed me direct:

Most of the “duplicates” in the list will be genuinely different people, and it’s perfectly obvious that some are. Don’t write to say a namesake is NOT you. But do write if you’re not sure, giving some indication of the events you’ve played in in the last three years or so.

Richard Haddrell
Grading Administrator, ECF

This site is now being updated by Richard Reynolds. Please report any problems to me at