Northern Counties Chess Union

The 2017 NCCU AGM was held on the 10th June and a detailed report can be found on their website.

As an organisation they are committed to furthering the cause of Chess in the Northern regions of England .


Trophy Presentation 1982

 From  left to right.

Paul Jenkins Alan Todd Stan Hawes Ian Maughan Ray Wynarczyk Arthur Tarn

It is always nice to unearth an image from times gone by.  Both Ray and 1an are still very much both active chess players . Very smartly dressed and an excellent bunch of fellas by all accounts.


South Shields Chess Memorial Shield

A Tale of Three Well Loved Club Secretaries And A Shield

Simon McGuinness a long time member of our club handed this Memorial Shield back and I thought it would be a nice to record its history on our website . I asked other members for their recollections and received this wonderful piece from Ian Maughan and I share it with you in its entirety below .

When I first joined the club, back in the early Seventies, round about the same time as Stan Johnson and the much-missed Late Stan Hawes, it was in the process of moving from the old Marine & Tech (now South Tyneside College) to the Y.M.C.A. (no singing, please!) building in Burrow Street, just off Fowler Street. At that time, Eddie Jenkins was club secretary, a dapper, Noel Coward-like, well-presented gentleman, and very much in charge.

This was in the glow of the famous Fischer-Spassky Match; clubs were thriving and chess was on an upward spiral and almost front-page news. I think it may have been my first night there when a photographer from the Gazette arrived to take a photo of a very young Simon McGuinness and Eddie Jenkins – not quite as young – with some competition trophy – it may have been the Friend’s Bowl, it slips my memory? After Eddie died, his son Paul took over as secretary and ran the club successfully for many years. In those days, it was a real honour to be asked to play for one of the teams. I believe someone called Williamson played top board for the first team back then, Lance Oliver may have been on board two, I’m not sure?

Later for several years, SSCC regularly had a stall at the annual Flower Show at Gypsy’s Green. One year Geoff Capes turned up to tow a heavy truck along the prom. I remember on one occasion I attempted the slightly less strenuous feat of taking on eight opponents (a mixture of club volunteers and interested passers-by) in a simul. I don’t recall how I did. Probably not that well. But the idea was to attract public interest. We did usually pick up one or two new members through promos like that.

Sometime later, the club moved to St Hilda’s Song-Room and Arthur Tarn, took over as secretary. Smartly-turned out like his predecessors, decidedly one of the old school, and a stickler for formality, Arthur’s main claim to fame had to be his near-legendary tobacco pipe, which he’d take out at the start of a game and proceed to tamp the bowl meticulously with a small penknife and slowly but surely coax it into life. This procedure couldn’t be rushed. Not by any stretch of the imagination. In fact, the longer it took, the more I think he preferred it, sometimes not actually getting around to lighting it till late on in the middlegame! Or not all, if checkmate was reached first. Once he did manage to begin puffing away, I always thought he gave the distinct impression of being like Inspector Maigret deliberating over a particularly baffling murder case – and not actually playing chess at all! On cold winter nights at St Hilda’s chess was played in near Sub-Arctic conditions with attendees (I nearly said members) almost freezing to death over a sluggish, yet hard-fought Petroff Defence or a teeth-chattering Lasker’s Trap. Under Arthur’s efficient command, committee meetings were held regularly in the Citizens Advise Bureau offices, then above a shop in King Street. And true to form, specially typed documents were prepared for pretty much every eventuality. All three of these loyal club secretaries are owed a massive debt of gratitude and looking back their contribution to running “The Cannyfolk Chess Club” was invaluable and greatly appreciated. Certainly, well-deserving of a thank-you shield for all eternity.

Ian Maughan April 2017


Friends Bowl Semi Final

Eddie Czestochowski  v  Chris Sayers    and    Ben Wood    v  Jim Riddle

Matches to be played by 26th may 2017.   Further details on Club notice board

Club Championship current situation .

Mike Savin and Colin Campbell narrowly missed their chances to upset the form  book by losing to Ian Maughan and Brian Towers respectively . The remaining Quarter final games .

Ben Wood v Dave Patterson and Eddie Czestochowski v Kevin Rowden .

Theses  are to be played by 5th may 2017.


South Shields Reach the Play Off in Durham League

South Shields finished in a creditable 6th Place in the Durham League and now face GATESHEAD on the 20th of April , with home advantage , in the play off for the B Division Trophy . The winner of this game will then play either Durham City Canons or Darlington Locos in the final game .

We are expecting a very tough game , we played them earlier in the season with the result going to GATESHEAD    3 -2 .


Fleeting Moment of Mid Table Mediocrity for 2nd Team

Tuesday’s draw against Leam Lane in the NCA first division has boosted the second team up to 6th position – exactly half way! Of course looking at the “Games Played” column tells you this won’t last but meantime Eddie has leant on Will to update the NCA website so we can bask in our temporary glory.

This is how the table looks –

Team NamePlayedWinsDrawsLossesGame PointsMatch Points
Forest Hall Admirals75112111
Durham City74212110
South Shields A7322208
Leam Lane Aces8323208
Morpeth A732218.58
South Shields B923417.57
Gosforth Empire6222176
Tynemouth A6303176
Tynedale Tans621313.55
Jesmond Knights512211.54
Gosforth Regents601581

The Wanderer Returns

Last night Dave Patterson drove half way across England to score a win for the second team’s crucial match against Gosforth Regents in division one of the Northumberland Chess Association league to give the team their second draw. This takes the team to 6 points (2 wins and 2 draws) from eight matches and gives the team a real chance of avoiding relegation.

Ron Evers Competition

Ron Evers Trophy

South Shields Chess Club entered two teams in the 2016 Ron Evers Memorial Team Rapid Play Competion . Winners of the previous year competition both teams started well and with both teams winning their opening games in Round 1 and 2  , they lie first and second and face the prospect of playing each other in Rounds 3 and 4.


Images on the day


Minor (Yichen Han), Major (Mike Smith) and Open (Charlie Storey) Northumberland Rapid Play Champions.