David Welch RIP (30-X-1945, 09-XI-2019)

David Welch, photograph by John Upham
David Welch, photograph by John Upham

We have learnt the sad news that popular longtime Arbiter and Organizer David Welch has passed away at the age of 74 after a long illness : he was being cared for in The Royal Liverpool Hospital.

David was born on Tuesday, October 30th 1945 in Brampton, Chesterfield, Derbyshire and he played for Wallasey Chess Club for many years having initially been a member of Liverpool Chess Club.

He attended Queen’s College, Cambridge reading Natural Sciences (Chemistry) and (according to John Swain) David served Cambridge University Chess Club as Junior Treasurer, Librarian and Bulletin Editor.

In 1968 David and Peter Purland started teaching at the same Liverpool school on the same day and continued their friendship from there.

David became a BCF arbiter in the early 1970s eventually becoming the BCFs Chief Arbiter and then the ECFs Chief Arbiter and was heavily involved in many British Championships around the country.

David was curator of ECF equipment for some time and personally funded much of the BCFs and ECFs early equipment stock.

He became a FIDE International Arbiter as early as 1977 and was awarded the FIDE International Organizer title in 2010.

David shared the exact same date of birth as long time friend and fellow arbiter, Peter Purland.

Here is an excellent tribute from John Saunders

in 2016 David received recognition from FIDE for his long service as an International Arbiter. David was the third English arbiter to receive the honour, following Stewart Reuben and Gerry Walsh in 2014.

David Welch receives FIDE Arbiter Award
David Welch receives FIDE Arbiter Award

We send our condolences to all of his many family and friends.

David Welch, photograph by John Upham
David Welch, photograph by John Upham

Happy Birthday IM James Adair

IM James Robert Adair
IM James Robert Adair

Happy birthday IM James Adair, on this day (November 9th) in 1992.

Reading born and University of York based James Robert Adair gained his International Master title in August 2014. James plays for York RI and 4NCL White Rose and played for Reading Chess Club and the Berkshire League as a junior. His best FIDE Elo rating was 2492 in August 2018.

IM James Adair
IM James Adair

Remembering Charles Edward Kemp (18-XI-1901, 09-XI-1986)

We remember Charles Edward Kemp who passed away, this day, November 9th, 1986

Using a Google translation from the Italian(!) wikipedia article we have

Charles Edward Kemp ( Manchester , November 18, 1901 – Manchester , November 9, 1986 ) was a British chess composer .

He composed over 600 problems , many of which were of help and Fairy (with heterodox pieces ). He often collaborated with Thomas Rayner Dawson in editing the Fairy Chess Review , founded by the latter ..

Together with Karl Fabel he wrote the book Schach ohne Grenzen (“Chess Without Borders”), Walter Rau Verlag, Düsseldorf, 1969.

In the second problem reported below, the heterodox piece called Grillo (” Grasshopper ” in English, represented by an inverted Woman ) appears . Remember that this piece moves along the columns or diagonals, but only by skipping a piece (of both colors) and completing the move in the next house; if an opposing piece is found, it will be captured. In any case, even without moving, he acts on this house. The black cricket in c4, for example, can make only five moves: c4-c2, c4xe4, c4-c7, c4-f7 and c4-f1; in all the houses of arrival it does not check the white king.

(From https://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Edward_Kemp)

Birthday Greetings IM Alan Merry

IM Alan Baxter Merry
IM Alan Baxter Merry

Birthday greetings to IM Alan Merry on this day (November 8th) in 1996.

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IM Alan Baxter Merry
IM Alan Baxter Merry

Happy Birthday IM Gary Quillan

IM Gary M Quillan
IM Gary M Quillan

Best wishes to IM Gary M Quillan on his birthday, this day (November 7th) in 1970.

Garry Quillan
Garry Quillan

Congratulations FM -> IM (nearly) Marcus Harvey !

FM Marcus Ross Harvey
FM Marcus Ross Harvey

Congratulations are in order for Witney based Southampton Unversity student FM Marcus Harvey who obtained his second International Master norm at the recent Hull 4NCL International Congress by scoring 4.5/9 with wins over IM Andrew Greet and IM Richard Palliser. Marcus plays for 4NCL Wood Green.

FM Marcus Ross Harvey
FM Marcus Ross Harvey

Remembering Jacob Henry Sarratt (?-?-1772, 06-XI-1819)

Jacob Henry Sarratt
Jacob Henry Sarratt

We remember Jacob Henry Sarratt who died 200 years ago today (November 6th) in 1819.

Chess historians will, of course, be familiar with JHS but the name is (probably) not well known outside these exalted circles.

Possibly his most obvious contribution to chess in England was in 1807 when he influenced the result of games that ended in stalemate. You may not know that in England prior to 1807 a game that ended in stalemate was recorded as a win for the party who was stalemated. JHS was able to influence various major chess clubs so that the result be recorded as a draw. Much endgame theory would be different if it wasn’t for JHS !

Outside of chess, JHS was an interesting chap :

The content below has been copied (and we have corrected a few typos along the way) from http://www.edochess.ca/batgirl/Sarratt.html

Also, http://billwall.phpwebhosting.com/articles/Sarratt.htm is worthy of consultation.

Jacob Henry Sarratt, born in 1772, worked primarily as schoolmaster but was much better known for his advocations which, of course, included chess.

After Philidor’s death, Verdoni (along with Leger, Carlier and Bernard – all four who co-authored Traité Théorique et Pratique du jeu des Echecs par une Societé d’ Amateurs) was considered one of the strongest players in the world, especially in England. Verdoni had taken Philidor’s place as house professional at Parsloe’s. He mentored Jacob Sarratt until he died in 1804. That year Sarratt became the house professional at the Salopian at Charing Cross in London and most of his contemporaries considered him London’s strongest player.

There he claimed the title of Professor of Chess while teaching chess at the price of a guinea per game.

By any measure Surratt was not a particularly strong player, but he was able to maintain the illusion that he was by avoiding the stronger players as he lorded over his students who didn’t know better.

Sarratt’s most important contributiion to chess was that he mentored William Lewis who in turn mentored Alexander McDonnell.

Surratt had a strange notion that chess culminated in the 16th century and that everything since then had been a step backwards. This odd notion had a positive side. Philidor was the darling of the English chess scene. Almost all books at that time were versions of, or at least based on, Philidor’s book. Surratt at least kept open the possiblitly that there were ideas beyond those of Philidor.

In 1808, true to his role as a teacher, Surratt published his Treatise on the Game of Chess, a book that mainly concentrated on direct attacks on the king which he lifted from the Modense writers.

He translated several older writers whom he admired (though his translations are not considered particularly good):
The Works of Damiano, Ruy Lopez and Salvio in 1813.
The Works of Gianutio and Gustavus Selenus in 1817.

In 1921 a posthumous edition of his Treatise, A New Treatise on the Game of Chess, was published. This copy covered the game of chess as a whole and was designed for the novice player. It also contained a 98 page analysis of the Muzio Gambit

In addition to his chess books, Surratt also published
[i]History of Man in 1802,
A New Picture of London[/i] in 1803
He translated Three Monks!!! from French in 1803 and Koenigsmark the Robber from German in 1803.

His second wife, Elizabeth Camillia Dufour, was also a writer. In 1803 (before they were married, which was 1804), she published a novel called Aurora or the Mysterious Beauty.

They were married the following year. His first wife had died in 1802 at the age of 18. Both his wives were from Jersey.

Contrary to what one might expect, Sarratt has been described tall, lean and muscular and had even been a prize-fighter at one point. He had also bred dogs for fighting. He was regarded as a very affable fellow and very well-read but with limited taste (Ed : surely this applies to everyone ?)

William Hazlitt, in his essay On Coffee-House Politicians wrote:

[Dr. Whittle] was once sitting where Sarratt was playing a game at chess without seeing the board… Sarratt, who was a man of various accomplishments, afterwards bared his arm to convince us of his muscular strength…
Sarratt, the chess-player, was an extraordinary man. He had the same tenacious, epileptic faculty in other things that he had at chess, and could no more get any other ideas out of his mind than he could those of the figures on the board. He was a great reader, but had not the least taste. Indeed the violence of his memory tyrannised over and destroyed all power of selection. He could repeat [all] Ossian by heart, without knowing the best passage from the worst; and did not perceive he was tiring you to death by giving an account of the breed, education, and manners of fighting-dogs for hours together. The sense of reality quite superseded the distinction between the pleasurable and the painful. He was altogether a mechanical philosopher.”

Somewhere along the way there must have come about a complete reversal of his fortunes because Surratt died impoverished in 1819, leaving his wife destitute. But the resiliant Elizabeth Sarratt was able to support herself by giving chess lessons to the aristocracy of Paris.

She must have been very well liked. In 1843 when she herself became old and unable to provide for herself, players from both England and France took up a fund to help her out. She lived until 1846.

Some games by Jacob Henry Sarratt:

Best Wishes IM Philip J Morris

Reenen duToit, Philip Gregory, Alan Hanreck, Tony Stebbings, Philip Morris, Conor Murphy
Reenen duToit, Philip Gregory, Alan Hanreck, Tony Stebbings, Philip Morris, Conor Murphy

We wish IM Philip J Morris all the best on his birthday, this day (November 5th) in 1967.

Phil plays regularly for Beckenham & Charlton Chess Club in the London Chess League and has played for Invicta Knights Maidstone in the Four Nations League.

Birthday Greetings IM Gary Lane

IM Gary Lane, photograph by John Upham
IM Gary Lane, photograph by John Upham

We send birthday wishes “down under” to IM Gary William Lane, born this day (November 4th) in 1964.

From Wikipedia :

Gary William Lane (born 4 November 1964) is a professional chess player and author. He became an International Master in 1987 and won the Commonwealth Chess Championship in 1988. He has written over thirty books on chess, including Find the Winning Move, Improve Your Chess in 7 Days and Prepare to Attack. There have been translations in French, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish. In the 1980s the ITV documentary “To Kill a King” was screened nationwide in Great Britain.It featured a young Michael Adams and Lane. This feature is shown regularly at chess film festivals.[1]

IM Gary Lane
IM Gary Lane

After his marriage to Woman International Master Nancy Jones, he moved to Australia, winning the Australian Chess Championship in 2004. He won the 2005 Oceania Chess Championship and represented Oceania at the Chess World Cup 2005.

He has also represented Australia in the 2002, 2004, and 2006 Chess Olympiads.[2] In the 2004 Olympiad he helped Australia score a 2–2 draw with his former country England, scoring a decisive win over Nigel Short.[3] He has been a chess coach for England or Australia at the World Junior and also European Junior championship for over a decade[when?].

Gary & family at the London Chess Classic, photograph by John Upham
Gary & family at the London Chess Classic, photograph by John Upham

In 2012 he won the George Trundle Masters in Auckland, New Zealand with a score of 7/9,[4] and the NZ South Island Championships in Dunedin, with a score of 8/9.[5] He was unbeaten in both events.

In 2015 at the Australian tournament the Doeberl Cup he beat Loek van Wely the reigning Dutch Champion and one of the world’s leading players. [6] He played the Closed Sicilian which he has also written about in two books. In 2016 he came =1st at George Trundle Masters in Auckland, New Zealand with a score of 7/9,[7] and followed this up with =1st place scoring 8/9 at the NZ South Island Championships in Canterbury.[8] He did not lose any games in the two events. At the 2nd Fiji International Open Chess Tournament Lane dominated the event winning with the perfect score of 7/7.[9] A score of 9/9 and clear first place was the result at the 1st Fiji International Rapid Open.[10]

Lane is a supporter of Torquay United F.C. [11]

Wells, Lane, Emms and Norwood
Wells, Lane, Emms and Norwood

Remembering Reginald Joseph Broadbent (03-VIII-1906, 29-X-1988)

In simultaneous play at the central cafe, Mr. RJ Broadbent pauses at the board of Mr. J. Nowell
In simultaneous play at the central cafe, Mr. RJ Broadbent pauses at the board of Mr. J. Nowell

We remember Reginald Joseph Broadbent who passed away on October 29th 1988

A detailed biography may be found here