Hello and welcome to the Newcastle-under-Lyme Chess Club website.

Chairman: Alberto Gissi     Secretary: Richard Cantliff 01782 257176.
Site maintained by Martyn Harris

Newcastle are members of the North Staffordshire and District Chess Association, though its main league is usually referred to simply as the Stoke League. Information about our venue can be found under Clubs-Newcastle. Our Privacy Policy can be viewed under Misc-Privacy.

Rambling Rook's Diary

Last Article
8 Nov 2017

Newcastle Events

This Week (21 - 25 Oct)

B Team:Cheddleton B, away, Fri
F Team:Meir D, home
Club NightFriday

Following Week (28 Oct - 1 Nov)

A Team:Crewe A, home
C Team:Crewe C, away, Wed
D Team:Alsager A, away, Tue
E Team:Crewe F, away, Wed
Club NightFriday

North Staffs Doubles

Sat 2nd Nov 2019
Holmes Chapel, 10:30 start
5 rounds, ½-hour games
320 and 220 sections
Contact Alberto Gissi 07565 554003


Birmingham Rapid
22/10/18 Joe, Chris and Dylan made their way to the Birmingham Rapidplay Congress over the weekend with Joe and Dylan scoring 4/7 respectively in the Major and Minor sections and Chris 2 in the Major.

Two Narrow Squeaks
19/10/18 The A team edged past Holmes Chapel A 3 - 2 on Thursday with Chris and Joe winning and Alex and Barry getting draws. The following night Alan and Hambel won and Nic drew as the C team won 2½ - 1½ at Cheddleton D.

E Excel
15/10/18 The E team won well at Meir C last night, with Alberto, Pete, Dylan and Andrew all winning.

B Begin Well
11/10/18 The B team started with a win against Fenton B tonight, with Barry, Alan and John all getting full points and Sam a half.

D Chop C
05/10/18 The D team beat the C in their opening fixture of the season with wins from Pete and Andrew. Alan drew with Chris as did Nic with Paul

Newcastle at Crewe
01/10/18 Joe won the 35 player Major section at the Crewe congress over the weekend with a score of 4/5, with Sam being in the 8-way tie for second a half-point further back and Chris getting some much needed practice to reduce the accumulated rust of years. Nic had a quiet time in the Intermediate (39 players), as did Dylan in the 32 player Minor.

Old boys Daniel Sullivan and James Rothwell plied their trade in the powerful 36 player Open, reaching 2½ and 2 respectively.

A move forward
26/09/18 The A team's match at Cheddleton A (106) has been moved forwards from 29th to 8th November

Friendly Win, Unfriendly Loss
22/09/18 The club lost their final South Cheshire Shield match at home to Crewe B despite Nic's win and Joe's draw. At the same time they also took on Crewe in a friendly which with the help of a win for the visitor's Philip Wright playing for us we won 4½ - 2½ with the other points coming from Chris' draw and wins from Alan, John and Sam.

Alex takes Summer Half
09/09/18 Alex won this year's summer half-hour competitin with a score of 5½/6, ahead of Myron on 4½.

15/08/18 At the fifth time of asking the South Cheshire Shield team opened their account with Chris, Alberto and Andrew all winning in the match at Crewe A.

Another Loss
09/08/18 Joe won and Dylan drew as the Shield team went down again, this time at Alsager.

Provisional Grades Published
09/08/18 The first draft of grades for the coming season were released recently. Changes shown in the table below are relative to last August's rather than the January list. Don't be too surprised if there are changes to these before the season starts.

Former members listed include
Richard Lee (Cambridge Uni)192
Geoff Marchant (Malvern)178
Ian Jamieson (Newport)172
Daniel Sullivan (Chesterfield)171
James Rothwell (Atticus)160
Martyn Harris (Kendal)160
Dave Cork (Sussex)159
Glyn Valentine (Fenton)143
Simon Maydew (Newport)140
Catherine Hiley nee Ashton (Rugeley)134
Nick Lowe (Altrincham)124
Prabhath Amarasinghe (Medway)121F
Derek Northage (Kidsgrove)105
Ivan Prikazchikov (G Man Jun)93
Robert West (Fenton)88

Pre-season Match
02/08/19 A pre-season match against Crewe will take place alongside the final South Cheshire Shield match on 20th September.

02/08/19 This year's club AGM will take place on Friday 13th September and will as usual be followed by a quickplay.

Summer Half Hour
02/08/19 This year's event will take place over the three nights Friday 16th and Wednesday 21st August, and Wednesday 4th September. As ever two games per night, with no need to play all nights. Hope as many as possible will turn up to encourage Alberto to continue to run such events.

Hambel and Joe in Torquay
02/08/19 Hambel and Joe have each played two five round events at the British Championships in Torquay. Hambel scored 2½ in the Soanes weekender (middle of three sections) and an excellent 4 in the U1750 to come 4= in a field of 83. Joe managed 1½ in the U1900, and a half point more in the presumably tougher U2050.

Another Shield Loss
02/08/19 Newcastle lost to Crewe B last week with John winning and Nic drawing.

John Prevents Whitewash
21/07/19 Newcastle's slow start to the South Cheshire Shield season continued against Alsager on Friday, when it took a daw from John to prevent the team being whitewashed.

Czech Thivyaa
13/07/19 Thivyaa is currently playing a schools teams event in the Czech Republic with her games available live on Chess Bomb. Czech her out.

County personality
13/07/19 Alberto has been awarded the title of Chess Personality of the year at the County AGM. He has also agreed to take on the role of Congress Secretary.

S Cheshire Loss
13/07/19 A fixture shuffle meant that the club played their first match a little later than expected, at Crewe B on Weds. Alberto won and Andrew drew, but this was not enough to gain a point.

Jackson Joy
15/06/19 Newcastle beat Cheddleton 2½ - 1½ in the final of the Jackson Cup with draws from Joe, John and Paul supporting Alberto's vital win.

Friendly Fun
15/06/19 Newcastle entertained Madeley for two quickplay games on Wednesday, running out overall winners 4 - 3. Chris, Dave A, Andy, Alberto and Louis all got a run out in at least one match and all but Louis picking up a point.

Alex Too Quick
04/06/19 Alex won the club's end of season quickplay last week with an unbeaten 4½/5.


Roman lach
17/10/19 I have agreed to adjust Roman's estimated grade to 150.

4NCL Congress
06/10/19 A small contingent of North Staffs players particpated in the latest 4NCL congress at South Normanton over the weekend, with Joe Hirst scoring 3/5 in the major and Julian Hawthorne and Les Fancourt having a quieter time in the minor.

Grading Booklet
01/10/19 I have added a booklet of NSDCA grades to the downloads page.

Crewe Congress
01/10/19 Needless to say there was lots of local interest in the Crewe Congress, so I won't mention everyone or repeat the performances of the Newcastle players mentioned left. Jonathan Blackburn and Bartosz Fajfer were best placed local in the Open with 3/5, Carl Gartside was in the pile-up for second on 3½ in the Major. Julian Hawthorne won the Intermediate section with 4½, with Rick Renegade and Roger Walker amongst those tied 4th on 3½, as were Derek Whitehurst and George Jelliss in the Minor.

New Dates
20/09/19 Two new dates:
505 Alsager B v Cheddleton G has been moved to 12th Nov
207 Rooks v Macclesfield to 19th Dec.

Malcolm Ties
09/09/19 Malcolm Roberts finished in an 8 way tie for first in the Morning Under 135 section at Paignton with a score of 3½/5.

Fixtures Out
26/08/19 Fixtures now available from the downloads page. Other pages will be updated gradually in due course.

Midland Congress
15/08/19 Thivyaa Rahulan, Hambel Willow and Julian Hawthorne all played in the Midlands Congress last weekend, respectively scoring 1½ in the Open, 3 in the Major and 2 in the Minor.

09/08/19 Entries for the Jamboree were well down this year - presumably the August date fell foul of too many holidays. Stafford won the Open and Cheddleton the U130 section. Full results will appear on the appropriate page when I have my next burst of enthusiasm.

09/08/19 Nic Wright, supported by Colin Abell, has agreed to taken on responsiblity for operating the LMS, and Pete Evans supported by Peter Windows will be maintaining the website.

Division 6
09/08/19 Meeting at the beginning of the week confirmed the existence of a division 6. Teams consist of at least 4 boards as agreed by captains on a match by match basis, with all boards counting. All players graded at most 80, with usual 15 point rule to determine board order.

02/08/19 I'll keep a record of entries for league and cup here.
League entries as at 12th Aug 2019

Division 1Division 2Division 3Division 4Division 5Division 6
CheddletonCheddletonChedd x 2Chedd x 2CheddletonCheddleton
CreweCreweCreweCreweCrewe x 2Crewe
H ChapelH ChapelH Chapel
MeirMeir x 2Meir
NewcastleNewcastleNewcastle x 2NewcastleNewcastle

Cup entries as at 15th Aug 2019

CreweCreweCreweCrewe x 2
H Chapel

02/08/19 Hambel and Joe were not the only North Staffs contestants at the British in Torquay (see left). Carl Gartside won the Soanes over the first weekend with a perfect 5, then scored 3 in the U1900 and 1½ in the U2050. Sam Parry reached 3 in both the Soanes and U2050, and still has a game left in the U14s. I've also spotted Sam Turner, 1½ in U2050; Malcolm Roberts with the same score in the U1900 and Harvey Murray-Smith with 3 in the U120. I trust they have all enjoyed their time on the south coast.

Post Vacant
21/07/19 Steve Emmerton has stepped down as Webmaster and LMS Administrator. The job title may not sound as grandiose as that of those who like to pontificate from the top table, but the role is considerably more important in terms of enabling the Association to run sensibly.

U100 Title
13/07/19 The Staffordshire County U100 team, the majority of whom are from North Staffs, won the National Final of their event, beating Nottinghamshire 7 - 5.

Midland Gig(a) for Jacob and Dylan
13/07/19 Jacob Boswell scored 5/6 to be joint winner of the 15-18 age group at the Midland Giga-Finals played last weekend, with Dylan Whitney being fifth equal in an U10 section with a score of 4½.

Minimum Movements
13/07/19 News of happenings at the League AGM has been slow to leak out, but there have been changes to the minimum counting grades which will now be 100, 90 and 80 for divisions 2, 3 and 4 respectively. The likely result is that the average grading difference between opposing players will increase.

North Wales
28/06/19 Joe Hirst scored 3/5 in the Major section at the recent North Wales Congress, with Julian Hawthorne, Malcolm Roberts and Michael Lee providing further North Staffs interest in that section. Les Hall was here too, playing the U120 minor.

S Lakes
11/06/19 Nic Wright was a joint winner of the Minor section at this year's South Lakes Congress, scoring 3½/5. Malcolm Roberts scored 2½ in the intermediate, where Les Hall playing up a section found the going predictably tough.

Congress round-up
04/06/19 Players from seven clubs took part in the annual UK v EU match, resulting in a resounding win for the EU:
198Alex RichardsonReinhold Heinlein187
161Michael Hancock01Bartosz Fajfer170
149Geoff LaurencePetru Floresc184
151Philip Cattermole10Kasian Capatina152
145Steve Hill01Joachim Trier136
128Douglas BarnettAlberto Gissi119
126Clive Ferry01Lukasz Michalek65
90Julian Cook01Dylan Whitney59

Previous news items for 2018/19 here