About The Club

When and Where

The Club meets on Wednesdays at 7:30pm September through June at St. Augustine's Church Hall, Richmond Road, Cambridge CB4 3PS.

Membership

The Club is open to all, and our members range in strength from beginners to those with ECF grades above 200 (or above FIDE 2200). Our membership season runs from 1 September to 30 June. We have different categories of membership, with annual subscription fees as follows:

  • Standard Membership fee: £90
  • Seniors (65 or older): £65
  • Juniors (younger than 18): £45
  • Persons other than Seniors who are unemployed: £45
  • Casual Members (not playing in our leagues, Club Championship, or other graded matches): £20
  • A person who joins January or later may be given a discount

Members wishing to play in leagues or other graded matches must also belong to the English Chess Federation, which costs about £16 - £24 (different levels) for the annual season starting in September, to cover grading fees.

Leagues, Teams, and Timings

We field teams (four or five players each) in several local leagues, for 7:30pm start. Digital chess clock time-controls limit games to around three hours, using Fischer timing, governed by the standard rules of chess. The schedule of fixtures is announced and online at the beginning of the season in September. Selection for most teams is done in August.

Main Activities

We play in the Bury Area Chess League (BACL) where we usually field six teams. Teams consist of four players, sometimes drawn from a squad of five. This League is very well organized with three divisions of six or seven teams each, playing each other team twice (Home and Away) making 10 to 12 fixtures. The Away fixtures are in the local towns of Ely, Linton, and Bury St Edmunds, on Mondays, Tuesdays, or Thursdays. BACL fixtures run from September to April.

We also play in the Cambridgeshire League against clubs from local towns mainly to the west of Cambridge, again with both Home and Away matches. We also participate in the Fenland Cup and Fenland Plate knock-out tournaments.

There is also a grading-limited tournament (The Roger Goldsmith Trophy) organized within the BACL throughout its season, offering good opportunities for less experienced players. Sum-of-grades (team of four): U500 or U580.

An informal annual "Town vs Gown" rapidplay contest (30 minutes per player) is held usually in April, mainly against Cambridge University students who quite enjoy thrashing us. Other fun events cater for handicaps and some bizarre experimental variants of chess.

Finally, there is an internal Club Championship of six or seven rounds played throughout the season (self-scheduled), formatted as round-robins within Groups, with pairings announced at the end of August.