Alfred Dempster H Whyte

Thanks to Brian Denman for this article

A D H Whyte

Little seems to be known about the early life of Alfred Dempster H Whyte. He was born on 29th October 1906, but it is uncertain where. Part of the problem may lie with the fact that the surname of Whyte could easily become confused with White. Unfortunately there also does not seem to be any trace of him in the 1911 census.

He does appear in the 1939 National Register and is living at 27, Marylebone Lane, London. His profession is listed as a painter and decorator. He is mentioned as marrying Violet Barnes at Hastings in 1945 and it seems that he first joined the club in that year.

He started playing on a relatively low board for club and county and he might not have played a lot of chess before coming to Hastings. However, in 1946 he was the East Sussex Queen winner and an example of his potential came a year later, when he defeated former British champion, R C Griffith, on board 14 of a Sussex v Middlesex match. It was not to be long before he established himself as a top ten county player. He seems to have reached his peak in the mid-1950s. In 1955 he came first equal with Arthur Winser in the club championship, though he lost the play-off match. In that same year he reached the semi-final of the county championship. After these performances he played a number of games on board 1 for the club when Arthur Winser was not playing. In 1958 he again tied first with Arthur Winser in the club championship and lost the play-off match.

His play declined only slowly and he continued to represent the club for many years. His name appears in the grading list for 1979 and perhaps later. He died in Hastings on 1st March 1982 at the age of 75. I believe that he left a good sum of money to the club on his death and the Alfred Whyte Cup was created in his honour. I enclose a couple of his games:

Rumble,JFS – Whyte,ADH [A54]

Hastings Congress 1947-48 Major ‘B’ (6), 03.01.1948

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 d6 3.Nf3 Nbd7 4.Nc3 e5 5.e3 Be7 6.Qc2 0–0 7.b3 b6 8.g3 Bb7 9.Bg2 Qc8 10.0–0 c6 11.Bb2 Re8 12.Rad1 Bf8 13.dxe5 Nxe5 14.Nd4 c5 15.Nf5 Bxg2 16.Kxg2 g6 17.Nxd6 Qc6+ 18.Nde4 Neg4 19.Rd5 Bg7 20.h3 Rxe4 21.Nxe4 Nxd5 22.cxd5 Qxd5 23.Bxg7 Kxg7 24.hxg4 f5 25.gxf5 gxf5 26.Qc3+ Kg8 27.Qc4 Qxc4 28.Nf6+ Kf7 29.bxc4 Kxf6 30.Rd1 Ke6 31.Kf3 Rg8 32.Rh1 Rg7 33.Rh4 Ke5 34.g4 fxg4+ 35.Rxg4 Rxg4 36.Kxg4 b5 37.f4+ Kf6 38.cxb5 c4 39.Kf3 h5 40.a4 c3 41.Ke2 c2 42.Kd2 h4 43.a5 h3 44.b6 axb6 45.axb6 c1Q+ Sources: J F S Rumble and BritBase. 0–1


Whyte,ADH – Hall,A [D22]

Hastings CC Championship, 1963

1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Nc3 a6 5.e3 Bg4 6.Bxc4 e6 7.0–0 c5 8.Qe2 cxd4 9.exd4 Qc7 10.Bb3 Be7 11.Bg5 0–0 12.Rac1 Qa5 13.Ne4 Nc6 14.Nxf6+ gxf6 15.Bh6 Nxd4 16.Qe4 Bxf3 17.Qxd4 Rfd8 18.Qf4 Bh5 19.Rc7 Rd4 20.Qc1 Re8 21.Rc8 Red8 22.h3 Bb4 23.Rxd8+ Qxd8 24.Qe3 Bg6 25.Rc1 Rd3 26.Qa7 Rd7 27.Ba4 Bd2 28.Bxd7 Bxc1 29.Bxc1 Qxd7 30.Bh6 Qc8 31.Qd4 e5 32.Qd6 Source: Hastings and St Leonards Observer of 11.4.1963. 1–0

Wanstead and Woodford, friendly

Our next home friendly is on Saturday 3rd September against another regular, Wanstead and Woodford, we lost 7-11 last time in 2019 so looking for revenge! Please sign up on the list in the club. Arrangements to be confirmed

UPDATE. Revenge was ours with an 8-7 victory

Reg Cload

Reginald Cload

Chairman of Hastings & St Leonards Chess Club 1987- 1990.
President of Hastings & St Leonards Chess Club 1991 – 1999.

Reg Cload, as he was known to everyone at the club, was born in London on 8 July 1921. He moved to Hastings in 1951 to work for the civil service. He died in Hastings on 8 April 2010. The Reg Cload Trophy is played after each AGM between The Presidents team and The Chairmans team.

Reg Cload was the author, together with Raymond Keene, of the book Battles of Hastings published by Pergamon Press in 1990. This is subtitled “A History of the Hastings International Chess Congress”. It begins with the formation of the club in 1882, followed by an account of the famous 1895 Tournament that featured 22 leading masters of the day, including the World Champions Emanuel Lasker and Wilhelm Steinitz, and was won by H. N. Pillsbury. Each chapter covers a particular period and begins with an account of the historical developments of the time and the personalities involved. This is followed by an annotated selection of games from the annual tournaments. The last event covered is that of 1989/90. There are also two sections of photographs. Much of the historical material reproduced on this website comes from Mr Cload’s research published in this book.

Hastings v Hammersmith 18 June 2022

Friendly match – Hastings v Hammersmith

18 June 2022

It is enjoyable to travel around the country playing chess in different cities. But last weekend it was our chance to stay at home and let the challengers come to us. Hastings and St Leonards Chess Club were hosting a friendly match against one of the top London clubs, Hammersmith Chess Club. The visitors arrived at midday with a team of 10 players, and a number of supporters, and the competition was soon underway.

The home team were marginally stronger, and based on the grading tables would have expected to win 6 games and lose 4. However, the home advantage kicked in and Hastings were ready to shine.

The first game to finish was the bottom board where Hastings Junior Alex Lebedev was facing the youngest competitor, 7 year old Oliver Valle. Alex played good solid chess and steadily dominated the board, giving Hastings their first win.

This was followed by board 9, where Martin Fletcher was playing against Brian Joyce. Martin found some tactical ideas in the middle game and forced a victory before reaching the end game. A pattern was starting to develop, and these two wins were followed on Board 8, where Keith Hossack beat Frank Valle; Board 6, where Brendan Ruane beat Robin Sarfas; Board 5, where Mark Brougham beat Adam Cranston; and Board 2, where John Sugden beat Gaston Franco.

Hammersmith were able to avoid a clean sweep with Ian Calvert on Board 3 and Paul Kelly on Board 4 being held to a draw by Michael Saunders and Edoardo de Angelis.

After several hours of play there were just two games still continuing. On Board 1 Daniel Lowe was in an evently matched end game against Marios Kouis. With both players graded at 2170 this was always going to be a difficult result to call and as it reached its climax the game could still go either way. However Daniel’s faultless end game skills proved decisive and Hastings had one more win. The final game was Caelan Rooney against Charlie Sturt. This was also a very closely fought end game, with the clock also impacting on the play with

just minutes remaining. Like Daniel, Caelan showed that he was solid in the end game, and this proved too much for Charlie as the final chance of a win for Hammermith disappeared. This gave a final result of 8 wins and two draws to Hastings with a score of 9:1.

While the long play games were the main course for the day, these were followed by a dessert of rapid play with a five round blitz tournament. Twelve players took part in this and the winner (with 4 points) was Hammersmith player Gaston Franco. Jim Wheeler was joint second with visitor Michael Sunders, both achieving 3.5 points.

The day was a great success. Not only did both teams enjoy some great chess, but it was also a friendly atmosphere, and Hastings are definitely hoping that this will become a regular fixture – perhaps with a trip to London next time. After the match the Hastings team were quick to say that the cammeraderie was more inportant than the winning. However that is much easier to say when you have won 9:1, than when you have lost.

Martin Fletcher

Newmarket Chess Tournament

From our roving reporter Martin Fletcher
Newmarket Chess Tournament – 27 May to 29 May 2022
Here is a brief report on the Newmarket Chess Tournament, which I attended last weekend.
It is a relatively small event – limited to 96 players (this number was reached). It also has only three sections – Open; Under 1950; and Under 1650.
It is held in a hall on Newmarket High Street. There was a cheap car park very close to the venue (just £3 all day), so travel was fine. I also found a relatively cheap Travel Lodge 15 miles away which kept the costs down.
The five games were played over three days (one on Friday evening and then two on Saturday and two on Sunday).
It was a friendly/sociable event, and most of the players knew each other, with probably the majority being from clubs in East Anglia.
The time control was 40 moves in 90 moves – with a 15 second increment from move 1; and then an additional 15 minutes after move 40. This time control did give a problem on the Sunday, as one of the games which started at 10am was still going strong when round 5 was meant to start at 2pm. One of the players seemed convinced that the game was clearly drawn, but the arbiter was unable to declare it a draw, and it was not until 2:20pm that the other player decided to accept a draw. This did delay the start of the afternoon – even more so for the two players in that game (and their opponents) who had a 30 minute rest before they went into round 5,
With a relatively high cut off for the minor section, there were very few lower graded players entered, which meant I started the event ranked 15th out of the 18 in this section. However, I had a good tournament and managed to finish higher up the leader board. With one loss, two draws, and two wins I finished equal fourth, and also gained the rating prize (with a grading increase of 19 points over the five games). I was happy with this result; although I am still having flashbacks to the disastrous knight move in the endgame of game 2. I had an extra pawn in the endgame with a knight against my opponent’s weak bishop. My endgame play is not great, and I gave away a winning game – not only that, but that extra point would have won the tournament! If only …. Why? …. Sigh!
Once I have got over game two I shall definitely recommend this tournament to others in the club. I shall be back next year to try to atone for the knight move, and shall be very happy to have some club members on hand to commiserate if my endgame does not improve.
As an aside there was one interesting incident on Saturday afternoon. When the games started at 10am one of the players was sitting opposite an empty chair on board 5, watching the time tick away. Then at 10:10 a player scurried into the room, sat opposite him, and started to play. It was another ten minutes before a second late player arrived and came to board 5 to belatedly start his game. The first late player was not only a poor time-keeper, he was also playing at the wrong board – he was paired on board 2! An interesting situation for the arbiter’s examination.

Last Mid Sussex match and table

The last mid Sussex match played on Saturday was the first team at home losing to Brighton 1-3, the final table shows the first team 3rd and the second team fifth out of 8 teams.

Division 1

Team Play Won Draw Lost For Against Points SP MP IM
Brighton & Hove 7 6 1 0 22 6 13 0 0 0
Horsham 1 7 5 0 2 19 9 10 0 0 0
Hastings & St Leonards 1 7 5 0 2 16 12 10 0 0 0
Lewes 7 3 0 4 11½ 16½ 6 0 0 0
Hastings & St Leonards 2 7 2 1 4 12 16 5 0 0 0
Worthing 7 2 1 4 11 17 5 0 0 0
Horsham 2 7 1 2 4 11½ 16½ 4 0 0 0
Eastbourne 1 7 1 1 5 9 19 3 0 0 0

Mid-Sussex League chess match Hastings second team against Horsham 2

28 April 2022

The Hastings and St Leonards second team played their final match in the Mid-Sussex League at home against Horsham 2.

Once again Hastings was facing a stronger team, with an average grade of just 1756, compared to Horsham’s 1844. Hastings got off to a good start with an early win by Paul Kelly, against David Roberts. Paul has been the anchor of the Hastings team, having played in every match, and achieving 3 wins and 2 draws. The visitors then caught up with a win by Philip Stimpson, against Hastings board 1 player Henry Cove. The next game to finish was Adrian Cload against Alex Taylor. This was always going to be a tough match for Adrian, as he was giving away 262 rating points. However, he played a strong game and lasted 42 moves before he was defeated.

With Horsham leading 2 points to 1, the result of the day rested on team captain Martin Fletcher, who was facing Roger Waddingham. Martin sacrificed a pawn early in the game in exchange for a positional advantage, and continued to press this advantage throughout. Roger was almost able to win the endgame with an advance of three central pawns, but Martin was able to use his king to stop the attack. And on move 58, when Martin moved his pawn to a7 it was clear that Roger was unable to stop this becoming a queen on the next move, and he resigned.

With this 2:2 draw, Hastings achieved a very welcome point, and finished the day in fifth place on the league table. A couple of the teams below them still have a game or two to play, so this may change. But Hastings will definitely not finish at the bottom of the table. For a second team in Division 1, this is a good achievement.

Martin Fletcher

Players trip to St Albans Chess Congress

23 April – 24 April 2022

Chess tournaments are a strange mixture of tension and excitement. The high points are really high, especially following a challenging win. And the low points are really low, especially when full of self-recriminations when making a foolish mistake, or failing to capitalise on a winning position. Five long games over two days is physically (as well as mentally) draining. Most importantly, chess is a social sport, and sharing the event with fellow club members is definitely to be recommended.

This was exactly what happened this weekend as a group of 10 chess players from Hastings & St Leonards Chess Club, with a wide range of abilities, travelled to St Albans for a weekend of chess. The event was split into five sections, with the lower graded players in the Minor event, and the strongest players in the Open, (with Intermediate, Major and Challenger in between). Hastings was represented in each section. The games were timed at 90 minutes for each player (with an extra 10 seconds added with each move), meaning that the games could last over three hours. With three games on Saturday and two on Sunday the time spent sitting at a chess board can easily mount up.

The club representatives were:

Minor section

Bill Filby

Martin Fletcher

Paul Buswell

Intermediate section

Marc Bryant

Major section

Steve Blewitt

Ted Filby

Challenger section

Brendan Ruane

Paul Kelly

Jim Wheeler

Open section

Rasa Norinkeviciute

At the close of play on Saturday there were three players with 2 points out the possible 3. These were father and son, Ted and Bill, and also Steve. Two of these were able to maintain their form, and were joined on day two by Paul Buswell in achieving a score of more than 50%. Paul and Steve both delivered a final score of 3, while Ted increased his score to 3½. With three draws, Ted finished his section in third place with no losses.

The overall winner on the day was Han Yichen, a 14 year old player from the Netherlands, representing Magdalen College School, who finished on 4½ points in the Open.

In the Minor section Martin delivered the first blunder of the tournament. Following an unforgivable lapse of concentration he lost his knight on move 4. It is generally believed that the loser is the player who makes the last mistake and that proved to be the case in this game. Both players continued to play steady chess, and the move 4 error was never recovered. Martin won his next game and also won the fifth game finishing in 34th place with 2 points. Bill was unable to improve on the two points at the end of the first day, and stayed on 2 points at the end, sharing 34th place with Martin. Paul Buswell played well in this section, with two wins and two draws finishing well up the rankings in 15th place.

In the Intermediate section Marc arrived on Saturday in high spirits, looking forward to some stimulating chess. However, the lack of regular practice started to show in his results, and he finshed the day with just half a point; a score which did not increase on day two.

The Major section was where the top action was seen with Ted’s podium finish. Steve finished close behind Ted with three points, and 9th place. This was achieved with two wins and two draws.

In the Challengers section Paul Kelly was hindered by the logistics of a chess tournament. On Sunday morning his train was cancelled and he missed the replacement bus. He was awarded a half point bye for game four and he lost game five, finishing the event with 2 points. This was disappointing as his first game in round one was, in his own words, a perfect game. Brendan Ruane finished on 2½ points with one win, two draws and a bye, with Jim Wheeler not far behind with two draws and one win for 2 points. Jim and Brendan took advantage of the pairing on Sunday morning. Finding they were playing against each other they delivered an early draw, giving them time to enjoy the local pub before the afternoon game.

Finally, in the Open section, Rasa finished 15th with two points achieved from two draws and one win. It was noted that Rasa spent the most time at the boards with her games nearly all going to the wire. When everyone else had finished playing on Saturday evening, Jim checked on the progress of Rasa’s game and reported back that after over two hours her game was just starting out, with a position everyone else was in two hours earlier. The late Saturday finish did mean that the evening meal was a takeaway just as the restaurants were closing. But it also meant that there was the maximum time spent in companionable converstation about all things related to chess. And that, after all, is what it is all about. Ted went home with a top three finish. The rest of us went home with happy memories and plans for the net tournament where we will do better, having learnt important lessons at this one. Don’t go to the pub before game five; check on train and bus arrangements; don’t leave all the action to the last five minutes of play; play some practice games before the tournament; and most importantly don’t move your knight to g5 on move 4.

Report from Martin Fletcher

Est. 1882