Home | Updated 10 February, 2016


Newham kids take on the World champion

17.12.15 - Fresh from winning the London Chess Classic in Olympia, the World Champion Magnus Carlsen took on six children from the London Borough of Newham in a simultaneous display at Hamleys Toy Shop.



The lucky six were Shahjahon Saidmurdov, Stefania Iosub, David John, Kata Szatmatri, Joshua John and Robert Dybowski, are all taught chess in curriculum time as part of the 'Every Child a Chess player' partnership between Newham Council and Chess in Schools and Communities.


After the exhibition all the children received a signed 'Play Magnus' chess set.


During the exhibition the children were interviewed by Norwegian TV. Go to 23 minutes and 28 seconds for the news segment on the simul. After the games Magnus signed each player’s score sheet and the children took him a Play Magnus Chess Set and signed board.


More Photos here

Free chess for your school to start in January 2016!


19.12.15 - We have some fully-funded places left on our chess e-learning programme. Your school can get chess until the end of the year with all equipment, materials and teaching completely free of charge.


Click here for details.




Thursday 14th January 2016 | Submitted by: Emma Mason


Chess, gambling and cards: Tudor games and indoor pastimes

Hundreds of years before the invention of radio or television, how did the Tudors occupy themselves of an evening, or during long, winter nights? Melita Thomas, the editor of Tudor Times, investigates …



Interior of a hostelry, after a woodcut in a folio edition of Virgil,

published Lyons, 1517.



'Playing Chess', engraved

by T Fry, 16th century.


Wandering around a Tudor house or garden on a sunny day is a delightful experience. We can imagine the lady of the house in her velvets and French hood picking flowers and herbs, or the maid turning those herbs into cooking ingredients or medicine.


Visiting during the day, we seldom think of what the evenings must have been like – long hours, with no entertainment other than what the household could provide. How did they while away the evenings? The answer is board games – some of which we still play to similar rules today, and some that have been adapted over time.




The most enduring game of all is chess, which has been played in western Europe since the early Middle Ages – witness the beautiful Lewis Chessmen (chess pieces of walrus ivory, found on Lewis in 1831, but likely made in Norway in around AD 1150–1200).


The rules of chess, however, underwent a significant change in the mid-to-late 15th century when the queen, originally a weak piece, became the most dominant figure on the board. The romantic among us might date the change to the emergence of powerful female rulers, such as Isabella I of Castile or Anne of Beaujeu, regent of France from 1483-91.


Read more ...

Training Course in Hull


17.1.16 - We are pleased to announce a course for new tutors in Hull in February. It is open to anyone regardless of teaching or playing experience.


Online booking available here.

Free School Chess Events


18.12.15 - The 7th London Chess Classic school events took place at Olympia from 4 to 11 December 2015.


There were record attendances, with 1718 children representing 101 schools from Bristol to Bradford playing 4141 tournament games across 6 days.


Click here for Ray Morris-Hill's superb photographs.


CSC also organised the English Junior Rapidplay on behalf of the English Chess Federation, which was filled to capacity weeks in advance. All results here and photos here.


Chris Young | Mon 21 December 2015


Bradford pupils visit London to take part in national chess tournament

Pupils at a Bradford primary school have visited London to take part in a chess tournament involving schools from around the country.



The team from Horton Park School at the London Chess Classic


Horton Park Primary is the first school in Bradford to work with Chess in Schools and Communities, a London-based charity that works to promote chess, mainly in primary schools in the UK.



It has helped numerous children develop a love of chess, and earlier this month a team from the school attended the annual London Chess Classic in Olympia.


CSC tutor Nick Mullan, who has been working with the children for over a year, said: “The children have all made excellent progress with their chess since we started the programme around 18 months ago


Read more ...

CSC Volunteers

18.11.15 - CSC is looking for a volunteer in London and also have tutor vacancies. More information here.

Sunrise making name for itself in wide world of chess

October 8 2015 | SUNRISE


10.10.15 - On 10 October 2015, the Mayor of Newham, Sir Robin Wales, will play a friendly chess match against Mike Ryan, the Mayor of Sunrise City in Florida, in the Transatlantic Mayors' Chess Challenge. Children from Newham and Sunrise will also play against each other by internet link.


Newham Borough Council are working with CSC and East Village in a Charity-Public-Private Initiative to teach chess in all 64 Newham primary schools.


Sunrise has recently been named the US Chess City of the Year, and teaches 30,000 children the "First Move" programme that is now being piloted by CSC.


Read more here

Yes2Chess CSC Liverpool Tournament


01.7.15 - The Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson provided the splendid venue of St. George's Hall for the first CSC Chess Merseyside Junior Tournament for primary schools on Monday 29 June. 400 children in 80 teams from 26 schools took part in sections for: U11's - 20, U10's - 26, U9's - 24 and U8's - 10.



The first CSC Chess Merseyside Junior Tournament - St George's Hall


The splendid St. George's Hall hosted the 1st Yes2Chess Liverpool event. A team of CSC tutors supported by volunteers from Barclaycard’s office in Sefton together with local players and teachers helped Tournament Director Bob Clark and CSC Chief Executive Malcolm Pein to ensure that this was a day to remember.


Following the prize giving, the children were given a round of applause from the grown-ups for their friendly, competitive play and for their excellent behaviour throughout. As part of the Yes2Chess programme supported by Barclaycard, every child received a free chess set and board.


More here ...

Yes2Chess Grand Finals 2015


17.7.15 - It was the second edition of an initiative to get children all over the world to play chess. 4,200 competitive games took place in a special Yes2Chess room on Playchess, and in person, and 40 finalists from the UK, Spain, Portugal, the US, Sweden, Germany, Denmark and Norway played the final matches of the international tournament in Hyde Park on 24th June to determine the overall winning school.


In June 2015, the Yes2Chess Grand Finals were once again staged at the Barclaycard Presents British Summer Time music festival in Hyde Park. The second edition of the tournament followed the first’s successful formula, as primary school teams from Denmark, Germany, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, and the USA were flown to London for a three day programme of events. The schools from Norway and Denmark took part in over the board qualifying tournaments, whilst the schools from Germany, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, the UK and the USA qualified via the private Yes2Chess room on Playchess.


Read more and play through some of the games ...

21st Yarm Team Chess Championship

Saturday, 3 October 2015




The 21st Yarm Team Chess Championship attracted 18 teams from all over Teesside.



There were sections for Under-9 and Under-11 players; both saw terrific battles for the top places over the course of five action-packed rounds.


Yarm A proved to be worthy winners, conceding only a single draw from a total of 20 games.


Yarm B managed to secure a fine second place thanks to a big win in the last round.


Read more and see many more photos


Championship tournament gallery





Also, our thanks to volunteers from Barclaycard who came to lend a hand. See them in action here.


CSC is recruiting

19.7.15 - Click here for tutor vacancies.

Yes2Chess Newham v Hamburg Match


09.4.15 - For the third year running Chess in Schools and Communities participated in the annual Alsterrufer tournament in Hamburg where over 2000 children compete in a huge match between schools located on the different sides of the River Alster .



Dave Chan CEO Barclaycard Europe making the first move for the

Newham team


Once again, the match took place as part of Yes2Chess and was supported by Barclaycard in both Hamburg and London. Five players from the charity’s project in Newham came to the CSC offices at Baker St to play children from Hamburg on the ChessBase Yes2Chess server and Dave Chan CEO of Barclaycard Europe made the ceremonial first move for the team in London.



At Hamburg the first move was made by Felix Magath a former footballer and manager who is a big celebrity in Germany and is the official ambassador of Yes2Chess in Germany.


Read more ...

Ofsted recognises chess's role in children's social development

15.5.15 - Bradford Central PRU (Pupil Referral Unit) received an Outstanding grade in their February 2015 Ofsted inspection, and the school’s CSC programme was given particular praise. The section of the report that discussed the safety and behaviour of the pupils – which was also deemed ‘outstanding’ – said the following:


“Inspectors were extremely impressed by student’s attitudes when observing the weekly chess sessions, where all students spend up to an hour learning and playing chess with each other and staff. These are special moments and contribute hugely to students’ social development.”


The charity began work at Bradford Central PRU after a referral from a school in Leeds, where the charity has been working for four years. After an initial year under the tutelage of CSC’s Leeds and Bradford Coordinator, Winston Williams, Bradford Central PRU took on the teaching themselves, creating a worthwhile and sustainable programme that we are delighted to have been recognised by Ofsted.


Click to download the complete Ofsted report in PDF format.

Say Yes2Chess !

Yes2Chess offers school children the opportunity to play online in a safe environment on the Yes2Chess server. Access to the server is free of charge and open to all children who register through their school from anywhere in the world to play friendly games. Every UK primary school is invited to register their pupils and start playing. Yes2Chess requires no special software to download, it is entirely web based and once you register and receive your passwords, children can start playing.



The 2nd Yes2Chess International Challenge open to children from USA, UK Germany, Spain, Portugal, Norway, Sweden and Denmark is also underway. Primary schools can register up to 20 teams of five players, all born after 1st January 2003, with each team containing at least one female.


The national tournament winner will receive a fun-filled trip to London in June 2015 to take part in Finals Weekend, where they will compete over the board against teams from the USA, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Sweden, Denmark and Norway. Last year, the finalists stayed in a top London hotel, and enjoyed a simultaneous against Grandmaster David Howell, a bus tour of London, a reception at the Houses of Parliament and a ‘Mad Hatter’s Tea Party’ at Barclaycard’s HQ in Canary Wharf.


The 2014 final was staged at Barclaycard Presents British Summer Time, a music festival in Hyde Park. A report on the 2014 event by Matthew Lunn can be found here. See the video! More about Yes2Chess and CSC.



Interview: Mayor of London at the London Chess Classic

07.2.15 - Boris Johnson talks about the importance of chess during a visit to the 6th London Chess Classic in 2014.





Chess makes children smarter


23.1.15 - New research from Denmark showed that primary school children in Denmark performed significantly better at Maths if one hour of matches was replaced with chess.


Read more ...

Chess in Schools and Communities wins Innovative Project Award

10th July 2013


The Earl of Wessex presents the Innovative Project Award to Chess in Schools

and Communities Chief Executive Malcolm Pein, alongside Sam Franks (Hiscox).


On 9th July 2013 Chess in Schools and Communities (CSC) was presented with the Innovative Project Award at the 2013 Sport and Recreation Alliance Awards sponsored by specialist insurance company Hiscox.


The award was presented to the charity’s Chief Executive, Malcolm Pein, by HRH The Earl of Wessex at St. James’s Palace in London after the charity impressed the judges with their ground-breaking initiatives over the past year.



With studies showing a clear link between playing chess in primary school and improved concentration and educational attainment, CSC has doubled in size in the past year ...


Read more ...






CSC on BBC Breakfast TV


Chess in Schools and Communities launched it's first Charity-Public-Private initiative in a ground breaking project to teach 20,000 children how to play chess in London Borough of Newham.


BBC Breakfast TV featured the launch on Wednesday 13 March 2013.


More here ...

Chess in Schools and Communities launches first Charity-Public-Private initiative



Chess in Schools and the Communities (CSC), a UK registered charity and Newham Borough Council are working together with East Village in an innovative project to deliver chess to all 64 primary schools in Newham and teach 20,000 children to play the world's most enduring game.


The 'Urban Chess' program was launched on 13th March. East Village celebrated its sponsorship of CSC, by welcoming local schools to Stratford Library for a fun and educational morning of chess games and classes on a giant board - led by British Champion Grandmaster Gawain Jones.


Read more ...

Royal Commended Performance 2012

25th July 2012


Chess in Schools and Communities received the Royal seal of approval on 19th July at St James’s Palace.


Chief Executive IM Malcolm Pein received the ‘highly commended’ award from HRH Prince Edward the Earl of Wessex at the Sport and Recreation Alliance's Community Sport and Recreation awards ceremony.



The award was made in recognition of CSC's 'innovative work in schools'.


Read more ...


  Press releases: CSC | SRA | ECF |



Strasbourg Visit Report

Wed 15th Feb 2012

CSC is working with the Kasparov Chess Foundation Europe and European Chess Union (ECU) on a political campaign to garner support for chess to be introduced to schools Europe-wide.


The focus of the campaign is a written declaration which can be found here http://www.kcfe.eu/wd50 . This was sponsored by 5 MEPS from the UK, Finland, Italy, Bulgaria and Malta.



Malcolm Pein, CEO of CSC and Rudi Valcke, chess teacher (BE)

explain the benefits of chess during the  Chess in School seminar at

the EU (on the left, Garry Kasparov)


Written declarations need the support of half of all MEPs before they can go before the European Commission for consideration and possible action.


For the last 6 months Garry Kasparov and his team, aided by the office of Bulgarian MEP Slavi Binev have been working tirelessly to secure the signatures of 380 MEPs. I am delighted to report that to date 377 signatures have been received!


Thanks to all those who wrote to their MEP's.


Read more ...

First birthday reception for the charity Chess in Schools and Communities

18 October 2011


Rachel Reeves MP, Member of Parliament for Leeds West, hosted our first birthday reception in the Jubilee Room at Westminster on Tuesday. A huge thank you to Rachel who recently visited one of our schools in her constituency to give a simultaneous display. Despite not having played competitively for many years, she remains a very good player and even Garry was impressed.


Children from Teesside, Leeds, Manchester, Liverpool, Swansea, Cardiff, Bristol, Barnet, Hackney, Newham and Hammersmith and Fulham were accompanied by their teachers and parents. Every child got the chance to take on Nigel Short in a simultaneous display. Rachel spoke about how learning chess at an early age had helped her. CSC are also grateful to the 13th World Champion Garry Kasparov who came to London and spoke at the event as well as making many media appearances. Thanks also to Nigel Short who played the children and a few MPs without losing a game!




Grandmaster Jonathan Rowson and our Field Worker England international Sabrina Chevannes, also made some moves. There was an outstanding performance from Matteo Walls of William Patten School in Hackney who nearly drew. I played a few moves and came to his board to find the position completely equal after about 30 moves – well done!


Rachel’s colleagues in the Labour Shadow Cabinet; Angela and Maria Eagle also attended the event. They, like Rachel, were strong junior players but in my home city of Liverpool.

Photos © Ray Morris-Hill

Malcolm Pein, Chief Executive.                                                                                                             


Click to see more photos from the event .



Monday 19 January 2015


An hour of chess replacing maths made Danish pupils better at maths





Pupils are better at maths, if they drop one math class every week and play chess instead.


It is the result of a major research project from the University of Aarhus, where five schools in Aarhus participated.


The children were taught chess instead of mathematics once a week for ten months - and it paid off: The pupils in the classes that have played chess has had up to 30 percent greater progress in math compared with the classes who have not had chess.


Read more ... (in Danish)


Charity Commission: 1133120



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