Cumnor Primary School

Tutor: Andrew Varney


Oxford Spires Academy

Tutor: Sandy Ruxton


SS Mary & John CE Primary School

Tutor: Sandy Ruxton 

Assisted by volunteers from Oxford Spires Academy


Community Projects

Restore Cafe


Previous projects

Mulberry Bush School






























Supported by:

The Red Hill Trust


UK Chess Challenge 2015-16


Children representing CSC schools in Oxfordshire performed excellently in the UK Chess Challenge:


* Jasmine Burgess (Oxford Spires) - U15 Oxfordshire Suprema

* Ross Tselos (Restore Café) - U12 Oxfordshire Supremo, 3rd= Southern Gigafinal, 2nd= Terafinal Challengers

* Hari Salvaraj (SS Mary & John) - U11 Oxfordshire Supremo, 3.5/6 at Southern Gigafinal

* Robert Fry (SS Mary & John) - U9 Oxfordshire Supremo, 3/6 at Southern Gigafinal

Congratulations to the under-9s team from SS Mary & John, who reached the semi-finals of the English Primary Schools Chess Association (EPSCA) Championship.

Cumnor Primary School Stars



16.7.15 - Two pupils from Cumnor Primary School had great results at the UK Chess Challenge Southern Gigafinal.


Movses Shirinyan was in the Under 10 section and his brother and Daniel in Under 9s. Both brothers scored 4˝/6. For Movses this was enough for equal third place, so he is through to Terafinal Challengers; for Daniel that gave him equal fourth, so instead he will play in the Silver Plate.


- Andrew Varney


Oxfordshire Megafinal 2015


05.6.15 - U13 Supremo - Oscar Idle (Oxford Spires Academy) U10 Supremo - Hari Selvaraj (SS Mary & John Primary)

U11 Boys Qualified - Ben Matthews (SS Mary & John Primary) U8 Boys Qualified - Theo Baldock (SS Mary & John Primary)


Just for interest, SSMJ were fourth in the Oxfordshire U-11 league, behind Magdalen College A,B, and C teams!


- Sandy Ruxton


EPSCA U9 and U11 county events



25.5.15 - Cumnor Primary School is quite active in chess beyond the CSC course, and there are many there who have done well at the county level. The head also teaches chess to some of the younger years. Some of the boys have played in the recent EPSCA U9 and U11 county events, and more than a few of the girls in the Oxfordshire U11 girls team.


Because of the old county boundaries used for the UK Chess Challenge, players from the school are considered hors concours for the local (Oxfordshire) Megafinal. Nevertheless, 5 children entered, of whom 3 qualified for the Gigafinal. This included the overall winner in the U9 section, who incidentally also won the top Oxfordshire U9 trophy at the county team trials back in January.


Cumnor PS – all names for ‘roll of honour’

Laura Bain

Lucy-Rose Clare

Susannah Foster

James Clare

Daniel Shirinyan

Movses Shirinyan


Break down:

Oxon EPSCA county teams members

Laura Bain

Lucy-Rose Clare

Susannah Foster

Daniel Shirinyan

Movses Shirinyan


UK Chess Challenge Southern Gigafinal qualifiers

James Clare

Daniel Shirinyan

Movses Shirinyan


- Andrew Varney




Cumnor Chess Club meets every Thursday night between 7pm and 9pm at Cumnor Old School (behind the Post Office), High Street, Cumnor, Oxford, OX2 9PE.


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Chess in Schools and Communities’ pupil qualifies for England Junior Squad



Chess in Schools and Communities are delighted to announce that Oscar Idle, formerly of SS Mary and John Primary School in Oxfordshire, has qualified for the England Junior Squad.



Oscar learnt chess when he was four, and started to play the odd game with his dad and his aunt. He began playing more regularly a few years later, at SS Mary and John Primary School. This was at their recently launched chess club, under the guidance of CSC tutor Sandy Ruxton.



It was there that he discovered how much he enjoyed playing, so his parents looked for other opportunities for him to play chess outside of school. This led to him playing for the U9s county team and for his local chess club in Cowley. As well being selected for the U12 England team this year, he continues to play for the county, for Cowley Chess Club, for his secondary school and in other individual tournaments around the country.


Oscar says, 'I really enjoy everything about chess: strategy and tactics and the complexity of the game - everything except losing.'


As well as chess Oscar is a big sports fan, and particularly enjoys playing tennis and running. He also really enjoys opportunities to write poetry, and is involved in drama and public speaking at his secondary school - Oxford Spires Academy - who host the Oxfordshire Megafinal every year.



Joan Clanchy, SS Mary and John Primary School

"First, I must record what a real success your lessons in chess have been.


Astonishingly, we have 26 hopefuls signed up for the summer term, when every other activity has gone into decline. The four stars have also signed up for their extra tuition, which is good.


One pupil is going forward to the tournament in May and could do with some extra help. He has never excelled at anything in school and has had some bad luck in his life, so it would be good if this was a boosting experience for him. We will soon have to find the team for the match against the other Primary Schools."




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