The final round of this year's Stepney Primary Schools Chess League took place in the spectacular offices of the EBRD in Canary Wharf. Eight schools took part, each sending in a team of 6 children for a full day of chess activities. The event was held on the 16th floor of the EBRD, with incredible views across London in all directions. At stake was the league trophy for which our schools have been competing all year.


The day began with the children receiving lessons from CSC tutors. These were a chance for the children to fill in some gaps in their chess knowledge in preparation for a competition later in the day. A huge range of material was covered, from how to stop Scholar's Mate, to what to do if faced by the Caro Kann Defence! There followed a simultaneous display given by the EBRD's top chess player, FM Miguel Senlle Caride. The children took on Miguel either individually or in small groups and gave him some very tough games.


In the afternoon, there was time for a four-round tournament, giving the children the chance to test their skills against their peers from other schools. This was a fantastic demonstration of the knowledge they've built up in their chess lessons back in school - we saw some excellent endgame technique and a couple of spectacular smothered mates. The prize giving was held in the bank's auditorium, complete with sweeping lights and music as the children came forward to collect individual medals and team trophies. English Martyrs Catholic Primary School were the winners on the day while Thomas Buxton Primary School were worthy overall champions, accumulating more points over the season than any other school. 


As well as the chess activities, the children received a presentation on the activities of the EBRD. Tower Hamlets lies sandwiched between the financial districts of the City and Docklands. This was a great opportunity for the children to learn more about how these industries work and the career opportunities they provide. Our huge thanks to the EBRD for their hospitality and support and for giving the children such a memorable day.