Inaugural Heywood, Lancashire, Chess Congress

June 24-25 1995


The venue for this inaugural event was the Civic Centre in the centre of Heywood, a Lancastrian town well served by its closeness to Manchester and the M62/M66 motorways. This was probably one reason why the event pulled in 152 entries at the first attempt, another may have been nearly £1300 in prize money. Anyway it’s very nice to report that the event was rated a great success, by players at all levels, with regards to venue, facilities and organisation. Special thanks must go to the Heywood trust fund for part sponsorship of the Congress, and to the Mayor who opened the proceedings with the comment "I can only say I’m flabbergasted!"

Flabbergasted is another word to describe being drawn to play on the main stage against GM candidate James Howell (grade 237). Local player Ben Hague fell to James in the first round of the Open, but visually handicapped Graham Lilley provided a much sterner test in the second :

Oliver Jackson and Jeff Horner had been making steady progress and came head to head in the 3rd round, in what was thought by most as the game of the tournament. The notes for the game are by Oliver:

This win allowed Oliver to draw with James Howell in the fifth and final round to share first place with James and Brett Lund who came up fast on the rails.

Meanwhile Ben Hague finished on this high note:

All 5 sections were not decided until the last hour of play in the final round.

 James Howell with the Mayor Rodney Stott and his Wife

Joint Open Winner James Howell with the Mayor Rodney Stott and his Wife

All 1995 Joint Open Winners

Joint Open Winners Brett Lund (left), James Howell (centre) and Oliver Jackson (right)





1st= J.Howell (Trafford Jun.Kts.), O.Jackson and Brett Lund (Preston) 4/5

Grading prizes: G.Lilley, M.Goodger and C.Riley

20 players



1st= K.Gornall (Crusaders) and S.Woodcock (Atherton) 4/5

3rd= G.Ellison (Poulton) and M.Whitehead (Rochdale) 3½/5

Grading prizes: J.L.Bentley, A.Lewis, J.Whitfield, A.Tyton and G.Chisango

21 players



1st P.R.Pugh (Preston) 4½/5

2nd= P.R.Chapman (Wigan) and David Buckell (Nelson) 4/5

Grading prizes: D.Talbot, A. Watson, B.Shaw, K.J.Salman and S.Crowley

30 players



1st= B.Kane (Prescot) and D.Brent (Urmston) 4½/5

3rd= J.J.McKeown (Southport), E.Ford (3C’s), A.R.Howe and B.O’Rourke (Eccles)

Grading prizes: R.Taylor, D.Scorer, R.Carter, V.Logan, V. Adatia, T.Sharkey, N.Coward, P.Haig, M.P.Coward and P.Hopkins

61 players



1st D.Wolstenholme 4½/5

2nd= H.Ahmed and C.Dunlop (Crusaders) 4/5

20 players

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