Bringing Chess to Visually Impaired People

The Gazette - November 2018

Sponsored by Geoff Patching
Edited by Julie Leonard
The views expressed in the Gazette do not necessarily reflect the policies or views of the BCA, nor those of the editor.

Forthcoming Events

16th to 18th November 2018: International Open Tournament, Hallmark Hotel, Derby

This year's International Autumn tournament will be held at the Hallmark Hotel, Derby. The hotel has excellent facilities and is very conveniently located within a few yards walk of Derby railway station.

There will be two five round chess tournaments. The Open section is open to all visually impaired chess players and associate members of the BCA. The Challengers is limited to those graded 100 or below. The entry fee for both tournaments is £10. Arbiters will be Julie Leonard and Matthew Carr. Tristram Cole will act as steward.

The cost of dinner, bed and breakfast for members and associate members is £40 per person per night for Friday and Saturday nights in a single room, and £37 per person per night sharing a double/twin room. For non members and those staying on the Sunday night, the cost will be £58 per person in a single room and £51 per person sharing a double/twin. The closing date has now passed, but if you’re very quick it may still be possible to enter subject to availability and payment of the late entry fee as per our Booking Conditions.

Please direct any queries relating to the tournament to the organiser, Voldi Gailans.

15th to 17th March 2019: The Les Whittle Memorial AGM Weekend Chess Congress

This will take place at The Old Swan Hotel, Harrogate. The AGM will be held at 2pm on Saturday 16th March. We are pleased to be returning to this popular hotel with its excellent facilities. The hotel is located close to the town centre, and a short taxi ride from the railway station.

There will be two five round chess tournaments. The Open section is open to all visually impaired chess players and associate members of the BCA. The Challengers is limited to those graded 100 or below. The entry fee for both tournaments is £10. The cost of dinner, bed and breakfast for members and associate members is £42 per person per night for Friday and Saturday nights regardless of room type. For members and associate members staying on the Sunday night, the cost will be £59 per person in a single room and £51.50 per person in a double/twin. For prices for non-members, please contact the organiser.

The closing date for entries is 25th January 2019. Please send your entry fee and full payment for all accommodation to Gill Smith by this date. Please send any resolutions or other items for inclusion on the AGM agenda to Guy Whitehouse by 31st December 2018. Also, let Guy know if you are planning to attend the AGM without staying at the hotel so that we can let you have the AGM papers.

Organiser Steve Burnell.

Tuesday 9th July to Tuesday 16th July 2019: The Geoff Patching Memorial British Championship

This will be held at The Livermead House Hotel, Torquay. It will be a seven round event, with one round each day, and will be open to all visually impaired chess players both from the UK and overseas. It will also be open to all associate members of the BCA. The British Champion will be the highest placed UK visually impaired player. Depending on the entry, there may also be a Challengers event in addition to the main championship.

This is a new venue for the BCA but it comes with good recommendations. For the last few years it has been the venue for a very popular one week chess tournament run by the Devon Chess Association and a few of our members have attended that.

The cost to BCA members and associate members will be £290 per person for the week, for dinner, bed and breakfast regardless of room type. The entry fee will be £10. For anyone staying part of the week only, the cost will be £42 per person per night for dinner, bed and breakfast. For anyone wishing to stay additional nights at the beginning or end of the tournament, the cost per night will be £69 per person regardless of room type. Payment for entry and all accommodation, including any additional nights, should be sent to the Treasurer by the closing date of 14th May 2019.

Organisers Gary and Tanvi.

Booking Conditions and Procedures

By entering a BCA tournament, a player is deemed to have consented for their name and any special requirements to be passed to the hotel prior to the event. Also, consent is considered to have been given for a player’s name, club, results and possibly also their gender to be sent to the ECF for grading purposes. For juniors, the date of birth is also required if they are to get the age-related grading bonus they are entitled to.

If you have any queries about the hotel or the tournament please contact the organiser. Blind and partially sighted UK residents under the age of 25 receive free entry and free accommodation when playing in BCA events. In appropriate circumstances, free accommodation is also available to a parent or guardian accompanying a junior.

Visually impaired UK residents in their first year of membership receive their first BCA weekend event free or £100 reduction in the cost of a week-long event. They may also be accompanied by a guide or companion who will receive the same concession. For a first event we ask for payment in advance and we then make a refund at the event.

You may pay in these ways:

Cheques payable to Braille Chess Association should be sent to Gill Smith, see the front of the Gazette for her address.

Online or telephone payments may be made to:

Braille Chess Association, sort code 40 52 40, account number 00082456.

Credit/debit card payments may be made through the BCA website.

If you pay by direct payment then you should inform Gill when the payment has been made. Bookings accepted after the closing date are subject to a £10 late booking penalty for each person. Late bookings and entries are accepted at the discretion of the organiser. Bookings are confirmed when full payment has been received. Payments can only be refunded within the time limit set in the terms and conditions set by the hotels. Members are advised to take out holiday insurance to cover themselves.

When contacting Gill please let her know if you want a single, double or twin room and if you have a preference for a bath or a shower. And remember, if emailing Gill, copy in the tournament organiser.

Also say whether any of the following apply.

1 If you will be bringing a guide dog;

2 If you are on a special diet;

3 If you have mobility problems and would benefit from being located in a room near to a lift;

4 If you are a wheelchair user;

5 If you feel you would have any special difficulties in an emergency such as a fire evacuation;

6 Any other special requirements.

The BCA reserves the right to refuse or cancel any entry or to exclude any person from any event it runs.