The Torbay Chess Congress
An annual congress held on the English Riviera
The Torbay Congress
Torbay Chess Congress
Torbay Chess Congress

50th Torbay Chess Congress Report

11th - 13th November 2016 at the Livermead House Hotel, Torquay


Open 25; Major 33; Intermediate 29; Minor 45 giving a total of 132 entrants. This is an increase of eight over the previous year.

Prize Winners


Scroll the table to the right to see full details.

1stWilliam McDougall (199)ChichesterWinning £225 and WECU nominated open qualifying event for the 2017 British Championships with £100 bursary.
2ndJohn Edge (183)Halesowen4Winning £130.
Joint 3rdChris Lowe (175)ExeterBoth winning £40.
Jeremy FS Menadue (189)Truro
Grading Prize 184 – 175 incMike Waddington (182)Dorchester3Both winning £15.
Richard J Webster (176)Calderdale
Grading Prize Under 177Oliver E Wensley (168)ExmouthBoth winning £15.
Robert G Taylor (167)Wales
Slow starter (0/2)William G Adaway(168)DorchesterWinning £30.


Scroll the table to the right to see full details.

Joint 1stRay Sayers (164)4All winning £85.
Ronnie Burton (162)Weymouth
Megan O'Brien (148)Plymouth
Grading Prize 158 – 148 incArthur M Hibbitt (158)Banbury3All winning £6.
Matthew R Wilson (158)Teignmouth
Yasser Tello (156)Wimbledon
Raymond J Gamble (155)Derby/Spondon
Ivor S Annetts (150)Tiverton
Grading Prize under 148Philip A Neatherway (182)3Both winning £15.
Peter E Halmkin (144)Teignmouth
Slow starter (0/2)Nathan Mills (153)Teignmouth2Winning £30.


Scroll the table to the right to see full details.

1stDavid J Jenkins (134)PenwithWinning £120.
Joint 2ndStephen Williams (136)Cwmbran4Both winning £65.
Paul Foster (126)Medway
Grading Prize 131 – 125 incMalcolm A Roberts (131)Holmes Chapel3Both winning £15.
Ray K Hunt (129)
Grading Prize under 125Timothy J Crouch (120)King's Head/PimlicoBoth winning £15.
Clifford B Peach (96)South Hams/ Plymouth
Slow starter (0/2)Mike J Cuggy (121)Brixham2Winning £30.


Scroll the table to the right to see full details.

Joint 1stHelen Archer-Lock (118)Abbey School/Reading4All winning £40.
Jason D Madden (117)Leamington
Ian Farrow (109)Hull
Alan R Fraser (107)Beckenham and Bromley
Grant Daly (102)Downend and Fishponds
Oliver Stubbs (118)Downend and Fishponds
Roy Greenhalgh (111)South Hams/ Plymouth
Grading Prize 111 – 106 incMichael R Pope (111)Salisbury3All winning £10.
Alan H Davies (110)South Hams
Peter Saunders (106)
Grading Prize 105 – 95 incMartin Maber (104)Taunton3All winning £8.
David F Burt (102)Bournemouth/ Poole
John W Carr (100)Portsmouth
Hazel Welch (97)Seaton
Grading Prize 94 – 76 incJack Tye (88)Downend and Fishponds3Winning £30.
Grading Prize under 76Anthony Moorhouse (67)TeignmouthAll winning £8.
Kenneth Hayden-Sadler (53)Teignmouth/ Poole
Wendy Carr (45)
Patrice Tournier (45)Hastings/ St Leonards
Slow starter (0/2)Edward Prenton (93)Winning £30.

British Championship Qualifier and a Bursary of £100

William McDougall

Torbay Individual Championships (incorporated in the Congress)

Open: Basil Wallis CupSteven LevySouth Hams
Major: Challenge CupMegan O'BrienPlymouth
Intermediate: Intermediate CupRobert WilbyPlymouth
Minor: Candidates CupRoy GreenhalghSouth Hams/Plymouth

Best Score by a Devon Player in the Graded Sections

Ralph Newman CupMegan O'BrienPlymouth

Best Score by a Devon Junior

John Whitfield CupJoshua BlackmoreNewton Abbot

Team Event

Teams of four players entered into this competition. The players in each team came from the same club. This year seven teams entered including 2 each from South Hams and Teignmouth. Three teams tied for first place on 12 points. The winning teams and players were:

South Hams RoguesDownend DynamoesTeignmouth - A
Steven LevyRichard LivermoreBill Ingham
David ArcherRobert TaylorMatthew Wilson
Alan DaviesOliver StubbsNathan Mills
Roy GreenhalghJack TyePeter Halmkin


The Congress was again held at the Livermead House Hotel. The 51st Congress will be held at the same venue from Friday 10th to Sunday 12th November 2017.

The Torbay Congress will follow on from the Exmouth Seniors which will run from Monday 6th November to Friday 10th November.

The 50th Congress

The Congress was formally opened by Mr Ray Hill, the Chairman of Torbay Council, on the Saturday morning. He was impressed both by the longevity of the Congress and the players' evident enthusiasm. Ray Chubb, the long time organiser of the Congress, and Bill Frost the guru of the ChessDevon website both dropped in and were warmly greeted by the players.

A 50th Chess Congress is a special event and we sought to mark it by involving all the players in a fun lottery style draw – importantly it was random and did not involve chess skills. Among the prizes were:

  • Beautiful pens crafted in wood from Buckland Abbey, Drake's home, supplied by Devon Pens
  • MadCow wooden puzzles created in Axminister, Devon
  • Chess Books written by Devon authors
  • Sunday lunches provided by the Livermead House Hotel.

You might perceive a 'Devon' theme in the prizes. They were well received by the players and we were treated to the spectacle of John Ariss sprinting around the room to hand them out. The organising team were very pleasantly surprised by Jorgen Neilsen who turned the tables and presented us with a lovely box of chocolates – thank you.

The competition was fierce in all sections with many awards being shared between a number of players. In the Minor no less than seven players shared the top spot. The additional grading and slow starter prizes meant that nearly every game in round five was decisive at some level.

Congress Team

The Congress relied on a large number of people to make it happen and to make it happen smoothly and competently. Tony Tatam again did his usual marvellous job of managing the entries and managing the Congress. I am indebted to Tony Tatam, John Ariss and Graham Mill-Wilson for efficiently sorting out pairings often with a very limited amount of time. Phil McConnell has been supportive and encouraging throughout the year and over the weekend he published the results and pairings on the Torbay Congress web site as soon as they were available. Rosemary Pavitt created the wall charts in her inimitable style. Ray Hunt delivered, set up and collected much of the kit with his usual calm efficiency. Mark Cockerton was our liaison with Kitsons, Solicitors, but then stayed on to help set up. I am aware that many other people helped to pack away sets, but sadly I didn't record their names. Brendan O'Gorman kindly consented to act as the photographer for the occasion and some of his photographs will be added to the website. The playing equipment was again supplied by Keverel Chess. Please be aware that I am very grateful to all of you for your help.

This year we used digital time clocks for the first time. They were supplied by; the Bristol League, courtesy of Alan Papier, delivered and collected by Graham Mill-Wilson; the Plymouth Chess Club, delivered and collected by Tony Tatam; South Hams Chess Club, delivered by Phil McConnell; Torquay Boys Grammar School and Newton Abbot Chess Clubs, delivered and collected by Trefor Thynne, who also stayed on to conduct some inpromptu training. To all of you a big “Thank You”.


This year the Congress was sponsored by Kitsons Solcitors, Bob Jones of Keverel Chess, the Livermead House Hotel and Devon Pens. Such generous sponsorship helps to maintain the Congress and ensure its survival.

Ken Alexander
Congress Organiser
November 2016