Young Norfolk chess players do battle on the boards at Sheringham

NIne-year-old Benedict Ward, of Norwich, prepares to put his opponent in checkmate at junior chess t

NIne-year-old Benedict Ward, of Norwich, prepares to put his opponent in checkmate at junior chess tournament held at Sheringham Primary School. Picture: KAREN BETHELL - Credit: Archant

Concentration was key at Sheringham Primary School at the weekend, as more than sixty youngsters from all over the county lined up to take part in a junior chess congress.

NIne-year-old Benedict Ward, of Norwich, prepares to put his opponent in checkmate at junior chess t

NIne-year-old Benedict Ward, of Norwich, prepares to put his opponent in checkmate at junior chess tournament held at Sheringham Primary School. Picture: KAREN BETHELL - Credit: Archant

The first in a series of four tournaments forming the Norfolk Junior Grand Prix, the event was organised by retired music teacher and lifelong chess fan, Stephen Orton, who founded Norwich Junior Chess Club 20 years ago.

Youngsters aged from seven to 18 competed for trophies at the day-long tournament on Saturday, with around eight parents playing against the clock in a friendly match.

Mr Orton, who got hooked on the game as a youngster 50 years ago, said that competitors, who had travelled from as far afield as Norwich, Wymondham and Great Yarmouth, had shown great promise and enthusiasm.

'It is very encouraging to see the progress they are making,' he added. 'Through chess, children learn concentration, logical thinking and how to cope with pressure and, for very clever children who are used to succeeding in everything they do, it is an important lesson to learn that they can't always win at chess.'

NIne-year-old Benedict Ward, of Norwich, prepares to put his opponent in checkmate at junior chess t

NIne-year-old Benedict Ward, of Norwich, prepares to put his opponent in checkmate at junior chess tournament held at Sheringham Primary School. Picture: KAREN BETHELL - Credit: Archant


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Mr Orton thanked Sheringham Primary School teacher Matthew Perry, who runs a lunchtime chess club, for his help in organising the tournament, as well as the school's Friends group members, who laid on refreshments.

Tournament winners were:

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U9s: Oscar Ellis, of Holt.

U11s: Eve Boulter-Dolder, of Norwich.

NIne-year-old Benedict Ward, of Norwich, prepares to put his opponent in checkmate at junior chess t

NIne-year-old Benedict Ward, of Norwich, prepares to put his opponent in checkmate at junior chess tournament held at Sheringham Primary School. Picture: KAREN BETHELL - Credit: Archant

U14s: William Bradley, of Wymondham.

U18s: Moby Wells, or Norwich.

For more information about Norwich Junior Chess Club, visit www.norwich chess.org.uk and for chess events in north Norfolk, visit www.northnorfolkchessclub.org.uk

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