Yorkshire Chess History



Edward Dale











Made in Yorkshire



Sheffield Sub-Site



1862, Friern district of Barnet, London



1939, Frome, Somerset





There were at one time (at least) two residents of Rotherham called Edward Dale.  One was a compositor/printer born 1844/45, in Doncaster.  One was a civil engineer born 1862, in London.  We know from the Yorkshire Telegraph & Star of 13/01/1923 that the Sheffield chess-player was born in Finchley.  We know from the Yorkshire Telegraph & Star of 03/02/1934 that the Sheffield chess-player moved to Frome.  We know the Edward Dale who died in Frome did so in 1939, aged 77, and therefore was born around 1862 rather than 1844/45.


Non-Chess Life


Edward Dale was one of at least four children born to Frederick Dale (born 1828/29, London) and Mary Ann Dale (born 1826/27, Barking Essex):


Frederick Russell Dale

born 1852/53, London

Charles H. Dale

born 1854/55, London

Edward Dale

born 1862, Friern, Barnet, London

Ethel Mary Dale

born 1869/70, Finchley


Edward’s place of birth was given as Friern, Barnet in the 1871 census as district from Finchley given as Ethel’s place of birth, though subsequently his place of birth was usually given as Finchley.  His birth was registered at Barnet in the second quarter of 1862.


The 1871 census found the parents and the four children except Charles H. Dale, and one servant, living at Dale Grove, Finchley.  Father Frederick was a clerk at the Imperial Gas Company.


The 1881 census found the parents and all four children living at Moss bank, 2 Nether Street, Finchley.  Father Frederick was still a clerk, as was Frederick junior.  Charles was an apprentice, though the trade in which he was apprenticed wasn’t stated.  Edward’s occupation wasn’t clear, simply an “S” being written down.  Ethel was recorded as a scholar.


Edward’s education and training aren’t evident, but one way or another he became a civil engineer.


The 1891 census found him lodging at Back Street, Staveley, Derbyshire.


In 1895/96 (as evidenced by the 1911 census) he married Hettie Ethel (of unascertained maiden surname, born 1867/68, East Bridgford, Notts., 8 miles E of Nottingham).  The couple lived initially at West Bridgford, about 3 miles S of the centre of Nottingham.  They had had three children by 1911, though one had by then died.  The surviving two children were as follows:


Eric Edward Dale

born 1896/97, West Bridgford

Amy Marjorie Dale

born Jan. 1901, West Bridgford


The 1901 census found the parents and above two children living at Charnwood Grove, West Bridgford.  Edward Dale was recorded as a civil engineer.  (Meanwhile, Doncaster-born Edward Dale the compositor lived at 31 Broom Villas aka Broom Terrace, Rotherham.)


By 1902 our man had moved to Rotherham, to the NE of, but adjacent to, Sheffield.  White’s General & Commercial Directory of Sheffield, Rotherham etc, 1902, listed Edward Dale, civil engineer, living at Tooker Road, Rotherham.  (It separately listed Edward Dale, journeyman printer, 31 Broom Terrace, Rotherham.)  White’s 1903 directory gave our man’s address more explicitly as 29 Tooker Road.


The 1905 directory listed neither Edward Dale, in Rotherham or Sheffield, suggesting our man moved from Rotherham to Sheffield around 1904, and that Edward Dale the printer had perhaps died, especially since Raymond Edward Dale,printer, was listed for the first time in this directory.   

Sheffield directories up to and including that of 1905 seemingly didn’t list our Edward Dale, but Kelly’s Sheffield directory dated 1908 listed Edward Dale, civil engineer, living at 33 Firth Park Road, Sheffield.  That address was omitted from the 1905 directory, as though it were temporarily unoccupied.  This all suggests that the Dales moved in Sheffield in 1904, but too late to get recorded in the directory dated 1905.


Edward Dale remained listed in directories as a civil engineer living at 33 Forth Park Road up to 1930 inclusive.  He was absent from the 1934 directory, and it was recorded in the Yorkshire Telegraph & Star of Saturday 03/02/1934 that our man had moved to Frome in Somerset around 1933.




The death of Edward Dale, aged 77, was recorded in the third quarter of 1939 at Frome, Somerset.




He was active as a chess-player in Derbyshire, before moving to Sheffield, and represented Derbyshire in the 1893 Sheffield v Derbyshire match.


While living on West Bridgford, he played for Nottingham/Nottinghamshire.  An example of him playing for Nottingham is a Nottingham v Leicester match played on 24/03/1900, when he played on board 1 for Nottingham, beating J. Collier.


In 1903-04 he was playing for Rotherham in the Sheffield league.


Edward Dale was a regular player in Sheffield’s Woodhouse Cup team from the 1904-05 season onwards, his first such match appearing to be a home match against Leeds on 15/10/1904, when he beat J. P. Myers on board seven.


He was Sheffield Champion in 1908, about another 5 times after that, and then a seventh (?) time in 1916.  He won it a final time in 1930.


He first represented Yorkshire in a county match, seemingly, on 24/03/1906, against Lancashire at Manchester.


He won the Yorkshire Championship in 1908 and won the 1921-22 championship in 1923 (!), and possibly on later occasions (data not to hand).


After moving to Frome, Somerset, he continued playing chess, representing Somerset over the board and at correspondence chess [YT&S, Sat 03/02/1934].  As late as the 1937-38 season “E. Dale (Frome)” appeared on board one for Somerset against Cornwall, beating C. T. Bennett (of Bournemouth but playing for Cornwall), in what appears to have been a correspondence match, according to The English Counties Chess Unions Combined Year Book 1938-39, page 68.



Sources, besides the usual ones:

Yorkshire Telegraph & Star of 13/01/1923

Yorkshire Telegraph & Star of 03/02/1934





Copyright © 2013 Stephen John Mann

Census information is copyright of The National Archive, see UK Census Information

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