Yorkshire Chess History



George Edward Wainwright











Made in Yorkshire



Sheffield Sub-Site



02/11/1861, Redcar



31/08/1933; reg. Keynsham, Somerset



(from American Chess Magazine, 1898)


George Edward Wainwright was born in Redcar in the North Riding of Yorkshire and resided somewhere in Yorkshire, be it Redcar, Bradford or Ilkley, at least until graduating from Oxford University.  Thereafter he moved round the country outside Yorkshire, but for a time played county chess for Yorkshire on the strength of his birthplace qualification.


Non-Chess Life


George Edward Wainwright was a son of Congregationalist minister David Wainwright (born 11/03/1835, Leeds), who in turn was a son of George Edward Wainwright and Sarah Carr Wainwright (née Speigt [sic; Speight?]).


The 1841 census listed David Wainwright’s 25-year-old mother, Sarah Wainwright, a dressmaker, and 6-year-old David, without offering a clue to David’s father’s status or whereabouts.  The 1851 census found 16-year-old David Wainwright living with an uncle and aunt, John and Susanna Carlston, at Queen Street, Market Rasen, Lincolnshire.  Uncle John was a chemist and druggist, while young David was a chemist and druggist’s apprentice.


While training to be a chemist, in Lincolnshire, David Wainwright married Ann Eliza Tetley (born 1831/32, North Walsham, Norfolk), the marriage being registered in the third quarter of 1859, at Swaffham, Lincolnshire.  The couple had at least two children:


Eleanor Wainwright

born Sep/Oct 1860, Chorley, Lancashire

George Edward Wainwright

born 1861, Redcar


Clearly, a radical change in career occurred, as the1861 census found David Wainwright as the minister of St. George’s Independent Chapel, Chorley.  He was living at Park Street, Chorley, with wife “Annie” and 6-month-old daughter Eleanor.


Our man, George Edward Wainwright was born 02/11/1861, at Redcar, the birth being registered at Guisborough.


David Wainwright died 20/09/1862 at Ilkley, when George was only ten-and-a-half months old, so he will never have remembered his father.


The 1871 census found 39-year-old widowed “Annie” living with the two children at 46 Ashgrove, Horton, Bradford.  Annie was a teacher at a ladies’ school, while the children were both scholars.  Also resident with them were three governesses and fifteen boarding scholars.


The 1881 census recorded 49-year-old widowed Ann Wainwright as a schoolmistress living at Thorn House, Cow Pastures Road, Ilkley, with 20-year-old Eleanor, who was a teacher (presumably in her mother’s school), and 19-year-old George Edward Wainwright, who was an Oxford undergraduate.  Living with the Wainwrights was Ann’s 44-year-old brother Samuel Tetley (born Swaffam, Norfolk), a dry salter’s commercial traveller.  There were also two governesses and nine boarding pupils, including two nieces of Ann.


In 1886, George Edward Wainwright married Alice Margaret Pictor, at Box, Wiltshire, the marriage being registered at Chippenham, Wilts.  The couple had four children:


George E. Wainwright (junior)

born 1887/88, Chiswick, Middlesex

Philip Francis Wainwight

born 1889/90, Chiswick, Middlesex

Constance Margaret Wainwright

born 1891/92, Teddington, Middlesex

David Wainwright

born 1894/95, Teddington, Middlesex


The birthplaces of the children suggest the newly-weds stared out living at Chiswick, moving to Teddington in 18090/91.


The 1891 census found George and Alice living with their first two children, and George’s mother Ann Eliza Wainwright, at St. Ronan’s, Kinestra Road, Teddington, Middlesex.  George was described simply as a clerk, and mother Ann as a retired schoolmistress.  The household included one servant.


The 1901 census found George and Alice, with the youngest three children and George’s mother Ann living at Eastcroft, Albury Road, Stoke next Guilford, Surrey.  13-year-old George junior was still alive, so possibly away at school.  There were now three servants.  George senior had significantly improved his status being now a principal at a local government board, whatever that was.


The 1911 census revealed yet another move, to 1 St. Andrew’s Square, Surbiton, Surrey, where George and Alice lived with Philip, Constance, George’s mother Ann, and two servants.  George was seemingly in the same job, being principal clerk to a local government board.  21-year-old Philip was a “pupil” at a photographic requisites supply company.


In a report of the 1911 Yorkshire-Lancashire match he was described as “Wainwright, Ilkley”, so maybe his mother still lived there at this time.


The death of our man’s mother, Ann Eliza Wainwright, aged 83, was registered in the third quarter of 1915, at Kingston, Surrey.


Census returns lacked clarity as to the nature of his employment as a civil servant.  He was for a long period a “prominent official” at Somerset House [1], then the repository of national records of births, marriages and deaths.  He had been retired for “some years” at the time he died [1].


By the end of his life he had evidently moved to Wiltshire.




George Edward Wainwright died at the age of 72, on 31/08/1933, at Box [1], Wiltshire, about 4miles NE of Bath.  The death being registered at Keynsham, Somerset (now Avon).




The Chess Player’s Chronicle of 8th March 1882, page 112, gave a game lost by “Mr. Wainwright” playing for Oxford University chess club against B G Laws of a Fourth Class team of the City of London Chess Club on 18/02/1881.


More explicitly, “G.E. Wainwright” played for Oxford in the 1882 Oxford-Cambridge match, drawing with F. Morley of Cambridge, the game being given in the Chess Player’s Chronicle of 5th April 1882 page 159.


George Edward Wainwright played in the Class II tournament of the 1882 Counties Chess Association meeting, in Manchester, finishing 8th out of 12 players on 5 points out of 11.


He played for Ilkley, as in a Leeds-Ilkley match of 1883.


He subsequently cropped up quite frequently in matches and tournaments around the country, including five Anglo-American Cable Matches.


He was (in 1908 and 1918, at least) a member of the City of London Chess Club, the championship of which he won in 1918.


He chose remained faithful to his native Yorkshire when it came to county matches.  Examples of him representing Yorkshire in county matches include the following:

Yorkshire versus Lancashire at Manchester on 24/03/1906, when he beat Victor Lionel Wahltuch of Manchester;

Yorkshire versus Lancashire at the Grand Central Hotel, Leeds on 26/01/1907, when he lost to P. R. England of Liverpool;

Yorkshire versus Lancashire at the New Shades Restaurant, Manchester, on 21/03/1908, when he beat T. Kelly of Manchester;

Yorkshire versus Middlesex at Holland’s Cafe, Sheffield, on 12/12/1908, when he beat W. Ward of London.

He missed the Yorkshire-Cheshire match on 18/01/1908.


A later example of him playing for Yorkshire is the 1911 Yorkshire-Lancashire match.


Source (besides the usual ones):

[1]  Yorkshire Telegraph & Star of 30/09/1933





Copyright © 2013 Stephen John Mann

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

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