Yorkshire Chess History



1854: Hull v Preston Correspondence Match











Made in Yorkshire



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Whilst it was increasingly feasible for West Yorkshire chess clubs to play over-the-board inter-club matches, Hull was relatively out on  limb, so for them, the inter-club correspondence match was still the main option for playing another club.  The Bellman (Humberside magazine with a chess column) of 16th August 1879, on page 12, referred to a correspondence game played between Hull and Preston 25 years earlier.


Hull won both games, presumably one as White and one as Black.


The Bellman gave the score of one of the games:

Hull v Preston, Correspondence, 1854

White: Preston, Black: Hull

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 exd4 4. Nxd4 Bc5 5. Be3 Bxd4 6. Bxd4 Nxd4 7. Qxd4 Qf6 8. c3 d6 9. Be2 Qxd4 10. cxd4 f5 11. f3 Nf6 12. Nc3 Bd7 13. Bc4 c6 14. a4 O-O-O 15. O-O g5 16. b4 Rde8 17. Rae1 h5 18. b5 Rh7 19. Re2 Rhe7 20. Rfe1 fxe4 21. Nxe4 Nxe4 22. Rxe4 Rxe4 23. Rxe4 Rxe4 24. fxe4 cxb5 25. axb5 Kc7 26. Kf2 Kb6 27. Be2 g4 28. h3 Bxb5 29. Bxb5 Kxb5 30. hxg4 hxg4 31. Kg3 a5 32. Kxg4 a4 White resigned


Interestingly, the above game was given in a form of algebraic notation, omitting move numbers, as follows:

P e 4

P e 5

Kt f3

Kt c6

P d 4

P tks P

Kt tks P

B c 5

B e 3

B tks Kt

B tks B

Kt tks B

Q tks Kt

Q f 6

P c 3

P d 6

and so on, using “Castles QR” and “Castle KR” for “O-O-O” and “O-O” respectively.  The Bellman usually used normal English description notation.


The Bellman doesn’t record the Hull Chess Club members taking part, but they are likely to have included some of the following:

E. Boden, E Howlett, possibly Samuel Wharton Kirke (if still living in Hull at the time), T Levett, M Middleton, Newman, TW (or GW) Palmer, and (James?) Walker.





Copyright © 2012 Stephen John Mann

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