Club chess
Tournament chess
Team chess

Chess grades
Using chess grades to measure how well you play
How they give you your first chess grade
How they use your match results to update your chess grades

Player’s grade

If you regularly play in chess competitions, you will eventually be given a grade. That grade will be based on your results during the year. The better you play, the higher your grade.

Club chess for junior players

This section will not teach you to play chess, but it should help you understand what is available for all players aged under 18. This page looks at chess clubs.

Learning Chess

Most people start by learning to play chess from friends or family. There are also books, computers, videos and even DVD’s to teach you the basics, and help you improve your game. You may also want to join a chess club.

Club Chess

A chess club gives you the chance to meet other chess players socially. The games you play against them will help you become a better player. You can also ask questions if there is something you do not understand.

Some games will be played just for fun, but as you improve, you may be encouraged to enter tournaments. Most clubs run at least one tournament each year for their members. Beyond the club, there are also local, regional and national tournaments to take part in. The club can also help you get involved in team events where you can play for your school, club or county.

Some clubs meet in school, others are open to the public. They both have advantages and disadvantages.

School Chess clubs

Whether there is a chess club in your school will usually depend on which school you go to.


  • The club is usually run in school time.
  • It is controlled by teachers.


  • Not all schools have a chess club.
  • The number and standard of players can vary.
  • Good players may soon have difficulty in finding worthy opponents.

Depending on when they meet, some school clubs may be happy to take children from other schools.

Tournament and Team chess

This site has similar guides to:
Tournament Chess
Team Chess for school, club or county.

Chess clubs outside school

Unlike school clubs, nearly all other chess clubs are open to anyone who wants to join. Some will only take junior players, and most of the others will be happy to accept them. Some clubs may not currently have any young players among their membership.


  • Depending on where you live, there may be more than one chess club nearby to chose from.
  • Players with a wider range of playing skills are normally present.
  • Nearly all clubs will have at least one league team, providing the opportunity to try League Chess.


  • These clubs tend to meet on a weekday evening — normally starting between 7.15 and 7.30 pm.
  • At least 4 or 5 other juniors may need to be attending the club regularly for the average junior to feel at home in this type of chess club.

Most of these clubs have a mainly adult membership.

Local clubs that coach junior players

The clubs section indicates local clubs already have junior players.

Local clubs

Details of some local clubs that are already involved with coaching and encouraging junior players can be found in the clubs page of this site.

In Control

The person who looks after young chessplayers in Staffordshire is

Traci Whitfield
Email: Traci Whitfield

Tel: 01782 623361
Please don't call after 9 pm.

Junior players welcome

Mrs Traci Whitfield,
Staffs Junior Chess,
21 Bankfield Grove,
Scot Hay,

Chess logo


Please contact:

Traci Whitfield  and  Andrew Davies


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