Ilford Recorder Chess Column (circa 1899 - 2002)

It is a sad fact that the editor of the Ilford Recorder, one Chris Carter, took a decision to dumb down the newspaper by removing the Chess Column, along with other items of a cultural interest, from its pages. This decision was implemented at the end of October 2002.

This website is the replacement.

Anyone who reads this site has the author's permission to print one copy of each article for their own or their Chess Club's benefit provided that the web address and the name of the author are shown on the print; and that the person taking the print write to:-

Chris Carter, Editor
Ilford Recorder
539 High Road

complaining about the lack of chess in the Recorder and explaining how good it used to be.

Update 3/2/2003: Ian Hunnable has drawn to my attention to the fact that the above statements, which were completely true at the time I wrote them (November 2002) have been rather overtaken by events. There was certainly a protest amongst readers of the Chess Column against the Editor's intention to scrap it. Several people, myself included, wrote to the Editor to deplore his decision and this protest has borne fruit in that Jon Manley has been asked to take the column on.

I have the greatest respect for Jon's journalism and can heartily recommend "Kingpin", of which he is Editor. However, Jon has told me that he accepted the post for a fraction of the amount of money which I received (he has agreed to produce the column for the same rate of pay that I received in 1986) and also has been given a much more restricted brief than that which I enjoyed for more than 16 years. I believe that he is selling himself short but is doing so out of public-spiritedness and to maintain the 100-year-old tradition of Recorder chess.

I believe that this whole episode reflects extremely badly on the Editor of the Recorder, who has attempted to abandon the community aspect of the local paper in order to maximise its profits. It is to the readers' credit that the tradition of Chess in the Recorder has been maintained, although given that the Editor is clearly no longer committed to the Column one wonders whether this is just a "stay of execution", as has been the case in other local papers' chess columns.

Some old Ilford Recorder articles can be read here.

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